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Vaccinations - does anyone support the alternative view?

(39 Posts)
Evo Wed 11-Feb-04 07:56:13

I'm new to this - and my DD is just approaching two months and thus the first vaccine (DTP) hurdle. Myself & my wife have been reading up (including past threads on this site) but have yet to make a decision. We are considering no vaccines at all, based around some of the arguments that are presented by the homeopathic / non-orthodox medical community, such as
many serious diseases were delining or had gone before the intrduction of vaccines; vaccines by pass a large part of the immune system which has been finely tuned over millions of years (the membranes of the stomache etc; there is no such thing as herd immunity; vaccines are not tested to the same standards as many other drugs;orthodox medecine works by 'suppressing' symtoms rather than helping the body to do its job.

I am firmly sat on the fence at the moment but have not yet managed to find what I would call a balanced view of the arguments from the orthodox and non-orthodox viewpoints. Indeed, most of the orthodox material seems to be almost contemptuous of anyone trying to suggest that there may be another way of looking at things.

Any views and suggestions of quality reading material would be most welcome.

WideWebWitch Wed 11-Feb-04 08:48:02

Hi Evo, you could try a search on this board - there have been some intelligent and interesting debates on the subject here. If you do go for DTP you might want to consider mercury free - if you search on mercury you'll find some threads. Welcome to mumsnet.

Evita Wed 11-Feb-04 10:12:16

I work for a medical research library and my dd is now 16 months. I did a load of detailed research about vaccines for dd and decided to get her to have the first ones you're in line for but to avoid mmr. I can't really give you details of what I looked at now as much of it is not available to the public and I looked quite a while ago. But the risks of the diseases in the first set of jabs is too great when weighed against the pitfalls (there are very few bad reactions and nothing lasting or serious). Whereas with mmr it's much more uncertain and there are safe ways around doing the single vaccine.

twiglett Wed 11-Feb-04 10:28:13

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Davros Wed 11-Feb-04 11:14:09

I don't understand all the scientific technicalities but I can say that I'm very glad I gave my baby the first set of immunisations. We took a long time to get through them, trying not to give her too much at once, and we also went for thimerosil-free. She has just had what may be chickenpox although it was very mild, and I was so relieved that she'd had those first injections and it is all behind us. My reason for caution is just being a cautious mum and because I have an autistic son I wouldn't do anything with a chance of being very risky to a potentialy vulnerable child. However, I'm so glad she's been immunised, for instance, against tetanus as well as the others. When it comes to MMR I won't have the comined vaccine but may consider singles and take time again. I wish we could just go ahead and not worry.

bundle Wed 11-Feb-04 11:42:47

I'm a medical journalist and I decided on mercury-free "triples" for dd2 (I wasn't aware for dd1), MMR for both - after doing LOTS of reading including material provided by my GP/HV.

Angeliz Wed 11-Feb-04 11:43:03

I hadn't read up about DTP but fortunately dd had the DTaP ones which i was later pleased about when i did read up,(rather late!!!)
She has had the single jabs for MMR and is still waiting on her mumps one though that does not worry me.
As Twiglett said, dd will not be having any boosters until we have checked whether or not she needs any!
Welcome Evo and i hope you can make a decision you and your wife are happy with. It's really hard isn't it? I am thinking of a second baby so am worrying already+

Angeliz Wed 11-Feb-04 11:43:54

bundle, am i right in thinking that DTaP does not contain thimerisol?

stupidgirl Wed 11-Feb-04 11:48:19

My ds had all of his (but not boosters) dd had all of hers until mmr and has had none since. If I had another child I wouldn't vaccinate at all. There seems to be very little unbiased advice out there on either side, to be honest.

I don't trust the government, and the fact that they are pushing all the more fiercely seems to me good enough reason to be suspicious of their motives.

Evita Wed 11-Feb-04 12:27:57

stupidgirl, with regard to MMR you are completely right not to trust the government. I honestly think that if / when the full evidence come into the public domain there'll be a total outcry. The government have invested so much money in the triple vaccine and are pretty much bribing GP's to give it. Not only are there links to autism but also to chronic bowel disease which was previously very rare in under 5's. Most importantly of all though is that there is a safe alternative in the form of single jabs. The only reason these are not available is due to financial concerns of the government.

twiglett Wed 11-Feb-04 12:33:02

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Jimjams Wed 11-Feb-04 12:45:43

Ds1 is fully vaccinated
ds2 hasn't received any (he's 2 now).


The best book I've come across is The Vaccine Guide by Randall Neudstaedter. it's the most balanced.

For the autism link search on metallothinein and walsh. Basically latest research suggests that the majorty of autistic children have a dodgy metallothionein protein. This is involved in detoxifying heavy metals amongst other things. So makes sense not to give your child mercury in a vaccine if they have a dodgy protein. Of course we don't know whiich children have the dodgy protein.

metallothionein is also involved in defence against viruses-and could explain some of the MMR suscpetibility (athough in my mind there is less evidence for that).

BTW my ds1 is autistic. I used to be very very pro vaccination until I saw what happened to my son.

if you want to talk more contact me off list as I've had enough of fighting on here about it.

have a search under my name and mercury of something as well- there's a,link to a very good radio show which goes into detail about thimerosil.

