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Shot Delays: Alternative Vaccine Schedules Mean Fewer San Diego Students Are Fully Immunized

Evening Edition

Aired 9/18/13 on KPBS News.

A trend toward giving children fewer shots at one time means more kindergarteners than ever in San Diego County were not fully immunized when they started school last year.

A trend toward giving children fewer shots at one time, combined with continued skepticism about vaccines’ safety, means more kindergarteners than ever in San Diego County were not fully immunized when they started school last year.

Much has been made of the “personal belief exemptions” parents use to allow their unvaccinated children to attend school. But a movement to delay or spread out vaccines for children is also lowering the county’s immunization rates for kindergarteners.

Nearly 90 percent of the county's schools had kindergarten classes with at least one student who was not up to date on vaccines at the start of the 2012 school year, the most recent year data was available from the California Department of Public Health.

California law requires students to be vaccinated against diseases like polio, measles and whooping cough before they can attend school. But parents can skip these requirements by signing a personal belief exemption, or PBE, which says immunization is contrary to their beliefs. (At the end of the year, a new state law will also require a health care practitioner's signature on the exemption). Just less than 4 percent of San Diego County kindergartners entered school last year with a PBE on file.

Aired 9/18/13 on KPBS News.

A trend toward giving children fewer shots at one time means more kindergarteners than ever in San Diego County were not fully immunized when they started school last year.

Even more children, about 5.4 percent, received conditional exemptions. Most vaccinations are given as a series of doses, and conditional exemptions mean kindergarteners have had some, but not all of the doses required to attend school. Children who aren't completely up to date on their vaccines but are working toward full immunization can attend school with a conditional exemption.

While there are many reasons for conditional exemptions — children have switched doctors or health care plans, missed appointments or haven't turned in vaccine records — some parents are choosing "alternative vaccine schedules," said Karen Waters, chief of epidemiology and immunization services for San Diego County's Health and Human Services Agency.

This means parents delay or spread out vaccine doses, so their kids aren't fully immunized when they start kindergarten.

Alternative vaccine schedules have grown increasingly popular in the last few years and seem to offer a "middle ground" between anti-vaccine parents and those who follow the state's vaccine schedule.

But the trend concerns medical experts.

Because vaccines do not become completely effective until a child has received every dose, they say. Children on a delayed schedule aren't fully protected when they start school, posing an increased risk of disease outbreaks.

Vaccines' 'Middle Ground'?

One alternative vaccine schedule was made popular by Orange County doctor Robert Sears in his 2007 book, "The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child."

"This is not an anti-vaccine book," Sears wrote. "…As I see it, vaccination isn't an all-or-nothing decision."

Instead, Sears, who goes by Dr. Bob, recommends a schedule that gives no more than two vaccines at a time (and no more than one aluminum-containing vaccine at a time) to spread out exposure to chemicals and limit potential side effects. He also admits, "we don't know if giving six simultaneous vaccines causes more side effects," but said giving fewer is "a reasonable precaution."

Sears's schedule has prompted fierce debate, including responses from respected pediatricians and scientists who say the schedule is not based on any science and would only end up harming more children.

The Dr. Bob schedule means children aren't finished with their first set of shots until they're 8 years old.

This means Sears-following children won't meet state vaccine requirements when they enter kindergarten. Sears helps parents prepare for this, writing, "All states … allow parents to waive vaccines for religious reasons. Sure, the school will hassle you and give you the 'bad parent' speech, but legally the administrators must let your child in."

Some parents following alternative schedules could be submitting personal belief exemptions to avoid being hassled by schools. Others could be choosing conditional exemptions. The state data doesn't show parents' reasons for taking exemptions so it's impossible to know exactly how many San Diego families are following alternative vaccine schedules.

'It's A Gut Feeling'

Carolyn Olstad sits in a grassy park across the street from her San Marcos home watching her two sons eat crackers and bury toys in a sandbox.

Olstad isn't anti-vaccine, but wants to slightly delay shots for 1-year-old Parker and 3-year-old Grayson. So instead of getting multiple shots in one doctor's appointment, she spreads out their shots over a series of visits (paying the co-pay each time).

"The last round (Parker) got, he was kind of fussy and I could tell his legs were really sore after — just from the shots, so the next round I'll probably have them spaced apart because he didn't take this round so well," she says.

Olstad says her kids will be fully vaccinated when they start kindergarten, but knows delaying shots means they won't be protected from disease as quickly as possible. But, she isn't too worried about it.

"If he was going to be exposed to something it would be a concern," she says. "If there was a pertussis outbreak, I'd want to make sure he was vaccinated, but if there wasn't a big outbreak, I don't think it'd be a concern."

Some parents decide to delay their kids’ vaccines by a lot more.

Toby Hayes lives with his wife and six kids in Rancho Penasquitos. He followed the regular vaccine schedule for his oldest daughter Aiyana. Then she was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder.

Although research by British physician Andrew Wakefield that showed a link between vaccines and autism has been discredited, Hayes is still concerned the vaccines gave his daughter her disorder. So he decided to delay vaccinations for his other five children until they're 10 years old.

"It's a gut feeling, I can't describe it, but we were just uncomfortable with continuing on the regular schedule," he says. "At the end of the day, you have to weigh what's best for the individual child, for the individual family."

Hayes isn't as concerned about his kids getting the diseases vaccines are meant to protect against because those diseases don't completely feel real.

"We haven't seen the diseases, haven't seen what they do, so there's almost more of a visual toll on what the vaccines themselves will exact," he says.

Public Health Vs. Individual Concerns

Dr. Stuart Cohen, a pediatrician and president of the San Diego County Medical Society, says overall public health relies on the concept of "herd immunity." Because some kids can't get vaccines for medical reasons, and because vaccines are not 100 percent effective, herd immunity stops a disease from spreading.

"We're going to go back to the Dark Ages if we cross this tipping point on vaccine refusal," he says.

Cohen predicts there will be an outbreak of a disease like measles in San Diego County in the next few years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported there have been at least eight measles outbreaks in the U.S. this year because of people who caught the disease in another country, returned to the U.S. and spread it to the unvaccinated.

Many of the un- or undervaccinated kindergarteners in San Diego County are clustered at a small number of schools: More than half of the kindergarteners at 18 schools had either PBEs or conditional status.

Fifteen of the 20 schools in the county with the highest percentages of kindergarteners not up to date on vaccines last year were private schools, including five Montessori schools. Most were either in North County cities like Carlsbad, Oceanside, Encinitas and Poway, or in wealthier San Diego neighborhoods like Mission Hills and La Jolla. Some of the schools were in areas like Julian, Warner Springs and Chollas Creek. (See the full list below.)

Clusters of un- or undervaccinated kids at one school mean disease outbreaks could spread quickly, says Shane Crotty, a scientist at the La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology. He says vaccines create tension between public health and individual concerns. Parents worried about vaccines' potential side effects want to protect their children, but the immunization system relies on all children following the set schedule.

"Not getting vaccinated is like littering," he says. "If one person does it, it's not a big deal, but if everybody does it, it becomes a really big problem."

Cohen, the medical society president, refuses to treat children whose parents insist on no vaccinations or delayed schedules. But other doctors, like Dr. Mary Anne Haskell, a pediatrician in Coronado, are happy to offer them.

As Haskell sits in her exam room crowded with stuffed animals, Russian stacking dolls and hanging mobiles, she says in the battle between public health and individual concerns, the latter wins.

"This isn't the public health perspective, this is an individual perspective," she says. "I believe that medicine is very hard to do as a one-size-fits-all. Almost all procedures in medicine and all medications and vaccines have a risk-to-benefit ratio, and you have to make the best decision for your family."

Crotty disagrees.

"This idea of spreading out the vaccines being a good idea is, I mean it's just a myth, and it's one of these myths that's gotten passed around," he says.

Vaccines are developed to be given on a specific timeline and giving multiple vaccines at one time is not harmful, Crotty says.

"Getting five vaccinations in a day is just a raindrop in the ocean of what your immune system deals with every day," he says.

Crotty says being partially vaccinated is better than not being vaccinated at all, but it still has risks.

