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Originally posted by RogerT
as a bit of 'fun' playing with stats:
From the study: chances of contracting pneumonia and dying by taking the oral HRV vaccine Rotirax are 1 in 6,000.
From general rotavirus stats: chance of dying from contracting rotavirus in the USA are 1 in 45,000 to 1 in 135,000
So you are 7 to 21 times more likely to die from the vaccine than from the virus!
I'm not a gambling man, especially when it comes to the lives of my children, but I know which odds I'd rather take
[edit on 15/9/08 by RogerT]
I chose the rotavirus study because it raised so many good questions about what needs to be looked at, but didn't in any way involve what I think is the main argument in opposition to your second position, which is so-called "herd immunity". It is my contention that the total eradication of a disease is not the only reason for vaccination - that a vaccine can "work" if it significantly reduces suffering due to the organism it targets.
This leaves a number of questions: is there any point vaccinating a severely undernourished population if the vaccine will fail in many? In a well-nourished population does the high level of immunity achieved suggest that the population could have ridden out an actual outbreak without any major adverse effects?
Both inoculation and vaccine campaigns have always been fraught with politics and financial interests. Despite the fact that inoculation was outlawed by the British Parliament in 1840, in 1853 The Compulsory Vaccination Act in England was passed by Parliament and every parent was required to have their baby vaccinated within 3 months of birth or face a fine of 20 shillings.
In modern times, we face similar threats that our children won’t be admitted to school unless they are jabbed with the hepatitis B vaccine (a rare syndrome) and whose safety data we have yet to see. The school nurse and Public Health Department, or school admittance policies should not be used to threaten you that you cannot enroll your kid, based on the madness surrounding the possibility that your 5-year-old will transmit a sexual, or needle-borne, or blood-product-transmitted “syndrome” that has a 99% or greater spontaneous resolution rate in otherwise healthy individuals, to someone else's 5 year old.
Currently, parents are being threatened that their daughters have a 70% chance of acquiring cervical cancer unless they fork over $300.00 dollars for a series of 3 HPV shots.
If you don't mind, I'm going to continue to focus on the "do vaccines work?" question for a bit longer. And it may be slow going, because this week is really busy for me in real life too. I'll have to look into the arguments for and against the theory behind them -- if you could provide me with a link or two arguing against it would be appreciated, since I'm pretty sure I'll be able to find the pro- argument but my Google luck researching the anti-vaccine argument is pretty iffy. I tend to get tens or hundreds of links to alarmist websites that don't give any research or evidence to back their claims.
Again, thanks for actually addressing the research with me -- I hope that we both can learn a lot about the issue this way.
The .1% I am all in favor for is mainly trauma surgery. If I get hit by a truck and my left arm is lying 12 feet away from my right arm on the pavement, I certainly want a trained surgeon to sew it back on again. I'll take the anaesthetic, although I'd rather have a well trained acupuncturist and/or herbalist on hand to manage the pain
I'm really still not done with "do vaccines work" because I can't see how we can decide whether they are necessary or not without first determining what all we're hoping they can do.
Would you take the antibiotics? I don't know if there are any kind of statistics on post-operative infection after limb reattachment without antibiotics, but I'm not convinced a couple cloves of garlic would do it.
How about other invasive procedures designed to correct physical anomalies that are not trauma-related? Surgery to correct congenital defects in infants? Catheter ablation to correct atrial fibrillation? Where does the line get drawn and why?
And what is it that makes "natural" medicines that an herbalist provides necessarily better than pharmaceutic agents developed in a lab? I don't mean politically better, or economically better -- I mean better for the health of the patient.
the number of people having in-hospital, adverse reactions to prescribed drugs to be 2.2 million per year. The number of unnecessary antibiotics prescribed annually for viral infections is 20 million per year. The number of unnecessary medical and surgical procedures performed annually is 7.5 million per year. The number of people exposed to unnecessary hospitalization annually is 8.9 million per year.
