Over a dozen people on life support in Michigan from the flu - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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http://www.uofmhealth.org/news/archive/201401/flu

 

Looks like it could be a dangerous flu this year. 

 

"More than a dozen adults and children are on life support at the University of Michigan Health System’s hospitals right now, because of flu.  Most are young and otherwise healthy...most have the H1N1 strain of flu.

And as far as hospital staff can tell, these patients either didn’t get the flu vaccine at all -- or didn’t get it in time to protect them fully.

“We are seeing the same thing we saw in 2009 and early 2010, with ICUs full of people in their 30s, 40s and 50s who need advanced life support for flu-related illness,” she says. “Except this year, protection has been available since September.”

 It appears that most of the current ICU patients have the H1N1 flu strain. This year’s regular seasonal flu vaccine protects against the most commonly circulating H1N1 strain, as well as others." 

I think I remember reading somewhere that the H1N1 flu strain is a viral descendant of the 1918 flu strain that killed mostly young healthy adults as well. 

So does this information make you worry more about the flu this year?  Do you still disagree that this year the flu vaccine benefits outweigh their risks? 

 

 


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#2 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 11:15 AM
 
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Slightly OT but I'm upset- one of my pregnant patients went to a pharmacy for a flu shot and was turned away for being pregnant! Told her she had to get it from her OBs office. ???

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#3 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 11:21 AM
 
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Most pharmacists don't want to give the Thimerisol shot to pregnant women. Didn't stop Tara over @ Red Wine & Applesauce tho.

I am interested in their definition of 'getting it in time'. What is the time lapse supposed to be?
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#4 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 11:24 AM
 
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ETA: http://www.redwineandapplesauce.com/2013/10/22/im-pregnant-but-there-were-too-many-hoops-for-my-flu-shot/

Notice, it is considered best practice for OB offices to offer it & improves uptake.
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I am interested in their definition of 'getting it in time'. What is the time lapse supposed to be?

 

IIRC, I think it takes about two weeks for it to fully work.  


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#6 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 01:18 PM
 
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This has to vary by formulation tho: I'd be curious to see what it is for the MedImmune Mist.
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#7 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 02:53 PM
 
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Slightly OT but I'm upset- one of my pregnant patients went to a pharmacy for a flu shot and was turned away for being pregnant! Told her she had to get it from her OBs office. ???

Did they not have the preservative-free? Not every store I work at does. Or did they just not want to vaccinate a pregnant woman at all? In which case, enh. I usually ask a pregnant woman if her OB is cool with her getting the shot. If she says yes, I go with it. (Now that I think about it, my midwives have said zero to me about either the flu or the Tdap shot; I went and got both on my own.) 

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#8 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 03:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by teacozy View Post
 

I think I remember reading somewhere that the H1N1 flu strain is a viral descendant of the 1918 flu strain that killed mostly young healthy adults as well. 

So does this information make you worry more about the flu this year?  Do you still disagree that this year the flu vaccine benefits outweigh their risks? 

 

I'm pretty sure all the flu strains are related to one degree or another, so yes, this one is probably related to the 1918 strain, but there are probably some pretty mild strains that are equally related to it (I don't have any citations for that, though, so feel free to prove me wrong).

 

No, reading that article didn't make me any more likely to get my flu shot this year.  I'm sure for some people it does shift the balance of risk -vs- benefits, but we got H1N1 last time it was going around, so I doubt that the vaccine would offer us much protection beyond what we already have.

 

I'm not particularly impressed by the article; it spends more time pushing the vaccine than discussing details, and I'm the sort who wants details.  I would be curious to read any more informative articles that you can suggest.

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#9 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 04:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by teacozy View Post
 

http://www.uofmhealth.org/news/archive/201401/flu

 

“We are seeing the same thing we saw in 2009 and early 2010, with ICUs full of people in their 30s, 40s and 50s who need advanced life support for flu-related illness,” she says. “Except this year, protection has been available since September.”

