It's October: It's a Smart Move to Get Your Vaccines this Month
It's October 5th 2012 and we just placed another order for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Gardasil (to prevent cervical cancer), Zostavax (to prevent Shingles), and also ordered a few vials of Flu Vaccine. The flu vaccine is for everyone 4 years of age and older. We also regularly carry the TDaP vaccine (to prevent Whooping Cough).
Whooping cough has caused over a half-dozen outbreaks in Santa Fe over the past 10 years. TDaP vaccine is for the 94% of adults who have not been vaccinated within the past 3 years. TDaP is also for teens who have not had a TDaP in the past 3 years. The vaccination rate for children and teens is 60%-- better than the 6% rate for adults. It's adults who are speading whooping cough. We can work together and we all can get better vacine rates here in Santa Fe. Let's start with you.
So, before fall gets colder and turns into winter, please stop on by and get your latest vaccines.
Vaccines, Radiation, and 'Relative Risk' Issues
Sometimes, discussions regarding vaccines and their safety and benefit in humans have been described as 'radioactive'! So, lets start with some 'radioactive' risk discussion- things you may have 'noticed' but don't actually think about.
Since all discussions have to begin from 'where we're at', then lets get started. At 7,000 feet Santa Fe has beautiful blue skies and has 37% more radiation exposure. That 37% more radiation exposure translates into many more cancers, especially skin cancers. But nobody is in a 'rush' to move. This 37% greater cancer risk, is a risk 'Santa Feans' are willing to accept. This is called a 'relative risk', it's a risk we're willing to accept as part of 'the package' of being here.
Have you spoken, in confidence, with a pilot or a flight attendant? They make very good money, get to 'see the world' and have massive cancer risks! Have you listened closely? They get paid very well, and 'only' work 10 days out of 30 days every month! Why would a company pay people 'very well' and only have them work 10 out of every 30 days- most companies on land would go bankrupt doing this? The reason: Radiation!
Radiation exposure at 30,000 feet (where airlines typically fly in the 'jet stream' to conserve fuel use) causes an increase of 90% more radiation exposure than what a person receives at sea level. The United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation Exposure directs that flight crews be treated as 'radiation workers'.
Air crews make up only 3% of all 'radiation workers' including workers in uranium mines, nuclear weapons processing facilities, and nuclear power plants. Yet, aircrews receive 24% of the total radiation exposure for all 'radiation workers'. In the past decade 11 military and civilian studies have been done on flight crews. Flight crews have the highest incidence of getting cancer and dying from cancer (due to radiation exposure) than any other group in the world!
Talk about a massive radiation exposure and risk of death! Yet, flight crews are not failing to show for work. 'Frequent fliers', the 'business people flying 15 to 30 days each month (way in excess of what's 'safe' for flight crews), these folks fly over and over again to 'important' meetings and each of these people are at a massively higher risk for getting and dying from cancer! Are those meetings worth getting cancer- are they 'that' important? Again, we return to the concept of 'relative risk'.
All of these people are 'willing' to take on these 'relative risks' (relative to all other risks they take in their life) because they have decided that the benefits they get are worth the risks they take. Yet, when fully informed, many people find it difficult to logically justify attending repeated business meetings as worth getting cancer! Yet, people continue flying and do not even discuss the massive cancer risks! Again, we have the concept of 'reltive risk'. However, these people also feel they have 'no other' choice to air travel.
Now we enter, the sometimes heated field of vaccine use in children and adults!
It's October 5th 2012 and we just placed an order for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Gardasil (used to prevent cervical cancer), Zostvax (the Shingles shot), and finally we ordered several vials of flu vaccine good for kids 4 through adults of the oldest age. The vaccines will be in Wednesday, October 10th in the afternoon. Please remember we always have the TDaP vaccine to prevent whooping cough. We've had anouther "outbreak" of whooping cough this year: that makes it the eighth outbreak of whooping cough in Santa Fe over the past 10 years. Some people ended up in the ICU, who were not vaccinated.
