Vaccine adverse events are rare – vast benefits outweigh small risks

Like all medical procedures, devices, and pharmaceuticals, vaccines are not perfect – there are rare vaccine adverse events. What matters is that the benefits, not only medically but also economically, outweigh any risks. As far ask I know, no perfect medical procedures, devices or pharmaceuticals, none, that are perfectly safe or perfectly effective. Sometimes the ratio is small. For example, there are chemotherapy drugs that only add a few months to a patient’s life, usually with substantial side effects to the medication.

Yet, if you ask a patient whether it was worth it, to spend just a few extra months with their children and loved ones, the value becomes nearly incalculable. But mostly, the FDA and other regulatory agencies demand that new products and procedures must meet or exceed the safety, and meet or exceed the financial and health benefits of currently acceptable versions. Actually, the FDA examines a lot more than that. They check the packaging, shelf life, instructions, manufacturing practices, and so much more, it would take a book to explain it (and there probably are several). It may not be a perfect process, but it’s better than what we had 100 years ago, and it continues to improve every single day. People tend towards a form of confirmation bias where they remember where a drug may or may not have been found to be dangerous (best example is Vioxx).

But they forget about the millions of medications and devices that save lives or measurably improve the standard of living. 

Vaccine adverse events study

After arguing the scientific point of view with the anti-vaccine religion for over 20 years, I have observed that they tend to vastly overstate the safety risks, while vastly understating the financial and health benefits. It’s a form of the Nirvana Fallacy, which is a fallacy that if something is not perfect, then it’s junk. For some, if a vaccine is only 95% effective in stopping a disease, it’s worthless. And they want a “guarantee” that there are NO side effects of the vaccines, even when the “adverse effects” of a vaccine-preventable disease could be hospitalization or death.

Of course, no pro-science proponent of vaccines would ever say “vaccines are perfect.” We never claim that vaccines never have an adverse effect, though there is no evidence that a vaccine has killed anyone in the last 30 years. On the other hand, I do have plenty of evidence that vaccine-preventable diseases have killed children across the world, including the USA.

As I have said many times, the pinnacle, the absolute platinum standard of clinical research are meta-reviews (or systematic reviews). In an issue of Pediatrics, a meta-review found that serious vaccine-related complications are extremely rare. And, to continue repeating the fact over and over and over, the researchers found that vaccines are not correlated, let alone causal, to autism. Essentially this study is an update or addendum to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), one of the most prestigious, apolitical, and scientific medicine organizations in the world, 2011 report on vaccine adverse effects. The report, which can be downloaded and read on your computer, Kindle, iPad, and other reading devices, details the plausibility and causality of potential vaccine-related adverse events. I discussed some of their findings previously, and there were few serious adverse effects related to vaccines.

Let’s take a look at the study. The authors examined 20,478 articles (that’s a huge number) that were identified as being related to the studio of vaccines. Of those, 67 were included in the systematic review based on the following criteria:

  • They excluded any papers that dealt with vaccines which are not available in the USA or that are no longer used in the USA.
  • They excluded papers about vaccines that didn’t include any safety data (which, amazingly, was approximately 17,000 papers).
  • They excluded papers that were not in English or actually couldn’t be found.
  • The researchers included studies that used active surveillance of the patient (usually through medical records and insurance claims, rather than more passive types of information gathering such as VAERS)
  • Studies also had control mechanisms, including controlled trials, cohorts comparing a vaccinated with a non-vaccinated group, case-control studies, self-controlled case series, and observational studies that used regression to control for confounders and test multiple relationships simultaneously (multivariate risk factor analyses).


In other words, the authors looked for the best of the best studies that examined currently available vaccines, that actively sought outpatient information to determine adverse effects that were identified by medical professionals, and that involved a control arm against which to compare data from the vaccinated group. So, what did the study find:

  • DTaP vaccine – No additional studies were found with respect to adverse effects with this vaccine. The current scientific consensus rejects any association between the vaccine and Type 1 diabetes as discussed in the IOM report.
  • Hepatitis A vaccine – The research found that there was a rare association of purpura, a discoloration of the skin, with the vaccine. In a post-licensure study of >1.8 million vaccine recipients, purpura was seen in 1-2 cases in each age group. The cases were mild and acute (temporary).
  • Hepatitis B vaccine – The study found that the vaccine was associated with an increase in immunoglobulin E (IgE) in those children who have a family history of food allergy (but not a clinical allergy). There were no clinical effects observed.
  • Hib vaccine – No association with serious adverse events.
  • Inactivated polio vaccine – There was a possible association between the vaccine and food allergies in a small number of patients.
  • Influenza vaccines  – The results were fairly complicated. One study found no association between the vaccine and adverse events. One study found an association with mild and temporary gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea, slightly more frequent with younger children. Another study found that the vaccines are associated with mild, short-term influenza-like symptoms (though, it must be made clear, not a flu infection itself). Finally, another reviewed article showed that there was some increased risk of febrile (fever-related) seizures in small children. Although these type of seizures are frightening to parents, they happen to some children who have fevers, irrespective of vaccinations. They are benign and there’s no evidence that it leads to any neurological issue.
  • MMR vaccine – There was a small association with purpura and febrile seizures. There was no association found with autism spectrum disorders.
  • Meningococcal vaccines – Again, there is a wide variety of evidence about adverse events. One study examined by the authors showed no association with any adverse effects. Two others reported a small rate of febrile seizures with the PCV13 vaccine, and an approximately 3X risk of febrile seizures when two types of vaccines were used. Given the variability of results, it would be difficult to claim a firm association between these vaccines and specific adverse effects.
  • Rotavirus vaccine – In 31 clinical trials, there was no association between the two types of rotavirus vaccine, RotaTeq and Rotarix, and any serious adverse event, including intussusception, a rare disorder where one part of the intestine invaginates into another part. However, some data points to a risk of approximately 1.1-1.5 cases per 100,000 vaccinated individuals for RotaTeq and 5.1 cases per 100,000 for Rotarix. These are extraordinarily rare adverse events, especially when examined against the pre-vaccine annual toll of rotavirus in the USA of 55,000 to 70,000 hospitalizations, and 20 to 60 deaths.
  • Varicella vaccine – Again in a huge study of >1.8 million vaccine recipients, purpura was observed at a rate of around 1-2 per 100,000, an extremely rare adverse event.