 

So does this information make you worry more about the flu this year?  Do you still disagree that this year the flu vaccine benefits outweigh their risks? 

 

 

I cut down the post to highlight the points I wanted to address.

 

First off, there is some good evidence the flu vaccine is only effective for about 3-4 months.  If you got the shot in September, it could have worn off by now.  The flu traditionally peaks in February or March - getting the vaccine as early as September makes little sense.

 

Secondly, no, I am not more worried about the flu this year than any other year.  I have no idea how the stats stack up this year compared to others - but if I had to hazard a guess, I would say that nationally, and thus far,  it has been pretty mild.  

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#10 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 04:14 PM
 
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ETA: http://www.redwineandapplesauce.com/2013/10/22/im-pregnant-but-there-were-too-many-hoops-for-my-flu-shot/

Notice, it is considered best practice for OB offices to offer it & improves uptake.

Oh I'm aware. If I owned the practice, we'd offer it smile.gif

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#11 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 08:41 PM
 
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KM, do you have a link about the vaccine only conferring immunity for 4 months? So are we now up to biannual shots? There's that poor little boy in Oregon who died of H1N1 and was vaccinated. greensad.gif http://www.kptv.com/story/24361002/doctors-confirm-oregon-boy-5-dies-from-h1n1-virus

Still no flu shots for me or my family. It looks like where the actual science is concerned, the jury is still out:
http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2010/04/new-canadian-studies-suggest-seasonal-flu-shot-increased-h1n1-risk

Meanwhile, we'll just wait our way through year after year of the usual marketing:

"This year is going to be really bad for the flu. Get your flu shot."

"OK. This year is going to be really, reeeeeeeallllly bad."

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Originally Posted by teacozy View Post
 

http://www.uofmhealth.org/news/archive/201401/flu

 

"More than a dozen adults and children are on life support at the University of Michigan Health System’s hospitals right now, because of flu.  Most are young and otherwise healthy...most have the H1N1 strain of flu.

 

I would be very interested to know what drugs they were given before they got to the point of being put on life support.

 

This article does not change my opinion on the flu or the flu vaccine. Plus, I and one of my children got H1N1 in 2009. (the illness, not the vaccine). From being exposed to us, my other child and my husband most likely gained immunity to H1N1 without getting sick.

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#13 of 40 Old 01-04-2014, 10:45 PM
 
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I would be very interested to know what drugs they were given before they got to the point of being put on life support.

 

Were they given Tamiflu? Tamiflu can be dangerous. We really don't know anything else about these patients. Do we trust this news article and leave it at that? Or, are there too many unanswered questions and not enough details?

 

Turquesa, that story is devastating. What's worse is that the boy was sent home from the emergency room. I wonder if he had stayed, would he still be here?


 
 
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#14 of 40 Old 01-05-2014, 08:07 AM
 
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KM, do you have a link about the vaccine only conferring immunity for 4 months? So are we now up to biannual shots? There's that poor little boy in Oregon who died of H1N1 and was vaccinated. greensad.gif http://www.kptv.com/story/24361002/doctors-confirm-oregon-boy-5-dies-from-h1n1-virus
 

Here is an article, not a study.  I will see if I can dig up a study.  There is an interesting blurb on the h1n1 in it as well.

 

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-09-21/news/ct-met-flu-shots-20120921_1_flu-vaccine-influenza-b-virus-flu-strains

 

ETA:  found this as well, it might be more useful:

http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2013/01/studies-flu-vaccine-effectiveness-waned-over-2011-12-season

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What a devastating story from Oregon!
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So does this information make you worry more about the flu this year?  Do you still disagree that this year the flu vaccine benefits outweigh their risks? 

NOPE!

 

Kathy - thanks for your posts! ah,,,,,,,,,,still time to vaccinate!

 

Teacozy - does this story worry you? 