One reason there's so many Whooping Cough outbreaks is the 94% of adults who are not vaccinated against pertussis (whooping cough). Please stop by and get all of your vaccine needs accomplished before fall gets colder and winter settles in. We're primed to have another whooping cough outbreak in 2013.
So, if you've a hole in your busy schedule, please stop by and get those important vaccines. You'll be glad you did.
Update: Feb. 22, 2011, U.S. Supreme Court (Bruesewitz vs Wyeth)
On February 22nd, 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Bruesewitz vs Wyeth that vaccine manufacturers are immune from lawsuits charging that the inherent design of a vaccine is defective. Most health care providers and legal scholars applauded the decision.
While a concern for 'patient's rights' was expressed, a Budist concept of the relativity in life and of risks of life was finally brought to light. In order to have the 'perfect' baby, then, by definition, there must be the 'less than' perfect baby. While most people are happy with the first infant, people with selfish, self-centerdness, can not accept a less than perfect child , in the second case. These people desire to 'blame somebody'. However, life is always less than perfect, even though we fail to realize the 'less than' perfect situation at the time.
What life lesson, what understanding are we to learn, and to live, by participating in the less than perfect situation? Most people of wisdom will advise that such situations, on the surface, which appear as a curse, over the long view over time are often situations and critical life lessions we must learn. These difficult lessons and conditions are very often those situations in life which make us stronger and better people.
How many of us would be happy if every news outlet advertised, showered, and shared every intimate detail of our lives, when we were less than perfect? Truth be told: we all have such less than perfect and less than inspiring moments. However, such moments allow us to desire other moments which are greater and better than what we've done.
Patience, kindness, and love are considerations many humans fail to be able to find, express, and share when less then perfect outcomes occur. Yet, in truth, if we seek greater peace and joy, we must also understand the necessity of unhappiness and sorrow. We also must understand that to accept one condition, we are then required to understanding that we will receive the other.
Such less than conditions are meant to cause frustration, and a desire to perform and to do better. For Adobe Family Practice, it means we use vaccines without thimerisol and we use the DTaP vaccine, instead of the more risky DTP vaccine, for children who we see in the practice. The DTaP vaccine is not perfect: but it sure beats a child dying a painful and desperate scared, gasping for breath death, as those children in California did (in 2010) as they suffered horribly, and then died. Those children's death and suffering was totally preventable with the DTaP vaccine.
The California parents, without years of science background to understand the severity of risks, decided they'd not vaccinate their children. They'd keep their children 'natural'. Death is natural, so is suffering. These parents then caused horrible, preventable suffering and death for their children. An often 'natural' outpouring of anger over the death of a child is to blame 'someone' and to exact revenge against that person, (or company). But often, that 'person' or 'company' did nothing wrong. The cause of the condition, often times, had many factors which caused the death or problem.
Let's be honest: many people bring lawsuits and complaints as a way to make money: plain, simple, and they admit to such motivation. Making 'money' from the suffering of a person is morally bankrupt. The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed with this conclusion. It's wrong, and it's not anything a civilized group needs to do to one another.
There is a higher moral road, and one traveled which leads to both greater peace and to greater serenity. We need to understand that science and technology constantly are updating. Scientists (health care providers) have a continuous need to stay and remain current on all of the latest developments. That said: everyone (parents and providers) can make the best and safest decisions, and there can still be a 'less than ideal' outcome. There can also be 'bad' outcomes, and 'horrible' outcomes where people suffer and die.
Rather than 'attack' one another, after we've decided we're frustrated with a less than perfect outcome,the condition should instead prompt the best of us to desire, to collaborate, and to work each day to achieve safer and better outcomes. The desire to do better and to achieve more (in a good way) is one of the highest of human ideals.
While some are less than thrilled with the Supreme Court decision, lets decide we need to all work together, in a good way, to find the moral high ground where we all work together to achieve greater things, and better and safer outcomes. Sometimes we must do this to find 'the better', sometimes we must do this to burry our pain from the loss and sorrow we all suffer, at various times.
