The Flu Vaccine is Effective – and some people find that shocking
On October 8th I was vaccinated against three strains of the flu. Oddly – for weeks after I didn’t feel poorly, I didn’t come down with the flu, and I didn’t have any reaction on my arm. As flu season starts there are all sorts of posts out there about why you shouldn’t get the vaccine. One of my favorite is this one:
“Johns Hopkins Scientist Reveals Shocking Report About the Flu Vaccine.”
Was this an article written in a peer reviewed journal by a respected authority on the subject?No to both. It was not an article that was reviewed by peers and other scientists – it was an opinion that he wrote.
Second, he is not a doctor who deals with medicine, or virology, or epidemiology – he is an anthropologist (he doesn’t have a specialty in the study of viruses or vaccinations). So it was not a piece in a respected journal, nor a piece written by a scientist who has authority in the field.
Isn’t Johns Hopkins a Premier Medical Institution – what do they say?
Yes, Hopkins is a premier medical institution – and the Departments of Medicine, DO NOT agree with this view. In fact, this year you will find that Johns Hopkins is advocating their hospital employees all get the flu vaccine – they supply it free of charge.
Is it True that the Vaccine is not 100% Effective?
This is true. The flu virus can mutate and change. But getting the shot reduces the risk of children getting severely ill (needing to be in an ICU) by 75%. As of August 2014 there were over 100 flu-related deaths by children in the United States. All could have been prevented by the vaccination.
Is this a Profit Maker for Big Pharma?
No. It is less than 1% of their profits. What is profitable for drug companies is people who get sick. Vaccination is prevention – so get a vaccine.
What about the child who was paralyzed after the flu shot?
There is nothing in the flu shot that causes paralysis. The flu vaccine is made up of virus that is not active, and preservatives. None of which cross the blood/brain/spine barrier and cause paralysis.
What about the mercury in flu shots?
Single dose flu shots and the nasal spray do not contain mercury compounds. The vaccine I took does contain a preservative called thimerosal that breaks down to ethylmercury. Ethyl-mercury does not cross the blood brain barrier, it is not a neurotoxin like methyl-mercury. Think of it this way: Ethyl alcohol is what we drink, Methyl alcohol is what poisons us. Ethyl mercury is broken down.
What about the formaldehyde in flu shots?
In some shots there is formaldehyde. However, did you know that your body makes formaldehyde – yes, it is a byproduct of your body’s metabolism. Formaldehyde is also found in larger quantities in most fruits. An apple has about the same amount of formaldehyde in it as a single dose of flu vaccine.
Can flu vaccine cause the flu?
If you get the nasal vaccine- you are getting live virus. If you get the shot, you are not. So yes and no. The live virus is “attenuated” meaning it is made much less potent than the real virus. So you will get infected with the virus. But the shot has “dead” flu- it won’t make you ill.
Don’t be a whimp- get the flu shot.
Most people just don’t like shots- but it is easier to get a poke than it is to get the flu- and you are doing the world a favor.
Dr. Terry Simpson
Dr. Terry Simpson received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Chicago where he spent several years in the Kovler Viral Oncology laboratories doing genetic engineering. He found he liked people more than petri dishes, and went to medical school. Dr. Simpson, a weight loss surgeon is an advocate of culinary medicine. The first surgeon to become certified in Culinary Medicine, he believes teaching people to improve their health through their food and in their kitchen. On the other side of the world, he has been a leading advocate of changing health care to make it more "relationship based," and his efforts awarded his team the Malcolm Baldrige award for healthcare in 2011 for the NUKA system of care in Alaska and in 2013 Dr Simpson won the National Indian Health Board Area Impact Award. A frequent contributor to media outlets discussing health related topics and advances in medicine, he is also a proud dad, husband, author, cook, and surgeon “in that order.” For media inquiries, please visit www.terrysimpson.com.