As I have stated many times, almost everything in medicine can cause minor and serious side effects. But, in the case of vaccines, those adverse events are extremely rare, sometimes barely noticeable, statistically, from the background level of the observed event in a broad population of individuals. Furthermore, adverse events do not include SIDS, shaken baby syndrome, autism, multiple sclerosis, diabetes or death. Millions of patients examined, yet none of those events has been established as being associated with any vaccine.

VAERS again

Making up stuff based on the passive and weak VAERS system is at the point that most of the pro-science discussion immediately dismiss anyone who ventures to bring up that data. Moreover, it is important to remember that even these infrequent adverse events must be weighed against the enormous benefits of the vaccines.

The CDC reported, in early 2014, that vaccines have saved over 700,000 lives (plus over 300 million illness and 21 million hospitalizations) since the early 1990s. Look at those numbers – 700,000 deaths versus a 1 out of 100,000 adverse events. In those 700,000 deaths, all from vaccine-preventable diseases, about 7 would have a febrile seizure if they were all vaccinated. I think if any parent is reading this, you’d trade your child being in the febrile seizure statistic, as scary as it is, rather than being in the death or hospitalization statistic, a substantially greater risk.



Every pharmaceutical company who manufactures and every physician who delivers a vaccine wishes it were perfectly safe, with no risks whatsoever. But that’s not only unrealistic, but it is also probably impossible. There is simply no way to mitigate risks from any medical procedure unless you want to buy into pseudoscience of alternative medicine. But whatever the risk has to be balanced against those lives saved and hospitalizations avoided by preventing these disease.

The anti-vaccine religion thinks it’s all made up. Some don’t even consider it, it’s not even in their imagination. And some may even think they can hide behind the vast majority (with some vaccines, nearly 95% of children are immunized) who are immune, protecting their children without even taking the tiny risk of the vaccination itself.

In fact, in an accompanying article in Pediatrics, Carrie Byington, MD, a professor of Pediatrics at the University of Utah Medical school, stated that some more recent medical school graduates are less impressed with the effectiveness of vaccines, mainly because they have rarely seen vaccine-preventable diseases in their own lives and during their medical education.

Older physicians, who have been around long enough, or who have traveled to countries where these diseases are endemic, are more confident in promoting vaccination. In fact, a study in Washington State found that more than half of medical providers were willing to consider untested, alternative immunization schedules that skip or delay vaccines. If pediatricians themselves won’t recommend vaccinations, then who will? A blog writer? A book author? I don’t think so.


  1. For another slightly different examination of this study, please see Red Wine and Apple Sauce.
  2. This article was originally published in July 2014. It has been extensively revised and was supposed to be republished last month, but I forgot to push the republish button. This feathered dinosaur failed miserably.


The Original Skeptical Raptor
Chief Executive Officer at SkepticalRaptor
Lifetime lover of science, especially biomedical research. Spent years in academics, business development, research, and traveling the world shilling for Big Pharma. I love sports, mostly college basketball and football, hockey, and baseball. I enjoy great food and intelligent conversation. And a delicious morning coffee!

84 Replies to “Vaccine adverse events are rare – vast benefits outweigh small risks”

  1. ” there is no evidence that a vaccine has killed anyone in the last 30 years.”

    This is absolutely not true. The HPV vaccine gardasil has killed many, and caused disabling, severe, incurable autoimmune disease in thousands more. Merck’s own studies of the HPV vaccine show a serious adverse event rate of 0.12%, and that the vaccine caused a substantial increase in deaths.

    The author of this article is lying about vaccine safety.

    The way that vaccine apologists get away with this unscientific nonsense is by never ever ever comparing vaccine exposure to unvaccinated controls.

    Essentially all vaccine safety studies are bogus frauds because they compare vaccine #1 with vaccine #2, or with an “active placebo” (such as adjuvant) that has significant side effects.

    Almost all vaccine research is not really scientific, and hence should be ignored. The paper referenced above is such a paper. its a case of “garbage-in, garbage-out”.

    1. Everything you’ve written is a lie.

      There are no deaths attributable to Gardasil, unless you data mine into VAERS which has the value of my nose hairs.

      All studies by Merck are publicly published, and they are available to read. What you are quoting is from the package insert, which also has the value of my nose hairs.

      Science is not magical. Science is a rational method to gather evidence to support or refute a hypothesis. If you think you can do better, then I suggest you get off your ass, go to college, get into graduate school, do research to get a Ph.D. (and I don’t want any shit online school). Then do a post-doctoral fellowship to provide evidence that you know better. Publish it. Stand up to the bright lights of your fellow scientists. Win a Nobel Prize. But until you do so, you’re just saying bullshit which supports the fact that you are a delusional and uneducated jackass.

      But do tell, show me how smart you are. Why is vaccine research is not really scientific, since it’s pretty clear that you wouldn’t know what science is if it kissed your lazy, uneducated ass.

      1. Everything YOU have written is a lie. Go look at Merck’s own submission to the FDA. When compared to placebo, gardasil had a higher death rate, and autoimmune disease incidence.