I recommend Randall neudstaedter as a good place to start though. He gives the pros and cons fo whicever decision you make.

CountessDracula Wed 11-Feb-04 13:09:40

Twiglett the Crohn's link is to the measles vaccine, not MMR specifically. I have Crohn's and there have been mumblings about links to measles vaccine for years, before mmr. ~There is an ongoing group action about this and nothing has been proven or disproved yet.

I am giving my dd single vaccines anyway as I just don't want to risk anything.

I don't want her to even have the measles part but I am pro-vaccination and I would never forgive myself if she got measles complications.

I have been to see an immunologist but she was basically spouting the govt propaganda IMO

suedonim Wed 11-Feb-04 16:53:13

What is the usual age to start jabs? I was really shocked when my great niece had her first set at one month and then at two months old!!! I understood that the baby still had some immunity from the mother at this age and also that the baby's immune system wasn't developed enough for it to be of benefit, but maybe I'm wrong. I'd be really interested to hear opinions.

Jimjams Wed 11-Feb-04 16:57:59

suedonim in the good old days (ie the 1980's) baby jabs (dtp) was given at 3 months. Polio was given seperately (6 weeks later iirc- I can check) and then over the rest of the first year the remaining dtps and polios were given. SO it took 6-9 months to complete the course. I will look this up later.

Now dtp polio hib and men C are given at 8 weeks 12 weeks and 16 weeks.

incidentally the regimes changed from being spread out to being crammed together at the same time as the MMR was introduced. I wonder whether the increase in autism since MMR introduction is due to too much mercury (in the dtp) being given too closer together. Especially given the research on autism and metallothionein proteins.

WideWebWitch Wed 11-Feb-04 17:10:49

I think I'm going to spread mine out because, although they're mercury free, it just seems to me to be a lot to load a baby's immune system with, very young. I left the 1st one 'til 10 weeks too.

MeanBean Wed 11-Feb-04 17:36:59

Neither of my children are vaccinated. I did lots and lots of reading when I was pregnant with my first child, and decided that the chance of my children dying or getting brain damage from any of the diseases was probably less than the chances of them being vaccine damaged. I tried and tried to get the statistics about it - eg: how many children in the UK have died of diptheria in the last 10 years versus how many have been vaccine damaged - but suspiciously, these statistics are simply not available, or if they are, they are so well hidden that the ordinary lay person like me can't get hold of them. Every time I asked anyone in the medical profession where I could find the statistics, they immediately got hysterical about how dangerous the diseases are; they didn't actually address my question in a grown-up, rational manner.

I'm still not sure if the decision I took is the right one to be honest; I would really like to have more information, but the NHS doesn't disseminate information about this topic, it disseminates propaganda. Like Jimjams, I did read a book which was very sober and rational and laid out the risks of the diseases and the risks of the vaccines - FYI Evo, the tetanus jab comes out as the safest, least likely to cause vaccine damage and most likely to be effective (you'd be amazed by how much vaccination doesn't actually work) - and as and when my kids might need that one, I would have that - also, tetanus is a disease which they are much more likely to get and be damaged by. In the end, you can only weigh up which risk you feel you want to take - it's just a bummer that there is so little real, unbiased information available. Good luck with your research, and if you find out anything else useful, let me know!

twiglett Wed 11-Feb-04 17:49:23

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Jimjams Wed 11-Feb-04 18:07:36

mean bean- the last UK death from diptheria was in 1992- a boy (about 10 years old I think) picked it up in Pakistan and died here. (that was from a dept of health publication)

CER Wed 11-Feb-04 23:06:00

I would recommend the book "Vaccinations Yes or No?" by Will and Lara Sussman. It's just been published and it's definately the most balanced book I've read, and doesn't feel like propoganda from either side.

It also has lots of information about numbers of cases of, and deaths from, diseases in the UK in recent years.

They have a website www.vaccinations-yesorno.co.uk and I think you can buy the book from there.

Davros Wed 11-Feb-04 23:08:58

Do they mention the number of deaths from autism? Yes, DEATHS - drowning, disappearing, getting run over etc etc?

Evo Wed 11-Feb-04 23:32:39

Thanks all for the useful views and comments - I can see I have some late night reading sessions coming my way.

The herd immunity point is interesting. I read an alternative explanation on this recently. It suggested that diseases are not caught and passed around groups of people at all. Rather, the diseases exist in all people, all of the time. The disease is 'caught' when a change in the environment or condition of the carrier occurs. In this way a change in the environment can effect many people at the same time and so produce an epidemic. I thought this was plain daft at first, but it has parallels with things like verucas and atletes foot - which are not caught at all, but appear under the right conditions.

Ah well, its getting late. Enough pondering for one day.

mammya Wed 11-Feb-04 23:49:16

How do you test immunity then?

mammya Wed 11-Feb-04 23:51:31

That was a question for Angeliz and/or Twiglett by the way, and anyone else who might know the answer.

hmb Thu 12-Feb-04 06:53:08

You take a blood test and the amount of specific antibodies ( the antibody Titre) is calculated. More than a specific amount will give a person immunity. Do they also look at specific memory cells? I can't remember.

I had both mine done, and neither had any problems. Everyone needs to make up their own mind,

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