Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Update on the #H1N1 (aka swine flu) vaccine

Since blogging about the H1N1 vaccine, I have come across several other sources making strong arguments against getting the swine flu vaccine, as well as additional sources debunking those arguments. All this research has made me seriusly re-think my willingness to get inoculated. With all the mixed messages out there, no wonder we're so confused!

Here are some links that you MUST read, no matter which side of the fence you're on (with thanks to my friends who pointed them out):
  • "What's the Danger of Swine Flu Vaccinations?" - Written by Dr. Anders Bruun Laursen for the Centre for Research for Globalization, based in Montreal, QC. The article is dated August 20, 2009, and though I hadn't heard of this centre before, it seems pretty credible, especially when you consider the next article.
Both these articles were written a while ago, so one would hope that changes have been made. However, I don't recall anything about these concerns being addressed by the media (who are supposed to be a trusted source of information for us, asking the questions we cannot ask). At least, not in Canada.

CBCnews.ca has at least tried to address the issue most Canadians are dealing with in this next article:
  • "The vaccination debate: To be jabbed or not", dated October 28, 2009. It looks at both sides of the story, featuring interviews with two doctors who have varying opinions and is a must read for a clear and concise understanding of the main issues in this debate.
Except, of course, it doesn't directly address all of the issues raised in the previously posted two articles. It does, however, point us to the following article:
If you scroll down to the comments, you'll notice people complaining about the squalene in the vaccines. Another commentator then points out that squalene is in olive oil and a bunch of other ingredients we ingest on a daily basis, and produced by our bodies, as explained in this US-based resource on the anthrax vaccine.

Some very smart people read New Scientist... and now I'm more confused than ever. What I would like is an in-depth interview by the CBC (or another similarly trusted broadcaster - seeing how officials react to tough questions is definitely a bonus here) with Canada's chief public health doctor, Dr. David Butler-Jones, should directly address the concerns of Canadians. Namely,

  • What exactly is squalene and in what dosage is it harmful?
  • How is Canada planning to follow-up on the effectiveness of the vaccine (trials, etc)?
  • What about these other toxic substances said to be included in the vaccine?
Who's with me?!

6 comments:

Sweeper14 said...

what makes me giggle is that the vactruth article... the references he cites (the ones that a scientific community would actually respect, not articles with weirdo titles published by a single author in a really obscure journal with an impact rating of 0)... they all support the safety of MF59... rofl dude. if you'll cite, make sure you understand what you cite (and how important it is). obviously never went to grad school. and let's see. water is also commonly found in cleaners, cosmetics and spermicides and MAY ALSO BE FOUND IN THE VACCINE! let's all freak out! lol. and this (straight from the article) could almost come from an XFiles script: " much gratitude to Lyn Redwood who obtained the meeting minutes from a secret meeting between government officials and pharmaceutical companies" haha cue Xfiles music and aliens walking in. I also thought it funny how he basically said "well, I can't find any information on nonoxymol 9, therefore it must be bad". The rest of the article follows suit. It's one the one hand really amusing for me to read but on the other hand, it also angers me because here some people who use big scientific words (without understanding their meaning) and giving 'references' (which are either crap or anecdotal or prove the opposite of their point of view!), making people THINK they know what they're talking about and scaring them all into making stupid decisions (like not getting the vaccine). I don't blame anyone really for getting scared after reading that crap, but I blame the people every bit for writing it. I wish there was some kind of a fine (or let's make it scary - for them - jail time) for spewing utter crap and stoking the fires of hysteria among the people and getting them to NOT get vaccinated. Just as bad though are the news services treating H1N1 like the apocalypse. relax already, eat a donut and get your vaccine, same as all the other vaccines you've gotten over the years.
(sorry. bad science articles are starting to piss me off. I read way too many of them for my lit review for the master's, and you learn to smell them a mile away)

... a bit later...

LMFAO I just looked at the first article. look at his resources!!! ROFL mostly wikipedia, youtube (WTF?? HAHAHAHA FAIL!!!), their own website and bad newspapers/magazines (Der Spiegel in Germany is kind of like "People" or "Us" or whatever gossip magazines are out there). Seriously? ROFL. This scares me actually. I have freshman lab reports to correct next week... they better not give me those sort of references... I just decided that if they do, I'm not even going to bother reading. They start with a max score of 1/10 (the one point being if they spelled their own name right)

Naila J. said...

Thanks for pointing this out!!

It definitely removes a lot of the apparent credibility of the articles, and after much thought on the matter, I've decided to stick to my original plan and get the vaccine.

Better safe than sorry!!

Also, I'm kinda sick of swine flu talk... aren't you? I'm going to try not to post any more about it... unless CBC (or someone of equivalent reputation) does do that in-depth interview I requested.

x-ine said...

I agree that the issue needs to be clarified by a health care professional, to help circumvent the skepticism surrounding this vaccine because there are some real quacks out there instilling fear in people who just don't know.

Why NOT get this vaccine? Some people say that the swine flu "is not so bad" ... but that's not the point. The point is, the more people who DON'T get the shot, the greater the risk of it being spread to people who can get sick and even die from it. Why not help prevent its spread? Why risk anyone's life, even if you think your own is not at risk?

This flu shot is no different than any other flu shot you would get on any given year, except for the fact that it is targeting one particular strain of flu. So it is not necessary for the product to jump through the hoops of a NOVEL product (rigorous clinical trials and such).

You know what? I'm getting the shot. I just can't afford to be sick right now with my thesis due in a couple of months. And I'm around people all day long, I don't want their stupid germs making me sick because THEY don't feel that it is important to get vaccinated.

x-ine said...

A few links for you/your readers to peruse:

On squalene: http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig/2009/10/what_is_squalene.php

On shots:
http://www.wired.com/magazine/2009/10/ff_waronscience

Happy reading!

Naila J. said...

I completely agree with you x_ine.

And you know what I found today?

A straight up news story by CBC on what's in the vaccine and how it was approved:

http://www.cbc.ca/health/story/2009/10/28/f-swine-flu-vaccine-ingredients-approval.html

I can now rest.

(and yes, I'm getting the vaccine).

Steve's Stuff said...

x-ine said:
Why NOT get this vaccine? Some people say that the swine flu "is not so bad" ... but that's not the point. The point is, the more people who DON'T get the shot, the greater the risk of it being spread to people who can get sick and even die from it. Why not help prevent its spread? Why risk anyone's life, even if you think your own is not at risk?
__________________

There is a slight fallacy in your question (assuming the vaccine does work as advertised) it will not stop a vaccinated person from spreading the disease. When someone gets vaccinated, their body does not suddenly become pristine, and pure as the driven snow. They can and most likely will still have the stuff growing in them, except that they will just be 'immune' to it. Thus the word 'immunization'. So, all the people out there who may have been vaccinated can still be carriers. The rest of humanity still has just the same risk of getting sick no matter who around them may, or may not have their own personal immunity, be it natural or from an injection. Granted, an Un-inoculated person has a greater chance of getting sick should a snotty nosed sick person come to work anyway, and sneezes on them - as opposed to NOT being sneezed on by anyone. But, then they could still get it even if a vaccinated person sneezes on them too. I doubt that the 'odds' would be very much different either way!