        You are the one thats delusional. I have read the science. The science promoted by vaccine apologists is garbage. And there is much good science implicating vaccines in autism and other diseases. It is now known that autism can be caused by immune activation during brain development. And what do vaccines do? DO they cause immune activation or not?

        Vaccine research is not scientific because the corrupt researchers in the vaccine industry compare their vaccines to active placebos, not actual placebos like saline. They compare a vaccine #1 with vaccine #2, or to an injection of adjuvant (which can cause serious adverse events). Never ever do they compare their vaccines with actual placebos, which would reveal how truly dangerous they are.

        I am educated in the sciences. I know what good science is, and isnt. Vaccine science is absolutely garbage, which is why nobody should trust the criminals at the CDC and vaccine industry generally.

        1. Yes, the CDC is filled with criminals. By criminals, you must mean dedicated public servants with world-class educations in public health, epidemiology, immunology, virology, bacteriology, and medicine. What have you got? A third grade education? What have you done for the world, except lie about vaccines which could lead to the deaths of thousands of children? You are the criminal. But you’re so deluded, so filled with the Dunning-Kruger cognitive bias, you can’t see your immorality and unethical behavior.

          That’s all right. I’m here to point it out.

          1. No i mean actual criminals, that lie about vaccine safety, and then go through the revolving door and work for the vaccine industry. The vaccine industry has destroyed the vaccine program, by cynically turning it into another profiteering scam.

            I am an educated professional, with advanced education in the sciences.

            “Dunning-Kruger cognitive bias”? You’re talking about yourself, jackass.

            Read these papers, for starters:

            Activation of the maternal immune system
            during pregnancy alters behavioral development of rhesus monkey offspring.


            Maternal immune activation yields
            offspring displaying mouse versions of the three core symptoms of autism.


            IL-6 and autism.


            IL-6 is increased in
            the cerebellum of autistic brain
            and alters neural cell adhesion, migration and synaptic formation.


            immune activation alters fetal brain development through interleukin-6.


            Brain IL-6 elevation causes neuronal circuitry
            imbalances and mediates autism-like behaviors.


            immune activation by poly I:C induces expression of cytokines IL-1β and IL-13,
            chemokine MCP-1 and colony stimulating factor VEGF in fetal mouse brain.


            immune activation causes age- and region-specific changes in brain cytokines in
            offspring throughout development.


            system gene dysregulation in autism and schizophrenia.


            Maternal Immune Activation and Autism Spectrum
            Disorder: Interleukin-6 Signaling as a Key Mechanistic Pathway


            Macrophagic myofaciitis a vaccine (alum) autoimmune-related disease.


            syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA) 2013:
            Unveiling the pathogenic, clinical and diagnostic aspects.


            syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA syndrome) in commercial sheep.


            persistence of vaccine-derived aluminum hydroxide is associated with chronic
            cognitive dysfunction.


            of aluminium to neonatal mice in vaccine-relevant
            amounts is associated with adverse long term neurological outcomes.


            Do aluminum vaccine adjuvants contribute to the
            rising prevalence of autism?


            Aluminum vaccine adjuvants: are they safe?


            Aluminum hydroxide injections lead to motor deficits and motor neuron


            1. “I am an educated professional, with advanced education in the sciences.”


              What are your undergrad degrees and your graduate degrees?

              What professional licenses do you possess in a health care/health care related field?

              What is your relevant work experience in any health care setting?

            2. Wow – we have a live one here. Is there a single anti-vaccine talking point that he didn’t quote?

            3. It’s some target practice for us Lawrence…as the troll keeps moving the goalposts.

              Cytokines, cytokine storms? Reminds me of another troll…on other science blogs.

            4. The ones mosving the goalposts are you guys. Please explain how immune activation is different from…immune activation.

            5. Actually we don’t move the goalposts. We have mountains of evidence of the highest quality, all of which support the safety and efficacy of vaccines. You on the other hand, want kids to get sick from measles, mumps, polio, because you are scientifically bereft of any knowledge.

            6. Where is this evidence, please?

              As I noted above, essentially all vaccine studies do not use unvaccinated controls. That massive science fail by vaccine researchers completely undermines your claims of safety.

              Your entire case for vaccine safety is based on severely flawed junk science that does not use proper control groups.

              In medical science, proper selection of controls is CRITICAL. Without proper controls, nothing can be proven.

            7. What you mean is “I know there’s lots of evidence out there, but because I’m an arrogant ignorant jackass filled with cognitive biases, I won’t look for it myself, and I’ll let you produce it for me, and then I can reject it, once again, because I’m an arrogant ignorant jackass.”

              Unless you get off your fat lazy living in your parents basement ass, go get a Ph.D., go do real research that refutes the thousands of Ph.D.’s who have gotten off their ass to do real research, you really haven’t much to add but silly ad hominems about other research.

              You’re just quoting what others say, because it fits your biased world view. Which, once again, gives me solid evidence that you wouldn’t know science if it came up and grabbed your balls.

            8. Lots of heat, but no light. Lots of insults, but no scientific references. I have provided references. You have provided none. Your entire argument for vaccine safety is an “everybody knows” argument. Its doctrinaire and entirely based on cognitive biases. How about some actual evidence instead?

              I have already specifically pointed out to you why you are wrong: the science you rely on is deeply flawed due to improper or nonexistent controls. A productive argument for you would be to provide some references that actually use proper controls (i.e. that are unvaccinated or receive saline instead of “Active” placebos like adjuvant injections).

              I have read hundreds of papers on vaccine safety, many of which supposedly contradict my arguments. But when considered in view of the lack of proper controls, they melt away into nothingness.

              The case for vaccine safety is built on studies that dont mean much. The evidence that vaccines are far more dangerous than claimed is overwhelmingly strong, in comparison.

