Immunizing Your Kids

Health Tips / Immunizing Your Kids

At least once a week someone asks my opinion on mandatory immunization, I suppose because WholeHealth Chicago is so widely known as an alternative medical center. Most often, the inquirer is pregnant and she’s read something about the (totally disproven) link between the MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine and autism.

Another question is whether vaccines contain mercury, in the form of the preservative thiomersol, followed by queries about a possible link between mercury and autism. I say that while there’s been no thiomersol in childhood vaccines since 1999, sadly there has been a steady rise in autism throughout the 21st century.

Probably the single most damaging public health hoax of the 20th century was former physician Andrew Wakefield’s 1998 article published in the British journal Lancet that linked the MMR vaccine to autism. Unbeknownst to the Lancet editors, Wakefield had been receiving funding from anti-vaccine groups. And because this idea was such a hot topic, Wakefield received a tsunami of media attention that resonates to this day in the form of doubts from the pregnant patient sitting across from me in my office.

Post-Wakefield infection rates skyrocket

After Wakefield, childhood immunization rates fell around the world and infection rates of the three potentially fatal childhood illnesses rose dramatically. Once Wakefield was investigated, his data was proven to have been manipulated and false. Later, his medical license was taken from him, and he’s no longer allowed to practice.

Wakefield is considered indirectly responsible for dozens of totally preventable deaths around the world and yet to this day, still revered by anti-vax advocates, he just won’t let go. Wakefield produced, directed, and stars in “Vaxxed: From Cover-Up to Catastrophe,” a pseudo-documentary laden with scary misinformation. “Vaxxed” was recently yanked from Tribeca Film Festival by festival director Robert DeNiro (father of an autistic child) because “we do not believe it contributes to the discussion.”

Among other things, the film erroneously accuses Blue Cross of giving doctors financial kickbacks for immunizing kids. This link provides the (false) basis for that accusation.

In actual fact, the alleged kickbacks are simply a standard reimbursement for the cost of the vaccines themselves.

Persistent opposition and immunization’s global reach

Yet the very vocal opponents to childhood immunization persist in their endeavors on websites and in chat rooms around the world. Interestingly, organized vaccine opposition first began with smallpox vaccination in 1798 and in one way or another has never let up. When you read the history of anti-vaccine movements, the tenor is much less about safety and much more about government control. The phrases used by the opposition are similar to those employed against water fluoridation, designated smoking areas, and mandatory seat belt use.

Keep in mind that except for seriously underdeveloped countries, mandatory immunization requirements exist worldwide. This is not an American thing. The government health departments of various countries may have slightly different immunization schedules, but virtually all developed countries will not let a child attend school if he or she arrives without immunization documents.

In fact, in every country where immunization was suspended (such as occurred after the MMR hoax) there was a documented rise in infection and death. Here in the US, the so-called Disneyland measles outbreak in 2014 triggered a six-fold rise in measles. It began with a single unimmunized tourist walking through the crowds. The virus quickly spread around the country, exclusively infecting those who had not been immunized.

One issue I have with opponents of immunization is they’re too young to remember the physical and psychological devastation these illnesses once caused:

  • Mumps could leave a child permanently deaf or sterile.
  • Although apparently a mild viral infection, a pregnant women catching German measles (rubella) might give birth to a blind or brain-damaged child.
  • Diphtheria and measles could kill, and did.
  • Polio was the terror of my own childhood. A kid could be fine on Monday, catch polio that afternoon, and be crippled for life a few days later.

Herd immunity and Illinois law

Understand that not only is your child protected by these immunizations, but with everyone immunized the disease can disappear altogether. There is virtually no smallpox anymore. Polio is almost gone as well. The term for this is “herd immunity,” which is the protection of an un-immunized person because everyone else is immune. And while herd immunity is highly useful in protecting anyone with a compromised immune system, parents choosing not to immunize their children are relying on everyone else’s children to protect their own.

Here in Illinois (and in California), the otherwise egregiously incompetent state legislature passed some of the most stringent mandatory immunization rules in the country, making it very difficult for an anti-vax parent to avoid the system. Formerly, the most common way people got around immunization was to get a religious exemption from their physician, and a quick note could do it. Now parents are required to complete a more complex form that must signed both by parents and physician. Parents needs to state a reason for the exemption for each individual vaccine.

In addition, before the form is completed parents also need to sign a statement verifying that they have been informed of the dangers of each illness their child is no longer protected from, that they have an understanding of herd immunity (i.e., they’re relying on other responsible parents to protect their child), and that the child might be denied admission to school (even with the religious exemption).

What anti-vax parents are often surprised to hear is “I hope you’re prepared to home-school your child.”

Pediatric docs oppose non-medical exemptions

The president of the American Academy of Pediatrics recently said, “We believe there should be no religious or personal exemptions.”

In fact, finding a physician to sign an exemption form may be quite difficult. Because (just like parents) pediatricians want what’s best for the children they care for, getting a doctor’s signature on a form that renders a child vulnerable to illness may be well nigh impossible. As a doctor, I would not want to be held responsible for a measles outbreak because I’d signed an exemption for a child who carried the virus into his classroom.

Yes, there are still some anti-vax physicians out there, and yes, if you go online you probably can find one, but are you really willing to place your child at risk because of your politics?

Some of Chicago’s top-notch pediatric practices simply will not accept any child whose parents refuse vaccination. They won’t sign the exemption form because they don’t want a possibly infectious (and potentially dangerous) child in the waiting room with babies who have not yet completed their vaccination programs.

Yes, autism is scary, but the vaccine-autism link was a hoax. Yes, the needle coming at your infant’s behind looks like a tenpenny nail. Yes, your daughter will wail when stuck.

But when all the kids come to your house for your daughter’s birthday looking so wild and healthy, you’ll know that none of them is at home in an iron lung (polio), dealing with deafness (mumps), covered with a nasty rash (measles), or choking for breath (diphtheria).

Be well,
David Edelberg, MD

38 thoughts on “Immunizing Your Kids

    Excellent as usual thank you!

