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Thread: How folkscience can kill innocent babies

  1. #31
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    Our immune systems get less responsive the older we get. Just like our muscles become less responsive. Bones become less responsive. Just about every system becomes less responsive as we age. You want to know 'why'? Most aging researchers want to know the same thing.

    So I'm not sure if she's referencing a specific study. But I know that there are studies that have increased the amount of vaccine to elderly in order to boost their immune system even more since they are at higher risk since they are somewhat immune compromised.

  2. #32
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    thanks for the reply...
    that makes sense to me...but the post said that older people DON'T benefit from flu vaccine...that's what does not make sense to me...

    jess

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrnyc View Post
    ditto...
    i just want to know about immune systems and the flu shot!

    jess
    Here's one report summarizing some of the studies:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/02/health/02flu.html

    and here's the quote about the immune system:

    "That finding has a biological basis. Vaccines work by priming the immune system to recognize and respond to incoming threats. Because the immune system slows down with age, older adults do not respond as well to vaccines as younger adults."

    Again, just to say that what appears to be proven by science ain't necessarily so. It's all just fallible humans looking at things and making their best guess on interpreting what they see, and it can all be turned topsy-turvy with another look. I'm more trusting of the thinking behind the DPT studies, but, knowing what I know about the state of medical research, I'm not really willing to bow down before any of it.

    And, yes, I did vaccinate my son against Pertussis

  4. #34
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    So, actually, it seems as if the whole thing with DPT vaccines is more complicated then it appears.

    Like chickenpox, the protection provided by the vaccine is much shorter than the protection provided by the disease itself (5 to 10 years for the vaccine compared to 7 to 20 for the infection). The increase in pertussis is not primarily among unvaccinated children - it's in teens and adults. That *sounds* like people who have had their vaccine wear off, although there's probably no way of telling. And these teens and adults are primarily the ones who are infecting infants.

    To avoid infecting infants, adults would have to be vaccinated pretty darn frequently to provide that herd immunity.

    (Here's one report - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2532581/. There are others)

    So, although the vaccine helps (and helped alot when it was first introduced) I'm not certain how effective it will turn out to be in the long run, unless adults are repeatedly vaccinated.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdugger View Post
    Again, just to say that what appears to be proven by science ain't necessarily so. It's all just fallible humans looking at things and making their best guess on interpreting what they see, and it can all be turned topsy-turvy with another look. I'm more trusting of the thinking behind the DPT studies, but, knowing what I know about the state of medical research, I'm not really willing to bow down before any of it.

    And, yes, I did vaccinate my son against Pertussis
    Yes but saying medicine is flawed, and we know it is in large part because of the inability to do controlled trails in some cases, in no way undermines the fact that it is still the only game in town for hoping to know anything real. It is evidence-based versus everything else which is based on wishful thinking.

    Vaccination is a victim of its own success in some ways. It is hard to control for masses who have not enough training to reason their way out of a paper bag in the case of these anti-vac folks. Some privately held beliefs don't just harm the individual... they harm innocents. That is an ongoing issue.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

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  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ballet Mom View Post
    If no one found it offensive....why was it deleted?
    I believe that Linda stated earlier that she had no choice but to remove any posts containing the word 'faith'. That is probably the reason it was deleted, rather than anyone reporting it or being offended by it.
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  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooka1 View Post
    Yes but saying medicine is flawed, and we know it is in large part because of the inability to do controlled trails in some cases, in no way undermines the fact that it is still the only game in town for hoping to know anything real. It is evidence-based versus everything else which is based on wishful thinking.
    "Hoping" is the operative word. That I trust science's process says absolutely nothing about the veracity of a particular result. Trusting a particular scientific results *is* a matter of faith. You could have faith that science had proved that vaccinating the elderly against the flu was effective, and your faith would be misplaced.

    The fear of the pertussis vaccine isn't faith against science, btw. It's science against science. It's parents weighing the scientific reports that pertussis leads to neurological damage against the scientific reports of its protective effects. That the science on one side appears to be weaker than the science on the other is not that easy to parse out. But it's not a faith vs. science battle.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by mariaf View Post
    I believe that Linda stated earlier that she had no choice but to remove any posts containing the word 'faith'. That is probably the reason it was deleted, rather than anyone reporting it or being offended by it.
    Also some posts are removed for being too factual where the facts involved fall under some societal taboo. That is the obvious reason but is never the stated reason for obvious reason.