              I will give you a specific example: Madsen 2002. This was a study of the MMR vaccine investigating the MMR-vaccine link. Had over 900,000 subjects. Big study, lots of subjects. Sounds great, right?

              here is the problem. The two groups are described as “vaccinated” and “unvaccinated”. But the so-called “unvaccinated” group received an unkown number of vaccinations, including an unknown number of measles vaccinations-the component of the MMR hypothesized to cause the adverse effects. So the study design can be summed up like this:

              “vaccinated” experimental group = MMR + ?? vaccines
              “unvaccinated” controls = No MMR, ?? vaccines, including measles

              See the problem here? Essentially no conclusions can be drawn from this garbage, other than perhaps MMR is probably not more dangerous than other vaccines for causing autism, and that MMR is not uniquely dangerous for causing autism. But certainly no conclusions can be drawn about vaccines generally.

              And yet, this study is hailed as one of the best, and it was published in the NEJM as supposedly a hugely important paper. And its used by vaccine dupes over and over again to argue for safety of vaccines generally. But in fact very little can be concluded from the results. The paper is a waste of everyones time.

            9. Nope. We simply don’t play your childish, ignorant, arrogant game. There are hundreds and thousands of articles that support the safety and effectiveness of all vaccines. A meta review that takes the 64 best articles is right here.

              You have provide nothing but rhetorical vomit. Which has no use to us.

              You’re asserting the lack of safety and effectiveness of vaccines. We await your brilliant use of science to provide us with the evidence.

              The onus is on you oh ignorant one.

            10. You have the claims that there are deaths and devastating consequences/injuries associated with receiving HPV vaccines…it’s up to you to provide the names of those young people who died or suffered real consequences due to receiving those HPV vaccines.

              We’re still waiting for you to pony up the names of those individuals as well as the “vaccine injuries” caused by HPV vaccines.

            11. I have my own talking points that come straight from the peer-reviewed literature. I never make any conspiracy arguments or resort to non-scientific arguments made by some of the dumb anti-vaxer types.

            12. I think he is a close relation to Lowell H. He even keeps referring to the same old tired list of “studies.” No links to amusing YouTube videos though 🙁

            13. Since you have no good arguments on the merits, you are attempting to resort to personal attacks. Im not going to enable this sort of resume contest. Either comment on the merits, or STFU.

            14. Pretty much confirms you have no education. I mean you cold brag about your science class in 3rd grade with Mrs. Wilson. She broke your heart I suppose.

            15. Again no comments on the merits. Im starting to think thats because you have no arguments. All you have is regurgitated spin invented by the vaccine industry.

            16. Heh, heh. I’ve already commented…multiple times and provided you with links to support my statements. You, OTH, have provide zero citations from first tier, peer reviewed journals to back up any of your statements.

              I’ll make you an offer. I’m set to send Skeptical Raptor a private email with my real name and documentation about my registered nurse license. I’m betting you will not provide SR with documentation about your professional license.


            17. I dont give a F about your RN license. I know plenty of RNs and that doesnt mean they are experts in any way on vaccines. I have spent thousands of hours reading the vaccine literature. To get your RN, you dont have to read any primary literature, and certainly dont have to read any vaccine primary literature. All you have to do is memorize the dogma and spin created by the vaccine industry. Thats why you have no idea what you are talking about.

              if you’re such an expert, why dont you explain why vaccine safety studies never ever include unvaccinated controls?

            18. I am also a retired public health nurse clinician-epidemiologist who actually worked for a large County health department-division of communicable diseases control, who investigated individual cases, clusters and outbreaks of V-P-Ds …. and the ~ 50 other communicable diseases with are “Reportable” to the CDC.

              I take great offense at your sliming libelous remarks about about doctors, nurses, and researchers who work in public health.

              So what are your credentials dodanimal?

            19. You brainwashed so-called medical “professionals” have ruined your own reputation by allowing the vaccine program, and medicine generally, to become a corporate profiteering scam. If you bothered to read your own scientific literature perhaps it would become more clear to you how weak your case is for vaccine safety, and how flawed your pathetic vaccine studies are. The scientific literature also amply describes the dangers of vaccines, and dangers of aluminum and immune activation generally.

              Your profession is thoroughly corrupt. Im happy to see that the public finally starting to figure it out.

              Medical science is unlike any other area of science for its corruption, ignorance and hyperconservatism. You will not regain the publics trust until you reform your profession to eliminate the corruption.

            20. I know you’re embarrassed by your 3rd grade education. But seriously, your only choice is inventing bullshit out of the thin air. Good one you ignorant little wad of pus.

            21. More admhominem personal attacks!

              Why do you not have ANY arguments on the merits?

              You have yet to address the issue of the lack of proper controls in vaccine safety studies. It is impossible to conclude anything about vaccine safety without proper controls.

            22. No relevant education and no credentials whatsoever to offer up any cogent arguments for your not-based-in-science comments.

            23. Uh, why do you keep going on about “unvaccinated controls” in a safety study? The universe is unvaccinated, except for the people who are being vaccinated. You already know the background rate of whatever you are looking for. You don’t have placebo for safety studies. All that belongs in the effectiveness testing. (When a drug is released, the package enclosure lists all the possible reported reactions, which are laughable. My favorite is diarrhea AND/OR constipation. Those are basically placebo effects reported by overly sensitive individuals.)

              You can see data on whether a vaccine is effective, and in what percentage of the cases, whenever a vaccine is used in a population that is partly unvaccinated. The recent measles breakouts were a pretty good illustration of the effectiveness of measles vaccine. Your “unvaccinated controls” are found in the schools and pediatricians’ offices, where they catch diseases they could have been spared.