    Deb Morrin
    Posted March 11, 2021 at 8:07 am

    Thanks for your comments, Dr. Edelberg. They are responsible from a public health standpoint, even if they seem to rile up the anti-vax crowd. I applaud you and respect your whole practice.

    Kati R
    Posted November 24, 2020 at 9:14 am

    Thank you for the clear and considered response to the issue, Dr. Edelberg. Thanks to a kind and patient doctor like yourself, who discussed vaccinations with clarity and compassion, my daughter is fully vaccinated.

    Posted October 20, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    Have the good people of this blog read Robert Kennedy Juniors words on this topic

    Link here

    and Here

    He is surely next in line after his father and his uncle after publishing these works. Check em out!

    Chris Curley
    Posted October 3, 2016 at 2:22 pm

    I wrote a comment but you did not answer my main concern–that you were critical of a film you DID NOT SEE. Because this says everything about professionalism. I no longer trust your opinions.

    Carol Diehl
    Posted September 10, 2016 at 5:42 pm

    On a completely unrelated note, or maybe not really….. anyway. Doc Edelberg….I would honestly really like to ask your professional opinion on the astronomical rise of the medical condition known as Autism. When you were young there were terrible diseases like Polio, but did you know anyone with “Autism”? I would love to know what your professional opinion is as to the etiology, rise, and prevalence of the condition known as Autism Spectrum Disorder. Thank You. Sincerely.

    Chris Curley
    Posted September 8, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    Just wanted to clear up the Doctor’s completely misleading claims about mercury, which looks like it was a script that was handed to him.

    “Mercury was removed from all childhood vaccines in (pick any year between 1999 and the present).”

    The Facts: After “realizing” the amount of mercury in the childhood vaccination schedule recommended by the CDC exceeded all national and global maximum safety limits, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the United States Public Health Service called for the immediate removal of Thimerosal from all vaccines on July 7, 1999.

    By 2003, the vaccine manufacturers had begun to react to the 1999 call by lowering the mercury content in many of the Thimerosal-preserved early childhood vaccines. However, in April of 2002, the CDC began recommending that pregnant women and very young children get annual Thimerosal-preserved flu shots. The result was a ‘shell game’ which has caused widespread confusion in the public because of press reports declaring, “Since (select a year between 1999 and the present), mercury has been removed from all recommended vaccines for children except for some flu shots.”

    Astoundingly, the total level of mercury exposure, if a child receives all the possible CDC-recommended vaccinations that are still Thimerosal preserved, from 6 months to 18 years of age, has actually increased. Significantly, if you put the amount of mercury added to the immunization schedule as a result of the CDC-recommended seasonal and (in 2009) H1N1 flu shots** on one side of a scale, and the amount of mercury that was subtracted from that schedule by reformulating early childhood vaccines without Thimerosal on the other side, the total amount of mercury added far outweighs the amount of mercury subtracted. In addition, today most tetanus shots and the multi-dose Sanofi Menomune® vaccine that are approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) still contain 25-micrograms-a-dose mercury.

    Currently, the actions taken by the vaccine manufacturers, the FDA and the CDC have increased the possible maximum childhood exposure to mercury from vaccines to twice the level that triggered the 1999 call to remove mercury from all vaccines as soon as possible! Also, new vaccine formulations with 25 micrograms of mercury per 0.5-mL dose are still being approved by the FDA for administration to pregnant women and children.

    **Most doses of these flu vaccines are Thimerosal-preserved.

    The Facts: The Eli Lilly Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for Thimerosal acknowledges that exposure to Thimerosal in utero and in children can cause “mild to severe mental retardation and mild to severe gross motor impairment.” The Sigma Aldrich MSDS lists abortion and fetal death as possible outcomes of in utero exposure.

    Nonetheless, most seasonal and H1N1 flu shots for pregnant women and young children contain 25 micrograms of mercury in the form of Thimerosal. For this exposure to be safe, a child would need to weigh more than 550 pounds.

    Thimerosal is a poison, neurotoxin, cancer-causer, and can interrupt the immune system and the normal development of an unborn baby or a child. Thimerosal is so toxic that putting it on your skin is illegal. However, the government not only allows but also defends its injection into the population, especially pregnant women and newborn children, as part of influenza vaccines currently recommended by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 8, 2016 at 6:21 am

    I hope Andrew Wakefield sees this and sues you for libel and slander. You are a bigger knucklehead than I thought. Do you know that the AAP receives large amounts of funding from vaccine manufacturers, who also place ads in their ridiculous journal, PEDIATRICS? Come on, Doctor. Though I hardly think you deserve the title. If the vaccine-autism link was a hoax, home come Hannah Poling received a multi-million dollar settlement in the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program for vaccine-induced autism? Google search it. How come the Tripedia package insert listed autism as a potential side effect? Again, google it. Do you understand that approximately 40% of the population have genetic mutations that affect their ability to methylate efficiently? That they cannot clear toxins, manage inflammation, fight infections, control oxidative stress, or repair DNA effectively? Do you understand that autism is an autoimmune condition? And we know from the VAERS database that over and over and over again, individuals develop autoimmune diseases after receiving vaccinations. Duh. And you claim that Dr. Wakefield was bought by anti-vaxxers. It appears that you, and anyone affiliated with the AAP, are the ones that have been bought. Shame on you.

    Karen Antivaxxer
    Posted September 7, 2016 at 1:58 pm

    Doc, curious how you respond to this. Here is the “protection” afforded to you by assaulting auto-antibodies via the needle. The medical establishment can’t change diagnoses, use new names of chronic illnesses, call iron lungs respirators…. but they cannot cover up the truth.

    “The mechanism by which the immune system is corrupted can best be realized when you understand that the two poles of the immune system (the cellular and humoral mechanisms) have a reciprocal relationship in that when the activity of one pole is increased, the other must decrease. Thus, when one is stimulated, the other is inhibited. Since vaccines activate the B cells to secret antibody, the cytotoxic (killer) T cells are subsequently suppressed. In fact, the ‘prevention’ of a disease via vaccination is, in reality, an inability to expel organisms due to the suppression of the cell-mediated response.