"Not getting vaccinated on the regular schedule basically means that the child isn't protected from those infections as early as he could be," he says. "It's like having your kid wear a seatbelt. You don't have them wear the seatbelt because you're going to get in an accident today, it's because you want to be protected for all the times in the future you're going to be in the car, you just always wear the seatbelt."

'Leave It To The Experts'

The undervaccination trend worries parents like Anthony Wagner, who made sure his two kids followed the state's vaccine schedule.

"We leave it to the experts," he says, even though he feels bad about making his kids get multiple shots at the same time.

"Probably one of the hardest things that I had to do as a dad was hold my kid down while she looks at me and says 'why are you doing this to me?' while they give her a serum shot," he says. "Well that's hard to do, but the benefit of that far outweighs the crying, as well as the risk."

His decision is even fine with his daughter Maeve, who's in kindergarten at the St. Vincent de Paul school in Mission Hills.

In a soft voice, Maeve describes the bad memories from her last round of shots: "It really hurt and it was really painful," she says.

But clearly she’s been listening to her dad, and she makes a point for him. She gets shots, she says, "because we don't want the sickness from the sick people."

This story was a collaboration between KPBS and its partner inewsource.

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Avatar for user 'Eddie89'

Eddie89 | September 18, 2013 at 8:46 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

It makes sense to space out the vaccinations. Being so young, these kids immune systems can barely keep up with the barrage of existing environmental assaults, let alone being injected with vaccines that will tax their overburdened immune systems even more.

They should change the rules to allow for a slower application of all these vaccines.

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Avatar for user 'jdrinca'

jdrinca | September 18, 2013 at 10:13 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

No, the Wakefield study has not been "largely discredited." It has been COMPLETELY DISCREDITED and withdrawn by the journal that originally published it. Dozens of published studies by reputable scientists and physicians have refuted any causal relationship between vaccines and autism. And NO, weighing what is best for your "individual child, individual family" is not acceptable. 10 infants DIED in California of whooping cough in 2009 because of vaccine refusers and delayers. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Centers for Disease Control have exhaustively studied the scientific literature to develop the schedule which offers the most benefits with the least risk for most children. "Vaccines are recommended for members of the youngest age group at risk for experiencing the disease for whom efficacy and safety have been demonstrated. ("; The scientists and physicians at the CDC and AAP have devoted their careers to understanding all of the risks and benefits of vaccines to individual children and the community. Why would you substitute your "gut feeling" for their expertise?

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Avatar for user 'benz72'

benz72 | September 18, 2013 at 10:33 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Let's set up a school for those who aren't fully vaccinated. Parents can choose to take their chances and send their children to that 'incubator' if they don't want to get their kids vaccinated.

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Avatar for user 'muckapoo1'

muckapoo1 | September 18, 2013 at 10:36 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

If you want to make a "personal belief" choice, with no more than a gut feeling, home school your kid. The schools need to make the right choice here to keep these kids out.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 18, 2013 at 12:36 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

I don't say this too often, but I agree with muckapoo1.

The public health statistics show clearly that dangers from immuniations are exceedingly rare and are far out-wieghed by the public health impact of parents deciding to not immunize, delay immunize, or under-immunize their children.

The actions these irresponsible parents are taking based soley on hysteria and non-science backed supersticion are putting entire communities at risk.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 18, 2013 at 12:41 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

"Probably one of the hardest things that I had to do as a dad was hold my kid down while she looks at me and says 'why are you doing this to me?' while they give her a serum shot," he says.

If that's the hardest thing your child ever has to endure, consider yourself one of the luckiest people in the world.

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Avatar for user 'domke'

domke | September 18, 2013 at 3:48 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Thank goodness most of these kids are in private schools! In the general public, unvaccinated children and their ill-informed parents are a menace to society!

Whatever happened to the greater good? Seriously, the small mindedness of parents and their beliefs shouldn't be weighed on the next generation.

I feel for the doctors and health professions that have to deal with way too many numbskulls out there already. And here they are having to explain basic issues of controlling disease and preventable deaths.

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Avatar for user 'jasonfleischer'

jasonfleischer | September 18, 2013 at 3:49 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Dear Claire Trageser and colleagues at KPBS,

I listened to your story this AM about delayed vaccine schedules. And then I read the text version online.

You and/or your editor made several mistakes that I feel are harmful to the public. The worst being:

1) Giving all sides of an argument equal time/weight, even when one of them is objectively in the wrong.
2) Omitting important information that would help people distinguish the relative credibility of each side.
3) Potentially endangering the public by giving media exposure to ideas that can put our health at risk.

The print version at least had a paragraph stating that Wakefield's article linking vaccines to autism was discredited. But it said that work was "largely discredited" rather than "fraudulent". BIG difference. And leaving this out of the radio version is downright negligent.

The article also gave equal weight to the opinion of a random pediatrician (favoring delayed vaccine schedules) and to the opinion of a research immunologist studying vaccines (opposed). A pediatrician is someone who must be a generalist, has probably read a few opinion articles and abstracts on this topic, and who's practice is influenced by human factors. An immunologist is someone who is dedicated to this one topic and is intimately familiar with the data and the facts, not just the summaries and opinions and desires of parents who have read scary articles from a misinformed media.

Finally the article has a narrative structure that makes the vaccine doubters seem more human and those on the side of evidence based medicine seem more robotic. A representative tidbit from the print article:

"But clearly she’s been listening to her dad, and she makes a point for him. She gets shots, she says, "because we don't want the sickness from the sick people.""

In the radio version the language and your tone of voice are much more dismissive:

"clearly coached by her dad, she makes his point for him. She gets shots, she says ..."

In summary, even in the print version this article is misinformation. In the radio edit, it is reckless.

Since we all tend to listen to the opinions of people we know over strangers, let me leave you with a few links from your colleagues at NPR's On The Media about the dangers of irresponsible media coverage of vaccination. Please pay particular attention to the argument that the media coverage of these false "controversies" is the real problem.

Thank you for reading this. I hope that it helps increase the value of reporting at KPBS, a station I value and have supported for 10 years.

-Jason Fleischer, Ph.D.
The Neurosciences Institute

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Avatar for user 'muckapoo1'

muckapoo1 | September 18, 2013 at 4:31 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Simple. Obey the rules of the public schools or keep your kids at home to school. Why should my kids be at risk over your beliefs. Ridiculous.

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Avatar for user 'Claire Trageser'

Claire Trageser, KPBS Staff | September 18, 2013 at 6:08 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Dear Dr. Fleischer,Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughtful response to my story. The story was meant as a description of a new trend toward delaying vaccines or spreading them out through alternative vaccine schedules—a trend that was reflected in our statistical analysis of the state's immunization data. To describe the trend, I used the voices of two parents who are delaying vaccines for their children, and a pediatrician who is willing to offer alternative vaccine schedules. The story was not meant to pit their opinions against those of experts. Instead it describes how some parents feel about vaccine schedules and then follows that description with the scientific reality that giving multiple shots at one time is not harmful and that having un or under vaccinated kids in school increases the risk of disease outbreaks. I think the story's points that this trend is increasing the risk of diseases and that there's no science behind the alternative schedules are made strongly—I'm sorry you disagree.Claire Trageser

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Avatar for user 'macott'

macott | September 19, 2013 at 8:48 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

In my children's kindergarden class, based on the data provided here, roughly 20% of the children are unvaccinated or undervaccinated. Unless the lack of vaccination is due to medical fragility, these kids need to be fully protected. Mine are vaccinated because I love them, and want to reduce their risks of getting these illnesses.

The parents are irresponsible, and have not done their due diligence. They need to talk to people who have had polio - they are still around. They need to ask about the risks if their children get these dangerous diseases. You don't want your child's leg to hurt? How will you feel when he/she is running a 105 degree fever or you've had to tie socks around her head to hold her jaw up (mumps). Kids used to die from these diseases. Vaccines do not cure, but rather provide a barrier. Your child gets rubella? You'll be lucky if your doctor even recognizes it.

Please folks, do the research. The benefit of the vaccine far outweighs the risks. What is the benefit if your child gets Rubella? Mumps? Measles?

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Avatar for user 'DoritReiss'

DoritReiss | September 19, 2013 at 9:34 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

There is no scientific support for delaying vaccines; there is nothing that suggests spreading them out is safer, and it's pretty clear that it leaves children at risk of diseases for longer - for example, infants that are most vulnerable to whooping cough are left unprotected until they parents get around to it. It also involves more doctor visits, with the risk of exposure, and more stress on the children, as they are vaccinated more often. In short, it's a bad proposition all around - for the individual child, and public health. It really is not something parents should be doing.
There is no credible evidence that vaccines cause autism; there is evidence that the unvaccinated are at higher risk of vaccine preventable diseases. Deciding to leave your child exposed to a real risk because of a gut feeling or instinct is problematic.

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Avatar for user 'Len'

Len | September 19, 2013 at 11:17 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@Jasonfleischer. Your points are correct, though Ms Trageser doesn't think so. There is a stupid belief in non-print media (mostly) that equal time/attention must be given to both sides of a matter, though one of them is absurd/disproved. One fully expects to find on an astronomy discussion that equal time is given to those insisting the earth is flat. (Well, it hasn't come to that, but close.) I suggest not considering KPBS-produced programs as reliable and factual. They vary from "everything has two sides" to "there is only one side." In the latter have been interviews about oil that had only a representative of that industry, a similar one about California electric power. Many times, it is apparent the host and/or producer has not done his/her homework.

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Avatar for user 'Lowell'

Lowell | September 19, 2013 at 10:34 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

To claim that Wakefield's study was largely discredited is to ignore the large number of studies that support the findings of that study and as well nearly duplicate the study and with the same findings. The successes of biomedical treatment in the reversal of ASD and with as well dietary changes that clearly heal the live MMR vaccine damaged intestinal tract and bowel, that in itself is siding with the side of selective ignorance and denial.

How do they explain that with the major increase in vaccines that children are now sicker than they have ever been in history. Children with more illness and chronic disorders than ever before. You will not find this in the families with unvaccinated children. We have to realize as well the major discrepancy in the vaccine history of success that the CDC tells of us, verses the real history that was recorded by individuals and doctors in the actual time frames of existing and past outbreaks of such as small pox and polio. The real story of vaccine failure is nothing like the majorly false propaganda that we are and have been fed. It is time to wake up and realize clearly the major amount of misinformation we have been fed.

Callous Disregard-Research, (more studies confirming that Dr Andrew Wakefield's 1998 study, was correct)

August 31, 2013
New Published Study Verifies Andrew Wakefield’s Research on Autism – Again

Controversial Doctor and Autism Media Channel Director proven right - MMR Vaccine Causes Autism & Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Dr Andrew Wakefield - MMR Vaccine - Truth and Reality

The Independent Science Showing the Harm of Vaccines and the Connection to ASD

The Unbiased Vaccine Science and Data

Vaccine Contamination

Aluminum Adjuvants - Lack of Safety Data - Lack of Aluminum Adjuvant Safety Studies

The False Theory of Vaccine Derived - Herd Immunity

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Avatar for user 'Carries'

Carries | September 20, 2013 at 6:54 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Wakefiled's study was fraudulent. The conclusions that vaccines are linked to autism are not supported based on the results from a large number of non- fraudulent follow-on studies.

I wonder if people who worry about giving multiple vaccines at one time understand that the immune system of the child is exposed to litterally millions of foreign objects in a day. Scrath yourself and your blood is exposed to these. Luckily the great majority are not pathogenic. For the few that are, the development of vaccines to prevent subsequent illness is considered one of the major factors in the current high level of health in developed countries.

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Avatar for user 'MacJak'

MacJak | September 20, 2013 at 8:18 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Thank you for reporting on this important topic!
More and more parents are seeing perfectly healthy toddlers regress after vaccinations, and are not "irresponsible" for spacing or delaying some vaccines (or skipping some unnecessary ones altogether).
I have three kids, and they all received their pediatric vaccinations on schedule, and ALL THREE had problems with them (2 are on the autism spectrum). I trusted my doctors to be "the experts" and followed the recommended schedule, and my kids paid the price. If I were a young mother today, I definitely would NOT follow the current, bloated schedule (and I would skip vaccines for things that were not truly life-threatening) as obviously our family has some genetic tendencies that make vaccines very risky for us.
What is so frustrating for parents like me is that our government refuses to even study the kids who were injured, instead they call everything a "coincidence", and pretend these kids don't exist. My kids all responded to complimentary alternative medicine aimed at treating vaccine injuries, which included all the things the CDC claims don't work (special diets, methyl B 12 shots, chelation for heavy metals, targeted supplements). My experience has been that autism is most likely a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental insult (in our case, the vaccines). Autism IS treatable, and more research should be focused on all environmental factors, including a very hard look at vaccines (despite the claims, proper vaccine safety studies still have NOT been done!). Parents like me are left to fend for ourselves.
I'm not ignorant, I'm not "anti-vaccine", and I'm most definitely not "anti-science". I'm a physical therapist who works with disabled children (and my aunt died of post-polio syndrome, so I am well aware of how devastating vaccine preventable diseases can be). After reviewing the available vaccine safety research, I have found that there are HUGE flaws and gaps that need to be addressed to restore public faith in the vaccine program. The CDC and American Academy of Pediatrics should be absolutely ashamed of their dismal handling of the autism epidemic, and have no one to blame but themselves for the decreasing public trust in our vaccine program. The "politics of autism" seem to be directing research, rather than what is best for the American children. What do the numbers have to be before we really address this devastating disorder and vaccines role in it? We now have 1 in 6 school aged children with some kind of a neurological disorder, 1 in 34 boys has autism. Is it any wonder parents feel the need to take control of their children's health? Our government certainly isn't looking out for our children. The CDC should be stripped any role involving vaccines. They've done such a poor, irresponsible job they can unfortunately no longer be trusted as a valid source of information in this area, which deeply saddens me.

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 20, 2013 at 9:11 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

If the author of this article had really done research on Dr. Bob Sears, it would have revealed how Dr. Sears' patient was the "index case" responsible for the 2008 San Diego measles outbreak

"....The index patient was an unvaccinated boy aged 7 years who had visited Switzerland with his family, returning to the United States on January 13, 2008. He had fever and sore throat on January 21, followed by cough, coryza, and conjunctivitis. On January 24, he attended school. On January 25, the date of his rash onset, he visited the offices of his family physician and his pediatrician. A diagnosis of scarlet fever was ruled out on the basis of a negative rapid test for streptococcus. When the boy's condition became worse on January 26, he visited a children's hospital inpatient laboratory, where blood specimens were collected for measles antibody testing; later that day, he was taken to the same hospital's emergency department because of high fever 104°F (40°C) and generalized rash. No isolation precautions were instituted at the doctors' offices or hospital facilities.

The boy's measles immunoglobulin M (IgM) positive laboratory test result was reported to the county health department on February 1, 2008. During January 31--February 19, a total of 11 additional measles cases in unvaccinated infants and children aged 10 months--9 years were identified. These 11 cases included both of the index patient's siblings (rash onset: February 3), five children in his school (rash onset: January 31--February 17), and four additional children (rash onset: February 6--10) who had been in the pediatrician's office on January 25 at the same time as the index patient. Among these latter four patients, three were infants aged <12 months. One of the three infants was hospitalized for 2 days for dehydration; another infant traveled by airplane to Hawaii on February 9 while infectious.

Two generations of measles cases were identified. The first generation (eight cases) included the index patient's two siblings, two playmates from his school, and the four children from the pediatrician's office. The second generation cases included three children from the index patient's school: a sibling of a child from the first generation and two friends of one of the index patient's siblings...."

Dr. Sears was against enactment of legislation that would require parents to be counseled by their child's health care provider, before claiming a "Personal Belief Exemption" and he blogged about his campaign to defeat that legislation on the Huffington Post.

There are no "two sides to the debate" about non-vaccinating parents and the pediatricians who pander to them-versus-the CDC/AAP Childhood Vaccine Schedule.