There's that poor little boy in Oregon who died of H1N1 and was vaccinated. greensad.gif http://www.kptv.com/story/24361002/doctors-confirm-oregon-boy-5-dies-from-h1n1-virus
 


 

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Were they given Tamiflu? Tamiflu can be dangerous. We really don't know anything else about these patients. Do we trust this news article and leave it at that? Or, are there too many unanswered questions and not enough details?

 

 

 

The little bit I watch TV or open a magazine yet I do see it ALL OVER--------- errrrrrrrrrrrr :irked 

 

Wonder what it is like to live in a country where you DON'T have to "ask your Dr" if this med or that med is "right for you"!? 

 

FEAR FEAR FEAR!!! 

 

ETA- incase anyone wants to do some reading - http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/disease/us_flu-related_deaths.htm

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5933a1.htm


 

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Teacozy - does this story worry you? 

There's that poor little boy in Oregon who died of H1N1 and was vaccinated. greensad.gif http://www.kptv.com/story/24361002/doctors-confirm-oregon-boy-5-dies-from-h1n1-virus
 

 

Worry me in what way? The vaccine certainly didn't cause him to die.  The story is very tragic but I have never argued, nor have I ever heard a PVer argue that vaccines are 100% effective in 100% of people who receive them.   But the fact remains that most children who die from the flu have not received their flu vaccine.  We had a thread about this a couple months ago. 


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#19 of 40 Old 01-06-2014, 06:35 AM
 
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Worry me in what way? The vaccine certainly didn't cause him to die.  The story is very tragic but I have never argued, nor have I ever heard a PVer argue that vaccines are 100% effective in 100% of people who receive them.   But the fact remains that most children who die from the flu have not received their flu vaccine.  We had a thread about this a couple months ago. 

Really?  What gives you such certainty? Do you have first-hand knowledge of his medical history?  

How do you know that he didn't have an unusual autoimmune or inflammatory reaction to the vaccine that subsequently spiraled out of control over the next few weeks?  How do you know his immune system didn't have an unusual (or perhaps not so unusual) reaction to the flu vaccine, that left him unable to cope with the croup, if it even was croup--remember, many doctors incorrectly assume it can't be pertussis if the child was fully vaccinated, and don't even consider pertussis as a possible diagnosis. How do you know that he didn't have any underlying autoimmune disorders that might have contraindicated a flu shot?

 

Fact: you DON'T know.

 

We can't say with any certainty that he died because of the shot, but we can't say that it wasn't a causal factor, either.

 

We do know that the doctor who diagnosed croup gave him steroids to help him breathe.  That's right, steroids--which would inhibit or even shut down his ability to fight influenza, croup, pertussis, and pretty much any other virus or bacteria. So within a few weeks, an apparently healthy child was given at least one vaccine (the flu shot), maybe more, and then steroids--and then he died.  

Gee, I wonder if they gave him Tamiflu on top of everything else after they decided that he had H1N1?

 

How very unscientific of you insist on ruling out a possible factor with absolutely no evidence.  But at least you are consistent: you consistently ignore the findings by the Cochrane group that the flu shot is ineffective in children.

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Worry me in what way? 

 

what a hoot! ………….and you think non-vaccers should be worried! :laugh 


 

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Really?  What gives you such certainty? Do you have first-hand knowledge of his medical history?  

How do you know that he didn't have an unusual autoimmune or inflammatory reaction to the vaccine that subsequently spiraled out of control over the next few weeks?  How do you know his immune system didn't have an unusual (or perhaps not so unusual) reaction to the flu vaccine, that left him unable to cope with the croup, if it even was croup--remember, many doctors incorrectly assume it can't be pertussis if the child was fully vaccinated, and don't even consider pertussis as a possible diagnosis. How do you know that he didn't have any underlying autoimmune disorders that might have contraindicated a flu shot?

 

Fact: you DON'T know.

 

We can't say with any certainty that he died because of the shot, but we can't say that it wasn't a causal factor, either.

