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I am trying NOT to write about vaccines…

Last week, I visited Denver, Colorado where Allison and I hiked the national parks and saw the beautiful sights around Denver.  I also visited and spent time with my dear friend,  Suzy Cohen—America’s Pharmacist.  Suzy and I have been friends for many years. Suzy has written many books about natural therapies including my favorite, Drug Muggers.  Three years ago, Suzy and I co-hosted the Thyroid Summit and we had a lot of fun putting it together.

During our week in Colorado, we saw Suzy and her husband Sam many times.  During one visit, we were talking about our respective blogs and I stated to her, “I am trying not to write about vaccines.”  Suzy commented, “But you always write about vaccines, why are you trying not to write about them?”

I explained to Suzy and Sam that I am tired about writing about the problems with vaccines.  I have been writing about the toxic ingredients of vaccines for well over a decade now.  I do not want to be defined as an anti-vaxxer.

You see, I am not anti-vaccine.  I am pro-health.  If vaccines were safe and effective, I would be on-board with the CDC’s (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) recommendations.  However, we are presently giving too many ineffective vaccines which contain toxic ingredients and do not work as advertised.

Perhaps I could stop writing about vaccines if the vaccine manufacturers would stop producing and marketing ineffective vaccines.   However, the fake news stories about ineffective vaccines still occur.  Whenever I see a fake news medical article, my writing juices get warmed up.  A recent article in the New York Times (10.25.17) got me going–it was titled, “CDC Panel Recommends a New Shingles Vaccine.”   The new vaccine—Shingrix—is manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline for adults 50 and older.  The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, which is part of the CDC, now recommends Shingrix over the old shingles vaccine—Merck’s Zostavax.  Amazingly, the new recommendations now state that adults who have received the older shingles vaccine should now get the new one.

GlaxoSmithKline will have another blockbuster vaccine as the cost for Shingrix is estimated to be $280 for two doses and it will be recommended for every adult over the age of 50.  The article in the NYT states, “…clinical trials showed {Shingrix} to be about 98% effective for one year and 85% effective at preventing shingles for three years.  Since one in three adult Americans will contact shingles at some point in their lives, a vaccine that is effective at preventing shingles would be good thing.

I have written about the failure of the older vaccine-Zostavax—for many years in both my blog posts and my Natural Way to Health Newsletter.  In those articles, I show you that Zostavax fails nearly 99% who take it. Naturally, anything that fails 99% who take it, should not be prescribed.

Let’s look at the Shingrix data.  I went to the Physicians Desk Reference information on Shingrix.  In section 14, the clinical trials used to get the vaccine approved are described.  There were 14,759 subjects aged 50 years and older who received two doses of either Shingrix or placebo.  In the NYT article, it was written that SHingrix was about 98% effective at preventing shingles for one year.  The PDR report stated that same thing.    If this vaccine was truly 98% effective, then I would have to seriously consider recommending Shingrix.

Here’s the actual data:

Six people out of 7,344 who received the two doses of Shingrix developed shingles—that is 0.08%.  210 out of 7,415 people who received the placebo became ill with shingles—that is 3%.  How do they get 98% efficacy out of these numbers? Again, I have written about how the Big Pharma Cartel manipulates statistics to make a poorly performing drug or therapy look better than it actually is by using the relative risk (RR).  Dividing .08% by 3% and subtracting from one provides the RR decline of nearly 98%.  However, the relative risk is an inaccurate statistical model that should never be used to make clinical decisions.  The more appropriate statistical model to determine if a drug or therapy should be used is the absolute risk reduction (ARR).

The ARR for this study can be calculated here:  3%-0.08%=2.9%.  Therefore, a more appropriate determination of the effectiveness of Shingrix is that it is 2.9% effective at preventing shingles for a median of 3.1 years (the length of the study).  And,  a true statement about Shingrix is that it takes 34 people to be vaccinated with Shingrix (1/2.9%) to prevent one case of shingles.  That means the drug failed 33 out of 34 who took it which is a 97% failure rate!

So, Shingrix is certainly better than Zostavax since Zostavax fails 99% who take it.

What an improvement.

And, all for only about $300.

If President Trump wants to truly drain the swamp, let’s start by getting rid of vaccines that fail nearly all who take them.  The shingles vaccines should be first on the list  of therapies that should be outlawed.

Yes, shingles is a horrible illness.  I had it a year ago.  A great treatment for shingles is ozone injections into the nerve root where shingles is occurring. It works nearly every time if it is done within a few days of the onset of the illness.  Also, taking vitamin C (5-10,000mg/day) and  L-lysine (1,000mg three times per day) helps.