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Avatar for user 'VaxFax'

VaxFax | September 20, 2013 at 10:22 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

It is a scientific fact that multiple vaccines in single visit and combination vaccines increase the rate of reactions.
The slides below are from a Vaccine Safety Datalink study about the addition of the Chicken Pox (Varicella) vaccine to the schedule. They detail an increase from the normal 1/3500 MMR febrile seizures to 1/2500 when a Chicken Pox shot is added to the same visit. The seizure rate increases to 1/1250 when the “Pro Quad”, 4 in 1 MMRV combination vaccine is used. The final slide is from a CDC presentation confirming that administering the PCV13 and Flu Shot in the same visit provokes a seizure every 1/2250. These documents speak very clearly against the idea that vaccines, because they are given to prevent illness, are somehow magically exempt from the normal rules of pharmacology and the occurrence of drug interactions and complications.
Is a parent unscientific if he can dramatically reduce his child’s risk of a seizure by dose timing or product selection? Particularly if the risk increased is in possibly contracting Chicken Pox? Chicken Pox was considered a routine childhood illness, and not even a reportable infection prior to the development of the vaccine. The US is one of only 15 or so countries worldwide to recommend universal Chicken Pox vaccination, (The UK and most of Europe does not).
This article accurately describes that most parents exercising exemptions do so selectively, and are not abandoning the entire schedule wholesale. What it does not address is that exemptions rise in response to an ever-increasing schedule. Oregon is “blamed” for a high exemption rate, but the most exempted vaccine is Hepatitis A, which is only required by 15 states, not casually transmissible but passed by fecal oral contamination, prevented by proper hygiene, and rarely results in serious health outcomes.
The fact is vaccination rates are higher than they have ever been, and exemption use is a response to a bloating schedule which is adding vaccines for infections that are not commonly dangerous and / or easily contractible in the school setting.

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 20, 2013 at 11:03 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

"It is a scientific fact that multiple vaccines in single visit and combination vaccines increase the rate of reactions."

Well that's nice that you referred to a reputable government source (the Vaccine Safety Datalink), for your information about the combined MMRV vaccine. Have you got any more links to back up your statement that "It is a scientific fact that multiple vaccines in single visit and combination vaccines increase the rate of reactions"?

How about looking at a few of the many vaccine safety studies that have been published about vaccine safety?

You make a claim that varicella is a benign disease, yet you fail to provide any documentation about that statement.

"The disease can also cause serious problems, including:

Bacterial infection of the skin and tissues under the skin (including Group A streptococcal infections)

Dehydration (loss of body fluids) from vomiting or diarrhea
Pneumonia (lung infection)
Encephalitis (brain swelling)

Some people may need hospital care. Chickenpox can even be deadly."


"Before the chickenpox vaccine, about 11,000 people in the U.S. needed hospital care each year for chickenpox, and about 100 people died each year of chickenpox."

How about looking at these photographs of unvaccinated people who contracted that "benign" varicella infection?

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Avatar for user 'AutismNewsBeat'

AutismNewsBeat | September 20, 2013 at 11:22 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

You don't have to go to college to learn about science and stuff

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Avatar for user 'oassiss'

oassiss | September 20, 2013 at 12:21 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

To the people that call parents of un or under vaccinated kids irresponsible, or that call them a danger to society: if your kids are vaccinated and you wholeheartedly believe that they are protected by them, you have nothing to fear. To Dr. Fleischer, and everyone else too, please show us double blind studies analyzing acute and chronic health outcomes of vaccinated vs. unvaccinated children. To all the adults here: when was the last time you've had your titers checked for all the vaccines that you were given as infants/children? Are YOU up to date with your booster shots? You could be as much of a danger to society as the unvaccinated or under vaccinated children, as you claim. Vaccinated people can still contract the disease that they were vaccinated against. With that being said, I believe that vaccines have a place in our society and health. But I don't trust the "experts" and follow whatever they say as a sheep. Why would you give a newborn the Hep B vaccine if the mother is Hep B negative and the infant is in no need of a transfusion? Makes absolutely no sense. Flu shots every year? Flu shots are not 100 % effective against all the strains floating around. You'll be covered for the 3 most common ones that "experts" think would be prevalent on the next flu season. However, they may not get the combination right every year, so you may still get the flu. Don't believe all the fear monguering either: most people that die of the flu are elderly and also people with compromised immune systems. This detailed data is never released. Chickenpox? I had it as a kid (and I'm sure most of you did too, as children). I was out for a week, and now I have life-long immunity. I can keep going. People that choose to not vaccinate, or delay vaccinations, are very, very informed. They do their homework and choose what they believe is best for their families.
In conclusion: I believe it's a must to have these double-blind studies that I mentioned above, and to provide alternative formulations of vaccines for people that have sensitivities or possible allergies to the ingredients. Right now there's none.

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Avatar for user 'VaxFax'

VaxFax | September 20, 2013 at 12:35 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

In the cases of the MMR & V and PVC13 & Flu it is scientific fact as documented that their combination increases reactivity. This is cited above, please review the documents again. I could perhaps amend the general statement, but for these common and studied vaccines the seizure rate increase is undisputed. It is not unreasonable that other vaccine combinations that have not yet been studied also have increased reactivity.

The documentation to Varicella being a benign infection is on slides 3 and 4 here,, detailing that the Netherlands undertook a study to evaluate if they should follow the US about Chicken Pox, and determined it was not warranted, as the infection is simply not serious enough. Slide 4 is from the UK health service, putting the risk of serious complication from a naturally acquired Chicken Pox infection at less than 1 in 100,000. It is in the red box.

That is an interesting statistic because Public Health Canada puts the risk of a Serious Adverse Event to vaccination to be 1/100,000.

" An adverse event following immunization (AEFI) is any unwanted medical reaction following immunization. The majority of adverse events are not serious and include soreness, swelling or redness at the injection site, fever, rash, headache or muscle aches and pains.

A serious adverse event following immunization is any adverse event that is life-threatening, or results in death, requires hospitalization, prolongs an existing hospitalization or results in residual disability.

Serious adverse events following immunization are rare. In any immunization campaign, from regular childhood vaccines to seasonal flu shots, the reported rate of serious adverse events is on average about 1 case for every 100,000 doses distributed.

The 1 in 100,000 rate is based on tens of millions of vaccine doses distributed over several years. This rate is based on the administration of several different types of vaccines, some of which have higher or lower rates of adverse events. Rates can also vary by age."

This citation shows that for some number of people who say, "I or my child was injured by a vaccine", are not mistaken or lying.

Is it a parent's right to decide allowable risk to their child for a preventive medical procedure?

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Avatar for user 'cphickie'

cphickie | September 20, 2013 at 12:36 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Dr. Sears has no scientific facts to support his dangerous deviation from the AAP/ACIP vaccine schedule. As a pediatrician (in Tucson, AZ), I get parents coming in with his pseudoscientific book in hand demanding to delay and skip vaccines. Right now, 3 schools near my practice her pertussis (whooping cough) outbreaks, all coming from the unvaccinated children. Is it any wonder that 10 infants (too young to receive whooping cough vaccine) DIED from a horrible 2010 whooping cough outbreak in California, where Sears and his just as awful fellow antivaccine pediatrician Dr. Jay Gordon (pediatrician to Jenny McCarthy's autistic son) live? And how did the State of California put a stop to that awful 2010 outbreak? They sure didn't consult Sears! Instead they mounted a massive (and massively expensive) vaccination campaign to get all those unvaccinated kids vaccinated. Yeah...thanks a whole lot "Dr. Bob"--I hope you lose your license for medical malpractice for what you've done to put children at risk, all without a single darn shred of evidence that anything you are doing is preventing anything. Chris Hickie, MD, PhD. Tucson, AZ

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 20, 2013 at 2:01 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@ Vax Fax: You still have not provided any information about the dangers of combining vaccines...aside from your link to a reliable government website The Vaccine Safety Datalink and the slightly increased risk of a febrile seizure when a child is administered the MMRV vaccine, rather than the MMR vaccine and the Varicella vaccine separately.

Now it is up to you to show us any reliable studies published in first-tier, peer-reviewed journals that a febrile (fever-induced) seizure results in permanent neurological sequelae. It is also up to you to provide any studies that the combination MMR vaccine is linked to the onset of autism...or any other childhood disorder. Pick a study from this PubMed line listing of 360 studies that disprove those links:

BTW, I see you posted that exact same comment on Age of Autism...a notorious anti-vaccine, anti-science blog.

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Avatar for user 'AutismNewsBeat'

AutismNewsBeat | September 20, 2013 at 2:11 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Lowell Hubbs of VaxFax doesn't really understand the links he posts. He's just doing what he's told.

