CHILDHOOD VACCINATIONSIn my practice I often get asked about my view on vaccination and my advice on vaccination alternatives.
First of all: the decision to get a child vaccinated or not lies entirely with the parents. Nobody (and that includes your GP and your homeopath) can make this decision for you; nobody can take this responsibility off your shoulders. But there is a lot of good information to help you decide.
What you do need to know is that while there is plenty of statistical evidence that vaccines offer a degree of immunity, to date there appear to be “no clear, open, objective and well designed studies on vaccination safety” (Dr. Jayne Donegan, see below). It does not seem to be common knowledge that vaccines do not only contain the antigens but a number of other, sometimes very toxic substances (see “What is in vaccines” below).
Make yourself knowledgeable and weigh up potential benefits against potential problems.
The links below will lead you to information about each topic. I do not take responsibility for the correctness of the information provided on the many websites. Vaccination - yes or no?Which vaccines are suggested by the NHS?What is in vaccines?Can vaccines cause health problems?What about vitamin K injections?What are the risks of not vaccinating?Where to get single vaccines?Are there alternatives to vaccines?Vaccination – yes or no?Before taking a decision, please have a look at some or all of the following papers and websites, but I strongly suggest that you read Dr. Jayne Donegan’s e-book (see below).On the “YES” side
The website of the Department of Health
provides ample information including research papers.
A website that is probably much visited by parents seeking advice is Net Doctors
The Vaccine Awareness Network (VAN) website two pages with pro-vaccine arguments (see page one
and page two
), which are then analysed by VAN.On the “IT DEPENDS”, “BE CAUTIOUS” and “NO” sides
:Childhood Diseases and Their Vaccinesby Dr. Jayne LM Donegan is an e-book (£8) that can be downloaded from her website .
It includes a list of other sources of information. The website also has a number of interesting and free articles.
You can read here how Dr. Donegan was accused by the General Medical Council (GMC) of serious professional misconduct when she acted as expert witness for two mothers who did not want their children to be vaccinated and who had been taken to court by the absent fathers. In the end Dr. Donegan was completely exonerated and none of the evidence she presented was contested by the GMC. In other words, the information she provides in the e-book is correct.
Dr. Sherri Tenpenny’s website drtenpenny.com
Dr. Tenpenny is an American physician and one of USA’s “most knowledgeable and outspoken physicians regarding the impact of vaccines on health” (quote from her own website) . On her site you will find a wealth of well researched information.
The World Association for Vaccine Education (WAVE)
This is a “globally focused, non-profit, educational institution advocating reformation of the mass vaccination systems. To this effect, WAVE provides an avenue for a public exchange of non-medical vaccine information, ideas and a continuously updated database of documents that concern vaccine risk and uselessness. It’s intent is to redress the balance of information available to parents on vaccination issues, acknowledge people who experience vaccine reactions, and adamantly advocate and maintain freedom of choice.” (quote from their website)
The International Medical Council on Vaccination
The website provides a wealth of well researched and written information, news, as well as links to videos and webinars, not only on vaccination but also on healthcare generally.
The www.vaccineinjury.info website
This site is run by Swiss homeopath Andreas Bachmair and contains a lot of useful information such as detailed descriptions of diseases, pathogens, therapy and complications, as well as of vaccination, immunity and adverse side effects. The site also has a vaccine injury database and a facility to submit your own vaccine damage / vaccine injury report.
Dr. Viera Scheibner’s website www.vierascheibner.org
Dr Viera Scheibner is a retired Principal Research Scientist with a doctorate in Natural Sciences. After a scientific career in which she published three books and some 90 scientific papers in refereed scientific journals in Australia and overseas, her study of infants’ breathing patterns and cot death in the mid 1980s pointed to vaccines as being behind the majority of cot deaths. This introduced her to the subject of vaccination, which she has, as a result, been studying ever since.
You may find Dr. Scheibner very outspoken and sometimes radical in her views on vaccination and orthodox medicine in general, which has made her controversial even among alternative health practitioners.
You can see some of Dr. Scheibner’s presentations here
Dr. Larry Palevsky’s article about “Vaccine Myths” appeared on Dr. Mercola’s website in 2009 and can be read here:
Dr. Larry Palevsky is a board-certified paediatrician trained at the New York School of Medicine, and according to Dr. Mercola “… one of the leading physicians in the country who is actually able to compellingly and convincingly provide sound, rational, scientific justification as to why you need to seriously reconsider the wisdom of choosing vaccines as an option to prevent against most diseases”.
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Which vaccinations are suggested by the NHS?
A NHS Vaccination Checklist can be downloaded from here
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What is in vaccines?
Vaccine ingredients include
Antigens: Bacteria or viruses (alive or dead) that can cause specific infectious diseases, which the vaccine intents to prevent
Adjuvants: Chemical substances which are added to enhance the immune response to the vaccine
Preservatives: Chemical substances to prevent further chemical reactions and decomposition of the above antigens
A table of Vaccination ingredients can be downloaded for example from www.informedchoice.info
Why is it important to know about vaccine ingredients? The following example, giving the ingredients of the MMR vaccine from Merck, may answer this question:
- Measles, mumps, rubella live viruses
- Neomycin: Read about research around this ingredient here
- Sorbitol: Read here about possible problems with it
- hydrolyzed gelatine: Read here about allergic reactions to this substance
- chick embryonic fluid
- human diploid cells from aborted foetal tissue
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Can vaccines cause health problems?
