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View Diary: Why People Distrust Science (250 comments)

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  •  It's strange to note (4+ / 0-)

    that I keep my pertussis updated at all times, just in case, mostly because I simply don't want it.  And I live not-far-enough from a large Amish community that thinks vaccines are Teh Evil or something.  Fortunately, it's part of the TDaP shot, which I get every seven years just to be completely sure...

    (This is one of many reasons I have no respect for the Amish, but this is neither the time nor place).

    (-6.38, -7.03) Moderate left, moderate libertarian

    by Lonely Liberal in PA on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:19:09 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I had my Tdap recently (6+ / 0-)

      I was actually surprised by how much it hurt! Bad luck maybe. Normally shots don't really bother me.

      Pertussis is at epidemic levels at this point thanks to Jenny McCarthy et al. although I guess the Amish probably aren't paying attention to her. But a lot of people are. I wrote a diary on this a couple of years ago -

      According to the National Immunization Survey, 39% of parents refused or delayed at least one vaccination in 2008, up from 22% in 2003.
      •  That sucker hurts! (2+ / 0-)

        The flu shot is a little pinch and done.  The TDaP is like having a nail driven into the nerves of your arm!

        39%?  Folks, we get what we deserve, and we're about to deserve a nice plague.

        (-6.38, -7.03) Moderate left, moderate libertarian

        by Lonely Liberal in PA on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:44:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  "Delayed" is an interesting term (4+ / 0-)

          that may not mean what you think it means. Or it may. That is, delays may be for reasons other than the parent distrusting vaccines in general.

          Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

          by elfling on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 02:35:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  My cousin "delayed" (4+ / 0-)

            her daughter's vaccines.  But a 102 degree fever in the child will cause that, and the doctor not only approved, she was the one who delayed it.

            They caught up the next week.

            I dearly hope the un-vaccinated proportion is very low.  But given the outbreaks we've seen lately, I suspect it isn't.

            (-6.38, -7.03) Moderate left, moderate libertarian

            by Lonely Liberal in PA on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 02:41:51 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  We delayed due to reactions. (0+ / 0-)

              Reactions we expected due to family history. And when mentioned, sometimes I get that "Anti-Vaccine" spiel.

              Kids at times have serious, adverse reactions. Kids sometimes get sick during vaccination periods and it has to be delayed.

              It is important not to confuse that with someone who doesn't "believe" in vaccines at all.

              And if you will recall, what scares parents, is the packet given out by pediatricians, that contains numbers and organizations to call, should the child suffer permanent harm or die from a vaccine. Everyone gets a copy.

              So before you go talking about this, like parents are just scared of vaccines like some people are frightened of mice, think again. They get paperwork on this, that is pretty sobering.

              And dealing with Autism --spectrum conditions, and no one knowing what is causing it, only realizing that the symptoms show during or shortly after vaccination--well don't get mad at the parents. For a while they had a hard enough time getting a diagnosis.

              You are right, non-Scientific, and non-medical parents are over a barrel with this. Treating like shit, and blowing them off, though, when they have legitimate concerns only makes them more suspicious and more pissed off.

              Now those of us who have followed this over the years, it appears that part of the culprit is genetic. A mitochondrial condition that can cause adverse reactions to vaccines that can lead to  permanent harm. But it's a test that isn't normally performed so parents have to wonder whether or not to test. The CDC says this:
              but this is what parents will see as well

              Another culprit is environmental, pesticides are associated with both autism and ADHD, and some of that exposure is prenatal, however symptoms might show during vaccinations in infancy.

              These are all somewhat new discoveries and quite subtle.

              Parents do the best they can in a complicated world. Autism and other life time disorders, are a scary diagnosis, that doesn't just affect the child, but can have significant financial ramifications for the life time of the family as well, depending on the severity of the condition.

              You shouldn't be so hard on them. This isn't the same as
              not believing in evolution.

              These are situations and outcomes that have a direct, intimate effect on these people's lives. You could be more understanding and compassionate.

              also you fail to address the biggest issue here in this situation.

              The distrust of the public with regards to their doctors. Whatever the science is, etc., doctors are influenced by big Pharma, and they dont always have good bedside manners, and regular people get a few minutes with some person who may or may not actually be interested in us [because doctors have their issues and hangups and prejudices just like everyone else]. You throw poverty into that mix, and things get real interesting.