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 20, 2013 at 2:18 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@ Dr. Hickie: Thank you for posting your comment about "Vaccine Friendly Doctors" and how they spread fear, uncertainty and doubt, with the public statements, their media appearances and with their books about parenting, to credulous parents.

Dr. Bob Sears and Dr. Jay Gordon both mounted campaigns against the passage of a bill in the California Legislature (since enacted), that requires parents who are thinking about "opting out" of a vaccine, to seek counseling from their child's health care provider, before they are granted a "Personal Belief Exemption". It is high time that Dr. Sears and Dr. Gordon are held responsible for their not-based-in-science stances against following the CDC/AAP recommendations for timely and complete immunizations against the serious, sometimes deadly, vaccine-preventable diseases.

Here, from the Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)-Vaccine Education Center, an informative website about vaccines and vaccine-preventable diseases:

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Avatar for user 'VaxFax'

VaxFax | September 20, 2013 at 3:32 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

The CDC paper states that up to 9% of febrile seizure sufferers go on to develop epilepsy. It states that vaccine induced seizures have the same epilepsy provocation rate as natural infection seizures.
Do you think a parent considers the difference between 1/3500 seizure rate and 1/1250 seizure rate to be "slight"?
And do you not think that even if a febrile seizure is full recoverable, it is a parent's duty to try to prevent their child from that awful experience, if they can do so responsibly

To bring this back around to the subject herein:
1. Does modifying the schedule, and the >3% of exemptors put the public health at risk? I submit no, based on the fact that from 1960 through to 1995 the vax rates were nowhere near the 90% plus now enjoyed for a much broader array of vaccines.
During those decades many vaccines had only 50-60% coverage.
2. Is a parent irrational for wanting to protect their child from an adverse reaction? Are vaccines so safe that any concern of injury is unwarranted? Not at all, the referenced documents show that by separating the Chicken Pox from the MMR a parent can dramatically reduce the chance of a febrile seizure.
3. No responsible person claims vaccines are 100% safe, 100% of the time, across 100% of the population. The question is in the frequency and severity of injury. Public Health Canada puts the SAEFI at 1/100,000. That is a small individual risk, but it is real, and there is a difference between "rare", and never. Project the Public Health Canada 1/100k injury rate = 10/mil across the vaccines administered every year. There are 8 million children 0-24 months receiving 20 plus routine vaccines, 160 million doses, x 10/ mil = 1600 seriously injured children. That is why the safety question will not go away- even a product that has only a .000001 failure rate can't beat the numbers.
Remember, exemptors agree to be excluded from school during outbreaks. In the event of a true epidemic the State has available coercive Police powers to force quarantine, and even potentially compel vaccination.
Parents should retain the right to determine allowable risk.

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Avatar for user 'AutismNewsBeat'

AutismNewsBeat | September 20, 2013 at 3:41 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

"... the referenced documents show that by separating the Chicken Pox from the MMR a parent can dramatically reduce the chance of a febrile seizure."

How many packs of cigarettes did your GED cost you? Chicken pox and MMR? Really Lowell?

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Avatar for user 'AutismNewsBeat'

AutismNewsBeat | September 20, 2013 at 3:41 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

"... the referenced documents show that by separating the Chicken Pox from the MMR a parent can dramatically reduce the chance of a febrile seizure."

How many cigarettes did your GED cost you? Chicken pox and MMR? Really Lowell?

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 20, 2013 at 4:35 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@ Lowell:

"Is there an increased risk for febrile seizures after children receive an influenza (flu) vaccine?

Febrile seizures can occur when a child is sick with influenza virus infection or other childhood illnesses that may cause fever. Therefore, febrile seizures are commonly seen during cold and flu season in the United States. However, several studies of children in the United States have been conducted to see if there is an increased risk for febrile seizures following receipt of seasonal flu vaccines. One study evaluated more than 45,000 children aged 6 months through 23 months of age who received influenza vaccines from 1991 through 2003 and did not find an association with seizures. In addition, there was no indication that seasonal flu vaccines or the 2009 H1N1 flu vaccines used in the United States during the 2009-2010 flu season were associated with an increased risk of febrile seizures.

On a separate note, during the 2010–2011 influenza season, CDC and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) conducted enhanced monitoring for febrile seizures after influenza vaccination because of reports of an increased risk for fever and febrile seizures in young children in Australia associated with a 2010 Southern Hemisphere vaccine produced by CSL Biotherapies (up to nine febrile seizures per 1,000 doses). Because of the findings in Australia, the U.S. ACIP does not recommend the U.S.-licensed CSL Biotherapies' trivalent inactivated vaccine (Afluria) for children younger than 9 years.

In another study, CDC studied the health care visit records of more than 200,000 vaccinated children 6 months through 4 years of age through its Vaccine Safety Datalink project during the entire 2010-2011 influenza season. The analyses found that febrile seizures following inactivated influenza vaccine and pneumococcal conjugate (PCV13) vaccines given to this age group did occur, but were rare. The febrile seizures were most common in children ages 12 through 23 months when the two vaccines were given during the same health care visit. In this group, about one additional febrile seizure occurred among every 2,000 to 3,000 children vaccinated. After evaluating the data and taking into consideration benefits and risks of vaccination, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has determined that no changes are recommended for the use of trivalent inactivated vaccine or PCV13 vaccines."

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 20, 2013 at 4:38 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@ Lowell:

"What are Febrile Seizures?

Febrile seizures are convulsions brought on by a fever in infants or small children. During a febrile seizure, a child often loses consciousness and shakes. Less commonly, a child becomes rigid or has twitches in only a portion of the body. Most febrile seizures last a minute or two; some can be as brief as a few seconds, while others last for more than 15 minutes. Approximately one in every 25 children will have at least one febrile seizure. Febrile seizures usually occur in children between the ages of 6 months and 3 years and are particularly common in toddlers. The older a child is when the first febrile seizure occurs, the less likely that child is to have more. A few factors appear to boost a child's risk of having recurrent febrile seizures, including young age (less than 15 months) during the first seizures, frequent fevers, and having immediate family members with a history of febrile seizures.
Is there any treatment?

A child who has a febrile seizure usually doesn't need to be hospitalized. If the seizure is prolonged or is accompanied by a serious infection, or if the source of the infection cannot be determined, a doctor may recommend that the child be hospitalized for observation. Prolonged daily use of oral anticonvulsants, such as phenobarbital or valproate, to prevent febrile seizures is usually not recommended because of their potential for side effects and questionable effectiveness for preventing such seizures.

What is the prognosis?

The vast majority of febrile seizures are short and harmless. There is no evidence that short febrile seizures cause brain damage. Certain children who have febrile seizures face an increased risk of developing epilepsy. These children include those who have cerebral palsy, delayed development, or other neurological abnormalities, or who have febrile seizures that are lengthy or affect only one part of the body."

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Avatar for user 'NotASheeple'

NotASheeple | September 20, 2013 at 5:18 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Amen! May these non-vaxxer rates continue to rise...may they soar! It is well past time for Americans to wake up to the fact that they are literally poisoning their children with each and every vaccine they allow to be injected into them. Common sense is all that is needed to know that purposefully injecting known neurotoxins, known carcinogens, known immune-damaging ingredients, known toxic chemicals, live viruses of both human and animal origin, DNA from other humans and animals, preservatives, peanut oil (ever wonder why there are now so many people with life-threatening peanut allergies...wonder no more), etc., is dumb and dangerous! Mothers need to listen to their mother's instinct about the ludicrousness of pumping all of this garbage into their precious babies. Once in, you can't get it back out. By allowing vaccination, you allow a cataclysmic chain of events to begin in your child that will have both short and long-term consequences, which time will indeed reveal. Each and every vaccine does some level of damage...each and every one. Were someone to give your baby the ingredients found in vaccines in a bottle, they would be arrested and thrown in jail. But somehow, it is legal and permissible for a doctor to inject these poisons into pregnant women, newborns, infants, toddlers, and now people of all ages. Sheer madness. Don't fall prey to the vaccine propaganda that now permeates every area of our society. Remember, it is about others' wealth, not your health!

And for the record, there are no "free" vaccines. We, the taxpayers, pay for the tune of $6.8 billion per year...and then we get to pay for all the damage they do, too. Big pHARMa, our corrupt government regulators, our corrupt elected officials, and our ignorant and/or arrogant doctors walk away scot-free, thanks to a 1986 Act of Congress called The National Childhood VACCINE INJURY Act. Yes, people, vaccines injure...every single one of them...and they permanently disable, make chronically ill, and kill, too.

Just because you might be wary of a particular disease does not make a vaccine safe or effective. Every single day, across the U.S. and across the world, this fact is borne out. Vaccines are NOT safe. Vaccines are NOT effective. Be savvy to the ploys and machinations of those who profit, quite handsomely, at others' lifelong expense. There are many safe and effective ways to protect, maintain, and enhance the health of your child, and they don't include a needle.

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Avatar for user 'cphickie'

cphickie | September 20, 2013 at 6:35 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

NotASheeple is an insane lemming hoping to lead others off his/her cliff of catastrophe

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Avatar for user 'AutismNewsBeat'

AutismNewsBeat | September 20, 2013 at 7:56 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

At least Sheeple has the integrity to admit her anti-vaccine beliefs. Unlike Bob Sears, who prefaces every interview with "I am not anti-vaccine."

If I was tasked by Big Pharma® to discredit anti-vaccine activists, I would copy and paste Lemming's comment a thousand times a day. I particularly liked the "peanut oil" reference.

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Avatar for user 'Shawn_Siegel'

Shawn_Siegel | September 21, 2013 at 5:09 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

This article would have a touch of validity if vaccination were actually immunization, but it's not. Immunity is a natural phenomenon, the result of a full, multi-faceted immune response to a pathogen, virtually always either inhaled or ingested, where it encounters the first responders of the immune system, in the nose, throat, respiratory and digestive tracts. Every supposed vaccine preventable disease is eminently treatable, and very rarely causes any lasting damage - essentially benign. Such immunity - true, natural immunity - typically lasts a lifetime, and comes with no additional side effects whatsoever.

Vaccines, on the other hand - hoo boy. Just for example, on average about 80% - sometimes literally 100% - of the kids in whooping cough outbreaks are vaccinated. And, at latest count, in the CDC's database are recorded over 5,000 vaccine-associated deaths, as many life-threatening reactions, many more permanent disabilities, and ten times as many required trips to the ER. Vaccines kill, brain damage, and otherwise seriously debilitate. They leave behind, most insidiously, autoimmune disorders - because they do not enter the immune system via the naturally expected route - that can surface weeks, months and even years later, as attested by immunologists. Goodness, the adjuvants used in most vaccines are also used by researchers to inject into lab animals when they want to purposefully induce rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases! The vaccine industry is certainly well aware of this - they just don't tell you. Instead, they urge you to inject them into your newborns, infants, babies and toddlers.

They view your right to fully informed consent with disdain.

Critically, one study, quoted by the Journal of the American Medical Association, found that only 1% of actual serious adverse reactions ever get reported. This means that no one, including your doctor, or the CDC, or Ms. Trageser, the author of this article, has any real idea of the risk they are proposing is acceptable for your child when you vaccinate.

The only San Diego students who are really fully immunized are those who have been naturally exposed to the disease and, with proper care and treatment, recovered, and gained the natural benefits. Nutrition, adequate rest and the other factors that make up a healthy lifestyle nurture an immune system that will bring a child back to wellness every time. That's its job.

Research. Educate. You can't eliminate risk from life, but the risk of damage from vaccines far outweighs the risk of damage from disease.

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 21, 2013 at 9:03 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

A little nitpicking about definitions from an AoA "expert"? Vaccination and immunization are used interchangeably in the health care field. But you wouldn't know that would you?

Here's a bit of trivia for you to take back to your colleagues at AoA:

Word Origin & History


1803, used by British physician Edward Jenner for the technique he devised of preventing smallpox by injecting people with the cowpox virus (variolae vaccinae), from vaccine (adj.) "pertaining to cows, from cows" (1798), from L. vaccinus "from cows," from vacca "cow" (bos being originally "ox," "a loan .

"Every supposed vaccine preventable disease is eminently treatable, and very rarely causes any lasting damage - essentially benign. Such immunity - true, natural immunity - typically lasts a lifetime, and comes with no additional side effects whatsoever."

Except, some vaccine preventable diseases are not eminently treatable and cause lasting damage, which isn't benign. And, when you have a "natural" bacterial illness, the immunity does not last a lifetime:

The rest of your statement is pure ignorant drivel. Honestly Shawn, why don't you send an "expert" here from the AoA brain trust. (Dr. Olmsted, Dr. Blaxill, Dr. Dachel or Dr. Stagliano) to teach us about vaccine-preventable-diseases and immunology, virology and bacteriology?

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Avatar for user 'Shawn_Siegel'

Shawn_Siegel | September 21, 2013 at 5:09 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Of course I know that vaccination and immunization are used interchangeably in the health care field - that's the point: it's a deception; a mischaracterization. Immunity, observed and recognized long before vaccines, is a natural phenomenon, the result of a full immune response to natural exposure to a pathogen, and carries with it no adverse effects. To call the supposed protection offered by vaccination immunity is preposterous - again, 80% of kids in whooping cough outbreaks, on average and just for example, are vaccinated, while immunity typically lasts a lifetime.

To call the statistics I quoted drivel is an ethical misstep. Vaccines do brain damage and kill. Vaccines do often leave behind debilitating autoimmune and neurological disorders. There are indeed over 5,000 vaccine-associated deaths recorded in the CDC's database. JAMA certainly quoted a study finding that only 1% of serious adverse reactions ever get reported. That is all poignant information that should be communicated to every parent before every vaccination, out of respect for that parent's right to informed consent - or refusal.

erous, when vaccines have a track record of triggering everything from asthma to allergies to lupus to epilepsy to autism, to death. And immunology . ly acqui

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Avatar for user 'Shawn_Siegel'

Shawn_Siegel | September 21, 2013 at 5:19 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Oops. Sorry for that little pigtail half-sentence at the end of the last comment. I was going to comment about immunology being rooted in unquestioning acceptance of the safety, effectiveness and necessity of vaccination. Actually, according to the immunologists with whom I've spoken, immunology stemmed from vaccination, not vice-versa - the point being, immunology is virtually blind to any negative aspect of vaccines, which makes it even more poignant when an immunologist researches the autoimmunity caused by the adjuvants in vaccines, and dubs them "the adjuvant diseases".

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 21, 2013 at 9:27 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Have you any, um, proof that pertussis disease provides lifelong immunity?

Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2005 May;24(5 Suppl):S58-61.
Duration of immunity against pertussis after natural infection or vaccination.
Wendelboe AM, Van Rie A, Salmaso S, Englund JA.

Department of Epidemiology, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA. />Abstract

"Despite decades of high vaccination coverage, pertussis has remained endemic and reemerged as a public health problem in many countries in the past 2 decades. Waning of vaccine-induced immunity has been cited as one of the reasons for the observed epidemiologic trend. A review of the published data on duration of immunity reveals estimates that infection-acquired immunity against pertussis disease wanes after 4-20 years and protective immunity after vaccination wanes after 4-12 years. Further research into the rate of waning of vaccine-acquired immunity will help determine the optimal timing and frequency of booster immunizations and their role in pertussis control."

Have you gotten your Tdap booster vaccine and provided that vaccine to your adolescent children, so that you or your children do not infect an infant too young to have been received the early childhood series of pertussis-containing vaccine? You do realize, don't you, that pertussis is a killer for infants who contract the disease when they haven't had the opportunity to receive the recommended doses?

How about ponying up some of the studies, published in first-tier, peer-reviewed journals that confirm that vaccines, the ingredients in vaccines, the timing and spacing of vaccines causes autism, asthma, allergies, "autistic enterocolitis" (Wakefield's debunked "theory" based on fraudulent research), or any other disorders or conditions that you and the brain trust at AoA conjure up?

Are you really relying on the VAERS database for your statement about vaccines causing over 5,000 deaths?

How about the deaths reported to VAERS following Gardisal vaccinations, caused by drownings, motor vehicle accidents and gunshot wounds to the head, Shawn?

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Avatar for user 'Anon11'

Anon11 | September 21, 2013 at 10:51 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Let the "anti-vaxxers" kill off themselves and their kids. It's natural selection at its finest. herp derp

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 21, 2013 at 11:29 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

The anti-vaccine folks remind me exactly of he anthropogenic climate change deniers.