    Thus, rather than preventing disease, the disease is actually prevented from ever being resolved. Thus, the autoimmune disease you develop is determined by which tissues in the body are attacked by auto-antibodies. If the inside lining of the gastrointestinal tract (the mucosa) is attacked by auto-antibodies, you can develop leaky gut syndrome. Crohn’s disease and colitis are also caused by auto-antibody attack of the GI tract itself. If the islet (insulin producing) cells of the pancreas are attacked by auto-antibodies, you develop insulin dependent (juvenile) diabetes.

    If the respiratory mucosa is attacked by auto-antibodies, you develop ‘leaky lung’ syndrome where, just as with leaky gut, antigens recognized as foreign to the body which are inhaled are unable to traverse the lining of the respiratory tract, causing the creation of antibodies against those antigens (usually dust, mold, pet or pollen antigens). If the components of the articular surface of the joints are attacked by auto-antibodies, you develop rheumatoid (or juvenile) arthritis. If the kidney tissue is attacked by auto-antibodies, you develop one of the many types of nephritis.

    If you develop auto-antibodies against the very DNA in the nucleus of all cells, you develop systemic Lupus (thus, the autoimmune potential of DNA vaccines being developed now is self-evident: worse yet, DNA components from these vaccines can be incorporated into your DNA, leading to actual genetic changes which could cause extinction of all vaccinated life on the Earth). And on and on and on.

    The brain and spinal chord can also be attacked with auto-antibodies (vaccine induced encephalitis), leading to a variety of neurological diseases. The most severe of these, leading to death, are sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and most cases of ‘shaken baby syndrome.’

    If components of the myelin sheath (the insulating covering of nerve fibers which allows proper nerve conduction) or the actual neurofilaments themselves are attacked by auto-antibodies, the resultant condition is determined solely by the location of the damage done. Such neurological conditions include but are not limited to minimal brain dysfunction, ADD/ADHD, learning disabilities, mental retardation, criminal behavior, the spectrum of pervasive developmental disorders (including autism), multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, Guillain-Barré, and seizure disorders.”

    — Rebecca Carley, MD

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 7, 2016 at 9:46 am

    Wow. “Conspiracy theories”?? This is clearly an attempt to silence meaningful discussion. “Angry”? Yeah, why would people get angry about profitable poison injections being sold to the public as a health measure (and coerced and forced on to them)? Your attempt at discrediting the entirety of this discussion with a cherry picked ad hom was rather pathetic. You have failed to address very serious issues brought forth to you.

    That the CDC has been busted tossing data in the rubbish bin is not a theory.

    That the CDC has a revolving door with the pharmaceutical corporations is not a theory.

    That these same vaccine manufacturers have been fined billions for fraud, bribery, and data manipulation is not a theory. You “blast” them but somehow think they are qualified to be involved in our health decisions? Without any question?

    That the Supreme Court declared vaccines “unavoidably unsafe” is not a theory. That vax manufacturers lobbied the U.S. govt. to pick up the tab for all their vaccine injuries is not a theory.

    That the numerous side effects and injuries of vaccines is listed right on the packet inserts is not a theory.

    That vaccine injuries are vastly under-reported due to a passive reporting system is not a theory.

    That their are known neurotoxins in vaccines that when injected directly into the bloodstream can cause serious damage is not a theory.

    That the synthetic and often live viruses contained in vaccines can cause a man made version of the very disease they are intended to prevent is not a theory.

    Suzanne Humphries, Toni Bark, Blaylock, Mark Geier, Jay Gordon, Moskowitz, Tenpenny, Nass, Campbell McBride, Sears, and hundreds more of tireless researching MDs, are not hippy conspiracy theorists. They are all doctors who used to believe in the cult of vaccination before they gained a conscience. They have taken the time to find out what the ingredients are in vaccines, whether or not they are safe, and whether or not they work.

    It is true. People conspire. Sometimes in board rooms. Sometimes to make a profit at the cost of others. Sometimes lies become so big they are accepted as truth. Even by doctors.

    Please do your research on Polio. Vaccines did not save us from Polio. I have already posted information showing that the Polio vaccine actually causes paralysis {conveniently} given another name. This can all be corroborated and is not theoretical. This will take 5 minutes of your time. And our generation was not subject to approximately 36 vaccinations given in multiple doses before the age of 6 (a 414% increase since 1950). No need to make a false equivalence.

    I will be posting a question to you as follow up. I’m wondering if you are serious about this issue or are just going to parrot industry propaganda.

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 7, 2016 at 9:36 am

    Doctor, I ask you… Do you really think that all of the parents of VACCINE INJURED CHILDREN, that in fact were vaccinated by their trusted medical doctors are just “part of the conspiracy?”
    The parents that brought their smiling, talking, walking child to the doctor on a Monday… And had to rush back on Tuesday with a child that was in the midst of a vaccine reaction? A reaction with damaging life long ramifications.

    You see, parents with vaccine injured children were not “anti vax” until they watched a combination of 5-9 doses of vaccines in one day injure their child.

    I assume you have patients in your practice that are unable to have penicillin? The results can range from mild reactions to severe, even death?
    When those patients must go to the ER, they are given a bracelet to warn ALL medical staff of the allergy, because their inability to accept the ingredients of that particular medicine is RESPECTED and ACCEPTED.

    On the other hand, those patients don’t care if other patients use penicillin, and have no bearing on the efficacy of the drug in the bodies of other patients.

    Why is it so difficult for you to understand that patients should NEVER be treated in a “one size fits all” manner?
    Not everyone has the GENETIC ability to methylate properly, as I am sure you are aware. MTHFR mutations, for example, leave patients predisposed to heavy metal toxicity. It’s irresponsible of you to have this stance, especially when the CDC is being investigated for FRAUD.
    Don’t watch the movie VAXXED. Really, don’t. Just think about this… When the government agency that is charged with testing the safety and efficacy of vaccines has come forward and admitted to LYING to the public, we should probably be listening.