The most stunning statistic, however, is that the total number of deaths caused by conventional medicine is an astounding 783,936 per year. It is now evident that the American medical system is the leading cause of death and injury in the US.
Of the 783,936 annual deaths due to conventional medical mistakes, about 106,000 are from prescription drugs, according to Death by Medicine. That also is a conservative number. Some experts estimate it should be more like 200,000 because of underreported cases of adverse drug reactions.
(OMNS) American poison control statistics show that in one year, there were 28 deaths from heroin; acetaminophen (the active ingredient in products like Tylenol ) killed 147. Though acetaminophen killed over five times as many as an illegal drug, few would say that we should make this generally regarded as safe, over-the-counter pain reliever require prescription
The 2003 Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposures Surveillance System indicates a total of 13 deaths attributed to herbal preparations. Three of these are from ephedra, two from yohimbe, and two from ma-huang. Accepting all seven claims of deaths attributed to these products, we still find that there were over 20 times as many deaths each year from acetaminophen.
Only three deaths are attributable to other single ingredient botanicals, and oddly enough, their identity remains unnamed in the Toxic Exposures report. Reporting three deaths without naming the cause is a clear admission of uncertainty.
Millions of persons take herbal remedies, and have done so for generations. Indigenous and Westernized peoples alike have found them to be safe and effective, and the 2003 Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposures Surveillance System confirms this (p 388-389). There have been no deaths at all from cultural medicines, including ayurvedic, Asian, Hispanic, and in fact, from all others.
Additionally, we find:
* Blue cohosh: 0 deaths
* Ginko biloba: 0 deaths
* Echinacea: 0 deaths
* Ginseng: 0 deaths
* Kava kava: 0 deaths
* St John's wort: 0 deaths
* Valerian: 0 deaths
Furthermore, there have been zero deaths from phytoestrogens, glandulars, blue-green algae, or homeopathic remedies.
You accuse "allopathic" medicine of having a "poison yourself to health" viewpoint -- I would argue that it is the pharmaceutical companies, the mass media, and the consumer-driven medical model that have this viewpoint, not the practitioners of conventional medicine.
Why can't a vaccination campaign be combined with education about nutrition and holistic ways of maintaining health?
You answered "yes" and "no", respectively. Can you provide supportive data for those answers?
I suspect our definitions of things like "effective" and "medically necessary" are too far apart to reach agreement, but I still think the exercise is worthwhile. If nothing else, it is helping me get a sense of the issues involved and the barriers presented by the current health communities (both alternative and conventional).
After three years of study, a Medical Working Group representing 180 Swiss medical doctors specializing in general medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics published an article in the Spring 1992 Journal of Anthroposophic Medicine entitled "The Immunization Campaign Against Measles, Mumps and Rubella, Coercion Leading to Uncertainy: Medical Objections to a Continued MMR Immunization Campaign in Switzerland," concluding that mandatory, mass vaccination with MMR vaccine is ineffective and dangerous.
What's your angle here, just curious?
Are you an MD? Are you telling me that MD's don't prescribe pharmaceuticals.
OK, it's either a poison it out or cut it out mentality. I've yet to meet a practising allopathic MD that knows much about health.
Well of course it can. But IMO, if the educational, legislative, financial, research focus was moved from combatting disease to promoting and preserving health, then vaccinations wouldn't be necessary even in your sense of the statement.
This is the difference between holistic medicine and allopathy. They live in distinct paradigms. To provide data you need a study. Studies need financing, which involves either a profit motive or a legislative motive. My assertions are validated by a gradual realisation of the natural order of things (call it common sense or awareness), I'm not aware of studies, although they may exist.
The recommended AZT dose for African infants and small children is the same per kg of body weight as the original high-dose AZT that is widely acknowledged to have killed an entire generation of grown men, and which has not been administered for almost a decade (see here for a short history barnesworld.blogs.com...).