Let's all strive to be tolerant of others and of their human weaknesses, while we work every day to improving our own stregnths and abilities. Rising to achieve greater things for humanity is admirable and necessary. The hunger to resolve human suffering can only be met when we each work with one another to reach to achive the higher and better way of life to which we should all aspire.
This Supreme Court decision encourages us all to be more tolerant and more understanding of the less than perfect human systems and creations, and it should continue to drive us to achieve a higher goal of greater safety, while achieving greater kindness and consideration for one another at the same time.
Vaccine Facts and Fraud
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Everyone is not entitled to their own set of 'facts'. Medical journals are an area often cited for 'facts' in discussing vaccine safety in children. One particular article, (Ileal Lymphoid Nodular Hyperplasia, Non-Specific Colitis, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder in Children), published on February 28th 1998, in the British journal Lancet, is often cited by critics against MMR vaccine as causing autism and was documented and written by lead physician and researcher Andrew Wakefield and his associate physician John Walker-Smith.
There were 13 co-authors to the study: in 2004,10 of Wakefield's co-authors disavowed the findings of the original 1998 study. The original article was 'retracted' (due to fraud) on February 2nd 2010: it was only 1 of 10 to 15 articles ever 'retracted' in the entire history of the pubilication of the Lancet, over the journal's 186 year history.
What the ABC, BBC, NBC, CBS, FOX and CNN fail to advise the general public about is that the original Lancet article, which attributed autism to the MMR vaccine, was an outright FRAUD! Lancet has retracted the article. The British Medical Journal has documented that the author had engaged in this fraud to entice people to use his own patented lab test to the tune of $42 million a year in profit. Further, the doctor was provided significant financial amounts by an attorney who wanted the patient data to solicit parents to sue vaccine manufacturers.
In May 2010, Doctors Wakefield and Walker-Smith were stripped of their licenses and titles, fired from their university posts, and are now seen for what they really were: people in a position of trust, who abused that trust for financial gain, and could genuinely care less about the children. Their 'data' on MMR and Autism was a complete and intentional FRAUD. The children were simply a tool for them to twist money from desperate parents, and to put that money into their pockets, and the pocket of their associate attorney. How completely and entirely corrupt!
Thimerisol and Methyl Mercury- Then and Now in Vaccines!
Thimerisol (an ethyl mercury molecule) was added to vaccines as a 'preservative', and was claimed by vaccine manufacturers as 'safe'. So began, what may have been an honorable attempt at safe preservation of vaccines, in a vial, in the 1930's.
Eli Lilly and company began putting thimerisol in vaccines back in the 1930's. They claimed, since it was small amounts, and thimerisol was proven as a surgical antiseptic and antifungal, it seemed 'safe' to use as a preservative. However, at the time, science as it was, seemed to favor what 'seemed' a safe way to prevent infections from growing in vaccine vials. Great vaccines, which saved many lives, such as those against small pox worked great wonders: as a 'side-effect' of vaccination, nobody wanted a person to become ill from a contaminated vaccine vial. Their reasoning, at the time, to use thimerisol made 'sense'.
Their decision to use thimerisol was also made during the time when 'medical science' used mercury to treat many infections (there were few antibiotic substances available at the time). To this point, it's understandable: the drug companies believed what they were doing was safe 'relative to other risks'. The use of mercury as a preservative was considered 'safe': but that was the 1930's.
Decades went by, new scienfitic studies appeared, and all scientific studies informed that thimerisol was damaging to the brain and central nervous systems in all animals, including humans. Thimerisol in vaccines, appeared no longer to be a 'safe choice'. The 'relative risk' shifted against thimerisol as scientific studies grew. Yet, once safer and more expensive alternatives became available, to thimerisol, the pharmaceutical companies failed to change over to the safer preservative agents.
Every study done on thimerisol (ethyl mercury) for the past 4 decades has showed it damaged the brain and central nervous systems in any living organism. So the vaccine manufacturers came up with methyl mercury, claiming it was 'safer'. What the studies have shown is that ethyl mercury is as dangerous as methyl mercury. The problem gets back to mercury: you can 'add' it or 'attach it' to any molecule you want and it's still mercury, and every mercury substance studied for the past 4 decades has proven toxic to the brain and central nervous system in humans and every other species.