    Posted September 7, 2016 at 8:55 am

    Well…..perhaps you’re not educated on the exonerated co-author, John Walker Smith,MD, of the published Lancet study with Andrew Wakefield? Here’s the link for you to read.
    Do we really know that the Disney Measles outbreak was caused by the lone unvaccinated tourist? Prove it.

    Posted September 7, 2016 at 8:03 am

    Yesterday, my associate and my editor both asked “How are you going to answer all these angry readers/”
    I thought about this and realized you really can’t respond when arguments are based on what many times turns out to be a combination of hearsay and conspiracy theories. People get locked into this thinking and simply won’t budge. Their minds are made up and the only people they will talk to are those that agree with them. Everyone else is part of the conspiracy. You just don’t bother with discussion because no matter what you say, you’re accused of being a tool of Big Pharma (has no one read my endless blasts against Big Pharma?)
    My guess is that a lot of the loudest protestors were immunized themselves as children, protected against polio, etc., and now for some odd reason, are reluctant to offer the same protection to their own children. Too bad your babies can’t speak up and ask for the same protection their parents had
    For all of you who “loved” the movie “VAXed,” rather than approaching it with a “See, I knew it all along” attitude, you might try cultivating healthy skepticism. Here’s a quick example of the results of being a skeptic: one link in the comments section was to an article by Shane “The People’s Chemist” Ellison, self styled immunization expert whose only medical education is being an organic chemist. He says that his opinions are quoted in an assortment of national magazine and TV shows. I decided to follow this up and see what he said in USA Today. The article is definitely not complimentary and begins “Anti vaccine movement giving diseases a second life.” Shane, is that something to be proud of? Do you enjoy your legacy of contributing to a rise in measles, mumps, etc?

    David Edelberg
    Posted September 7, 2016 at 6:48 am

    My comment seems to have disappeared so trying again. Clearly you are commenting on a film you have NOT seen. On that alone you lose my respect. You are also re-framing de Niro’s decision — he WANTED the film shown, withdrew it under duress. If you had seen the film you would know it is not anti-vaxx — Wakefield was simply questioning the bundling, the timing of the MMR, and the possible vulnerability of black male children. I will no longer recommend your practice to my Chicago friends. Know that this has nothing to do with your stand on vaccines, but your refusal to do even the slightest research — like see the actual film!!

    Posted September 7, 2016 at 6:08 am

    You have lost my confidence as well. Misinformation here — first that it was de Niro’s choice not to include the film in the festival. The father of an autistic child, he WANTED the film in the festival, withdrew it under duress. It was then shown at a nearby theater where I saw it.

    Like the mob who petitioned de Niro, it seems unlikely that you have actually seen the film. I have little respect for those who would speak authoritatively about that which they haven’t seen or experienced. Especially a medical doctor!

    Because if you did see it, you’d know it is not an anti-vaccination film at all–that is made clear. Instead Wakefield specifically questions the BUNDLING of the 3 vaccines — measles, mumps, rubella–the TIMING of the immunization, and possible vulnerability among black male babies.

    The problem with the hysteria of the pro-vaxxers is — as Big Pharma would hope –any and all investigation into vaccines is shut down. As a research doctor told me, NO ONE will touch vaccines because their results, if negative, will be discredited and their careers terminated.

    Please read the comments here. I have recommended your practice to many Chicago friends and sadly, will no longer do so. And will exit from your newsletter, which now seems to be no more authoritative than WebMD.

    Posted September 7, 2016 at 5:54 am

    wow. Doc Edelberg. Shocking. Peddling those Big Pharm tropes. There is not even any substance to this article. Did not even mention any of the OTHER adjuvants, besides Mercury that are NeuroToxic. The comments to this article have more depth of knowledge, than is presented in his article. I used to think of you as a voice of moderation, and perhaps open mindedness as an allopathic practitioner, sadly you are just another…..Brick in the Wall.

    Chris Curley
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 1:14 pm

    I would not be taking any advice from the AAP. “informed consent” is impossible when so many doctors are uninformed.

    Historically, the AAP does not favor passing along information about vaccine side effects to parents. In the 1950’s there was clear evidence the DTP vaccine was causing serious adverse neurological effects; however, the AAP continued to give the public message that the vaccine was safe and effective. Instead of warning parents about the risk, the AAP engaged in scare tactics to mislead the public about the actual number of pertussis outbreaks and stressed the danger of pertussis. At the same time, the AAP ignored or denied the risks of the DTP vaccine until finally the FDA approved a safer vaccine for all five doses for U.S. children in 1996.

    In 1974, in Reyes v. Wyeth Laboratories, the AAP adopted the position that side-effect warnings were not important and should not be required since they served no useful purpose. In the famous Reyes case, two-week old Anita Reyes received the oral polio vaccine in a Texas department of health clinic in 1970. A nurse gave Anita the vaccine without providing any warning about the vaccine’s side effects to Mrs. Reyes. About two weeks later, Anita was diagnosed with polio. At eight months of age, her father filed a lawsuit under the belief that the vaccine caused Anita’s polio. The Fifth Circuit court awarded Mr. Reyes $200,000. The court held that Wyeth had a duty to warn Anita’s parents directly. The AAP, on the other hand, took the position that warnings only encouraged vaccine injury lawsuits and that these lawsuits threatened efforts to increase immunization rates by frightening or confusing parents. Similarly, in 1982 the AAP rejected the proposal to require pediatricians to inform parents about the risks and benefits of vaccination and risks of vaccine preventable diseases.

    Given the AAP’s history, the next time a pediatrician tries to coerce you into vaccinating your child or does not respond to your concerns about why your child is sick or complaining of pain after receiving a vaccine, please keep in mind that pharmaceutical companies have donated millions of dollars to the AAP for years. There are warnings to beware of holistic and alternative health care options as medical quackery; however, it would behoove parents to seek out health care professionals whose livelihoods are not dependent on the pharmaceutical industry. Recognize and research other ways to prevent and treat infectious diseases with less serious side effects; they do exist and are effective and are more widely embraced in other countries not gripped by the clutches of the pharmaceutical industry.

