This section was compiled by Frank M. Painter, D.C. Send all comments or additions to:Frankp@chiro.org
Vaccination is a controversial topic with chiropractors because of our non-drug and non-surgery approach to health. This section attempts to present both sides of the vaccination issue.
If there are terms in these articles you don't understand, you can get a definition from the Merriam Webster Medical Dictionary. If you want information about a specific disease, you can access the Merck Manual. You can also search Pub Med for more abstracts on this, or any other health topic.
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Early Life Infections Improve the Function of the Immune System
American Journal of Clinical Chiropractic 2006 (Apr); 16 (2): 22–25
This collection of medical citations presented by Dan Murphy, DC demonstrates that early exposure to antibiotic use and Pertussis vaccination contribute to the development of atopic disorders such as asthma, and hay fever, and may also be associated with the onset of pediatric lymphoblastic leukemia. Our thanks to the American Journal of Clinical Chiropractic for releasing this article exclusively at Chiro.Org!
Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System
The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is a Cooperative Program for Vaccine Safety of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). VAERS is a post-marketing safety surveillance program, collecting information about adverse events (side effects) that occur after the administration of US licensed vaccines. Reports are welcome from all concerned individuals: patients, parents, health care providers, pharmacists, and vaccine manufacturers.
California Bans Mercury-containing Vaccines for Pregnant Women and Kids
Pregnant women and children younger than 3 in California will soon no longer receive vaccines containing more than a trace of mercury, under a law approved this week. Vaccines for those groups will contain no more than a trace of thimerosal (termed thimerosal-free in the industry)—a preservative in some vaccines that contains ethyl mercury. The law takes effect in July 2006, according to news services.
Study Finds Increasing Concerns about Vaccines Among Parents, Practitioners
A team of investigators at the University of Michigan attempted to assess how members of the medical profession (and the parents of their pediatric patients) feel about vaccines, by mailing a survey to a national random sample of 750 pediatricians and 750 family practice physicians. The survey was designed to address parental concerns about vaccine safety, how often primary care physicians do not recommend vaccines, and the impact of recent vaccine problems on physicians and parents. The results of the survey, presented at the joint meeting of the Pediatric Academic Societies and the American Academy of Pediatrics in Baltimore, Maryland this past April, show that many parents - and even some physicians - are becoming increasingly concerned about the safety of childhood vaccinations.
Doctor's Group Opposes Vaccine Mandates
A leading national physician organization [American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS)] is calling for a moratorium on all government mandated vaccines and has passed a resolution to that end at their annual meeting. The members of the Association voted this week at their 57th Annual Meeting in St. Louis to pass a resolution calling for an end to mandatory childhood vaccines. The resolution passed without a single "no" vote. "Our children face the possibility of death or serious long-term adverse effects from mandated vaccines that aren't necessary or that have very limited benefits," said Jane M. Orient, MD, AAPS Executive Director. You may want to review their Resolution Concerning Mandatory Vaccines. You may also want to review their Fact Sheet on Mandatory Vaccination.
Who Will Pay for the Adverse Events Resulting From Smallpox Vaccination? Liability and Compensation Issues
NHPF Issue Brief 2003 (Mar 12); 788: 1–15
This paper summarizes liability and compensation concerns surrounding the smallpox vaccination program announced by President Bush on December 13, 2002. The paper examines the nature of adverse health events that are likely to occur in connection with the smallpox vaccine, assesses the liability protections that have been established for organizations and individuals participating in the vaccination program, and discusses the compensation mechanisms being considered to address the damages incurred by volunteers who may suffer from adverse vaccine reactions. Specifically, the implications of the Federal Tort Claims Act, workers' compensation programs, and the creation of a new no-fault compensation fund are explored.
I hope you will enjoy this series of articles, stimulated by Joel Alcantara's 2-23-1998 article in Dynamic Chiropractic. The correspondence between Dr. Alcantara and the authors' Colley/Morgan/Haas is most insightful, and raises many issues, particularly “freedom of choice”, which needed to be addressed publically.
The Infant Vaccination Controversy
Read this article, based on interviews with Harris Coulter, Ph.D., and Barbara Fisher. They coauthored DPT: A Shot in the Dark (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1985; Warner, 1986; Avery, 1991)
Chiropractic Students' Attitudes about Vaccination: A Cause for Concern?
Canadian Medical Association Journal 2002 (Jun 11); 166 (12)
In the survey reported on page 1531 of this issue, Busse and colleagues discovered an unsettling trend during the professional education of chiropractic students. The authors found that while some students had negative attitudes toward vaccination on entering their training for the profession, many others appeared to develop such attitudes as they progressed through their studies. Yet the core curriculum of the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College (CMCC), where the survey was conducted, teaches both immunology and health promotion and is itself supportive of vaccination. In addition, the policy viewpoint of the Canadian Chiropractic Association also supports vaccination as it is currently practised in Canada. The Busse article
“Attitudes Toward Vaccination: A Survey of Canadian Chiropractic Students” concluded that “Most CMCC students reported pro-vaccination attitudes, but there appeared to be an increase in anti-vaccination attitudes as students progressed through the CMCC program. This pattern was seen almost exclusively among students who relied primarily on informal sources of vaccine information rather than on core CMCC lectures or prior lectures at university.”
