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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 4:44pm     #16
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An article chock full of misinformation.

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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 5:13pm     #17
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2013-2014 flu season info:
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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 5:15pm     #18
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Originally Posted by Suann47 View Post
I don't get the shot, I don't get the flu. I don't trust any drugs, I use herbs and vitamins.
Me too!!!

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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 7:12pm     #19
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There is so much factually wrong in that article that it's not even worth arguing.

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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 7:28pm     #20
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I don't do flu shots. I do almost all the others readily available, from MMR to DTP and so on. This stifle is so full of crap
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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 8:00pm     #21
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I had to cut a lot out because it was too long, but it debunks the myths.

Myth #1: The flu vaccine gives you the flu or makes you sick. (No, it doesnít.)

This is by far the most common myth I hear Ė even though itís scientifically impossible from the inactivated vaccine. Are there people who become sick right after having gotten the flu shot? Of course, and itís an illness they had likely caught before the shot and it took a a few days for symptoms to appear, or itís just coincidence (and it may or may not be the flu). The flu shot takes two weeks to confer protection, and it takes 2-5 days to incubate a flu virus. A person who does come down with the flu within a week of getting the shot was already infected when they got the vaccine.

Myth #2: The flu shot contains dangerous ingredients, such as mercury, formaldehyde and antifreeze. (Not exactly, and the ingredients arenít dangerous.)

Single dose-shots of the flu vaccine and the flu vaccine nasal sprays do not contain any mercury compounds. The multi-dose flu shot does contain a preservative called thimerosal, which breaks down into 49% ethylmercury and used to prevent bacterial contamination of the vaccine container. Ethylmercury, as Iíve discussed before, is processed differently by the body than methylmercury, the neurotoxin that can build up in the body and is found in fish. (Keep in mind the difference a letter can make in chemistry: methanol is anti-freeze while ethanol is a Chardonnay.) Ethylmercury is made of larger molecules that cannot enter the brain andexits the body within a week.

There is no danger in receiving a vaccine with thimerosal Ė theyíre given all over the world and itís been extensively studied, even for cumulative effects on children over several years. And, keep in mind, if youíre just one of those paranoid types, you can easily request and get a flu shot without the preservative.

Formaldehyde is used in safely small amounts in several flu vaccines (Fluarix, FluLaval, Agriflu and Fluzone) to inactivate the virus so it cannot cause disease. It is not in other influenza vaccines (Afluria, FluMist and Fluvirin). Formaldehyde also occurs naturally in fruits and vegetables even is produced by the human body for a variety of functions, including making amino acids. The amounts of formaldehyde in these vaccines vary from 5 Ķg per dose (Fluarix) to 25 Ķg per dose (FluLaval) to 100 Ķg per dose (Fluzone). For reference, a pear contains about 39 to 60 mg/kg of formaldehyde (100 Ķg = 0.1 mg, so pears contains approximately 39,000 to 60,000 Ķg/kg) A typical pear weighs about 220g, or 0.22 kg. That means a single pear (0.22 kg) would contain 0.22 times the 39 to 60 mg/kg, or 8.6 to 13.2 mg (8600 to 13200 Ķg). (Meanwhile, a single dried shiitake mushroom contains 100-406 mg/kg of formaldehyde.) (Meanwhile, a single dried shiitake mushroom contains 100-406 mg/kg of formaldehyde.)

The claim of antifreeze being in vaccines comes from the use of octylphenol ethoxylate (Triton X-100) (in Fluzone) or octoxynol-10 (Triton X-100) (in Fluarix) used to inactivate those viruses or to purify other vaccines. Polyethylene glycol by itself is one component of antifreeze but is not antifreeze itself, just as water is a component of antifreeze. But these are not the same as polyethylene glycol and involve the use of Triton X-100 as a splitting agent, which has been shown to be safe. Learn more about specific components of flu vaccines here, but remember, again that ONE LETTER can make a huge difference in what youíre talking about.

Myth #4: Flu vaccines can cause Alzheimerís disease. (They canít.)