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 1:03 pm

    My feelings are not quite as strong about this article regarding vaccinations as others who have commented. I decided to complete an exemption form after an unsettling experience at a pediatric medical center in Miami. The attending physician gave me stacks of patient education on immunizations like I was negligent, uniformed mom because I was traveling for work and I missed my son’s well child check and his pediatrician had traveled to South America for the holidays and we couldn’t get on her schedule until later than expected. We went to the children’s hospital thinking that this would be a child centered experience.
    My son had sniffles at the time of the appointment where I inquired whether an immunization was advisable during our visit or should we reschedule the shots, the physician pretty much dismissed my questions as a silly mommy.
    After those shots, his sniffles turned into an autoimmune disaster where our pediatrician saw him almost every week for 4 months once she returned to the States. Luckily, I had insurance and flex spending because our healthcare costs soared over $8K after that one appointment.
    Due to a push by the Department of Children and Family Services and physicians, parents are told that these shots are required for preschool when they may not be appropriate at the time given. Some physicians do not exercise judgment necessary to hold off on vaccines until a cold/sniffles subside because they have monthly requirements for well-child visits.
    Rather than putting my kid through more shots, I found a homeopath to help us rebuild his immune system. Since this experience, I started researching where I won’t continue vaccines for my child based on this experience and the neurotoxins (additives) in these vaccines. I have read Natasha Campbell McBride, MD book on Gut Health where we try to keep fruits, veggies and little to no processed food in his diet.

    Kimberli Nelson
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 12:39 pm

    Doc, do your homework and honest research. You are dead wrong!
    Shame on you!

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    Im in the midst of responding to you with an email that includes scientific links, as you obviously did not, could not do, since this is obviously parroting what BCBS is dictating you say. Doctors are not educated on vaccines, except to give them; we all know this. Polio vaccine has a long and sordid history, if you bothered to research and the infection is not all you’ve been “told”. (Try reading Dissolving Illusions, Vaccine Epidemic, Healing the New Childhood Did you know the “outbreaks’ occurred during DDT spraying, which, after all, was marketed as “DDT is good for me!!”. That it declined, not due to the vaccine, but because they stopped spraying. That now with the spraying for “Zika”, there are cases of paralysis, I mean polio, because insecticides are known to cause both paralysis and microcephaly. The ignorance and arrogance with which you provide this “information” is beyond baffling, angering, disappointing, disgusting Your patients seek HEALTH which never can come through a needle. And it’s beyond insulting to try to explain away what educated, intelligent parents can find out for themselves by simply looking at the science, not the information provided by the very companies who stand to profit from the use and mandating of their products. I guess you don’t know that not one vaccine has been tested using a RCT, NOT ONE! Not to mention they have never been studied in combination in humans, yet the primates who they’ve tested the current schedule (whatever that means, since they keep cramming more onto it) have become autistic. There’s never been a study comparing the HEALTH of vaccinated (please don’t use the word “immunization”, as you clearly do not know what that means) vs unvaccinated but just by using your eyes and ears, as any good clinician should, you can see unvaccinated kids are healthy, grow and develop normally. Because guess what? You cannot improve nature. No one dies of measles, as you stated it’s a “nasty rash”. Mumps? Did you not know that Merck was fined for lying about its efficacy? Did you not know that the “outbreak” at Harvard affected only vaccinated kids, the unvaccinated did not get it? Oh and by the way, no one died and becoming sterile is extremely rare, and it first has to affect both testicles, which is rare. Naturally, childhood infections were meant to occur IN CHILDHOOD and your precious, useless vaccines have now pushed vulnerability into older kids/young adults, in which it IS more risky. Nice going! Did i say you cannot improve nature? Do you know basic immunology, because even immunologists state repeatedly how little we know, because it is so very complex. The simplistic idea that you can inject the organism, killed or live, along with toxins to make the immune system react (and yes, mercury is still in vaccines; any amount is unsafe and kills brain cells; i guess you haven’t seen that video of what happens in the petri dish; aluminum, known to contribute to alzheimer’s, breast cancer, and much more; formaldehyde, polysorbate 80, just to name a few), and have NO PROBLEMS is ignorant and unscientific. Autism rates are currently 1 in 45 in the US, 1 in 28 in New Jersey (just released by the CDC). Autism is a LIFELONG DEBILITATING condition, costing individuals and society countless millions/billions of dollars. 1 in 15 US kids has a seizure disorder/epilepsy (my 19 y/o son); 1 in 6 has a neurodevelopmental disorder (learning, speech, etc.) This is not a coincidence. The current trajectory, according to Stephanie Seneff of MIT is 1 in 2 kids by 2032, 80% of all boys! We wont need to worry about infertility from mumps – there will be no one normal left to procreate. Lastly, childhood infections have many benefits – first of all they are all mild, except in the very rare instances. SEcondly, they provide lifelong immunity, not just to that infection, but provide protection against cancer (i will provide the science by email; something you should consider when attempting to tell people “im a doctor, i know better than you”.), thirdly, when the current childhood population contracts these infections (one at a time, btw, nature would never give you 3-4 infections at once, no nature is smarter than that), they boost the immunity of the adults (this is why we have “epidemics” of shingles now, because it is a direct (look at the CDC’s own research on the development of the varicella vaccine) and indirect (due to non-circulating infections) effect. Herd immunity cannot be achieved through vaccination; herd immunity occurs when some people acquire the infection and others who are in contact demonstrate real immunity simply through the exposure, without having symptoms. Lastly, doctors your age used to know that childhood infections are periods of tremendous growth and development. My son did not grow properly because of vaccines, he was my biggest baby and just got sick and stopped gaining after every “well” baby check. I have a long list of books you should read, but of course, they’ve all been written by “quacks” (many of whom are MDs who actually researched after seeing their patients’ health decline) providing in great detail how immunity develops, the history of the infections, the real graphs demonstrating reduction in infection morbidity/mortality due to improved sanitation and NOT vaccines, the microbiology, etc. etc, because i guess they are just making it all up, and it should be good enough for those of who read your newsletter that you, an MD after all, know what’s best, and your flimsy “information” should satisfy us. You’ve been bought, that is clear, although I’m sure you didn’t even write this BS; I’m sure it’s a stock response from BCBS, Merck, et al. I am PRO HEALTH, PRO SCIENCE AND ANTI VACCINE because i have been studying since before my first was born, and unfortunately, i went against my instincts (without which we would not be here as a species) and caved to the pressure by ill-informed HCPs like you and my husband, who now knows better. He also thought your article was BS. You should know that most people have BECOME anti vax, they don’t start that way. They “believe” (it is more religion than science) and trust (doctors, who have not studied and do not know any more than what the pharm reps in school and the office have told them) and then when it goes wrong, as it does FREQUENTLY NOT RARELY, then they stop vaxxing and their other kids are healthy. NOT A COINCIDENCE.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 11:51 am