              I don’t know if you remember the Tuskegee experiments, where the victims were left untreated (as if they were a control group) after the effectiveness of penicillin was known. There are ethical considerations in administering a placebo (for instance, a saline injection instead of an immunization), where risk is substantially increased. Would you want your child to be given a placebo polio shot?

            24. There are plenty of parents who deliberately avoid the use of unsafe vaccines. They would be thrilled to participate in a study as unvaccinated controls. Such a study could be done open-label, and there would be many thousands of unvaccinated children available to use as controls.

              the fact that the CDC and vaccine industry block and advocate AGAINST any such research just goes to show how unscientific they are and how concerned they are of knowing the true dangers of vaccination.

              I have seen plenty of data and vaccine safety studies. they are all garbage due to the lack of adequate controls.

              A vaccine is not a placebo.

              An adjuvant injection is not a placebo.

            25. Oh yes these parents with their 20 minutes of “education” on google vs. MD’s, Ph.D.’s who have dozens of years each in research and studying public health.

              You are an amateur, uneducated, ignorant little jackass.

            26. You all already knew Dodanimal is an antivaxer. His Disqus posting history shows he’s much, much more:

              – He thinks vaccines cause autism, and “Jenny McCarthy is supported by the science.”

              – He thinks autism is caused by brain inflammation.

              – He thinks psychiatric drugs are a scam, and that “mental illness outcomes are worse for those on meds”

              – He thinks mental illness is “curable with a persistent orthomolecular approach,” alt-med blather for
              vitamins and dietary supplements. IOW he seriously thinks BPD and schizophrenia can be cured with vitamins.

              – He thinks psychiatric meds cause violent behavior
              – He’s anti-GMO
              – He thinks asthma can be cured with vitamins and diet.

              – He thinks “natural nutrient based therapies” can cure:
              High blood pressure
              Bipolar disorder
              Ulcerative colitis
              Polycistic ovarian syndrome

            27. You fail at this argument because you dont have any arguments on the merits.

              You resort to personal attacks, instead of arguments on the merits of what I wrote, because you are a loser with a poor understanding of the science. You have no idea what you are talking about.

            28. Also, vaccine adjuvant is sometimes used as a control, and adjuvant provides absolutely no protection against anything (though it does have a risk of death, brain damage and autoimmune disease). SO adjuvant has exactly the same ethical implications as using saline control.

              So why is it that adjuvant is used? The obvious answer is that it conceals the damage caused by the vaccine.

              Adjuvant controls were used in the primary control group in the studies of Mercks HPV vaccine (gardasil). When the adjuvant caused almost as much death and disability as the HPV vaccine, they declared the vaccine “safe!”. Its a total fraud.

            29. Wow, your ignorance shows through. An adjuvant boosts the immune response to an antigen. So less antigen can be used to get a long-term adaptive immune response.

              Why? Because the immunization mimics the pathogenic attack without all of those nasty pathogenic effects like death.

              Adjuvants do not protect against death, brain damage or autoimmune diseases, because they are simply not risks of vaccination you twit.

            30. You are the one thats ignorant. I know exactly what an adjuvant does.

              Adjuvants are dangerous. Thats the part you completely fail to grasp, and why your understanding of vaccine risks and vaccine studies is so completely warped and flawed.

            31. Why haven’t you provided your educational background and qualifications, you dodo?

            32. I’ve already commented on the “merits” of those nebulous claims of yours…and provided some specifics about the Tarsell case.

              Your turn now to produce the names and the injuries suffered by young women who received those vaccines.

              You’re an ignorant anti-vaccine troll, who lacks any proof…who has never worked in any health related field…why should we believe random trolls on the internet who blather on…and on…based on their spectacular lack of basic science skill, their deplorable lack of any professional licensing and their out and out lies?

            33. For giggles – let’s look at the aluminum salt adjuvant/ neurotoxin “studies” that you link (ignoring the made-up ASIA disorder):

              #1: This one is a French study about macrofagia myofasciitis (MMF). I can only see the abstract, but it appears that the researchers are trying to link the presence of MMF lesions with a systemic disorder including symptoms of cognitive dysfunction through correlation, but no real mechanism of causation is discussed. The same group of researchers have published similar studies in the same journal (Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry), but, just like ASIA, no other researchers have found the preliminary
              “evidence” compelling enough to investigate further.

              The French Ministry of Health and the
              WHO (that’s the World Health Organization, not the band) have reviewed the studies about MMF (plus they’ve done their own studies, like ones with real control groups and whatnot), and “concluded that the evidence does not support an association between the persistence of aluminium-containing macrophages at the site of a previous vaccination and clinical symptoms or disease.” So, no link to a systemic disorder.

              WHO Questions About MMF:

              Then four studies by Shaw and his minions :

              #2: Aluminum in neonatal mice – I can only see the abstract, but it is about mice! I think the problems with relying on animal models have been discussed.

              #3: Aluminum adjuvants and autism – I
              only looked at the abstract, but this one appears to actually involve humans (way to step it up, Shaw and Tomljenovic!).
              Orac does a great job at tearing this “study” apart. He notes many problems, including a misuse of Hill’s criteria to show correlation; misleading information about the cytokine
              profiles used in the study; making the BIG mistake of comparing a group of children from one country to a group of children from another country without accounting for individual differences within each group; making assumptions that everyone who is vaccinated has the same problems with aluminum retention as those with the rare MMF lesions, etc:

              #4 Aluminum Adjuvants: Are They Safe? – This “study”
              is just hypothesis; there is no testing involved. So, yeah.