This myth is even addressed on the Alzheimerís Association website, where they note the2001 study showing a *reduced* risk of Alzheimerís among those who had received flu vaccines, the polio vaccine and the tetanus and diphtheria vaccines. In fact, the risk for developing Alzheimerís was half as much for those receiving these vaccines. The myth originated with a quack named Hugh Fudenberg who has no evidence for the claim.

Myth #5: Flu vaccines provide billions of dollars in profits for pharmaceutical companies. (Maybe, maybe not, but so what?)

There is no question that pharmaceutical companies are for-profit companies and that they really rake in the billions. If they didnít make a profit off vaccine, they wouldnít manufacture them. However, the profits they earn from vaccines are a drop in the bucket when considered along with chronic condition medications such as blood pressure meds and mental health drugs, not to mention the cash flow from medications like Viagra.

Myth #6: Flu vaccines donít work. (Um, they do work.)

Flu vaccines are not 100% effective. (Actually, no vaccine is 100% effective.) But they doreduce the risk of catching the flu even if they cannot eliminate the risk. And there are tons of studies showing this. Unfortunately, the effectiveness of the flu vaccine varies quite a bit from year to year and is among the less effective vaccines compared to ones such as the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine, whose effectiveness is in the high upper 90%s. (The more people who get the vaccine, though, the better herd immunity is and the more effective it can be.)

Next, the effectiveness of the flu vaccine varies for different age groups, partly because of the way the immune system ages. ďGenerally speaking, your immune system peaks in early adulthood and goes downhill from there Ė hence less than ideal efficacy of standard flu vaccines in the elderly,Ē Atwell said. Yet even studies showing low overall effectiveness ó this one found anywhere from 33 to 100 adults need to be vaccinated each year to prevent one case of the flu ó still show a reduced risk of the flu in vaccinated individuals. Coming at it from a different angle, another recent study estimated that vaccination preventedanywhere from 1.1 million to 5 million flu infections during each flu season over six years.

Again, some years, the flu vaccineís effectiveness is very low. Other years, itís better. But just because it does not work 100% all the time for all people does not mean itís worthless or ineffective. Some days, I feel like Iím only operating at 50% human capacity ó but I still need to be a mother to my son, and Iím better than no parent at all for him. Or, for a simpler analogy: If there is a 50% chance itís going to rain, do you take along the umbrella even if itís an inconvenience? Some do because they donít want to get wet if it does rain. Some bring it, but itís a bad storm and they get a little wet anyway.

Myth #7: Flu vaccines donít work for children. (Again, they work.)

As noted above, the effectiveness of the flu vaccine varies by age and by which vaccine (live or inactivated) a person gets, but there is no doubt that it offers some protection against the flu. As Melinda Wenner Moyer points out in this Slate piece, the live vaccine (FluMist) is more effective for kids aged 2 to 7, up to 83% effective (meaning kids who get the vaccine are 83% less likely to get the flu than gets who arenít vaccinated). To put that studyís finding in absolute number terms, 16% of unvaxed kids got the flu compared to 3.4% of those who received the live vaccine.

Myth #8: Flu vaccines make it easier for people to catch pneumonia or other infectious diseases. (No, they make it harder.)

This myth is just bizarre. For one thing, catching the flu will weaken your immune system while youíre sick, during which itís easier to become ill from other bugs. But more importantly, pneumonia is among the most common complications to occur as a result of a flu infection, so getting the flu shot *reduces* your risk of pneumonia, a leading cause of death among those who die from influenza complications.

Myth #9: Flu vaccines cause vascular or cardiovascular disorders. (No, they donít.)

This is another myth that should be flipped on its head. There is no evidence that the flu vaccine causes vascular disorders. Meanwhile, the vaccine has been shown in multiple studies to reduce individualsí risk of heart attacks, stroke and other cardiovascular events.

Myth #10: Flu vaccines can break the ďblood brain barrierĒ of young children and hurt their development. (No, they canít.)

There is no evidence that flu vaccines can hurt childrenís development or that childrenís neurovascular structure are affected by flu vaccines. A childís blood brain barrier is formed in utero and is functional from birth in regulating what can and cannot pass into the brain. Researchers at Stanford University and the University of California Ė San Francisco discovered in 2010 that pericytes are required for blood-brain barrier development and that pericytes are present in the fetal brain. This research shows that an infantís blood brain barrier is developed before birth. The physiology of the blood brain barrier and how it functions at that level of development make it highly implausible that any vaccine components could penetrate the barrier.