    I have a moderate vaccine stance. I do think we are “over vaccinating” at this point in time (with the current vaccine schedule). The difference between how many are administered, when, the number of doses between 1980 and now is staggering. I do feel you are oversimplifying the argument, Dr. Edelberg, with all due respect.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 11:08 am

    Hi Dr.E. Please see the movie vaxxed regarding the whistleblower in the CDC. Your article also forgot to mention some key facts of why parents are being cautious regarding vaccinations. The movie can be streamed for $3.99 go to for info. Also some key points that you missed in your article -Dr. William Thompson, a senior scientist at the CDC was awarded whistleblower status by the Department of Justice after it was revealed that he’d called a father of a child with autism and confessed that the CDC had manipulated data on a study to examine the relationship between MMR and autism. Senator Posey of FL has been trying to get congress to subpoena him for a couple of years. Dr. Poul Thorson, who is was lead author on the hallmark epidemiological study negating any vaccine autism link, is on the FBI’s most wanted list for absconding with millions of dollars of federal grant money.

    Also; Two Merck scientists, Stephen Krahling and Joan Wlochowski, filed a whistleblower lawsuit in 2010 against Merck, claiming the company skewed tests of the MMR vaccine by adding animal antibodies to blood samples allowing them to show a 95% efficacy rate for mumps. Merck’s MMR is the only one licensed in the United States and recent outbreaks of mumps have occurred on college campuses among those previously vaccinated. There are more whistleblower stories and lawsuits. The main issue is the safety of vaccines.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 10:52 am

    Thank you you for your informative article, Dr. E. Your insight (science/medical knowledge) is appreciated, esp with the risk of a firestorm of opinions. Childhood friend’s mom had polio (brutal), & my buddy’s un-vaccinated child almost died from whooping cough recently. Our family is siding with medical experts, science, data, and the reduction of horrible childhood illnesses.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 10:38 am

    Abnormal Entrance = Abnormal Immune Response.

    So injecting protein into the body by way of vaccination is good, yes?

    Vaccines are called antigens — “A toxin or other foreign substance that induces an immune response in the body, especially the production of antibodies.” Antigens are made from foreign proteins. These foreign proteins are produced from animals (like cows, monkey’s and chickens) and also humans (human cells from aborted fetuses.)
    Foreign proteins (in order to be beneficial to the body) need to first be digested in the GI tract.
    “When we eat protein it is broken down into its constituent amino acids…if a foreign animal protein makes it into our bloodstream without having being broken down this can set up an autoimmune type response…By injecting things never meant to be in the body we are not only bypassing body defenses but wrongly activating other defenses.” — Dr. Robyn Crosford

    So what’s the outcome if you inject amino acids and/or foreign animal and human protein into the body instead of first digesting the proteins to make amino acids naturally?
    Auto-immune disorders like Addison’s disease, celiac disease – sprue (gluten-sensitive enteropathy), dermatomyositis, Graves disease, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, multiple sclerosis, myasthenia gravis, pernicious anemia, reactive arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjogren syndrome, systemic lupus erythematosus, type I diabetes etc.
    Food allergies or food sensitivities associated with eggs, gluten, peanuts, milk, etc.”

    why is aborted fetal cell tissue used to make vaccines?


    In order to make vaccine viruses they grow them in animal flesh. Some of the viruses are specific to humans and only grow in human flesh. In order to grow enough of them they have to use fast growing flesh. Fetal tissue grows fast, as does cancer. Fetal cancer grows very fast, so that is what they use. The virus infects the cells of the fetus. When the cells replicate they produce more virus, but the virus is in the cell. To get it in the vaccine there is no way to completely dislodge it from the fetal tissue, so the fetal tissue ends up in the vaccine. It is problematic because when we inject undigested protein into a person it primes the person to reject that type of protein with an allergic reaction the next time it encounters that protein. For example after they started using peanuts in vaccine manufacture, people started developing peanut allergies. Well the same thing happens with human tissue, except that people develop allergies to other human tissue, ie themselves. This is known as autoimmune disease. It is very common now, though it was incredibly rare before vaccines were widespread.

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 10:16 am

    An interesting side note concerning the mention of polio involves some shady behavior by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC); in 1958, after the introduction of the live polio vaccine, they changed the definition of “polio.” Cases of inflammation of the membrane that protects the brain and spinal neuron cells, causing muscular weakness and pain (but not paralysis) were no longer classified as “polio”; they were now to be referred to as aseptic meningitis, even if the polio virus was present.

    Reported cases of aseptic meningitis went from near zero to thousands, and polio cases dropped the same amount. Then, later in 1958, the CDC changed the definition of “polio” again… poof…”eradicted”!! All cases with classic polio paralytic symptoms were to be called acute flaccid paralysis. In 1960, the CDC triumphantly declared large parts of the world as “polio free,” while the newly created acute flaccid paralysis “mysteriously” became quite common.

    In 1977, Jonas Salk, the creator of the polio vaccine, testified before a Senate subcommittee that “all polio outbreaks since 1961 were caused by the oral polio vaccine.” In 1985, the CDC reported that 87% of the cases of polio in the USA between 1973 and 1983 were caused by the vaccine and most of the reported cases occurred in fully immunized individuals.