              #5 Aluminum hydroxide and motor deficits and
              motor neuron degradation – The full text was easy to find for this one, so I read through it. Much of the preamble to
              this study involves Gulf War Syndrome (GWS) and investigating the effects of the aluminum salt adjuvant in the anthrax vaccine. Here’s the big problem: Epidemiological studies of Gulf War veterans have shown “little supporting evidence” for the anthrax vaccine being a cause
              (basically, that hypothesis has been
              ruled out completely), whereas “evidence strongly and consistently” indicates pesticides and nerve agent medication as the cause:

              Couple of other points on this one:

              1) Hey, look – it’s mice again!

              2) The anthrax vaccine is generally
              administered as a series of shots over a short period of time (up to six over 2 weeks). This really does not mimic any
              childhood vaccination schedule, if one is indeed trying to use this “study” in support of harm to children from aluminum salt adjuvants. Also, unlike vaccines in the childhood vaccination schedule, no large-scale clinical trials of the anthrax vaccine were ever performed.

              3) The authors assert that they adjusted the dosage based upon the substantial weight differences between a human and a mouse, but dosage the mice received was still 150% of the dosage the humans would have received (100 μg/kg versus 68 μg/kg in one group; 300 μg/kg versus 200 μg/kg
              in another).

              I’m sure that someone who had more than just a couple undergrad-level biology and chemistry classes could find
              many more issues with this one – these are just the common-sense objections that I have.

              BTW, Shaw and his minions have pretty close ties to a number of anti-vax organizations , so I wouldn’t consider them unbiased researchers. Also, the work of Shaw’s
              group is done under a Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences and published in an inorganic chemistry journal; thus, their work is not “peer-reviewed” by experts
              in infectious diseases, immunology, epidemiology, etc.

              Overall, you are trying to prop up these few crap “studies” (excuse my potty mouth!) against a review of 60+ studies of millions of human children. And so I really question your claims about being THAT educated in any science field.

            34. Mice are commonly used for toxicology testing for good reasons-because the results are frequently applicable to humans. You have no evidence to suggest that humans would be more resistant to the effects of aluminum than mice.

              Shaw is a neuroscientist. His expertise is in studying neurons.

              It has been proven that Gulf War illness is the request of squalene adjuvant used in the anthrax vaccine. Squalene injections cause autoimmune diseases like lupus.

              Shaw has proven that injected aluminum causes substantial nerve and brain damage.

              You have no studies-in animals or humans-demonstrating that aluminum injections are safe.

              Every single one of your pathetic studies fails to use proper control groups that have no vaccine or adjuvant exposure.

              There is nothing wrong with Shawss studies or Shaw’s lab or research group. UBC is an excellent institution. His results re: injected aluminum have been replicated by other researchers.

              Arguing that Shaw should be ignored because he is “anti-vax” is not a rational or reasonable argument.

            35. Yawn!

              Animal studies are a starting point, but are a long, long way from conclusive evidence.

              So, now Gulf War syndrome is caused by the squalene adjuvant in anthrax vaccinations (citations please!)?? Because the study you linked tested an aluminum salt adjuvant in the anthrax vaccine. And, by the way, squalene was not the adjuvant used in the anthrax vaccinations; trace amounts of squalene were found in some lots of this and other vaccines because squalene is everywhere, including amounts found naturally in our blood:

              I think that the ethics of having an unvaccinated control group have been discussed extensively elsewhere; it is a subject that anti-vaccine advocates will bring up ad infintum because they either don’t understand why it would be impossible due to ethical considerations, they know it could never be done due to ethical considerations (and thus they can always distract with that red herring), or they just really don’t care about killing kids.
              Any additional response to all the other fallacies and inconsistencies previously noted, anything besides whining about how a researcher paid by an anti-vax group to speak at an anti-vax conference couldn’t possibly be biased?

        2. Except that…everything you stated in this comment (and your other comments on this thread) is inaccurate, misleading or false.

          I’ve got Merck’s 28 page Gardasil Vaccine Physicians Prescribing Information (Package Insert) right here. It is the same data from 40 separate clinical trials which was submitted to the FDA. In addition there is data from post marketing studies. There is no data to suggest a “higher death rate or autoimmune disease incidence” within the groups who received the vaccine-vs-those who received aluminum adjuvanted placebos or saline placebos.

          Using this link, prove to us that you are not making stuff up:

          “I am educated in the sciences. I know what good science is, and isnt.
          Vaccine science is absolutely garbage, which is why nobody should trust
          the criminals at the CDC and vaccine industry generally.”

          I bet.

            1. Again, your argument here is merely a personal attack? Thats it? Mere personal attacks are completely unconvincing and a distraction. I never use them, and you should not either.

              How about some comments on the merits of what is claimed about the HPV safety data? What SPECIFICALLY do they get wrong?

            2. If you have evidence, you get treated with respect. But you only have access to lies, logical fallacies, and anti-science “beliefs.” No evidence.

              If your cognitive bias is so severe that we can’t agree on the basic science, there’s nothing more. It’s like you think water is H3O…If we can’t agree on the basics, then all other conversations about biology become a waste of time.

              So given the fact that you deny even the simple parts of biomedical science all that’s left is to point out that you’re a complete dumbass. And I’m all right with that. You are a complete dumbass.

            3. I have posted dozens of papers on immune activation and aluminum, and merck’s FDA data.

              I have zero bias. I have looked at the scientific evidence objectively. The vaccine safety studies SUCK because they do not use appropriate control groups. Without proper controls, it is impossible to prove anything in science, and medical science especially. The lack of proper controls is why your beliefs about vaccines safety are a joke and completely wrong.

              Using proper controls is fundamental to the scientific method, especially medical science. Its pathetic that vaccine researchers have rejected this fundamental, basic concept of how to do good science.