In the words of Claus Koehnlein, a German physician who has treated AIDS patients for ten years without AZT and its cousins:
"AZT kills everything that depends on DNA replication -- that means opportunistic infections and also cancers will respond to the treatment -- but at a high price.
Two opposing viewpoints of health and disease have been evident since ancient times. The conventional view, or Allopathic (literally, “other disease”) sees problems coming from outside the body. Or simply, the cause of disease comes from outside, then invades the body and the person gets "sick."
The Germ Theory.
Allopathic philosophy says that when the body has symptoms like pain, fever, or nausea, that means the person has caught some bug, some disease and needs to have these symptoms “treated” - i.e., covered up. Usually with drugs.
If the disease localizes itself in one certain part of the body and won't go away, then that part of the body may have to be cut out with surgery. That's the allopathic viewpoint: disease, symptoms, drugs, surgery.
The holistic view is different.
Holistic philosophy says that the cause and cure of all disease lie within the body. The parts of the body are interrelated in ways that are so complex, so sophisticated, so elegantly orchestrated and exquisitely tuned, that all medical technology has only the crudest, faintest understanding of just a few basic mechanisms.
In most cases, the body can heal itself if provided with the opportunity.
It does this from the inside out - from the brain and spinal cord, outward through the nervous system, to every organ, and cell.
For every time you have ever been sick, there have been hundreds of times when your immune system has conquered a disease without any overt symptoms being expressed.
The mysteries of the body - its inner workings - are actually the most evolved systems in the universe. We are dealing with the life forces, the life substances - that which can never be viewed in dissection or isolated in laboratory culture.
To influence these subtle, delicate interweavings, natural cures seek to nourish and encourage the body back into a condition of balance, by gentle support.
Allopathic medicine has always criticized holistic medicine with the same complaint down through the years, persisting intact to the present time: the same thing over and over - alternative medicine is unscientific, unproven, not supported by controlled clinical trials, undocumented in peer-reviewed journals, and anecdotal. They don't really say Alternative doesn't work; just that it's unproven. What this implies of course is that mainstream allopathy is objectively scientific and proven by clinical research.
There are two big problems with such claims:
1. it's apples and oranges
2. "science" is really not that scientific
Apples and oranges. Two different things, totally different paradigms. Alternative medicine is not just a different way to cure the diseases we might get. It is not competing with anyone in the Disease Care market. Holistic medicine doesn't cure diseases. It promotes a healthy condition which is not conducive to disease, by purifying the biological terrain, to allow the body to express its natural potential. All the time.
the strength of holistic methods often lies in their empirically demonstrable value. Chiropractic, for one, has been around for over 100 years, with millions of people being cared for. The benefits of spinal correction are easily shown and easily understood. Chiropractic doesn't have to be "proven" except to a defense lawyer or someone with a political agenda to attack it.
Same way with acupuncture. The 12 meridians and the thousands of herbs employed by acupuncturists - none of this has been "proven" by strict "scientific" studies. After 4000 years, acupuncture is still around, and people still choose it as a helpful treatment.
Also for the minute dilutions employed by homeopathic medicine - these have never been written up in NEJM after double blind studies showed their effectiveness.
Allopathic posturing pretends that all drugs and procedures have been thoroughly tested in objective scientific research studies, which guarantees both safety and effectiveness. There are some basic problems with such a wish.
First of all, in the "controlled" study, scientists pretend they are testing some drug by isolating just one single variable, and holding all other factors the same, in order to prove the effectiveness of the drug.
The only way to do this is to place the subjects in a position of uncertainty and helplessness: the "double-blind" study. That means that supposedly neither the researchers nor the subjects know who's getting the drug and who's getting the placebo sugar pill.
The point is, the whole structure of such a design is flawed. Why? Because we're dealing with the innate healing systems of the human body. It doesn't respond normally in a situation of helplessness and uncertainty. That's not its normal condition. That's not how people live their lives.