Myth #11: Flu vaccines cause narcolepsy. (Not the seasonal flu vaccine, and not most others.)

This is one of the few myths that is rooted in a small amount of fact, though itís often misrepresented or blown out of proportion. Narcolepsy is a neurological disorder in which the brain in unable to regulate sleep-wake cycles. Several studies, first in Finland and then in other European countries, found and confirmed a link between narcolepsy and the 2009 H1N1 flu vaccine called Pandemrix, manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline Europe and used in several European countries (but not in the US or Canada). It was not used before 2009 or since the 2009-2010 season, and no links to narcolepsy have been found for US-manufactured H1N1 or seasonal flu vaccines. The CDC is sponsoring an international study on the link between the 2009 H1N1 flu vaccines and narcolepsy, expected to be completed in 2014.

Myth #12: The flu vaccine weakens your bodyís immune response. (It actually strengthens it.)

Vaccines do not weaken the bodyís immunological responses or cause other infections. They actually strengthen the immune system, activating a response that leads to the production of specific antibodies against the disease the vaccine is designed to protect against. The immune system is like a muscle and vaccines are like the exercise. The vaccines train your immune system for a future attack just like exercise strengthens your muscles and makes you body stronger. (The flu, on the other hand, does weaken your immune system while your body tries to fight it.)

Myth #13: The flu vaccine causes nerve disorders such as Guillain Barre syndrome. (Not the seasonal vaccine, but the flu can.)

Guillain Barre syndrome (GBS) is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system mistakenly attacks a personís own nerve tissue, causing muscle weakness and sometimes temporary paralysis. The disorder affects approximately one person out of every 100,000 individuals. Causes are not well understood, though the disorder has been linked to viruses including cytomegalovirus, Epstein Barr and influenza (as well as the bacteria campylobacter).

This myth, like the one about narcolepsy, is partly based on fact because the 1976 H1N1 flu vaccine was found to be linked to a higher risk of GBS that year Ė approximately 10 additional cases of GBS for every 1 million people vaccinated. Since then, GBS risk has probably been the single most studied adverse event from the flu shot in the history of flu shot research. One study that investigated the risk of GBS from the flu shot among more than 30,000 million ďperson-yearsĒ (30 million people over an 11-year period) found no increased risk for the flu shot. Based on numerous studies, the independent Institute of Medicine ďconcluded that there was sufficient evidence to reject an association between influenza vaccination and GBS.Ē

Myth #14: The flu vaccine can cause neurological disorders. (No, it canít.)

There is no evidence that the flu vaccine can cause neurological disorders, but there is evidence that influenza can. Meanwhile, children with neurological disorders or other neurodevelopmental conditions are especially encouraged to get the vaccine because they are at a higher risk of complications from influenza than other children. Almost half of the children who died from the flu during the 2009 season had underlying neurological disorders, such as epilepsy or cognitive dysfunction.

Myth #15: Influenza isnít that bad. Or, people recover quickly from it. (Uh, itís pretty bad.)

Influenza is a serious illness. The symptoms are similar to other illnesses, so people often mistake milder illnesses for the flu. Some lucky folks do recover in a few days, but most are down for a week or two, and complications can be life-threatening, especially complications in children. Not everyone gets a fever, but having the flu isnít pleasant, especially given the minor side effects or low risks for serious side effects from the vaccine.

Myth #16: People donít die from the flu unless they have another underlying condition already. (Actually, healthy people DO die from the flu.)

People die from the flu. Every year. This includes children with no underlying conditions (plenty of unfortunate stories here). In fact, a study published just today in Pediatricsreported that 43% of the more than 800 children who died from the flu between 2004 and 2012 had no underlying medical conditions. Often, influenza might contribute to a death but not be listed on the death certificate if the individual died from complications of the flu, such as pneumonia.

Myth #17: People with egg allergies cannot get the flu shot. It will kill them! (No, it wonít, and thereís an egg-free vaccine.)