“A single vaccine given to a six-pound newborn is the equivalent of giving a 180-pound adult 30 vaccines on the same day” Dr. Boyd Haley, Professor and Chair, Department of Chemistry, University of Kentucky (2001)
The answer is simply “yes”. Otherwise there would be no vaccine damages legislation, or reparations paid to vaccine damaged patients. This link will lead you to a page which gives information about Vaccine Damage Compensation, how and where to claim. Note that although most vaccines are given when children are under the age of 2, claims can only be made when a child is over two.
In the Sunday Times of 25th October 2010 Health Editor Sarah-Kate Templeton reports:
Forty children are suspected to have died as a result of receiving routine vaccines in the past seven years.
Childhood vaccinations are also suspected of having left two young children with brain injuries and caused more than 1,500 other neurological reactions, including 11 cases of inflammation of the brain, 13 cases of epilepsy and a coma.
The data, disclosed by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority (MHRA) following a request by The Sunday Times under the Freedom of Information Act, shows that, since 2003, there have been more than 2,100 serious adverse reactions to childhood vaccines, some of which were life-threatening.” (full text can be found in the Sunday Times of 25th November 2010
As already mentioned above, the www.vaccineinjury.info website gives you the opportunity to report vaccination damage.
To get an idea of potential health problems, read just one manufacturer’s information about their MMR Vaccine: On page 6 you can read, for example, that “...M-M-R II has not been evaluated for carcinogenic or mutagenic potential, or potential to impair fertility”.
Many of the links in the previous sections will already have given you information about potential health problems from vaccines and why this is so. Here are some more:
An interesting, although not very well referenced article on how your immune system works and how vaccination can damage it can be read here
Vaccination and Immune Suppression on Dr. Mercola’s website is another article explaining the reasons why vaccines cause health problems.
Have a look at Dr. Tinus Smits website with information and lots of cases about vaccination damage and its treatment with homeopathy : www.tinussmits.com
Listen to Robert F Kennedy Jr.’s speech about vaccine cover up on YouTube here
That quite a number of doctors and nurses have their doubts about the safety especially of poly-vaccines is shown in this article of the Daily Mail published on the 1st of May 2003:
"A survey carried out by Direct Health 2000 has revealed that two out of five children being given single vaccines instead of the MMR jab have parents who are medically trained. The survey analysed data for 58,000 children who have completed courses of single vaccines since 1999. The findings have given critics of the MMR vaccine more ammunition to argue against the triple inoculation. They claim that doctors and nurses are more worried about the possible risks of the MMR jab than they are prepared to admit in public. Sarah Dean, chief executive of Direct Health 2000, says, 'These statistics indicate the strong pro-MMR stance adopted by the Health Department is not believed by...those who have to promote it."
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What about Vitamin K injections?
Vitamin K injections are given within a few hours of birth. Some of my patients have told me that they were themselves still too dazed to make an informed decision, others said that they thought the child was given just vitamin K, not realising that the injection contains other ingredients. This article is well researched
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What are the risks of not vaccinating?
Nothing in life is risk free. From the moment your child is conceived to the day it dies – as an old person, one hopes – it will be faced with many risks of all kinds. You simply cannot foresee and prevent all of them. The argument for vaccination is that there is a possible risk of getting certain diseases. The belief of many, if not most people is that vaccines provide one-hundred per-cent protection. This is not so, no vaccine gives total protection, although in some cases the producers claim that protection is around 98%.
Have a look at this research, for example:
Explosive School-based Measles Outbreak - Intense Exposure May Have Resulted in High Risk, Even among Revaccinees
Mikko Paunio,1 Heikki Peltola,2 Martti Valle,3 Irja Davidkin,3 Martti Virtanen,4 and Olli P. Heinonen1 (Source: aje.oxfordjournals.org)
From the Abstract: “Even high levels of measles vaccination coverage have not always prevented outbreaks of measles spread by airborne transmission. It has been suggested that a large inoculum might increase vaccine failure risk. Airborne transmission might occasionally entail a large measles inoculum. [Inoculum = The microorganisms or other material used in an inoculation] …… When siblings shared a bedroom with a measles case, a 78 percent risk (seven out of nine children) was observed among vaccinees. Vaccinees had approximately 2 days' shorter incubation time than unvaccinated persons. Vaccinated and unvaccinated students were equally able to infect their siblings. Total protection against measles might not be achievable, even among revaccinees,
when children are confronted with intense exposure to measles virus. Am J Epidemiol 1998; 148:1103-10.
The question is: what are you protecting your child from and at what cost to the child’s immunity. It is worth to analyse this quite carefully before you make your decision.
