Tag: antivaccine

Texans for Vaccine Choice

Texas: Ground zero for the politicization of school vaccine mandates

Vaccine policies and school vaccine mandates have traditionally been as close to a nonpartisan issue as there can be in the US. Unfortunately, in Texas antivaccine activists and conservative activists threaten to change that. The antivaccine group Texans for Vaccine Choice has formed an unholy alliance with antiregulation conservative activists to attack school vaccine mandates. Antivaxers all over the country are doing...

/ March 5, 2018
Gardasil

Death by Gardasil? Not so fast there…

There is a type of "vaccine injury" story promoted by the antivaccine movement that is particularly pernicious, a narrative I call "death by Gardasil." The stories, which use tenuous connections between vaccination against HPV to prevent cervical cancer and the unexpected death of a teen or young adult, are always tragic, and you can't help but feel incredible empathy for the parents....

/ February 5, 2018
Facebook

The characteristics of antivaccine networks on Facebook

Facebook has become a major hub by which antivaccine messages are propagated. A recent study examines the characteristics of antivaccine groups on Facebook and comes to some not-so-startling conclusions.

/ January 8, 2018
Aluminum in cells

Move over, Christopher Shaw, there’s a new antivaccine scientist in town

Move over, Christopher Shaw, there's a new antivaccine scientist dedicated to demonizing aluminum adjuvants in town. His name is Christopher Exley. He's got a fluorescence microscope, and he's not afraid to use it.

/ December 4, 2017

The Pathological Optimist: More hagiography than documentary about Andrew Wakefield

The Pathological Optimist is a recently released documentary by Miranda Bailey about Andrew Wakefield that I got a chance to see. In interviews and in the film's promotional materials, Bailey takes great pains to emphasize that she "doesn't take a side" about Wakefield. Unfortunately, her film demonstrates that, when it comes to pseudoscience, "not taking a side" is taking a side, and...

/ October 9, 2017

The influenza vaccine and miscarriages: Much ado about nothing

A study published on Wednesday claims to have found a link between influenza vaccination and miscarriage, and antivaxers are gloating. The study itself suffers mightily from post hoc subgroup analyses on small numbers, so much so that even its authors don’t really believe its results. None of that stopped them from publishing the study, thus justifying "more research" that will almost certainly...

/ September 15, 2017

No, a Vaccine Court ruling does not show that vaccines cause SIDS

There was a rumbling in the antivaccine underground over the weekend about a recent ruling by the Vaccine Court compensating parents of a child who died of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). In a confused and scientifically highly flawed decision, the Special Master Thomas Gowen didn't rule that vaccines cause SIDS, but did rule that they contributed to SIDS in this one...

/ August 21, 2017

Trump’s new CDC Director is very pro-vaccine, but was she also at one time a quack?

On Friday, Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Tom Price announced the appointment of Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald to head the CDC. Reassuringly, her record as Georgia Public Health Commissioner was pro-vaccine and relatively non-ideological. Not so reassuringly, a news report yesterday found that before entering public service she was peddling anti-aging quackery at her private practice. Where will her balance fall now...

/ July 10, 2017

Does society try to shame and shun vaccine refusers and the vaccine-averse?

Antivaxers often complain that they are judged harshly, even shunned. A recent study suggests that, to some extent, they might well be. But are judging, shaming, and shunning parents who refuse to vaccinate their children wrong? More importantly, what about the children, who didn’t choose not to be vaccinated, and how likely is such stigmatization to change behavior?

/ June 12, 2017

Corrigendum. The Week in Review for 05/14/2017.

The week in review. Measles cases climb in Minnesota; Texas is jealous. Koala and rabbit abuse. FDA suggesting pseudo-medicine? And more.

/ May 14, 2017