            4. You refuse to make any arguments on the merits because you have no arguments.

              Im not arguing with fundamental laws of nature here. The idea that vaccines are safe and do not cause brain damage is not a fundamental law of nature. Its a hypothesis that is far from proven, and for which there is a great deal of contrary evidence.

              Again, your claims of vaccine safety depend hugely on severely flawed studies that do not use proper control groups.

        3. Hey, dummy, even if there was any support to your hypothesis that immune activation during brain development caused autism (would like to see some peer-reviewed studies in high-impact journals to support that) . . . you know what else causes a lot more “immune activation” than a shot? A full-blown infection of one of the vaccine-preventable diseases! Even a regular old cold, that most young kids get 3+ times a year, cause more of an immune response than a shot.

          So, by your “theory,” vaccines would actually help prevent autism by minimizing immune response.

          1. Oh, I see from reading some of your links you are talking about maternal immune response in development . . . in monkeys, mice, etc. Not humans.

            Again, a full-blown infection causes more immune response than a vaccination.

            And you’ve got some studies about ASIA (a made-up group of disorders that have no basis of support other than a small group of researchers that keep publishing the same article over and over again) and the articles cited separately by these ASIA studies, again mostly in animals.

            Yeah, not very impressive.

            1. Humans have the exact same cytokine response as mice and monkeys etc. These systems are ancient and quite similar across species. Hence, the animals models are very good. Thats why they are used.

              Humans have exactly the same IL-6 as mice and monkeys, and it appears to function in exactly the same way.

              So, your made-up ad-hoc argument is wrong.

              ASIA has been demonstrated in sheep and other animals. It demonstrates the neurotoxicity of aluminum, which is used in almost all vaccines. Further, the Shaw group has proven that inject aluminum in vaccine-comparable dosages results in behavioral changes and neuro damage in infant mice. Oh, and neuron death.

              Where are the studies showing that injected aluminum is safe? Got any like that? Because the only studies I can find on injected aluminum always show grave harm that should be of serious concern. The response of the vaccine industry has been pathetic: to deny, lie about and ignore the evidence of harm.

            2. But, if all your “evidence” about immune response and autism is in maternal studies of various creatures, then it must be tied to the immune response of the mom, right? That what maternal means. So your “evidence” would be for the shots the pregnant woman receives, not the kid. Move them goal posts!

              Every time a new vaccine is tested, the testing includes testing the whole vaccine – including its adjuvants. One of the main reasons that aluminum salts have been used for 70+ years as a vaccine adjuvant is their ability to enhance the immune response without causing side effects other than local pain and swelling at the injection site.



              ASIA in sheep? Nice work!

              Did you provide a link yet to the “proof” the Shaw group provides, ’cause I would like to read that.

            3. Maternal immune activation leads to fetal immune activation. And its the fetal immune activation (the cytokines, and IL-6 in particular) that causes the damage. The maternal immune activation is merely the trigger for the fetal immune response.

              And there is nothing special that happens at birth that suddenly renders an infant resistant to the damaging effects of immune activation. Many of the same brain development processes are occurring before and after birth.

              Fetuses are more sensitive, though. Fetuses can be extremely sensitive to immune activation damage. Thats another reason why they are used-its easy to observe the effects with relatively small numbers of animal subjects. Highly statistically significant results can be obtained with only a few dozen animals. That accelerates research and reduces costs. A single immune activation event can cause severe brain damage in a large proportion (e.g. about 30-60%) of fetal subjects.

              In view of the remarkable sensitivity of the fetus, and the absurd number of vaccines in the USA schedule, its remarkable, IMO, that the autism and brain damage rate from vaccines is not higher than it is already.

            4. Here’s what Science blogger Dr. Emily Willingham has to say about mice studies:

              “If the study in question is about mice,
              never talk about how the results will lead to a therapy or a cure or
              write about the mice as though somehow, they are just tiny humans with
              tails. Mice have misled us before. They are only a way to model what
              might happen in a mammal sorta kinda related to us. They are not Us,
              otherwise we’d live in tiny, crowded places, having 10 children at once
              and ignoring them when they grow fur, and this autism thing wouldn’t be
              an issue.”

              ***Wish I had come up with that clever remark//sigh.

            5. There’s an old joke in the cancer research world. “We’ve cured cancer in mice thousands of times.”

              But Emily Willingham’s take on the matter is perfect. I would give my right eyeball to science if I could write like her. Maybe if I didn’t have my right eyeball, it was just make me a better writer.

          2. Lets see, getting every vaccine on the schedule will result in more immune activation events, because unvaccinated kids (even in the absence of herd immunity) will not get anywhere near all the diseases there are vaccines for. You argument is a preposterous logic fail.

            Regular colds do not include a dose of injected aluminum, which causes a longer course of chronic inflammation/immune activation. And brain-specific inflammation, at that.

        1. That’s not an analysis…that’s a chapter in Habakus’ anti-science book, written by Blaxill and Olmsted from the clown blog, Age of Autism.

          1. The numbers used are taken directly from Merck’s FDA submission. Yes, its a very fair analysis.

            You will notice that this data includes results from TWO control groups: one received adjuvant (i.e. vaccine without the antigen), and one received saline. The saline group is the only proper control.

            Both the vaccine and adjuvant groups had increased risk of death and severe adverse reactions. Only the saline group had a baseline, normal adverse event rate consistent wih the general population.

            Why is adjuvant allowed to be used as a “placebo”? Its NOT a palcebo. Adjuvant alone can cause severe reactions.

            This is a specific example of the severe flaws and fraud in vaccine safety research. And the FDA allows this unscientific nonsense. its criminal, really. Its a scam contrived to support Mercks $$ billion HPV vaccine business. The HPV vaccine almost certainly causes more damage than it prevents.

