Skepfeeds-The Best Skeptical blogs of the day

Pneumonia vaccine ineffective?

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on June 7, 2010

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT VACCINE CENTRAL

Pneumonia vaccine ineffective against repeat infections: study” screams the headline. The article goes on to clarify that a study just published seems to suggest that the pneumococcal vaccines in use in Canada do not seem to perform any better than no vaccine. How is that possible? Well, so far as I can tell, it isn’t, and this seems to be another case of dubious reporting by the journalists, and careless conclusions by paper authors.

I could not get my hands on a copy of the full published study the article refers to, although I will probably be able to in the near future. In the mean time, all I can go on is the abstract which can be found at PubMed or at Chicago Journals. Let us examine exactly what this study seems to suggest, based on the publicly available abstract.

Background.There is debate surrounding the effectiveness of the 23‐valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV). We determined whether PPV was associated with reduced mortality or additional hospitalization for vaccine‐preventable infections in patients previously hospitalized for community‐acquired pneumonia (CAP).

Ok, so first thing to keep in mind: they only studied people who got pneumonia. This is not a study comparing vaccinated vs. unvaccinated, and seeing if there is any protection offered by the vaccine in the form of reduced infection rates. This is a study consisted of only people who got sick, breaking those down into two groups and seeing how each group fared.

Now, it is an accepted fact that no vaccine is 100% effective, meaning that no vaccine will prevent the disease on all people who receive it. For one reason or another, some people get no benefit from any given vaccine. Those people will get sick from the disease, regardless of their vaccination status.  By definition, if you are gathering together people who are sick in the hospital, you are already limiting yourself to only that subset of the vaccinated population for whom the vaccine has already failed. So from that point alone, this is like saying “Well let me find all the people for whom the vaccine failed & let me measure how effective the vaccine was for them“. Just to make a comparison, this sounds kind of like saying “let me find out which team lost, and see how likely they are to have won!“.

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT VACCINE CENTRAL

Jenny McCarthy body count update

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on April 8, 2009

Here is the latest updated numbers from the Jennymccarthybodycount.com website.

jmbc

The scary part is that I belive her intentions are to do good. She is completely misguided and wrong in here refusal to hear anything about what science has to say about it, but I do think that deep down she believes she’s doing the public a favor. Unfortunately her delusion is costing a lot in terms of suffering. I wish she’d wake up and smell the coffee.

NIH wakes up

Posted in Bad Astronomy by Skepdude on September 22, 2008

The National Institutes of Health has shut down a study based on antivaccination garbage.

Hurray!

The research was looking into chelation, the idea that an amino acid can be pumped into the bloodstream where it will remove some potentially toxic metals. What spurred this? The nonsense that mercury is present in the blood due to childhood vaccines.

Yeah, that crap again. So why was the study stopped by NIH?

The board determined that there was no clear evidence for direct benefit to the children who would participate in the chelation trial and that the study presents more than a minimal risk.

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT “BAD ASTRONOMY”