Most of the diseases we vaccinate against were actually on the decline already when vaccination was introduced. This can be easily verified when one studies old disease and hygiene statistics. Dr. Donegan, for example, has done so in her book mentioned above. Also, statistics sometimes seem to have been manipulated in that diseases were simply re-named if they appeared after the introduction of vaccination. Dr. Scheibner, for example, conducted a very detailed study of the Poliomyelitis vaccination history. She writes
“Perhaps the most revealing information was unwittingly presented in an article by Schonberger et al. (1984). Their figure 1 shows the annual reported paralytic poliomyelitis case rates for the USA during the period 1951-1982. The graph shows a steady fall in the incidence of paralytic poliomyelitis until 1974-75, when it shot up threefold and remained high (with slight up and down fluctuations) until 1979; then the incidence seemingly fell down again to the 1974 level.
This graph is practically identical to the graphs of whooping cough incidence published by Hutchins et al. (1988). Their graphs show a steady downward trend in the incidence of (and mortality from) whooping cough until 1976, when the incidence shot up threefold. This coincided with the "nationwide childhood immunization initiative" [in the USA], when individual states were gradually passing legislation requiring three doses of DTP (diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis) vaccine and OPV for school entry, no doubt preceded by an advertising campaign for some time beforehand and accompanied by intensified vaccination activity. The incidence of both whooping cough and polio quite obviously went up threefold when vaccination became virtually mandatory. I see it as clear evidence that the vaccinations caused the recipients to contract the diseases which the vaccines were supposed to prevent.” ( Source: www.whale.to/vaccine/scheibner.html )
If you read Dr. Donegan’s e-book and/or any of the other more detailed information about diseases and vaccines, you will find that children whose immune system is compromised are more likely to be at risk. Reasons for a compromised immune system often can often be found in a toxic overload possibly already in the parents and continued through pregnancy (medication, toxic environment, stress etc), during delivery (epidurals, oxytocin etc) and the first years of life (vaccinations, antibiotics etc. You will also find that childhood diseases are actually important for a child’s development. Some children are genetically predisposed to be more at risk, but genetic predisposition does not necessarily translate into illness.
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Where to get single vaccines?
There are several private centres in the UK offering single vaccines. Prices vary; below you will find two links I found on Internet. Please note that these are only examples; I do not know anything about these centres.
Note that single Mumps vaccine does not seem to be available any longer, since Merck stopped the production.
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Are there alternatives to vaccines?
If you decide for partial vaccination or against vaccination, the best alternative is to make sure that your children’s immune system is strong by giving them good food avoiding sugar, sweeteners, avoiding too many empty carbohydrates (white bread, pasta etc); giving them love and security; avoiding drugs and other chemicals, as these deplete the immune system, and using natural methods of health care as much as possible.
To protect your child - and yourself - it is hugely important to understand that the body has its own very powerful ability to deal with illness, and that it is important not to suppress this ability. Fevers, discharges, skin eruptions, vomiting, diarrhoea are all part of the body’s defence system in order to maintain homeostasis = a balance of health. Use natural methods to relieve the symptoms and to promote healing. Drugs should only be used in cases of emergency.
If in addition to this you are looking for alternative prophylaxis, that is methods to prevent infection with a disease agent, homeopathy may have some answers. Over the centuries and in many countries homeopaths have shown that patients who received specific homeopathic remedies during outbreaks of infectious illnesses such as Scarlet Fever were less likely to fall ill than those who did not receive homeopathic treatment.
In Germany, for example, “Hufeland, the great Protomedicus [head-physician] of Prussia at the time, reviewed all the results of the prophylactic use of Belladonna for scarlet fever. His subsequent declaration of its efficacy would be akin to the Surgeon General of the United States recommending the use of homeopathy in the treatment of AIDS today. Hufeland¹s support of Belladonna as a prophylactic carried so much weight that the Prussian government made its use during scarlet fever epidemics obligatory in 1838.” (Source: website of the American National Centre for Homeopathy (NCH) - You can read more about homeopathic prophylaxis on this website)
It is important to note that standardised or generalised homeopathic treatment with homeopathic nosodes (remedies made from disease agents) contradicts classical homeopathic philosophy and principles. Response to disease is individual and cannot be foreseen. During epidemic outbreaks of disease symptoms may be very similar across a population and it is when these symptoms are known that homeopathic remedies can be successfully employed to protect or cure. But one cannot predict how a specific disease agent will act during the next outbreak – what kind of symptoms it will produce, how individuals or groups of individuals will respond. Hence it would be impossible to predict which specific remedies would be effective.
Whether one takes the classical homeopathic viewpoint or not, there certainly is a need for more research. The largest study to date is a Cuban study on the homeopathic prophylaxis of Leptospirosis. You can read about it here
Australian homeopath Dr. Isaac Golden has conducted long-term research into the issue of vaccination and homeopathic prophylaxis, which can be found here
Note that The Society of Homeopaths, of which I am a member, does not endorse homeopathic prophylaxis of childhood illnesses because of the lack of sufficient research.
For more information on research into homeopathy click on the Research link on the menu.
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