Thursday, October 22, 2009

To Take or not to Take the Swine Flu Shot

I saw some interesting videos about the swine flu. One from the seventies is especially worth checking out: :
> I did the math on it: 46 million people were inoculated against the flu and there were 4000 lawsuits by people who contracted Guillain-Barre Syndrome, which means about one in eleven thousand suffered enough to file a lawsuit. The question that's not answered is how many lives might have been saved among those who would have gotten the flu if they had not been given the shots. As always, it's a crap shoot. I once got very sick from a smallpox vaccination, but thank God I'm still around to tell about it.

A little info from the front lines. My daughter who is an attending physician working full-time in a Portland hospital told us she got a swine flue shot a few days ago. The shot takes about three weeks to become effective. According to her a lot more cases are beginning to show up day by day, and you can do a google on "frequency of swine flu cases" to see what the bigger picture is. Two women across the street from us came back early from a road-trip in their RV because one of them had contracted the swine flu. (She's recovering slowly.)

Of course, it always pays to be suspicious as long as somebody somewhere is out to make a buck, and there is money to be made in vaccine sales.

So what's the answer? The better informed you are from as many sources as possible and the more willing you are to do a little detective work, the better the odds you will make the right decision. It goes without saying that staying in good spirits is always conducive to your health. If things are getting you down, get in touch with a life coach.


Brigitte said...

Isn't this vaccine being made very differently from the one in the 70's?

Also, I am curious what you think about Barbara Ehrenreich's (spelling?) new book? The way she explained it on the Daily Show it seemed that she is opposed to the idea that being positive is good for your health... but maybe I just understood it wrong...

Howard said...

I think Ehrenreich's "Bright-Sided" speaks for a healthy dose of realism at a time when this is needed most. Hunky-dory optimism leads to the kind of giddiness that drove speculators to bring about financial collapse. In terms of positive thinking in the areas like health, she is right and she is wrong. She is right when you consider that positive thinking can be a source of denial and keep people from getting treatment when they need it. She is wrong in the sense that her stance dismisses the placebo effect--the expectation of a cure can be more effective than the chemistry in the pill.

--I don't have the details on the manufacture of H1N1 vaccine. There is some interesting material at the following website:

Hans Roth said...

Hi Howard,

As you know, I don't have a lot of faith in the medical community due to all the politics involved. The AMA has always been in bed with the pharmacutical and insurance moguls. The indiscriminate dispensing of anti-biotics, at the drop of a hat, has caused the break-down of the immune systems of many. Get a common cold and feed it with anti-biotics. As for the flu shot, I don't get them. I haven't caught the flu in 19 yrs. In fact, years pass before I even get a cold and even then it passes quickly. I maintain that a positive mental attitude and a good sense of humor are instrumental in keeping ones physical health. Just one man's opinion and we all know that opinions are like assholes...everybody has one.