Chiropractors and Vaccination: A Historical Perspective
PEDIATRICS 2000 (Apr); 105 (4): e43
This article claims that chiropractors who maintain an anti-vaccination stance do so because of “chiropractic philosophy, which, eschewing both the germ theory of infectious disease and vaccination, considered disease the result of spinal nerve dysfunction caused by misplaced (subluxated) vertebrae.” This arguement is inaccurate, and is seriously out of touch with current opinion in the chiropractic profession. This may have been the case 60 years ago, but certainly isn't now. Those of us who are concerned with the side-effects of vaccination and government enforcement policies do so because of reports in the scientific literature. Think about this:In a NBC television news interview, David Kessler, MD, the former head of the FDA (Federal Drug Administration), estimated that physicians report only 10 percent of all adverse vaccine reactions! So, ask yourself...if there were 10 times more adverse reactions than are actually reported in medical journals, would that affect your opinion about enforced vaccination?
The Virus and the Vaccine
The Atlantic Monthly February 2000
A simian virus known as SV40 has been associated with a number of rare human cancers. This same virus contaminated the polio vaccine administered to 98 million Americans from 1955 to 1963. Federal health officials see little reason for concern. A growing cadre of medical researchers disagree
Vaccine Extraimmunization - Too Much of a Good Thing?
JAMA. 2000 (Mar 8); 283 (10): 1311-1317
The article by Feikema and colleagues in this issue of JAMA suggests that extraimmunization of children occurs considerably more often than previously appreciated. Using data from the National Immunization Survey, Feikema et al examined the immunization histories of more than 22,000 children aged between 19 and 35 months.
"Shots in the Dark" - An article on the effects of Diphtheria, Pertussis and Tetanus (DPT) shots
The Washington Post Sunday, Aug. 30, 1998
According to the handout that the federal Centers for Disease Control requires pediatricians to provide parents, the complications from DPT shots are these: 1 in 100 DPT shots will provoke prolonged crying or high fever in an infant; 1 in 1,700 will cause a brief seizure or state of shock. Over the decades, several hundred million pertussis shots have been given around the world -- today, nearly 90 percent of American 2-year-olds have been immunized -- but there still is no agreement on the graver reactions to the vaccine. The literature has recorded hundreds of
instances -- perhaps 1 in every 300,000 shots -- in which children died within a few days of a DPT shot, or suffered recurring seizures that brought on retardation or other chronic brain damage.
Parents Requesting Open Vaccine Education
We provide information on vaccines, and the immunization policies and practices that affect the children and adults of Texas. Our mission is to prevent vaccine injury and death and to promote and protect the right of every person to make informed independent vaccination decisions for themselves and their families.
About Vaccine Choices
What options are available to parents in their choice about vaccines? First, parents may decide they want less than the total range of recommended vaccines. It comes as a surprise to some
parents that they can choose to have one or some vaccines and refuse others. You are responsible for your child s health. You are in control. If a child suffers a dramatic and tragic reaction
to a vaccine, it is the parents who must cope with it. The doctors may be sympathetic, but they are personally uninvolved. They view it merely as a casualty in the war against disease, if
they admit any culpability at all.
Australian Vaccination Network
A parent's right to choose what's best for their child...some would say that this is one of the most basic rules of any civilised society. Yet governments all over the world have abridged or denied the right to free choice when it comes to vaccination for our children or ourselves. The Australian Vaccination Network is working to help parents take back that right to free and informed choice by allowing them to see both sides of this issue before making a decision.
Making an Informed Choice: IMMUNIZATION - The Other Side
As a parent you are or will be faced with some very important decisions regarding immunization for your child. The American medical model has been one of encouraging vaccinations and artificial immunizations as the way to prevent contracting a disease and eradicating epidemics. The federal administration has attempted to make vaccination mandatory, which certainly eliminates freedom of choice regarding our own or our child's body!
National Vaccine Information Center
Vaccines, immunizations or inoculations are recommended for every child born in the United States. A vaccination shouldn't hurt a child but sometimes they do. Before your child takes the risk, find out what it is.
Vaccine Safety Website
This site is dedicated to the promotion of safer immunization practices through the application of scientific principles to vaccine research. The website highlights research into the long term effects of vaccines and discusses potential harmful effects of vaccines. The content of this site is not intended to be anti-immunization but instead to promote the concept that the goal of immunization is to promote health not eradicate infections.
World Health Organization (WHO) Vaccine and Immunization Page
WHO is committed to: (a) To ensure the quality and safety of vaccines and other biological medicines through the development and establishment of global norms and standards, (b) To assess the strategies and activities for reducing morbidity and mortality of vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs), and (c) To reduce financial and technical barriers to the introduction of new and existing vaccines and immunization-related technologies.