No Serious Reactions to Smallpox Vaccine

Discussion in 'Health and medical' started by Mark Probert, Sep 18, 2003.

  1. Mark Probert

    Mark Probert Guest

    No Serious Reactions to Smallpox Vaccine Thu Feb 20, 2:50 PM ET Add Health - AP to My Yahoo!

    By LAURA MECKLER, Associated Press Writer

    WASHINGTON - No serious reactions have occurred so far from the smallpox vaccinations given to more
    than 4,000 American civilians, federal officials said Thursday.

    In the military, where more than 100,000 people have been vaccinated, there have been five serious
    reactions.

    The civilian program, intended to vaccinate close to 500,000 public health and hospital
    emergency room workers, is now being administered in 27 states and large cities, the Centers for
    Disease Control and Prevention (news - web sites) said. As of Wednesday, officials had
    inoculated 4,213 people.

    None has had a reaction considered potentially life-threatening, severe or moderate, the CDC said.
    There were seven people who had reactions that included fever, rash, malaise, itching, hypertension
    and inflammation of the pharynx.

    The Pentagon (news - web sites) is not disclosing precisely how many soldiers have been vaccinated,
    but says the total is "well over 100,000." All five men who have experienced serious reactions —
    four in the Army and one in the Air Force — are in good condition, officials said.

    Two had encephalitis, one had a heart infection, one developed a rash known as "generalized
    vaccinia" and one may have had "ocular vaccinia," where the virus used in the vaccine migrates to
    the eye. In most cases, the symptoms were not severe.

    In addition, the Pentagon said, two members of the Air Force and four Marines had mild rashes that
    may be generalized vaccinia, though the conditions were so mild that experts are not sure that they
    meet the definition.

    Based on historic data, experts expect anywhere between 15 and 50 life-threatening reactions out of
    every 1 million people vaccinated for the first time, with one or two deaths. People being
    revaccinated are less likely to have bad reactions.

    Routine smallpox vaccinations ended in the United States in 1972, as smallpox was on the wane. No
    one has contracted the disease in this country since 1949, and the last naturally occurring case
    anywhere was in 1977.

    Experts fear the virus could return in an act of bioterrorism, and President Bush (news - web sites)
    started the new vaccination program in December.

    ___

    On the Net:

    Government smallpox information: http://www.smallpox.gov
     
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  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Mark Probert <Mark_Pr[email protected]> wrote:

    >> Mark Probert <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>>No Serious Reactions to Smallpox Vaccine Thu Feb 20, 2:50 PM ET Add Health - AP to My Yahoo!
    >>>
    >>>By LAURA MECKLER, Associated Press Writer
    >>>
    >>>WASHINGTON - No serious reactions have occurred so far from the smallpox vaccinations given to
    >>>more than 4,000 American civilians, federal officials said Thursday.
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>In the military, where more than 100,000 people have been vaccinated, there have been five
    >>>serious reactions.
    >>>
    >>>The civilian program, intended to vaccinate close to 500,000 public health and hospital emergency
    >>>room workers, is now being administered in 27 states and large cities, the Centers for Disease
    >>>Control and Prevention (news - web sites) said. As of Wednesday, officials had inoculated 4,213
    >>>people.
    >>>
    >>>None has had a reaction considered potentially life-threatening, severe or moderate, the CDC
    >>>said. There were seven people who had reactions that included fever, rash, malaise, itching,
    >>>hypertension and inflammation of the pharynx.
    >>>
    >>>The Pentagon (news - web sites) is not disclosing precisely how many soldiers have been
    >>>vaccinated, but says the total is "well over 100,000." All five men who have experienced serious
    >>>reactions — four in the Army and one in the Air Force — are in good condition, officials said.
    >>
    >>
    >> No wonder. Soldiers are adults in good physical condition. Kids who get vaccines are not.
    >
    >
    > So many kids got the vaccination in the primitive days of the 1950's and the population went up in
    > spite of it...

    I never posted the crap that people would be sterilized by vaccines or something like that.

    But the low problem rate of vaccination _IN THE ARMY_ does not necessarily mean that vaccinations
    are harmless (riskless) _FOR ANYONE_.

    Even if, say, 99.95% don't have any (serious) complications, if the remaining 0.05% gets sick from
    the vaccines then it's a big problem.

    Esp. if the chance that the vaccination will be ever 'needed' is very unsure.

    Not to mention vaccines against illnesses which are not severe for anyone with an in-tact immune
    system (ordinary flu).
     
  3. Eric Bohlman

    Eric Bohlman Guest

    > I never posted the crap that people would be sterilized by vaccines or something like that.
    >
    > But the low problem rate of vaccination _IN THE ARMY_ does not necessarily mean that vaccinations
    > are harmless (riskless) _FOR ANYONE_.

    Nobody's ever argued that they are.

    > Even if, say, 99.95% don't have any (serious) complications, if the remaining 0.05% gets sick from
    > the vaccines then it's a big problem.

    Obviously anything that would reduce the total risk exposure is worth doing. But I really do mean
    *total*, and that means taking into account the risk of *not* vaccinating as well.

    > Esp. if the chance that the vaccination will be ever 'needed' is very unsure.

    To calculate this chance, though, you need to look at the incidence of the disease in an
    *unvaccinated* population. It's cheating to assume that people don't need a vaccine because the
    incidence of the disease in a *vaccinated* population is low.

    > Not to mention vaccines against illnesses which are not severe for anyone with an in-tact immune
    > system (ordinary flu).

    Influenza kills about 20,000 Americans per year. They aren't all immunosuppressed. The elderly and
    people with chronic diseases are particularly susceptible. And guess what? They're the people the
    influenza vaccine is recommended for. People who don't fall into the known risky categories aren't
    urged to get the vaccine.
     
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