Last Year’s Flu Vaccine Killed and Injured Over 93,000 US Citizens – Will This Year be Any Different?

Intrepid investigative reporter Christina England exposes the dangers of last year's flu vaccine by presenting 2 cases of children allegedly suffering adverse effects after flu vaccination, then cites the alarming number of adverse reactions to the flu vaccine reported in VAERS.

In the first instance she writes about Marysue who falls ill with Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis:

Note: (Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (ADEM) is characterized by a brief but widespread attack of inflammation in the brain and spinal cord that damages myelin – the protective covering of nerve fibers. Although it can be caused by a viral or bacterial infection, vaccinations are also a known cause.) [3]

hrmm, let's follow up on that reference.

Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) is characterized by a brief but widespread attack of inflammation in the brain and spinal cord that damages myelin – the protective covering of nerve fibers. ADEM often follows viral or bacterial infections, or less often, vaccination for measles, mumps, or rubella.

So she copies the first sentence from the reference verbatim (except for an apparent cut-and-paste error omitting 'Acute' at the start of her sentence), then she conveniently generalizes the last sentence specifying a rare link between ADEM and MMR vaccinations, to just vaccinations. Some might view this as clear evidence of our crackerjack investigative reporter cynically manipulating the facts to fit her narrative, but let's give her a chance.

The wikipedia page for ADEM reports that influenza vaccine (and others) have been implicated but not proven; only rabies vaccine is proven to cause ADEM:

The only vaccine proven to induce ADEM is the Semple form of the rabies vaccine, but hepatitis B, pertussis, diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella, pneumococcus, varicella, influenza, Japanese encephalitis, and polio vaccines have all been implicated.

The page goes on to state:

The risk of ADEM from measles vaccination is about 1 to 2 per million,[19] which is far lower than the risk of developing ADEM from an actual measles infection, which is about 1 per 1000 for measles (and 1 per 5000 for rubella).

So children have a 200x to 1000x greater chance of developing ADEM from viral infection versus the vaccination used to protect them from infection.

Then she reports on a teenager who falls into a coma and dies after a flu jab. There's no evidence the flu vaccine was responsible. The sober and objective Christina England doesn't mention that the rate of serious adverse reactions (all reactions, not just coma and death) are on the order of 1 in a million. Instead she cites NVIC, ""the most powerful anti-vaccine organization in America, and its relationship with the U.S. government consists almost entirely of opposing federal efforts aimed at vaccinating children." NVIC cites the 93 000 adverse reactions reported in VAERS, the CDC's Vaccine Adverse Effects Reporting System.

Hrm, VAERS sounds like a reliable, primary source for accurate information on adverse reactions caused by vaccines, let's just verify that by checking out their 'About' page:

Guide to Interpreting VAERS Case Report Information

When evaluating data from VAERS, it is important to note that for any reported event, no cause-and-effect relationship has been established. Reports of all possible associations between vaccines and adverse events (possible side effects) are filed in VAERS. Therefore, VAERS collects data on any adverse event following vaccination, be it coincidental or truly caused by a vaccine. The report of an adverse event to VAERS is not documentation that a vaccine caused the event.

Just a second, so VAERS is not a reliable source of adverse effects definitely linked to vaccines? And the rest of the report are emotional but factless case studies? And she sites antivax sites as references? And she hides the lack of evidence linking influenza vaccine to ADEM behind slight-of-hand referencing? Maybe this Christina England isn't the objective vaccine safety reporter I mistook her to be.

/r/VaccineMyths Thread Link -