    Despite indisputable proof that vaccines do nothing to prevent disease, brainwashed pediatricians insist that it is unwise and a health risk to have unvaccinated children. Sadly, nothing could be further from the truth.

    We still have the nasty paralysis that Polio once frightened us with, it’s just given another name like GBS or AFP. Iron lungs are now called respirators. The irony is that the vaccines which are supposed to prevent the diseases are actually causing them. Not to mention causing a whole host of auto-immune crises occurring in our children…it is not your “genetics”… but hey, watch out for the chicken pox.

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 10:07 am

    The amount of misinformation in this piece is staggering. I am so thankful that there ARE doctors that have decided to think for themselves, and not tout their expertise on a topic, based on what they have heard in the media…
    YES, that is my accusation. Many of the quotes above are taken directly from main stream media outlets.

    I prefer my doctor to have a critical thinking mind of his/her own, and treat each patient as the individuals that they are.
    By the way… my son and I have both been injured by vaccines, and neither of us have AUTISM. The vaccine safety issue is about a hell of a lot more than that.
    Yet the media tends to only harp on the one topic, so you wouldn’t have known any better.

    Appalled Parent
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 9:40 am

    Most of the loving and caring parents stop vaccinating or question vaccines is because of ingredients and the potential for all side effects- NOT AUTISM. The lack of REAL unbiased studies is what concerns me. Reading package inserts will show that they only test one vaccine against another. They don’t test any particular vaccine against a placebo. Another thing is that when i had my daughter 5 years ago, she had trouble gaining weight and regulating body temp. At her 7 week appt they wanted to give her 9 doses of vaccines. As an adult I would not allow 9 doses of vaccine to be injected into my legs at once. The schedule is aggressive. Point blank period. Reading the amounts of aluminum as well as tons of other questionable ingredients, it made me really start questioning if this was the best route for my child. I think most parents are concerned when they read on the CDC website that 1 in 1250 doses of MMRV causes seizures. This is just one vaccine. There are tons of others on the list. Parents are not uneducated. Parents want safe and effective vaccines to keep their children safe. In most cases its people weighing the risk vs reward. Vaccines carry too much of a risk for some parents.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 9:32 am

    You really should educate yourself and watch the movie Vaxxed. Sounds like you could use some educational material to mull over. I feel sad for the customers you serve.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 8:42 am

    We cannot find a doctor who will waive or provide an alternate vaccine schedule for our infant. I’m curious about both sides. My dog almost died from over vaccination (direct link, proven and listed side effect) so risks are certainly possible (in my experience). The problem is that you don’t know which person (or animal) is vulnerable until after the risk occurs.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 8:03 am

    Please actually see the Vaxxed film. Your ignorance is showing. It’s not an antivax film and it’s not about Andrew Wakefield. It’s about William Thompson, a top scientist at the CDC who admitted to destroying data that proves there’s a link between the MMR vaccine and autism. The solution? Go watch the film and find out.

    What you said about vaccines being “mandatory” for most schools in the U.S. is also false. I’m a resident of Illinois, 32 years old, attended both public and private schools and I’ve never been vaccinated. My two children are currently in Illinois public schools and are also not vaccinated. So, no, not mandatory at all.

    I’d rather my children have a rash for a couple days than a decreased quality of life indefinitely. Are you out of your mind, “doctor!?”

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 7:56 am

    I am in total shock by this newsletter. Read it a few times to make sure I read it right.
    There is a difference between vaccination and immunization? And that there are many children walking around whose parent’s think they are immunized against a disease because they have had the vaccination and in fact are not. I think you should talk about that.
    And there is this, “If vaccines truly worked – why would vaccinated kids be at risk?” Read this and see vaccinations differently.

    Linda Silbert
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 7:13 am

    One upsetting thing after another with this dr. I left his practice along time ago when he basically told me it was all In my head . The Lyme disease that he didn’t know how to test for for , he so arrogantly told me , nope no Lyme.
    Anyways , he has no platform to stand on. And then to make blanket stamtentd re vaccines. That just aren’t true. I just stopped vaxing my 4 year old. The best decision I’ve ever made. I won’t be s sell out the pharmaceutical companies so you can take your kush vacation. Everyone knows these vax pays for our vacations .
    Shots aren’t one size fits all. And I’ve Seen story after story about autism happening right after a healthy little baby got 5 doses of vaccine .
    You had a lot of balls to write this article and I would guess you will do to ur to lose patients.
    Please anyone reading if you need a pediatrician to help you along please respond to my message.

    Posted September 6, 2016 at 7:07 am

    This is why, in the Johns Hopkins Patient Guide for immunocompromised patients, it makes no mention about avoiding non-vaccinated individuals… but it does mention avoiding “contact with children who are recently vaccinated.”

    It also stated to “Tell friends and family who are sick, or have recently had a live vaccine (such as chicken pox, measles, rubella, intranasal influenza, polio, or smallpox) not to visit.

    At least, it used to state this. As of March 2015, the guide has been revised and this language has been removed, likely because of all the press it’s been receiving. Still, the fact remains that recently vaccinated individuals can and do spread disease.

    Recently Vaccinated Individuals Can Spread Disease

    Barbara Loe Fisher is the co-founder and president of the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), a non-profit charity dedicated to preventing vaccine injuries and deaths through public education and defending the legal right for everyone to make vaccine choices.

    She explains how you can shed live virus in body fluids whether you have a viral infection or have gotten a live attenuated viral vaccine:

    “Live attenuated viral vaccines (LAV) that use live viruses try to, in essence, fool your immune system into believing that you’ve come into contact with a real virus, thereby stimulating the antibody response that, theoretically, will protect you,” she says.

    “When you get these live viral vaccines, you shed live virus in your body fluids. Just like when you get a viral infection, you shed live virus. That’s how viral infections are transmitted.

    Because viruses, unlike bacteria, need a living host… in order to multiply. What these viruses do is they try to disable the immune system and evade immune responses.”