So the outcomes of such artificial situations as the sacred double blind study are going to be essentially meaningless when applied to the normal everyday physiology of a healthy human.
At least 100,000 deaths a year from prescription drugs that were correctly prescribed and administered - wait a minute. All these drugs are tested by randomized, double blind controlled clinical trials, right?
So they're all "scientifically proven" to work, right? Employing the most rigorous of scientific testing procedures, only the drugs that have made it through all that are allowed to be put on the market, right?
So what's all this posturing about, that alternative medicine isn't reproducible in clinical trials, LIKE REAL MEDICINE IS.
Here we have the finished products of their own scientific processes, so I want to know, why are 160 of them taken off the market every year only to be replaced by about the same number? And why are they killing all these people? Many are starting to notice this!
So what's your comments on the 3 year study by the 180 swiss doctors, finding that MMR jabs are dangerous and ineffective?
By the way, as well as antibacterial/fungal/viral, garlic also reverses diabetes
I thought I'd answered your question re drugs vs herbs etc, but obviously not to your satisfaction.
Two different things, totally different paradigms. Alternative medicine is not just a different way to cure the diseases we might get. It is not competing with anyone in the Disease Care market. Holistic medicine doesn't cure diseases. It promotes a healthy condition which is not conducive to disease, by purifying the biological terrain, to allow the body to express its natural potential. All the time.
I don't have a link for it, so no comment.
I did a quick search of pubmed for studies on garlic and found quite a lot. It looks like (and yes, I'm talking from the conventional medical perspective here) allicin, a compound occurring naturally in garlic, interferes with RNA and DNA replication and has good efficacy against gram-negative bacterial pathogens.
I also looked into its use for diabetes, and found a couple of review articles that urge further studies, and a number of animal studies, which suggests that in it's own slow way conventional medical science is listening.
That if, for instance, an identical compound, with identical effectiveness and identical side effects, could be produced in a lab or by a plant, but the lab version was cheaper, herbalists would urge patients to use the plant version because it was "natural".
These sources also completely ignore recent developments in molecular biology, for example, which are transforming how the medical establishment understands disease and health. An idea of "allopathic medicine" that hasn't evolved since the 1960s has been set up as a straw man for holistic medicine proponents, who insist that MDs are incapable of questioning established practice. This is simply not true. It does a real disservice to doctors, biologists, and chemists who seek to learn from outside the field, and I think it does a disservice to holistic practitioners whose energy gets focused on beating up the straw man.
Again, back to vaccines:
Since you haven't commented on either the Pennsylvania boarding school study or the article and related CDC press releases from the OP, I assume that you are stipulating that being vaccinated for measles makes you less likely to get measles during an outbreak and likely to have a less severe case if you do have a breakthrough infection. In other words, that the measles vaccine works.
All I can hope to do is demonstrate that in the world we live in, vaccines prevent more suffering than they cause -- and this of course will be a purely circumstantial case.
"I was told by this preacher that when the government introduced the National Immunization Days in 1997, most of the children after vaccination started dying. The preacher told me that they had so much death that his cassock, that he wears to go and conduct the burial ceremony, got old.
In the same room there was one mother who had four children, and she hid one and took three other children for vaccination, and three children died and that one survived. Now when I went to do my presentation and I asked most of the people who were there - about two, three thousand people - each person had the same story. .........
At the main hospital in Mbarara during that month of 1977 more than 600 children had died following polio vaccination. 600 children ! So even some of the timid medical practitioners who were initially afraid to come out, started coming out giving information and saying 'Oh, we knew this oral polio vaccine was trouble because as soon as the child receives it, they get a temper-ature and their health goes downhill and there is nothing that you could do.' "----Kihura Nkuba (Nov 2002)
P.S. -- now I'm curious: what's your angle? Are you a professional in the field?