              So perhaps instead of beating all these parents up, you need to look at the bigger picture. The disconnect between vaccines and parenting may have more to do with the crumbling of a trustworthy medical system, and less to do with anti-science.

              science may simply be paying for someone else's proverbial sins.

              If someone you know suffered serious harm from a drug that should have been pulled, how do you think that person will differentiate that from vaccines, esp if those drugs are made by the same companies?

              •  While I understand (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                that these issue have a direct and intimate effect on parents' lives, by not vaccinating their children at all (I'm not talking about delaying, as obviously there can be some valid reasons for that), they're potentially both exposing their children to a horrible disease they may not get otherwise, and exposing the children of other parents to those diseases as well.  Why should those parents have to worry about their children getting mumps or pertussis just because little Timmy's parents couldn't be bothered to look at the actual scientific studies about vaccines and autism?

                •  And remember that the kids for whom there are (0+ / 0-)

                  valid reasons to delay (or even not vaccinate at all) absolutely depend on herd immunity to protect them.

                  Personally, as a physician, I would be very concerned at a child becoming febrile after having ingested bleach or had it shot up his rectum—Orac (Respectful Insolence)

                  by ebohlman on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 06:03:05 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Well, yes. (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    My point is that no, I don't consider this position understandable, because it's inherently selfish.  A child who is willingly unvaccinated is a potential public health hazard.

                    I understand the concerns some parents have, but that's no excuse to possibly make their child patient zero for the next big epidemic.

          •  True, but (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Lonely Liberal in PA

            There have been pushes toward wider access to vaccines so I would tend to doubt that the secular trend over time should reflect reduced access. Things like LL mentions should be a wash (or not a time trend).

            I haven't looked at the data set though so I don't know for sure.

        •  Yes, especially if they have to use an 18 gauge (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lonely Liberal in PA

          needle because they ran out of the regular sized ones (rare, but it does happen).

          You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

          by Throw The Bums Out on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:51:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  And that's the real problem with vaccines (6+ / 0-)

        They hurt. The kid cries. Often you feel icky the next day.

        Thus, any meme that reinforces the short term Nooooo! against the long term benefit has a very solid place to take root.

        For example, taking antibiotics (especially unnecessary ones!) has a similar risk profile for substantial side effects as most vaccines. Yet, there's been no popular meme that giving your child antibiotics is poisoning them.

        Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

        by elfling on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 02:33:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Tru Dat (0+ / 0-)

          If we could hammer home that the parent is selfish for wanting to avoid the "Nooooo!" and the crying as opposed to the tiny little coffin you risk later, this might help.

          (-6.38, -7.03) Moderate left, moderate libertarian

          by Lonely Liberal in PA on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 02:42:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Seriously, that's not really fair (3+ / 0-)

            it's not selfish. We have to though point out that we are trading short term pain for long term protection from worse - just like we put helmets or seat belts on, or sunscreen.

            And significantly, kids do have a say in this. You can only hold them down for so long. Just because the parent takes them in does not mean it's happening.

            The way you solve this is with new means to administer vaccines, like intranasal or some of the other spiff new technology like these microneedles that cause less pain and do not require the patient to hold still for effective, safe administration.

            Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

            by elfling on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 03:30:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well they can also help by using a fresh needle (0+ / 0-)

              for every shot rather than giving most of the shots with the same needle (assuming single use vials).  Even though there are no infection control problems with doing so those needles get pretty dull after three shots (each injection actually counts as two "uses" because of the stopper on the vial).

              You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

              by Throw The Bums Out on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:56:10 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  It IS selfish (0+ / 0-)

              when you consider that by not vaccinating their child, they're potentially exposing other children to horrible illnesses.

          •  Though doctors that reuse needles (on the same (0+ / 0-)

            patient and with single use vials, so NOT an infection control issue and thus permitted in most cases) don't help much either.  After all, after 3 shots the needle has been "used" 6 times and thus is very dull.

            You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

            by Throw The Bums Out on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:57:24 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, and don't forget ignorant people or parents (0+ / 0-)

          that when they feel icky take a tylenol or advil rather than just enduring it.

          You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

          by Throw The Bums Out on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:50:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  A good part of the reason for not getting shots (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, ebohlman

        Is likely to be financial rather than some objection to vaccines.

        I expect that may drop some now that most children will be covered by insurance in some way, and copays for preventive care go away.

      •  Oh, and remember. Absolutely no aspirin (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lonely Liberal in PA

        tylenol, or advil for a week to two weeks after the shot no matter how much it hurts.

        You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

        by Throw The Bums Out on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:51:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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