Before debunking this myth, itís important that people know the flu vaccine Flublok, available for the first time this year, is manufactured without eggs. Recommended by the CDC earlier this year, Flublok is recommended only for those aged 18 to 49.

For those not in that age range, or if the new vaccine is unavailable, the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology states clearly, ďPeople with egg allergy are not at any additional risk of having a reaction when given the flu vaccine even though the vaccine may contain some amount of egg protein.Ē This statement is based on the evidence in theirinfluenza vaccination recommendations (paywall), summarized here.

Myth #18: If I get the flu, antibiotics will take care of me. (No, they canít.)

Influenza is a virus. Antibiotics fight bacteria (anti = ďagainstĒ; biotics = ďof life,Ē referring to living bacteria, not to viruses). All the antibiotics in the world wonít help you fight off a flu infection.

Myth #19: The flu shot doesnít work for me, personally, because last time I got it, I got the flu anyway. (It still reduces your risk.)

As noted further up, getting the flu vaccine does not guarantee you wonít catch the flu. It does reduce your risk of getting the flu, and it can lead you to have a milder course of the illness than if you hadnít been vaccinated. Itís also entirely possible that you catch a strain of the flu not covered in the vaccine.

Myth #20: I never get the flu, so I donít need the shot. (You can see the future?)

Millions of people have never gotten into car accidents. They still wear seat belts and carry insurance.

Myth #22: Itís okay if I get the flu because it will make my immune system stronger. (Selfish much? And no, it doesnít.)

As noted above, your immune system is weakened while youíre ill from the flu. While your immune system may be strengthened after you recover against that particular strain, a vaccine primes your immune system to fight off influenza strains in the same way (without the week of fever, chills and vomiting). Additionally, if you catch the flu, you are contagious to others. Being vaccinated helps keep herd immunity levels higher in your community, especially protecting those who are weaker or cannot be vaccinated.

Myth #23: Making a new vaccine each year only makes influenza strains stronger. (No, it doesnít.)

This myth is a challenging one to address succinctly without oversimplifying the science. The short answer is that current vaccines are not going to create more dangerous variants of a flu strain.

Influenza virus strains are evolving and changing on a regular basis in two main ways: ďantigenic drift and antigenic shift.Ē Drifts are small, gradual changes that happen all the time in response to environmental pressure and even within our own bodies. The influenza virus has a segmented genome: its genome is in eight parts which can randomly re-assort. When the virus infects an individual, it can ďexchangeĒ these gene segments and change within that one individual. Our own immune response can invoke a selective pressure on the virus that contributes to drifting, with or without a vaccine. If the virus didnít change at all from year to year, the flu vaccine would never need to be reformulated each year (and that Holy Grail of a universal flu vaccine would be less elusive).

Myth #24: The side effects of the flu shot are worse than the flu. (No, they arenít.)

The most common side effects of the flu vaccine are aches, itching, fatigue, headache, fever, hoarseness, sore or red and itchy eyes, a cough and soreness, redness or swelling where the shot was given and aches. Young children may, in rare cases, develop a high fever (a febrile seizure) that can result in a short seizure, not causing long-term damage. The most serious risk is an allergic reaction, possible in approximately 1 out of every 1 million doses. In the H1N1 vaccines already noted above, Guillan Barre syndrome may be an increased risk for 1 to 2 of every 1 million doses, though itís many times more common from influenza itself.

Myth #25: The flu vaccine causes Bellís palsy. (No, it doesnít.)

As I was writing this post, a friend notified me that their spouse had developed Bellís palsyfollowing the flu shot. I have not heard this mentioned as a myth, so I investigated it. It appears that one flu vaccine used in Switzerland during the 2000-2001 season might have been linked to an increased risk of Bellís palsy (46 cases). An investigation of US reports in the decade prior also appeared to show a risk, which led to a more in-depth study. That in-depth one found no increased risk, which a report from the independent Institute of Medicinefound as well. In addition, a study looking specifically for Bellís palsy risks in children after a flu vaccination found no increased risk. Sometimes it can be tough to separate cause from correlation and to determine whether two things that happen at the same time are related or coincidence ó hence the reason for multiple studies.