 

We do know that the doctor who diagnosed croup gave him steroids to help him breathe.  That's right, steroids--which would inhibit or even shut down his ability to fight influenza, croup, pertussis, and pretty much any other virus or bacteria. So within a few weeks, an apparently healthy child was given at least one vaccine (the flu shot), maybe more, and then steroids--and then he died.  

Gee, I wonder if they gave him Tamiflu on top of everything else after they decided that he had H1N1?

 

How very unscientific of you insist on ruling out a possible factor with absolutely no evidence.  But at least you are consistent: you consistently ignore the findings by the Cochrane group that the flu shot is ineffective in children.

 

Because that makes no sense.  The first sentence in the article is "Doctors confirm an Oregon boy, 5, has died from the H1N1 virus. "  He died from the flu.  Not from the flumist given to him a month earlier. 

 

In a different article his mother says that both her and her husband were recovering from the flu when he started getting sick.  He was clearly exposed.  

 

Occam's razor. 


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Well they certainly aren't going to come out and say he died from the measures taken to rid him of the flu, that might make the flu look like less of a bully and put the medical community and their pharmaceutical measures in the spotlight....

 

edited to add: No, haven't gotten a flu shot (ever) nor would I or anyone in my immediate family

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Where does it say he got the Mist? Maybe I missed it?
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#24 of 40 Old 01-06-2014, 10:01 AM
 
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NM: I see it now. However I do agree that we don't know if getting Vax'ed contributed to his untimely death.

This concerns the shot vs. the mist but could be relevant:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090519172045.htm
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I didn't see a reference to flu mist either.  I did see the kptv article says, "Calandra Burgess says all three of her kids got their flu shots this November, so she was surprised when her youngest son, Ronan, got sick."

 

If it was indeed a flu SHOT that he got, he might have gotten a reaction.


​If it was the flu MIST, that is known to CAUSE flu--usually mild cases, but not necessarily.  It's contraindicated for pregnant women and for children under 2.   And it could certainly have been the source of infection for his parents, if they came down with it a week or two after he was given FluMist.
 

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#26 of 40 Old 01-06-2014, 11:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I didn't see a reference to flu mist either.  I did see the kptv article says, "Calandra Burgess says all three of her kids got their flu shots this November, so she was surprised when her youngest son, Ronan, got sick."

 

If it was indeed a flu SHOT that he got, he might have gotten a reaction.


​If it was the flu MIST, that is known to CAUSE flu--usually mild cases, but not necessarily.  It's contraindicated for pregnant women and for children under 2.   And it could certainly have been the source of infection for his parents, if they came down with it a week or two after he was given FluMist.
 

http://www.kval.com/news/local/5-year-old-dies-of-flu-complications-Vaccines-arent--238797891.html

 

"Calandra Burgess said her son Ronan received the flu vaccine in November. 

"All thee of my Children had the nasal spray. My other two kids didn't get sick at all," said Burgess.

You're wrong. The flumist does not cause the flu.  

 

"Can the nasal spray flu vaccine give you the flu?

No. While the nasal spray flu vaccine does contain live viruses (unlike the flu shot), the viruses are attenuated (weakened) and cannot cause flu illness. The weakened viruses are cold-adapted, which means they are designed to only cause infection at the cooler temperatures found within the nose. The viruses cannot infect the lungs or other areas where warmer temperatures exist." 

Bolding not mine.  http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/qa/nasalspray.htm#give-you-the-flu


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I'm wondering about the impact of the steroid treatment on a 5-year-old with h1n1, regardless of the source of infection.

 

If steroids inhibit immune response, it seems to me that this was a case of medical malpractice; the doctor didn't bother to test for influenza because they were already beyond the 24-hour window for Tamiflu effectiveness (though we don't know whether Tamiflu was eventually administered in the hospital).  That's ridiculous--the doctor should have wanted to know if they were dealing with influenza or not.

 

Of course, instead of malpractice, this tragic case is being used as fodder for fear monger/marketing for the flu shot.

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​If it was the flu MIST, that is known to CAUSE flu--usually mild cases, but not necessarily. 
 