    Barbara has compiled a special report, “The Emerging Risks of Live Virus and Viral Vectored Vaccines” containing over 200 references, which delves into virus shedding and vaccine virus shedding.

    In it, she raises valid questions about whether or not scientists, public health officials, and vaccine manufacturers truly understand the impact live attenuated viral vaccines and vaccines using viruses as vaccine vectors, have on our immune function, genetic integrity, and the environment.

    The Disneyland was a well-timed media scare in light of the recent pharmaceutical bribing of California state legislators to remove all exemptions from their forced poison injections. The big bad scary measles were conveniently blamed on the unvaccinated with absolutely zero hard evidence.

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 6:21 am

    Boy, disappointed to say the least. I would have thought the good Doc would have done some of his own research rather than relying on standard template Pharmaceutical industry propaganda. I don’t even know where to begin.

    First, Wakefield is not a fraud. Brian Deer is. He was the victim of a corporate orchestrated career assassination in order to make an example of anyone willing to challenge the profits of the pharma vaccine sacred cow. His work linking gut health to the brain has been replicated dozens of times. You should actually read it. My prediction is that he will go down in history as a medical hero. In the movie Vaxxed, PRODUCED by medical journalist Del Bigtree, we see that the real fraud has occurred at the CDC (which is nothing more than the marketing annex for the pharmaceutical cartel). Keep in mind that every major pharma corporation has been convicted of fraud, bribery, and data manipulation… but hey, let’s keep inviting the pedophiles over to babysit our children.

    In order to find the truth about vaccinations I might suggest starting with DR. Suzanne Humphries’s book, Dissolving Illusions. In it you will discover that it was not vaccines that saved us from infectious diseases, but improved sanitation, clean drinking water (plumbing), nutrition, and generally improved living conditions coming out of the harsh conditions of the industrial age.

    Edward Jenner, the “father of vaccines”, believed because a few old dairy maids told him, that injecting cow puss (pox) into people, he could prevent small pox. You read that quackery right. Unfortunately the vaccine 18th century mindset never evolved, and in fact has become worse. Mercury is still in certain vaccines but is only one of many known neurotoxins that have NEVER been studied for safety in mixed and multiple dose cocktails. Aluminum, formaldehyde, surfactants, detergents, aborted fetal tissues, animal proteins, and several other nasty synthetics. Keep in mind that when this toxic sludge is injected directly into the blood stream it bypasses the initial line of immune defense (the humoral) and is able to sit like a ticking toxic time bomb and even breach the blood brain barrier. Anyone telling you this stuff is safe either cannot read or is selling bridges. You may read the list of potential side effects on the vaccine insert packets themselves. No need to narrow the discussion to Autism (which is just another way of saying neurological damage…. which is caused by NEUROTOXINS)… since you will be at risk for paralysis, asthma, chronic ear infections, severe food allergies, encephalitis, anaphylaxis, and much more… the Supreme Court ruled in the 80s that vaccines are “unavoidably unsafe”, and through manufacture lobbying, the Govt. granted pharmaceutical companies exemption from all future liability. Since then well over $3billion have been paid out in damages from the special compensation court. It is not accessible for most because it is a slow moving bureaucracy requiring tremendous resources from the families of the vaccine injured. It is also only the tip of the damage iceberg because of the passive reporting system.

    Speaking of ignorant doctors. Pediatricians have roughly 50,000 pages of text to memorize during their training. About 8 of those are dedicated to vaccines. And 6 of those are the ever-escalating CDC schedule. You can do the math from there but most doctors are not informed about vaccines, only trained to administer them like obedient dogs. So if you want to spend a couple of hours over at PubMed reading the dozens of peer reviewed articles linking neurological damage to vaccines, you’ll likely be much more qualified to discuss vaccinations than your doctor.

    As for “dangerous” children, you won’t find anything more dangerous than a recently vaccinated child. They will be shedding for weeks after poison injections and walking around like little bioweapons. There’s so much more to say and contradict from this propaganda piece but I advise all of you to completely ignore this article and do your own research. You cannot manufacture immunity with a ‘one-size-fits-all’ silver bullet shot, loaded with known neurotoxins. Immune systems are complex and need to be built up over time. Do a quick google search on massive outbreaks during times of mandatory/mass vaccination programs throughout history. Then google the myth of “Herd Immunity” or as I like to call it “Herd Stupidity”. Yet another term co-opted from your favorite no-risk profiteers. There is NO “science” backing up vaccinations and the pharmaceutical cartel and CDC are not here to help you get healthy. You do not have to give your sovereign bodies over to this corporate/state nexus and you do not have to ask permission to not be injected with poisons. Forced/mandatory vaccinations are medical tyranny, PERIOD.

    Peter Mitchell
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 6:09 am

    P.S. Would like to be notified by e-mail for future comments

    Lori Miller
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 6:07 am

    Great article! Covered much I didn’t know. Still wondering about vaccines though…in particular, for Hepatitis B. I was required to have three shots as a nursing student. Became severely ill after the first shot. My doc said it wasn’t due to the shot. I disagreed. Another doctor said if I had high levels of candida that the shot had something in it (can’t remember what, yeast maybe?) to trigger symptoms. Waited 3 months and got another shot and same thing happened…became severely ill. Didn’t take the third shot. Can you address the Hep-B shots Dr. Edelberg?

    Lori Miller
    Posted September 6, 2016 at 6:05 am

    Well Doc,

    You just lost my confidence.

    Will no longer believe you.

    As the parent of a totally disabled child, I know when they changed.

    And with Big Pharma pushing and pushing vaccines for every age possible, and now the whole Zitka false flag, the big boys had a patent on this a long time ago.

    I believe ASD is a combination of factors but you are besmirching a man who has been backed up by Dr Thompson at the CDC about the research they destroyed and he saved.

    We have studied this extensively for over 13 years now.
    Attended conference, read so many books, and spoken with other very knowledgeable parents and professionals.
    If you have never had a child disappear before your eyes, please do not speak with such authority.

    Disappointed is not the word.


    Posted September 5, 2016 at 9:06 am

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