However, it is important that adverse events occurring after any vaccine is given are reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) so that researchers can follow up on conditions that are reported multiple times. Itís best that a doctor make the report since medically confirmed events are generally given better weight. Most likely, based on the research known to date, the friendís spouse developed Bellís palsy for another reason that occurred unfortunately at the same time as the flu shot (the condition can be caused by a wide range of viral infections, including the flu itself). Since the report occurred this year, there is insufficient evidence to determine for certain if it is related to the flu shot or not; itís only possible to hypothesize that it wasnít based on past evidence. But the friend should report it to VAERS nonetheless. This is how new associations, such as the narcolepsy link with the European 2009 H1N1 Pandemrix vaccine, are identified.
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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 8:25pm     #22
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Originally Posted by Suann47 View Post
I don't get the shot, I don't get the flu. I don't trust any drugs, I use herbs and vitamins.
Same here as well.

To carry yourself forward and experience myriad things is delusion. That myriad things come forth and experience themselves is awakening.

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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 8:34pm     #23
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yes, well my husband was proud to say he never got the flu until 2-3 years ago... There really is something to be said about why every nursing home patient gets a flu shot. immunity wanes with age. why do you all think the shingles vaccine is now recommended for people fifty and up? like I have said before, go to an old graveyard and look at all the tombstones from the 1918-1919 years. secondary pneumonia kills people from the flu because those bacteria get inside bodies that are weakened from the flu. good luck people. I hope you can still say you have never had the flu when you are 55. stay away from my weak and fragile relatives, and I hope you do not work in health care.

look up the stats. one person in a million gets gb. a million. you can get gb from any virus . it just can happen.
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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 8:38pm     #24
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Just a thought for those who don't get a flu shot because it ramps up the immune system ...

You'd probably also want to make sure you are not eating GMO foods. Each GMO molecule has a gene in it (inserted into a virus for transport) which not only stimulates the immune system to react, but also (the virus) can be incorporated into your cells. This might very well cause chronic immune system reaction/inflammation.

It's a dangerous world people. It's hard to know which molecule to trust. I try to be careful when it comes to things I do on a frequent basis. And I never ever trust atoms ... they make up everything.

....duknuk's chicks are here!
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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 8:42pm     #25
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Thanks, MrsM.

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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 8:43pm     #26
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and I bet Barbara Walters was proud to say she never had chicken pox either. well, guess what she got it a few years ago..... age can do that to you.

thank you mrs. m
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  Old  November 8th, 2013, 10:39pm     #27
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Red face pneumonia
Had this a few times in my life and it's most definitely NOT FUN! Since everyone's system is different, not everyone needs to get a preventive shot.

My tip is AVOID large crowds like Christmas shopping. One year I went shopping at Walmart looking for last minute Christmas presents and a lady was sneezing all over the place. Well, days later I was sick and stayed sick for 3 months with an upper respiratory infection. Took 3 different types of antibiotics. Went into pneumonia. Now, I get a flu shot and pneumonia shot every year.
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  Old  November 9th, 2013, 12:19am     #28
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The flu shot isn't magic. You do not receive instant immunity from the flu. It takes your body about two weeks to build up enough antibodies against the strain to be able to fight it off. If you tend to get sick after gettng the flu shot, that means you were exposed to the flu within the past couple days before you started having the symptoms. Your best net at not getting the flu is to get your shot early becausr as I stated before it takes about two weeks for your body to produce the antibdies for it!

**my keyboard is glitchy, sorry for misspellings
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  Old  November 9th, 2013, 10:05am     #29
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[quote=Scary Snarky toaD;10911504][b][color="Teal"]I had two bad bouts of pneumonia in '83 and '85. Subsequently I was given a pneumonia vaccine and not had pneumonia since that vaccine. I would never attribute getting a flu shot to keeping me from pneumonia, I WOULD attribute the pneumonia vaccine from doing that. "

The flu can easily lead to aspiration pneumonia. Both the flu and aspiration pneumonia can easily kill.
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  Old  November 9th, 2013, 2:50pm     #30
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Originally Posted by Ravzie View Post
An article chock full of misinformation.

Her Majesty Ravzie declares it, so it MUST be true. No reason to point OUT any "misinformation" just DECLARE it, that makes it true.

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Never smiles sadly -- Into the past.
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