Monday, July 08, 2002

Vijay on says:

I have been looking for an answer to the question, "Do the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks?" for almost a decade now. Over the past eight years I have reviewed close to 2,000 peer review articles on the issue. I have reviewed journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Journal of Epidemiology, Journal of the American Medicine Association, British Medical Journal, and the Annals of Neurology, to name a few. From a purely scientific standpoint, a review of the scientific data reveals that the evidence for vaccine safety and efficacy is just not there.

The answer is not easy to find. I have looked myself. To the best of my knowledge, there is no scientific publication that makes the case that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks.

A recent JAMA article wanted to say that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks, but the strongest statement that it could document was:

Vaccination is not risk free, but most in mainstream medicine agree that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks.

The cited support for this was a Mayo Clinic editorial that said:

Despite such irreducible uncertainties, the modern use of vaccines has clearly benefited more than harmed.

But Vijay wanted something a little more rigorous, I am sure. This is just opinion, without any definition of benefit or harm. I don't think that he will find it. For more info, see the Vaccine Policy FAQ.

No comments: