Have you ever tried to understand or make sense out of the things anti-vaccine folks say?
How did it go?
Making Sense of Anti-Vaccine Arguments
Consider what a group of anti-vaccine folks did with the above post about a child with severe complications to a chicken pox infection…
What are some of the big complications of chicken pox infections? Complications that help make chicken pox deadly?
That’s right, secondary skin and soft tissue bacterial infections (cellulitis and necrotizing fasciitis). In fact, bacterial super-infections of the skin are the most common complication of chicken pox infections.
“Necrotizing fasciitis can lead to sepsis, shock, and organ failure. It can also result in life-long complications from loss of limbs or severe scarring due to surgically removing infected tissue. Even with treatment, up to 1 in 3 people with necrotizing fasciitis die from the infection.”Necrotizing Fasciitis: All You Need to Know
No, chicken pox is not necrotizing fasciitis, but all of the breaks in the skin from chicken pox lesions give bacteria, including group A Streptococcus (group A strep) and Staphylococcus aureus, plenty of opportunities to enter a child’s body and quickly spread.
We often hear that chicken pox isn’t serious in other countries that don’t routinely use the chicken pox vaccine. Don’t believe them.
On average, about two young children die in the Netherlands each year due to chicken pox.
“Based on the results presented in this study we estimate that between 3 to 8% of all Dutch patients with varicella, depending on age, consult a GP due to a complication. Our findings are similar to data from Germany, France and the United States of America, were it is estimated that in approximately 2 to 6% of cases attending a general practice. Furthermore of these varicella patients 1.7% experiences complications severe enough to seek hospital care.”Pierik et al on Epidemiological characteristics and societal burden of varicella zoster virus in the Netherlands
And folks in the Netherlands have similar rates of complications as we did in the United States in the pre-vaccine era and many are hospitalized.
Do you understand what’s happening in these comments? When folks choose to skip or delay their child’s vaccines, they will work hard to justify their decision.
That’s not surprising.
“the state of having inconsistent thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes, especially as relating to behavioral decisions and attitude change.”cognitive dissonance definition
If you aren’t going to vaccinate your kids, do you want to think that you are leaving them at risk for such a serious complication, even if it is rare, or will you make up reasons for why the story can’t possibly be true?
Sure, these folks believe every vaccine injury story on Facebook without any proof, but all of a sudden they all become skeptics when faced with a story highlighting the known complications of a vaccine-preventable disease.
That’s the modern anti-vaccine movement.
More on Making Sense of Anti-Vaccine Arguments
- VAXOPEDIA – Who Dies from Chicken Pox?
- VAXOPEDIA – 10 Myths About Chicken Pox and the Chicken Pox Vaccine
- VAXOPEDIA – Believe It or Not, Chicken Pox Parties Are Still a Thing
- VAXOPEDIA – Is the Chicken Pox Vaccine Creating a Shingles Epidemic?
- Logical Fallacies and Cognitive Dissonance
- Why It’s Hard to Admit to Being Wrong
- Cognitive Dissonance Helps Explain Why We Hate To Hear The Truth
- “There must be a reason,” or how we support our own false beliefs
- CDC – Chickenpox Can Be Serious
- CDC – Necrotizing Fasciitis: All You Need to Know
- Early diagnosis of post-varicella necrotising fasciitis: A medical and surgical emergency
- Necrotizing fasciitis secondary to chickenpox infection in children
- Necrotizing fasciitis in an infant secondary to varicella zoster infection
- Necrotizing fasciitis – A possible fatal varicella complication
- Post-varicella epiglottitis and necrotizing fasciitis.
- A case-control study of necrotizing fasciitis during primary varicella.
- Necrotizing fasciitis as a complication of chickenpox.
- Periorbital varicella gangrenosa: A rare complication of chicken pox.
- Periorbital Varicella Gangrenosa.
- Study – The epidemiology of varicella and herpes zoster in The Netherlands: implications for varicella zoster virus vaccination.
- Study – Epidemiological characteristics and societal burden of varicella zoster virus in the Netherlands