A third wave of H1N1? We'll know in a few weeks

The predictions have been out there for some time that we would get a third wave of this most recent novel H1N1 pandemic.  Previous pandemics have behaved similarly, and the idea that H1N1 will ‘obey’ the general flu season is something that was shot to hell as it spread around during the last Summer.  Still, predictions are never perfect. With that in mind, it’s quite interesting to look at Google’s new city-by-city flu map.  If you chart the current H1N1 levels across the nation on the grid, and then superimpose the data for the last three years or so, you’ll see we’re pretty much in the same place we were at this time during other flu outbreaks, and that February is generally a pretty bad time for the normal seasonal flu. We’ve all got our shots and boosters so we’re in a pretty good position right now.  With our upcoming travel plans I’m pretty glad everyone is immunized given the long hours and tiny plane I expect we will be flying to the other side of the world.]]>

Thiomersal (thermisol) in H1N1 vaccines, the silly debate.

Thermisol. Thermisol is composed of 49% ethylmercury (please note:  ethyl mercury) In 1997, the EPA / FDA / WHO, etc were looking at the effects of mercury on individuals, such as those injured in industrial spills or those who consume too much seafood.  Methyl mercury (please note:  Methyl mercury) was considered harmful if an individual consumed too much of it or was exposed to it for too long.  A set of guidelines was established as to what constituted a suspect amount of methyl mercury. The FDA then took a look at ‘mercury’ in general that was in childhood vacinations.  Since they didn’t have any good data on ethyl mercury, they decide to apply the standards that were just developed for methyl mercury to childhood vaccines. The FDA found that: Given the normal amount of vaccinations for children under six months, …using the vaccines w/ preservatives at that time, …applying the standards for methyl mercury (a different type of mercury than what was actually in Thermisol), …in certain kids at a certain weight, there might be an accumulation of mercury over the guidelines recently established for methyl mercury (eventhough, again, Thermisol has ethyl mercury). As a result, the FDA worked with the drug companies to remove things like Thermisol from vaccines if at all possible, erring on the side of caution and playing it conservative, just in case. And then the theories began…. Thiomersal became the cause of autism, the reason to avoid all shots whatsoever.  Despite the efforts of many scientists and ZERO studies that have indicated a link, the idiots continue to scream holy murder from vaccinations.  In fact, the continued harping about Thiomersal has led some autism leaders to feel that discovering the real cause and gaining a real understanding of autism is being needlessly delayed by all the hype about vaccinations.  Jenny McCarthy, Jim Carey and Robert Kennedy Jr. have been leading a celebrity parade against vaccinations which, sadly, some people are listening to. Anyway, I got the family the H1N1 shots this weekend.  I didn’t even bother to ask if the vaccine was Thiomersal free or not, despite so many messageboards erupting in debates about the preservative.   I later looked it up and it probably was but I can’t really be sure unless I trace the lot number .   I’m kind of thinking it’s almost beneath my dignity to even follow up and find out. Get your flu shot.]]>