    I think Linda just wants people moving along, a sentiment with which I completely agree. She is responsible for keeping things on track and she is doing it all on a voluntary basis to her great credit.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  9. #39
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    thanks hdugger...for that quote...
    but i still dont quite trust those kinds of statements...and i do believe i have benefited from flu shots...at every age! even if their claim is true...i dont see the harm in getting one, on the chance it can help...there are some really nasty flu viruses out there!

    jess

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by hdugger View Post
    "Hoping" is the operative word. That I trust science's process says absolutely nothing about the veracity of a particular result. Trusting a particular scientific results *is* a matter of faith. You could have faith that science had proved that vaccinating the elderly against the flu was effective, and your faith would be misplaced.
    Careful of your use of the "f" word there.

    Yes but some things being discussed are not open questions. Just because some open questions remain in this area doesn't mean others are necessarily still open.

    The fear of the pertussis vaccine isn't faith against science, btw. It's science against science. It's parents weighing the scientific reports that pertussis leads to neurological damage against the scientific reports of its protective effects. That the science on one side appears to be weaker than the science on the other is not that easy to parse out. But it's not a faith vs. science battle.
    Well I made a similar point earlier about how the unwashed masses are almost completely unarmed in making this determination. At some point, when public health is at stake, they must trust the scientists who as a group are the good guys in this game.

    I am also saying that other modes of discourse that are not evidence-based can only undermine the efforts to understand complex medical, scientific, and technical issues in modern society. In that sense, the choice is to come at it from an evidence-driven viewpoint versus to come at it from a wishful thinking viewpoint. Many children are taught that evidence is not required in certain endeavors so they are not likely to seek it out in others where the rubber meets the road.

    The answer obviously is to beef up science education so folks can understand the issues much better. There are some who seek to undermine science education and this could not be more counterproductive.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrnyc View Post
    thanks hdugger...for that quote...
    but i still dont quite trust those kinds of statements...and i do believe i have benefited from flu shots...at every age! even if their claim is true...i dont see the harm in getting one, on the chance it can help...there are some really nasty flu viruses out there!

    jess
    You're too young for the lowered immune stuff It's primarily in people over 70.

    The caution, I think, is not to place too much faith in the flu shot. Protect yourself during flu season "as if" you hadn't had the shot. That's probably the safest course.

  12. #42
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    The problem is the attempt to associate anti-vaccination hysteria with people of f---- and their "demon-haunted world" due to some people's pre-existing prejudices. It is quite clear that people of all stripes are in the anti-vaccination crowd.

    "In February 1998 a paper written by Wakefield and 12 other doctors about 12 autism spectrum children was published in the Lancet."

    Dr. Wakefield, who was a respected surgeon and twelve other doctors somehow managed to get their research published in a major scientific medical journal.

    That sounds like science to me. It apparently didn't turn out to be very good science...but what's new? Hardly a reason to be blaming religion.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Wakefield

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooka1 View Post
    Careful of your use of the "f" word there.

    Yes but some things being discussed are not open questions. Just because some open questions remain in this area doesn't mean others are necessarily still open.
    My point is that there's no science to back up the idea that your science-based faith is a more effective in medical decision-making than any other kind of faith. I don't believe the question has ever been examined. Science might be right 25% of the time in medical matters, which would make it a less effective predictor than a chimp picking numbers out of a hat. There's just no way to say with any particular result. Again, it's the *process* that is trustworthy - not any particular result.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pooka1 View Post
    I am also saying that other modes of discourse that are not evidence-based can only undermine the efforts to understand complex medical, scientific, and technical issues in modern society. In that sense, the choice is to come at it from an evidence-driven viewpoint versus to come at it from a wishful thinking viewpoint. Many children are taught that evidence is not required in certain endeavors so they are not likely to seek it out in others where the rubber meets the road.
    The problem with DPT and autism is that there was some evidence to suggest that they were related. I'm not going to remember the source of the article - I think it was Salon, but I'm not at all sure. But I did read a pretty convincing article about 6 years ago tying the two things together. Again, I'm pretty hazy, but the evidence had to do with when vaccines were introduced (or discontinued) and what happened to the rate of autism.

    OK, I found the article, but I'm don't really have time to review it right now - http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2005/06/16/thimerosal

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ballet Mom View Post
    "Health officials also released demographic information showing that 77% of the hospitalized infants under 6 months old were Latino, as were eight of the nine fatalities."
    A complete guess, but I suspect this has to do with lack of access to medical care. Poorer people (again, total guess that these were poorer Latinos) tend to wait way too long to get medical attention because they can't pay for it.

  15. #45
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    Emergency room care is pretty darn inconvenient. If you have to wait hours to be seen, you don't bring you child in at the first troubling sign but instead wait until they seem *really* sick.

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