Finally, there's been enough media and political support to 'encourage' the removal of thimerisol from vaccines. While in the public spotlight, the vaccine companies have found a preservative which is safe, and does not have mercury! Almost...
When an 'urgent' need for large amounts of flu vaccine arrives, the vaccine companies return to their former ways and load the flu vials with thimerisol. The 'urgent' need justifies their actions, so they claim.
What's morally bankrupt, is these companies try to con pregnant women into getting the 'necessary' laced flu vaccines, knowing they will harm the mother and the fetus' brain and nervous system. Such actions can not be justified.
In summary: most vaccines are now safe. Many infants and adults were harmed in the past by thimerisol laced vaccines. The 'flu' remains the one vaccine which some vaccine companies can not stop themselves from lacing with thimerisol.
Conclusion: If you do not want to cause brain or nervous system damage, do NOT take the flu shot. First the flu shot is not 'effective' in many years, (according to the CDC's own data); next, the continued use of thimerisol can not be justified. Please read our section on, 'Natural Life Extension Therapy', where you'll find out natural probiotics are more effective, and safer, than any 'flu' shot because they reduce the chance for 'all' colds and 'all' flu by 85%! There has been never been a 'flu' shot that effective, ever!
Some Facts, Some Bad News, Some Good Hope, and Relative Risk
The vaccine topic is 'radioactive', but so is air travel. Relative risks can only be calmly evaluated when people are informed, and decisions are wisely made, based upon reason and relative risk, not based upon emotion or sensationalized media reports. For example:10 parents decided not to vaccinate their children in Southern California; these 10 infants and children died; how 'wise' and 'informed' was the parent's decision?
Based upon the facts, these same Southern California parents had no problem with jet travel, which endangered them more than any vaccine. The parents, obviously, made a very poor choice in assigning 'relative risk' in believing that vaccines posed more risk of injury or death, than did the Whooping Cough illness which killed each of the 10 children.
What can be done? First: we need to measure 'relative risk' based upon science, and facts, not emotion and hype. When parents are making foolish choices which results in their children dying, other parents should not imitate the foolish behavior. The dangers posed by vaccines are gone, except for the flu vaccine.
On the other hand, in a few decades, fewer people will fly in aircraft: first, 10,000 gallons of jet fuel consumed by each plane, for each flight, can not be maintained, or justified as fuel and oxygen become more scarce. Second, shooting that exhaust into the jet stream is never going to be healthy nor will it ever help the planet. We obviously need to do some more thinking, as a people, and as an educated society, which has a history of coming up with 'better' ideas. Jet aircraft have changed little from the 1940's when they were first invented: are we American's so foolish and lacking in talent that we can not come up with a better transport system than jet aircraft over the past 70 years? Really?
MMR & Vaccine History: It's been horrible that a British physician and his associates used their positions and authority to run a scam using children, claiming a problem existed with the MMR vaccine, when it did not, solely so he and his associates could reap millions in their scam! Bad also, is the corporate greed, dishonesty, and deception that mercury, in one form or another was a 'safe' preservative, that was neither safe nor necessary in vaccines.
These corporate and individual dishonesties, with the act of harming children and adults, with wreckless abandon, for the sole purpose of financial gain, has now led many people to no longer trust 'any' vaccine.
Take Home Lesson: The MMR and most vaccines are now safe, and contain no mercury. Some flu vaccines still have mercury as a 'preservative'. It will only be through honest and transparent investigative reporting and good Senators and Congressmen that we get legislation in place which supports safe vaccines, and tosses out the corporate dishonesty and apathy whereby dollars are more important than people!
Whooping Cough: A Major Risk to Health in Santa Fe (the 4th Outbreak in 10 years!)
According to the US CDC: in 2008 there were over 13,000 cases and 20 deaths reported to the CDC for Whooping Cough! Also known as 'Pertussis' this is one rare disease that is raging back and killing people in the U.S.!