    2. linky, linkym linky….to any reputable source for your outrageous statements about Gardasil “killing many” and severe adverse reactions (causing) “incurable autoimmune diseases in thousands more”?

      Are you ashamed of your sources?

      1. He doesn’t understand science. I provide evidence, in this article, that included over 2 million children, and no deaths were reported. None in the massive IOM study that was 10’s of millions of children.

        dodanimal is one of those ignorant, uneducated, Dunning-Kruger afflicted, cognitive-biased fools that troll the internet.

        He probably wears a Red Star Trek uniform. LOL

    3. Let’s pretend we live in a parallel world where what you say is true. It’s not, but we’re going to pretend it is.

      My math sucks, but I believe 0.12% is derived from 100,000. Which means, 12 out of 100,000. Severe adverse events (A.E’s) range from diarrhea lasting six hours or more, to heavy nosebleeds, to anaphylactic shock and death. Since no deaths have been reported, we’ll strike that off the list.

      Somehow, I think the parents of teenage girls, and boys, would rather they be hospitalized for anaphylaxis than for them to get CANCER!! How about you?

      1. Your response highlights another huge problem with vaccine studies: the failure to specifically identify adverse reactions. How many of these are incurable autoimmune disease? Merckis not revealing that information.

        A huge problem with your cost/benefit analysis is that the risks occur TODAY, and the benefits (if any, since they are not proven) occur 15, 20 30 or more years from now. if the vaccine protection lasts that long (thats never been proven).

        So one is trading risk of severe reactions and death (yes plenty of deaths have been caused by the HPV vaccine), with possible benefit in the future. In any rational cost/benefit analysis, future events are ALWAYS DISCOUNTED. And 20 or more years in the future must be discounted a great deal.

        Mercks own FDA submission shows a higher death rate in the vaccine group compared to the saline controls. So yes, the HPV vaccine causes death.

        Further, go look up the risk of cervical cancer. its pretty low, and treatable. The risk of death from cervical cancer is lower than the risk of severe adverse reaction to the vaccine.

        And finally, cervical dysplasia, cancer and HPV infection are all treatable by natural means, including methyl donors, carotenoids, B12, folate etc. These natural options are far safer and very effective for preventing and reversing cervical changes that lead to cancer.

        the bottom line is that the HPV vaccine has one of the worst risk/benefit ratios of any vaccine, or medical intervention. its an idiotic vaccine thats been recommended to the public merely so that Merck can make billions. its a corporate scam.

        1. Okay. Let’s play it like this: The most powerful man in the world (The President of the United States) had an affair. It got out.

          The most secretive, and powerful spy agency in the world (the NSA) spied on the American people. It got out.

          If your claim were true, do you really think it would stay a secret? Seriously?

  2. Younger doctors have never seen a case of the diseases for which these marvelous vaccines are given. A recent outbreak of measles was hard to diagnose because nobody had the experience. This is something to be celebrated!

      1. I’m more worried about the next disease – something like SARS or worse that gets out of hand because of all of this distrust & quite frankly, fear-mongering against medical research, the CDC & the like…..

        1. I’m a big fan of the zombie genre. And I’m no Johnny-come-lately to being a fanboy of it, I’ve been a fan since Romero’s original, Night of the Living Dead. Kept me awake for months.

          I, and many of my science-y friends, will be demanding a vaccine while preparing for the hoards of zombies. We will be looking to the CDC and WHO to save our butts. The anti-vaxxers will be visiting their homeopaths.

          Case closed.

      2. I wonder if the younger generation of doctors would recognize polio, although many patients have pretty obvious symptoms. Measles is a little harder to recognize. I remember having it, and you would not describe what I had as a “rash” — it was more like hives than prickly heat. But everyone is different. Not to mention that it’s complicated : The high fever for 10 days was more suggestive. Of course, measles was pretty common in 1950, so everyone knew about it. So was polio.

        Polio, once diagnosed, would result in a huge vaccination effort, as they are trying to do in Syria. At this moment, the New York public schools are requiring 3 polio shots for new entrants into 2nd and 6th (I think). We have lots of international traffic in New York, and we don’t mess around. Polio is carried in feces and many carriers are asymptomatic.

        There is no excuse for polio still being around. Religion is not an excuse, and the fact that war has overtaken so many is really not an excuse either — it is possible to vaccinate everyone even under war conditions if the perpetrators are not total bastards. (Total bastards goes for the religious objectors, too; they have been killing medical personnel.) It seemed to be almost gone. One more generation and it would be.

        1. Indeed. I read something (somewhere) where it was reported last year there were something like 300 cases of polio world wide. That is amazing. Over 7 billion people in the world, and only 300 got polio? My math sucks, but isn’t that like, 0.000003%?

          1. When public health vaccination gets rolling, incidence approaches zero. The first disease that reached zero was smallpox. Polio was well on its way until 3 pathetic groups of backward Muslims (Pakistan, Nigeria, Afghanistan) decided vaccination would make them sterile or un-Kosher or something. The problem with polio is that the virus is enteric and found in sewage; for instance, it was found in Brazil although nobody seems to have contracted it. So you have to get everybody vaccinated over a period of time until all the virus has been eradicated in the environment. If you skip a few people, it comes back, for instance in Syria under wartime conditions.

    1. The Ohio Department of Health has frequent updates about the multiple measles outbreaks in the State. There are 369 confirmed cases of measles YTD in Ohio…all attributed to unvaccinated individuals who traveled to the Philippines, contracted measles there and who then returned home to infect babies too young to have received MMR vaccines and other unvaccinated individuals in their communities:

      There were instances of exposures to those measles cases in hospital Emergency Rooms, because the rashes that patients presented with, were misdiagnosed as dengue fever.

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