Folks, I did not even get into the safety of Shingrix here as this blog post is too long.  This vaccine contains polysorbate 80 which is a substance that has been linked to anaphylactic reactions and has been shown to cause infertility in mammals as well as hormonal changes in rats.  Polysorbate 80 should not be injected into any living being.

Should you take a vaccine that fails 97% who take it?  I think not.  This is another perfect example of “Fake News!”

Author Info

David Brownstein, M.D.

Comments ( 10 )

  • Author Icon
    Betsy Friauf

    I got Zostavax two years ago, at age 60. Then, a couple months ago, my doctor said I should also get Shingrix. I asked him if it’s safe for people like me who had Zostavax. He said absolutely yes, so I went to Walgreens and got the first dose of Shingrix. Within 12 hours I was so sick I had to have help to get out of bed. Very dizzy, horrible headache, eyeballs felt like a hot poker was sticking in them, fever and shaking chills, ear pain, muscle and joint pain, every recent injury or defeated arthritis bout came back with a vengeance. I was so exhausted it felt like I was dragging an anchor, and I had occasional urinary incontinence. The injection site was so painful I could not use the arm. I saw the nurse practitioner in my doc’s office the day after the injection. She tested me for flu and various other things and said, yes, the Shingrix caused this. Come to find out, Shingrix was NOT TESTED in people like me who had Zostavax within five years. Anyone see a problem here? After a week I was still tired and had trouble concentrating, and some hearing impairment, with a stabbing pain running from jaw to ear several times daily. Back to doc, who said yes, it was a Shingrix reaction and I should NOT get the second dose. Three weeks since the injection, I still have some trouble concentrating, I’m fatigued, my hearing isn’t normal and my left ear sometimes hurts. I have never in my life had a bad reaction to a vaccine until I got shingrix. I have always followed doc’s advice and gotten every vaccine recommended, including annual flu shots. I have heard from several friends and acquaintances that they felt sick enough after Shingrix that they couldn’t work for a day. I think Shinrix was shoved onto the market before it was ready. Singles is horrible, but having permanent hearing loss from a vaccine, which I may have, is horrible. And if I had fallen while I was dizzy, it could have turned out much worse than a case of shingles.

  • Author Icon
    Ryan Bedell

    The interesting thing about this is that 34 is a pretty amazing NNT for a preventative intervention. It’s equal to the flu shot in the best matched years. It’s better than statins, it’s better then mammograms, It’s better than bed nets for Malaria (Bed nets for malaria are the most cost effective way to spend your charitable dollars currently in existence.) If you used your way of talking about the intervention then antibiotics for open fractures would fail 94% of patients and that’s a very well respected intervention. Basically, you’re saying that all of medicine isn’t worth doing. Is that what you mean to say?

  • Author Icon
    Curt W

    Wait. I’m confused.

    You wrote that 6 patients in the trial developed shingles (0.08%) compared to 210 (3%) in the placebo arm . It looks to me that the vaccine prevented 204 cases of shingles and only failed 6 times.

    How is that a 97% failure rate?

    I’m not the best at math so forgive me if this is a stupid question.


  • Author Icon
    D. Smith

    My husband and I have been taking Super Lysine from Quantum Health for over 20 years and it has helped multiple skin issues, as well as immune issues. Ours is the one called Super Lysine + immune support and has Vitamin C, Echinacea, licorice, propolis, odorless garlic. About $12 bucks a bottle for 90 tablets. A sure-fire long term fix for shingles you won’t hear about from your doctor.

  • Author Icon
    David Weiner

    I appreciate your attention to vaccine issues.

    Though I do not think that it is helpful to identify one’s self as either “pro vaccine” or “anti vaccine”. That is really just a device for pitting us against one another.

    It is far more sensible to opine on the government vaccine program. I can state, unequivocally, that I am opposed to the government vaccine program.

    What is the government vaccine program, exactly? It is the apparatus used for scheduling and mandating vaccines, for promoting them via propaganda, for smearing and threatening doctors who hold contrary views. It is the framework that approves vaccines based on inadequate testing and conducts phony studies of its own to bolster its own predetermined conclusions. It is the framework that removes liability for harm caused by vaccines from manufacturers and doctors.

    The government vaccine program must be abolished. Let there be a separation of vaccines and state.

  • Author Icon

    Great article. I finally understand the difference between relative risk reduction & absolute risk reduction & can’t wait to explain this concept the next time someone tells me how effective a drug or vax is. (like to my doctor, ugh)
    Sorry to hear you had shingles, Dr. B. I did too, a few years ago and took 1,000 mgs Lysine plus 2 caps of high strength St. Johnswort every night and it seemed to clear it up pretty quickly. I continue to take 500mgs of Lysine & 1 cap of the St, Johnswort to prevent its return and for mood and have not had any symptoms since. Love your blog!

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