Ignore science and sell superstition.

Of course vaccines aren't perfect and carry risk, but that risk is far, far less than the destruction caused by an infectious disease pandemic striking a community,

Notasheeple your comments re dangerous, ignorant, and not backed by since.

Yours is the type of dangerous rhetoric that will bring diseases like polio back to being commonplace it's country

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Avatar for user 'Shawn_Siegel'

Shawn_Siegel | September 22, 2013 at 7:49 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Sure - and how about nonsensical comparisons.

Correlation implies causation. Obviously, some reported instances of reaction will prove unrelated to the vaccine, but the burden of proof lies with the naysayer, because that's the nature of the VAERS correlation. Search for the study in the BMJ - British Medical Journal - titled: Evaluation of Spontaneous Reports of Adverse Reactions to Drugs. It was an in-depth study, the only one I've come across, of a buncha cases of reactions following drug dosage - the exact type of correlation as is VAERS. You'll find it was found probable that close to 80% of the reactions reported were causally related to the drug, and there was still the possibility that an additional 10% were related, as well; because that's the nature of the correlation.

Peking, you're a sitting duck - for the statistical manipulation of the vaccine industry. Research the radical changes the CDC made to the definition and labeling protocol of polio, right after the vaccine was introduced - it's historical fact. Think about it - why in the world would they wipe out upwards of 90% of the cases of polio, with a coupla strokes of the pen, when at the same time they were ostensibly assessing the effectiveness of the vaccine? - it makes no sense; it's unscientific - and you don't have to be an immunologist or statistician to understand that. When over the subsequent couple of decades we were told the vaccine had eradicated polio, it was a blatant lie. I understand why it's difficult to accept that, but if you're afraid to take a closer look, you'll simply remain naive - and threatened. Search for The Polio Caper on Facebook - it links to the CDC and the Illinois Medical Society for its evidence.

Good day. My hope is that someone with an open mind and common sense will read this and research for themselves. If they do, they'll ultimately come to the same conclusion: you can't eliminate risk from life, but the risk of damage from vaccines far outweighs the risk of damage from disease - and the only true way to prevent disease is to nurture the immune system and learn to treat diseases properly, which will bring you back to wellness every time.

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Avatar for user 'MadMamaBear'

MadMamaBear | September 22, 2013 at 8:23 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Educated parents actually read the package inserts. We understand phase IV clinical trials are done AFTER the vaccine is approved and in use. This one is Paul Offit's baby. See 4.2 Contradictions:

If you don't know who Paul Offit is watch this:

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Avatar for user 'MadMamaBear'

MadMamaBear | September 22, 2013 at 9:27 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Vaccination and the Onset of Dravet Syndrome:

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Avatar for user 'MadMamaBear'

MadMamaBear | September 22, 2013 at 9:29 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

"Varicella vaccination is less effective than the natural immunity that existed in prevaccine communities. Universal varicella vaccination has not proven to be cost-effective as increased HZ (Shingles increased because of vaccine) morbidity has disproportionately offset cost savings associated with reductions in varicella disease. Universal varicella vaccination has failed to provide long-term protection from VZV disease." 2013 PMID: 20642419

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Avatar for user 'MadMamaBear'

MadMamaBear | September 22, 2013 at 9:30 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Four to 12 days post 12 month vaccination, children had a 1.33 (1.29–1.38) increased relative incidence of the combined endpoint compared to the control period, or at least one event during the risk interval for every 168 children vaccinated. Ten to 12 days post 18 month vaccination, the relative incidence was 1.25 (95%, 1.17–1.33) which represented at least one excess event for every 730 children vaccinated. The primary reason for increased events was statistically significant elevations in emergency room visits following all vaccinations. There were non-significant increases in hospital admissions. There were an additional 20 febrile seizures for every 100,000 vaccinated at 12 months.


There are significantly elevated risks of primarily emergency room visits approximately one to two weeks following 12 and 18 month vaccination. Future studies should examine whether these events could be predicted or prevented

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Avatar for user 'MadMamaBear'

MadMamaBear | September 22, 2013 at 9:41 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

You will never look at vaccinated children the same - Shedding Virus. As you watch this you can pause for the specific study quoted.

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 22, 2013 at 1:08 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Hah, attacking Dr. Paul Offit with a videotape from that Quack Fest Conference of the Congressional panel who held those sham autism hearings, November, 2012.

How about researching how Andrew Wakefield, the disgraced and discredited former medical doctor wined and dined those Congressman and their wives, for months before that hearing took set the agenda for that sham hearing.

How about looking at the $ 40,000 donation made by a wealthy businesswoman from Minnesota to Darell Issa's campaigns and PACs as an incentive for Issa to show up at the Autism One-Generation Rescue conference...and as an incentive for Issa to schedule, yet another "Vaccine" hearing in Congress, November, 2013?

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 22, 2013 at 1:15 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Obvioiusly, Mad Bear you didn't actually read the link you provided to Dravet Syndrome...including the conclusion:

"INTERPRETATION: Vaccination might trigger earlier onset of Dravet syndrome in children who, because of an SCN1A mutation, are destined to develop the disease. However, vaccination should not be withheld from children with SCN1A mutations because we found no evidence that vaccinations before or after disease onset affect outcome."

Thanks so much for providing that link.

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 22, 2013 at 1:22 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Are you really linking to an article about pertussis, written by Gary S. Goldman...a crank anti-vaccine writer who got his degree in "computer science" from a diploma mill? Gary S Goldman !! who is the founder of the Medical Veritas journal, who is an AIDS denialist?

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Avatar for user 'Anon11'

Anon11 | September 22, 2013 at 3:10 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

I'm telling you, just let the anti-vaxxers believe their nonsense. They don't research it. It's pure cognitive dissonance. Let them kill themselves off. It will be good to see natural selection making a comeback. We have too many stupid people already. It's a shame their stupidity affects their helpless child, but I guess that's collateral damage.

Watch them fight for lies they think sound good. Watch them fight for any way to blame someone or something for their kids' problems. Watch them tell you do to research while providing links that contradict what they're saying is true.

They can't tell they are stupid. They have too much faith in what they *know* to be true in their hearts. You hear them talk about homeopathic medicine, and how it "cures" their kid's autism. No one talks about the horrible diets most people have, or how parents rely on tv to raise their kids.

And they still trust a source that has been completely proven as false. Natural selection at work...

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Avatar for user 'VaxFax'

VaxFax | September 23, 2013 at 9:53 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Does the >5% of selective vaccinators’ “undervaccination” pose a threat to public health? If you use the Measles license in 1963 as the start of the modern day vaccine era, all of the country was massively undervaccinated for the first 30 years or so of the era. The ultra high 90% plus percentages we see today were only possible through a combination of factors which coalesced in the late 80’s early 90’s. One factor was school attendance mandates that didn’t solidify until the early 80’s. Another was the VICP liability shield for Pharma and Health Care Workers in 1986, and finally the forming of the VFC- Vaccines For Children, in 1993-4 whereby the government buys and provides vaccines free to people who lack insurance or other means. Using the current definition of undervaccination- that anyone who is missing any dose by the set timeframe- the entire country was undervaccinated for decades without collapse into plagues.

Is it irrational, unscientific, or irresponsible to ever modify the schedule? I have posted links to CDC VSD slides and information sheets documenting that combining the Chicken Pox vaccine to the MMR, both as separate shots or a combination significantly increases the rate of febrile seizures. A febrile seizure is not merely an extremely unpleasant experience but a medical emergency. The CDC paper states “About 1 in 3 children who have one febrile seizure will have at least one more febrile seizure. Most children (>90%) will not develop epilepsy.” Therefore up to 9% do develop epilepsy. Vaccine provoked febrile seizures are equal in their ability to cause problems as seizures from other causes. “Two studies have shown that children who have febrile seizures after receiving an MMR vaccine are no more likely to have epilepsy or learning or developmental problems than children who have febrile seizures that are not associated with a vaccine”. A febrile seizure is a febrile seizure- vaccine provoked seizures are not somehow safer.