In Santa Fe, in the past 10 years, there have been 4 outbreaks of Whooping Cough, including ICU Admissions! This is a completely preventable condition. In the 'old days' people would get a Tetanus shot (T) every 10 years; that changed about 15 to 20 years ago to a Tetanus and Diptheria (TD) vaccine.
In 2005, medical professional organizations, (including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, CDC), changed the recommendation to a TDaP. The 'aP' in TDaP is for 'acellular (weakened) Pertussis'. In kids, about 40% of the population is vaccinated. In adults, only 6% are vaccinated: a pathetic 6%! This is a preventable (and treatable) condition that can take out a healthy adult for 6 to 8 weeks- and make them weak and sick in bed gasping for each breath with a barking cough 24/7 - if they don't get worse and end up in the ICU on a ventillator.
On December 21st 2010, we met with a patient who'd suffered some lung damage, and was unfortunate enough to have had Whopping Cough each year for the past 2 years! She asked why we were so insistant on getting her the TDaP vaccine. You know why, and now so does she: to raise her anti-body level so she would not get Whooping Cough for the third year, in a row!
This very intelligent woman, who'd suffered for two years, in a row, when a vaccine could have prevented ALL suffering, total exhaustion, insomnia, and severe air hunger- where she thought she might die from not getting enough air into her lungs: she was the face of the 94% of Adults in Santa Fe who are NOT vaccinated, and she has now joined the 6% of smart adults who are vaccinated against Pertussis.
Stop by the office, with those you care about, and get your TDaP. Together, we can help prevent another outbreak in Santa Fe. You now have a plan! We can do this together!
November 2010: CDC Reports 10th Infant Dead From (Preventable) Whooping Cough
Ten groups of parents, in California, have been mourning the death of their infants and children, from Pertussis. Pertussis, (whooping cough), is usually prevented by getting routine vaccines. However, not everyone gets vaccinated. The vaccine numbers are VERY low: 94% of all adults in the U.S. are not vaccinated against Pertussis (whooping cough), and a only 40% of children are vaccinated. What's really sad, is many adults have no clue if they or their children are up to date on their vaccines.
When most people are vaccinated, it's much harder for any one person, who may not be vaccinated, to become ill. An unvaccinated adult (from the 94% of unvaccinated adults in our city and in our country, or the 60% of children who are not vaccinated) could easily have caused the outbreak, not just in California, but the four Pertussis oubreaks we've had, here, in Santa Fe in the past decade.
Come by the office and get that TDaP vaccine for yourself, get it to help your family, and get it to reduce the infection rate in your community. Bring in the children for their DTaP vacine. Four outbreaks in 10 years in Santa Fe: we can do better. We need to do better, together. It's an excellent plan to get our vaccines for this new year. See you soon!
Autism, Mercury and Thimerisol Exposure
From the journal Pediatrics, October 2010: there is no link between thimerisol and autism. While there has been more diagnosis of autism in the population, a large part of that is a higher rate of proper diagnosis. Just as there's a higher rate of PTSD and Chronic Fatigue- two diagnosis which were rarely made prior to a decade ago.
While we know that no amount of mercury is 'good', people living in the U.S. get far higher exposure and damage from mercury from coal fired power plants than from all vaccines combined! That's right- simply because a vaccine has a thimerisol, a family living in Sothern California, or one living near the '4 corners' coal fired plants in New Mexico, receive massive doses of mercury and other polutants from coal fired power plants and auto pollution that far exceed all vaccines combined back when all vaccines carried thimerisol.
In Southern California, a person living in most of the 'routinely' polluted areas has the same damage done to their lungs and body as if they smoked a pack of cigarettes each and every day. Then, again, California has dozens of days every year where children and adults with asthma are warned to stay indoors because the air polution is so dangerous. Californian's call these (politically correct) 'air quality' days.
Realtive risk: It's far riskier to live in Southern California or near the 4 corners area of New Mexico, and receive massive doses of mercury and other poisons, than to receive any small amount of mercury from vaccines. Small amounts of 'unnecessary' mercury are not good in vaccines, and that's been corrected: massive doses of mercury from coal burning facilities is far worse- and that has not been corrected!