 

"

Transmission of the live attenuated virus strains in FluMist Quadrivalent does not result in illness in others1,8

TRANSMISSION ≠ ILLNESS

Shedding can result in transmission, but does not result in illness in others1,8

  • Like the influenza virus, the vaccine virus can also be transmitted to an unvaccinated individual1,8
  •  
  • However, the vaccine virus has been engineered not to cause illness1,8
  •  
  • The shed virus must regain its ability to replicate at the higher temperatures of the lungs in order for illness to occur4,5
  •  
  • The virus must revert back to wild type to produce illness4,5
  •    -With at least 5 attenuating points in each strain, the odds of reversion to wild-type influenza are 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000,000 (one in 100 quintillion) replication cycles (1x1020 replication cycles), more than a millennium in time4,5
  •     -No cases of reversion to wild type have been reported to date1

 

FluMist Quadrivalent may be used by those eligible recipients who have close contact with immunocompromised persons 9" 

https://www.flumistquadrivalent.com/hcp/live_attenuated_vaccine.html

Again, Occam's Razor.  You are talking about a 1 in 100 *QUINTILLION* event (the flumist shedding and reverting back to wild type virus, thus giving one of his parents the full blown flu, who then in turn give him the full blown flu)  VS  Being one of the unfortunate people who the flumist didn't completely protect and after being exposed to his parent's flu virus, caught it and tragically died.   I'll go with the latter. 


“The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it.” ~ Neil deGrasse Tyson 
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#29 of 40 Old 01-06-2014, 12:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by teacozy View Post
 

Again, Occam's Razor.  You are talking about a 1 in 100 *QUINTILLION* event (the flumist shedding and reverting back to wild type virus, thus giving one of his parents the full blown flu, who then in turn give him the full blown flu)  VS  Being one of the unfortunate people who the flumist didn't completely protect and after being exposed to his parent's flu virus, caught it and tragically died.   I'll go with the latter. 

Occam's razor (also written as Ockham's razor from William of Ockham (c. 1287 – 1347), and in Latin lex parsimoniae) is a principle of parsimony, economy, or succinctness used in logic and problem-solving. It states that among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected. (Wikipedia)

 

​So let's go back to your original assumption:

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by teacozy View Post
 

 

Worry me in what way? The vaccine certainly didn't cause him to die.  The story is very tragic but I have never argued, nor have I ever heard a PVer argue that vaccines are 100% effective in 100% of people who receive them.   But the fact remains that most children who die from the flu have not received their flu vaccine.  We had a thread about this a couple months ago. 

 

As I said in my previous response (which you ignored), you have no way of knowing whether or not the vaccine was a causal factor in his death.

 

What are the side effects of FluMist?
 

Well, the FluMist website has very limited information.

"Children under 2 years old have an increased risk of wheezing (difficulty with breathing) after getting FluMist Quadrivalent.

Who may not be able to get FluMist Quadrivalent?

Tell your healthcare provider if you or your child are currently wheezing; have a history of wheezing if under 5 years old; have had Guillain-Barré syndrome; have a weakened immune system or live with someone who has a severely weakened immune system; have problems with your heart, kidneys, or lungs; have diabetes; are pregnant or nursing; or are taking Tamiflu®, Relenza®, amantadine, or rimantadine."

 

Rxlist.com has more extensive information:

"Children or teens should not take aspirin for 4 weeks after getting FluMist. FluMist may interact with steroids."

and

"Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • severe weakness or unusual feeling in your arms and legs (may occur 2 to 4 weeks after you receive the vaccine); or
  • high fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms."

 

So the manufacturer KNOWS that severe adverse effects can occur 2 to 4 weeks after vaccination.

 

And teacozy wants to assume that "the vaccine certainly didn't cause him to die." 

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#30 of 40 Old 01-06-2014, 01:11 PM
 
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And teacozy wants to assume that "the vaccine certainly didn't cause him to die." 

 

get the vaccine or the mist, get the flu and STILL die --------------nothing to worry about! 

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