The WHO document shows very few countries vaccinate for Chicken Pox. The PUBMED citation shows the Netherlands studied the idea and rejected it. The UK Health Ataxia paper states, “ a search was conducted of all the scientific research published between 2002 and 2008 that described complications following Chicken Pox…. Studies showed that the incidence of severe complications in children following chickenpox was less than 1 in 100,000.”

Shouldn’t a parent be able to decide whether or not the risk benefit ratio is appropriate for his child?

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Avatar for user 'lilady'

lilady | September 23, 2013 at 1:24 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@ Lowell: The NHS presently does not offer varicella vaccine to all healthy children...neither does the U.K. government mandate vaccines for school entry...hence the major problems with measles outbreaks in the U.K., Wales and in Western European countries.

This year during the Wales measles outbreak 1,200 cases of measles were reported, which led to many hospitalizations and the death of a young man. Wales has a total population of 3,000,000, the United States has a population of 314,000,000. If we didn't have school mandates for vaccination, we could be looking at 80,000 cases of measles YTD.

Why don't you write to the ACIP and the CDC to provide them with your "expertise"? I'm certain that your "opinions" and your expertise in the fields of immunology, virology, bacteriology and the epidemiology of V-P-Ds, would be welcome.

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Avatar for user 'Anon11'

Anon11 | September 23, 2013 at 2:33 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

"Therefore up to 9% do develop epilepsy. Vaccine provoked febrile seizures are equal in their ability to cause problems as seizures from other causes. "

Up to 9% is not 9%. I would love to see a source for your claim.

“Two studies have shown that children who have febrile seizures after receiving an MMR vaccine are no more likely to have epilepsy or learning or developmental problems than children who have febrile seizures that are not associated with a vaccine”.

Link the studies, please. I was not aware that a proven, direct link between MMR vaccines and febrile seizures existed.

"The WHO document shows very few countries vaccinate for Chicken Pox."

The site has a paywall, but regardless the first page shows 18 countries, of which half have a universal vaccination (If I'm reading it right) and the other half still makes the vaccine available. Do you even read your own links?

"Shouldn’t a parent be able to decide whether or not the risk benefit ratio is appropriate for his child?"

You assume the parents are educated enough to make that decision. I don't know about you, but the people who go to medical school seem more qualified to decide.

Use your head, not your heart.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 24, 2013 at 8:05 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Mama bear, phase 4 trials are post-marketing, they are supposed to be done after the fact.

The safety and efficacy are established in previous phase trials.

You don't understand basic clinical research.

Just one small example of the hype and hysteria the anti-science crowd is spewing in here.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 24, 2013 at 8:08 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

I firmly stand by my comparison of the climate change diners and the vaccine deniers.

Not saying there is a correlation at the micro level, but in terms of the general hijacking of science by hysterical ignorants who spew falsehoods enough until a "movement" forms based on lies.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 24, 2013 at 8:09 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

*deniers, not diners

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | September 24, 2013 at 8:12 a.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Maybe some of the parents refusing should take themselves and their children to,parts of Africa or Asia and see the devastation lack of vaccinations cause.

Children dying and suffering horribly from preventable illnesses.

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Avatar for user 'Eddie89'

Eddie89 | September 28, 2013 at 1:18 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

Here's some late breaking news on this topic. [Breaking: Courts Discreetly Confirm MMR Vaccine Causes Autism] Money Quote: "And in the end, the federal government agreed that Ryan’s encephalopathy had been caused by the MMR vaccine, a landmark ruling that confirms what Dr. Andrew Wakefield found more than 15 years ago when studying gut disorders in children given the MMR vaccine."

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Avatar for user 'VaxFax'

VaxFax | September 28, 2013 at 5:03 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

@Anon11 - MMR & febrile seizure & epilepsy citation here-
"About 1 in 3 children who have one febrile seizure will have at least one more febrile seizure. Most children (>90%) will not develop epilepsy." Up to 9% can.
The "up to 9%" was accurate.
There should not be a pay wall at the scribd? Try it again, or you could simply google 'World Health Organization" and use the function yourself.
There are 190 + countries in the world, only 29 offer Varicella to anyone, only 16 to kids under 6. Most other countries reserve Varicella to people who reach adolescence without natural infection, Health care workers without immunity or are in risk groups.

Recall this article is about if schedule modifiers are a threat and if there is any rationale to adjust the schedule. I have provided info against the first and for the second.

Is this near hysterical reaction to people who question the vaccine schedule warranted? It implies that the FDA, Government Regulators, and the Pharmaceutical Companies are infallible, and impeccable in their actions. Is that true? Absolutely not. By definition every FDA recalled drug was first an FDA approved "safe and effective" drug.
Does Pharma behave ethically? Absolutely not, outside of the Gulf oil disaster they comprise some half the Top Ten largest Criminal fines for fraud, etc., in the last year.
To be truly informed study this symposium offered by Harvard's Center for Ethics discouragingly titled "Institutional Corruption and Pharmaceutical Policy"

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Avatar for user 'VaxFax'

VaxFax | September 28, 2013 at 5:06 p.m. ― 3 years, 5 months ago

From the Harvard report
"Today, the goals of pharmaceutical policy and medical practice are often undermined due to institutional corruption — that is, widespread or systemic practices, usually legal, that undermine an institution’s objectives or integrity. We will see that the pharmaceutical industry’s own purposes are often undermined. In addition, pharmaceutical industry funding of election campaigns and lobbying skews the legislative process that sets pharmaceutical policy. Moreover, certain practices have corrupted medical research, the production of medical knowledge, the practice of medicine, drug safety, and the Food and Drug Administration’s oversight of pharmaceutical marketing. As a result, practitioners may think they are using reliable information to engage in sound medical practice while actually relying on misleading information and therefore prescribe drugs that are unnecessary or harmful to patients, or more costly than equivalent medications. At the same time, patients and the public may believe that patient advocacy organizations effectively represent their interests while these organizations actually neglect their interests."

Isn't it naïve to act as if the category of vaccines is somehow separate and distinct from the greater frame of Pharma influence?

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Avatar for user 'NoMercury'

NoMercury | November 24, 2013 at 4:04 p.m. ― 3 years, 3 months ago

Claire Trageser’s article does not come close to understanding the entire picture in the vaccination debate. She does not mention that the government mandated vaccination schedule has tripled since 1984. And that the increase in autism since that point in time has gone from 1-in-10,000 to 1-in-50 children and 1-in-30 for boys. So if vaccinations are not driving the massive increase in the autism rate, then tell me what is? In the 1950’s when the polio rate was 1-in-1,500 it was called an epidemic and became a national priority. The autism rate in America is 1-in-50 and is not an epidemic nor national priority. The CDC mandated vaccination schedule requires 32 vaccinations by age 18 months. This is a one-size fits all approach. Not all immune systems are the same. Some have genetic predispositions and can be comprised by so many injections so early in infant development. In America today 1% of children have been diagnosed with autism.This is a national disaster.
In 1986 Congress passed a law that pharmaceutical companies are immune to lawsuits due to injury caused by vaccinations. Watch this video, If your child is injured by a vaccination you'll be holding the bag on that outcome. The government will not help you. I know. That is what happened to my son.

The public needs to become educated on How Mercury Triggered Autism, The government and pharmaceutical conglomerates market and push flu shots which contain a mercury based preservative, thimerasol Mercury is the 2nd more toxic element on the planet and is a risk a developing fetus SafeMinds_FluCampaign_13-14.pdf
in pregnant women. Mercury is a known neurotoxin and causes brain neuron degeneration., How toxic is mercury? The EPA has classified that 200 parts per billion (ppb) of mercury is classified as hazardous waste. The mercury concentration in a DTaP and Haemophilus B vaccine vials is 1-50,000 ppb Yikes! These were administered 4 times each in the 1990's to children at 2, 4, 6, 12 and 18 months of age. And is also the current "preservative" level mercury in multi-dose flu vaccinations, Again, mercury is a known neurotoxin and causes brain neuron degeneration. Stay away from flu vaccinations!

Big government and Big Pharma/AgriBusiness have colluded on what is best for the consumer regarding vaccinations and GMO’s (food labeling). The marketing machine is massive and the eco systems they’ve created, including lobbyists, are making a large sum of money. You cannot trust the government and big pharma/agribusiness ‘systems’. They have been Bought,

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