I've Been Taken To Task

I posted on Friday about vaccines and my opinion of parents who don’t do use them.

Ginger Taylor responded (and snarked at me for not approving her comment fast enough). She makes some points, to which I respond.

I want to know what you, my regular readers, think. Am I being a mouthpiece for corporate pharmaceutical or does the science hold up?

This entry was posted in Opinion, Science. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to I've Been Taken To Task

  1. CHris says:

    I’ve got to tell you that as a parent of a 15 month old, I continue to be somewhat put off by the vaccination schedule of my son. I’m generally more of a “trust” than a “distrust” when it comes to authority figures, but I’m also fairly skeptical.
    The part that probably bugs me most is that all of the “well visits” scheduled for him seem to be driven by the immunization schedule. I’d like to see the study that determines whether vaccinations cause children to hate doctors! I would think it’s a pretty big disincentive to visit your practitioner if EVERY time you did for YEARS you got one or more sticks in the arm.
    Where I find the counter argument soft, is in the area of determining new immunization policy in the context of the current ‘low-disease’ environment. That’s sort of the classic, “I stopped taking my pills because I felt better” but on a societal scale. It doesn’t make sense because it very well might be (note that I didn’t say “IS”) the pills that are making you feel better. The extension to the vaccine issue is obvious.

    To argue one point from Ginger’s response to your original post, this is a quite from the CDC media center:
    Of the 131 patients, 112 were unvaccinated or had unknown vaccination status. Among the 112 unvaccinated U.S. residents with measles, 16 were younger than 12 months of age and too young for vaccination, and one had presumed evidence of measles immunity because the person was born before 1957.

    Of the 95 patients eligible for vaccination, 63 were unvaccinated because of their or their parents′ philosophical or religious beliefs.
    So yes, only 63 of 131 were unvaccinated (63 of 95 ELIGIBLE for vaccinatio), sounds like you have a 50/50 chance…. except that vaccination rates in the US are rapidly approaching 95%. For the sake of argument, let’s assume that the number’s more like 80% (as reported by USA Today). So if HALF the cases of measles are amongst the unvaccinated, then that implies approximately a 4x increase in likelihood of infection relative to the vaccinated majority. Imagine what happens to the measles rate if 50% of the population fails to be vaccinated. Yes. Deaths WILL occur.

  2. Chris says:

    Suck. I typed my name in wrong and fell into the moderation queue… I’m sure I will be rescued soon.

  3. zerj says:

    While vaccinations do certainly cause my kids to dislike doctors, I don’t see the benefit to a non-aggressive schedule.

    The obvious drawback to not being vaccinated early is your at risk to contract the disease, So earlier is better. The only drawback to not having the vaccine early is if your child can’t handle the potential side effects. So if the side effects are not age-related aggressive scheduling gives you the most bang for your buck.

    I just don’t get the whole anti-vaccination thing either. The only study quoted on Wikipedia showing a link between Autism/Vaccination was quickly thought of as junk science. It is always difficult to prove a negative like this. It may be possible that the MMR vaccine causes you to make poor judgement decisions when shoe shopping, after all there are no studies disproving that hypothosys.

    That said to me it does seem like there is an increase in the amount of Autistic Children. So some research sounds like a good idea. However at this point I think devoting resources to vaccination studies are probably diverting money from the real causes whatever they may be.

    Personally I was more worried about the internet being a bigger cause of Autism than Vaccinations. The theory being that people who are very introverted (and perhaps would now be diagnosed with a mild form of asperger’s syndrome). Are much better at communicating and finding a mate, then reinforcing a genetic pattern in thier children. Whereas 50 years ago these people would have been lifelong hermits/spinsters. Certainly there have been studies showing silicon valley has some higher than average autism rates.

  4. Bill Ruhsam says:

    I don’t like going to doctors and I know better. I’ve never had one of those mythical “family physicians” and I’m not sure I know anyone who did (or does). As a child of the burbs and the HMO system, that seems to be one of the casualties. But, I still go for my shots.

    In interests of full disclosure, I’ll tell my listeners that the last time I got a vaccination, I suffered all of the common side effects (headache, nausea, dizziness, pain at injection site) but I’ll still go back for another because the consequences of not getting the shot are so much worse.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>