Shingles Vaccine: VERY Effective in Preventing Painful Condition
From the JAMA, January 12th 2011: The Herpes Zoster vaccine is very effective. The vaccine is effective in preventing an outbreak of 'Shingles', and if an outbreak occurs, it lessens the severity of the outbreak: this from a study of 76,000 vaccinated people versus 227,000 who were not vaccinated. These 'larger community studies' have been undertaken by drug and vaccine manufacturers for the past several years to prove and confirm both safety and efficacy, versus smaller studies required by the FDA prior to initial approval of the drug or vaccine. It's 'nice' to hear good news about vaccines which worked in small, initial studies, which, in the real world, work as well as promised.
The first symptoms or 'outbreak' of shingles starts with a 'tingling' or itching along an area of skin. Next it progreses to a feeling that your skin is being ripped off with a pair of red hot pliers and acid pored over it: again, and again, and again...you get the idea that this is one very painful condition and it's a painful condition which never stops! Generally there is a rash with vessicles (fluid filled small bubbles under the skin). The fluid in these 'bubbles' is highly infectious. Shingles is causes by the herpes zoster virus: that's right-- herpes, as in the family of viruses which will bring you skin infection, after skin infection, again and again.
Great thing about herpes zoster is that you can get a vaccine which can prevent it, called Zostavax, which will boost your antibody production! By boosting your antibody level, (antibodies are the good guys in your system which fight off and prevent or lessen infection), you can prevent Shingles completely, or you can lessen the severity of it, and lessen how often it returns.
THe shingles vaccine is recommended for people over age 60.
The unfortunate part: most people will not seek out, and many providers will not offer a shingles vaccine, because unlike all other vaccines, the vaccine manufacturer has gone to great legnths to harass anyone who wants to stock the vaccine and get reimbursed for it. In speaking with vaccine reps, we've been advised that IF we were to stock the vaccine, we'd not get reimbursed for it until we provided: a bill for the vaccine, a copy of the actual bill where we bought the vaccine, and then waited about 6 months. No other vaccine has such crazy antics associated with use. Understand, if we vaccinated about 10 people a month, we'd be giving the vaccine and insurance companies a $10,000 loan that would never be paid off, since new amounts would be added for every amount they paid. No reasonable person would give a $10,000 loan, every month, for the next 10 years, for free, to a large drug company!
So, what happens is, we provide a prescription for patients to order and receive the Zostavax vaccine at a pharmacy. The drug and insurance companies will pay pharmacies that same month that they bill. No other vaccine 'works' in this crazy way!
Getting back to the news: most patients will only seek out and get a vaccine after they or a close friend or family member gets the Shingles. If a person has an active Shingles infection, and then receives the vaccine, then the vaccine is able to 'only' do so much (less), which is much, much less than if a person were to be vaccinated before they were infected, (see why below).
Once a person is infected: the person must be treated with BOTH steroids and antiviral agents to prevent severe and permenant burning pain. Studies have been done showing BOTH treatments are needed. Unfortunately, not every provider is 'up-to-date' and many providers will prescribe one treatment or the other, only.
Even when a person receives the quickest treatments with both antiviral and steroid medications, (started within the initial 48 hours) and even when the correct high dosages are used, many people will have some persistent pain along the nerve, and in the area where they had the initial shingles outbreak. Most people should take a prescriptive and preventive dose of an antiviral agent, for 6 months after the initial outbreak to prevent and lesen any future outbreaks. Taking the shingles vaccine, Zostavax, after the initial infection period ends, is better than never taking the vaccine.
Who should be vaccinated: any person with a chronic disease, such as diabetes, kidney disease, or any chronic illness, plus nearly every person over age 60. People with active cancer should not get the vaccine, or people with HIV, or those on prednisone or other 'suppresive' medication (so we treat with the vaccine after the outbreak is over, since we use prednisone with an antiviral agent during the acute attack). Prednisone interferes with antibody production: so we don't want to vaccinate while someone is being treated for a shingles attack, (where we use an antiviral agent and prednisone to control swelling and inflammation along the nerve).