CLINICAL EXPERIENCE IS ANECDOTAL
Anecdotal is another favorite word used to slam holistic medicine. Allopaths say that holistic methods are unscientific because results are simply anecdotal, meaning case by case. The real meaning of anecdotal, however, is case history. In actuality, in the practice of medicine nothing is more important than the case history. That's how people's lives really are affected by illness and by health; case history is what really happens to people, real people - the patients who really walk in the door. The point here is that actual case histories cannot be controlled by studies bought and paid for by those whose interests are best served by a certain outcome. "Scientific" studies and reporting can be controlled by political and economic consideration - unwanted research topics never get funding; unwanted data often is ignored or not reported. By contrast, patients who actually walk in the door are not subjects in a research project.
Hundreds of case histories, anecdotal individual cases, year after year accumulate to give a doctor the most valuable source of information possible: clinical observation. The years of experience and clinical observation - these are not to be trivialized as something intrinsically inferior to the "real science" that gets published in medical journals.
Mainstream medicine may use this "anecdotal" ploy not only against holistic ideas, but also against any medical ideas or research that is beginning to stray outside the fold of Pharmaceutical Economics. New ideas are not welcome until the Angle has been figured out. For now, just remember this - the word "anecdotal" is a red flag that means "probable snowjob ahead."
Allopaths hope to give the impression that mainstream pharmacology and standard hospital procedures are "backed by scientific research" and are therefore not only safe, but superior to any procedures of Alternative Medicine. In this way, with the help of the legislature and the twin Doberman FDA and FTC, natural cures will be forced out of the market. $5.8 billion every year is spent reinforcing the inaccurate notion of the "scientific validity" of mainstream medicine into the public awareness: in commercials, medical publications and general media. (CLA, Jan 99)
Scientific? Fully 80% of surgical procedures have never been tested for safety or efficacy in clinical trials. As for The Machines glittering all throughout the hospital, there are no standards of efficacy for an instrument to be introduced into practice, except incorporation into the insurance billing codes. No machine ever has to be proven to be of any value whatsoever. The patient's long-term welfare is not an issue. In addition, it is an amazing fact that physicians are not required to be certified by any independent professional organization to show they know the proper use of the medical devices they operate
Overall, 51 percent of approved drugs have serious adverse effects which are not detected prior to approval. JAMA 1998; 279:1571-1573
According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, Apr 1998, side effects to prescription drugs are now at least the FOURTH leading cause of death in the United States! (Lazarou) This amazing study escaped the attention of mainstream media, for obvious reasons. The researchers did a meta-analysis, comparing 39 different studies of drug side effects. This was only the second meta-analysis ever done in mortality from drug side effects. Their findings:
· At least 106,000 Americans die from drug reactions every year
· At least 2.21 million Americans have adverse drug reactions requiring hospitalization.
The researchers emphasized that these figures are only for drugs which are “properly prescribed and properly administered,” and only takes into account hospitalized patients! This does not even include the thousands of other deaths from wrong prescriptions and errors in administration, or patients who are at home.
The study probably does not portray an accurate picture of the true numbers involved, according to JAMA’s own editor David Bates, in an editorial appearing on p.1216 of the same issue. Why not? Because of routine underreporting of adverse incidents by hospital staff, in order to avoid scrutiny from regulators and patient attorneys. Stands to reason.
Bates actually estimates that as few as 1 in 20 adverse drug reactions actually gets reported! Using stats like that could easily make adverse drugs reactions the #1 cause of death in the US, which may actually be true. But since there’s really no way to track it, they backed off and just stuck with fourth place. And this is JAMA, not the Chiropractic Report or some New Age newsletter from Santa Cruz.
We identified 9 laboratory-confirmed cases at the school: 8 students and 1 staff member. Among them, 2 had never received any doses of measles-containing vaccine (MCV), 1 received 1 dose of MCV, and 6 received 2 doses of MCV.