Why do some people think that getting a flu vaccine can cause them to get RSV?
The usual suspects…
Do Flu Vaccines Cause RSV?
Like the flu, RSV or respiratory syncytial virus, causes infections during cold and flu season.
Unlike the flu, we don’t yet have an RSV vaccine, but that hasn’t stopped anti-vax folks from trying to link them together.
Of course it is silly think that a flu shot could cause a child to develop RSV.
For one thing, you can just look at who gets RSV, especially severe RSV infections.
“The average seasonal RSV hospitalization rate in this study was 5.2 per 1000 children who were <24 months old, but the rate varied by season as much as fourfold. Nevertheless, 1-month-old infants consistently were most likely to be hospitalized, almost twice as often as the next 2 most at-risk groups: infants <1 month old and infants 2 months old. These youngest infants accounted for an important proportion of all children admitted with RSV infection in the first 2 years of life: 11% were infants <1 month old, 44% were ≤2 months old, and only 36% were >5 months old.”
Hall et al on Respiratory syncytial virus-associated hospitalizations among children less than 24 months of age
While anyone can get RSV, even adults, it is infants who are under 6 months old that typically are at the greatest risk to have severe infections. And of course, these kids are too young to even have a flu vaccine!
Anyway, the whole idea that “RSV is an adverse reaction from flu vaccine” comes from the misuse of a study, Increased risk of noninfluenza respiratory virus infections associated with receipt of inactivated influenza vaccine, that doesn’t even mention RSV.
“Being protected against influenza, TIV recipients may lack temporary non-specific immunity that protected against other respiratory viruses.”
Cowling et al on Increased risk of noninfluenza respiratory virus infections associated with receipt of inactivated influenza vaccine
And it is very important to keep in mind that it was a small study about interference caused by non-specific immunity.
Another larger study that did include RSV, “Influenza vaccination is not associated with detection of noninfluenza respiratory viruses in seasonal studies of influenza vaccine effectiveness,” found that “influenza vaccination was not associated with detection of noninfluenza respiratory viruses.”
What to Know About Flu Vaccines Causing RSV
The bottom line is that flu vaccines do not cause RSV and do not increase your risk of getting RSV.
As most people understand, we do have a herpes zoster vaccine, but that is for shingles – and it has nothing to do with the actual herpes virus. Remember, shingles got the name herpes zoster before it was known that it was actually caused by the chicken pox virus (varicella zoster).
And while there is a very large herpesviridae family of viruses, which includes the herpes simplex virus that causes cold sores (HSV1) and genital ulcers (HSV2) and the chickenpox virus, it also includes viruses that cause mono (EBV) and roseola (HHV6 and 7).
Still, only HSV actually causes herpes.
So no, none of the viruses we get could actually cause herpes.
It is thought that nearly 48% of people have HSV1 though and that you can be contagious, shedding the herpes virus even if you don’t have an active cold sore.
So what’s more likely, an infant was exposed to someone with HSV1 and got infected or they received a vaccine that was contaminated with HSV1, something that has never been documented?
No one expects to hear stories of kids dying after being vaccinated. Fortunately, these types of tragedies are very, very rare.
Still, even one is too many when it might have been prevented. After all, that’s why we vaccinate our kids in the first place. To protect them from life-threatening vaccine preventable diseases.
A Toddler Has Died After Being Vaccinated in Cuba
The Ministry of Health in Cuba released a statement a few days after her death:
“Between October 7 and 8 of this year, three one-year-old children were diagnosed with an adverse event associated with vaccination with PRS, which protects against Mumps, Rubella and Measles, this is applied according to official scheme to children one and six years old.
All had been vaccinated on October 7 at the “Betancourt Neninger” Polyclinic in the municipality of Habana del Este, province of Havana, and immediately after symptoms appeared, they were admitted and received medical attention by professionals of high scientific level in the Pediatric Hospitals ” Borrás Marfán ”and Centro Habana.
Through the active research carried out on all children vaccinated in that Health Area, two more children were detected with symptoms, which motivated their admission.
Painfully on October 9 at night, the one-year-old girl Paloma Domínguez Caballero dies, admitted to the “Borrás Marfán” Hospital as a result of complications. The remaining four children remain admitted: one with intensive attention, which is stable and the others evolve favorably.
The system of active surveillance of the events associated with vaccination carried out in the country has not identified any other children with symptoms.
The PRS vaccine has been used for years in Cuba, imported from India, is endorsed by the World Health Organization and certified by the Center for State Control of Medicines, Equipment and Medical Devices (CECMED).
A Commission of the Ministry of Public Health investigates the causes that caused this unfortunate event.”
Official Note from the Ministry of Public Health on adverse event associated with vaccination with PRS (computer translation)
So what happened?
Tragically, either because of errors or contamination, vaccines can rarely cause people to get sick, either if:
a reconstituted vaccine was used much after six hours – live vaccines can quickly become contaminated if they are kept and used for too long a time
vaccine diluents were mixed up – some vaccines need to be mixed before use and vaccination tragedies can occur when a dangerous medication is used instead of a vaccine’s standard diluent
vaccines were improperly handled – breaking the cold chain – or allowed to expire
In Samoa, the recent tragedy in which two toddlers died, we know that the vaccine diluent was mixed up with a powerful anesthetic.
It doesn’t sound like a diluent mixup happened in Cuba though.
“The mother told the news portal CiberCuba that the daughter’s arm began to swell the same day she was vaccinated. Then the vomits arrived. Less than 24 hours later I was already in intensive care, from where I did not come out alive again.”
Vacuna en mal estado suministrada en Cuba podría haber dejado 25 niños en estado de gravedad
With reports that the vaccines were possibly expired and the child getting sick later in the day, with swelling in her arm, it is more likely that there was some contamination, maybe in a vaccine vial itself.
The report says that it was the PRS vaccine – Parotiditis, Rubéola, and Sarampion – or MMR, which is usually available in 5 or 10 multi-dose vials when one dose vials aren’t available.
It was imported from India, which makes many of the vaccines that are used throughout the world, but any contamination likely would have occurred well after it was manufactured and shipped to Cuba.
In all of these cases, there is typically nothing inherently wrong with the vaccine itself.
“Cuba, a relatively poor and small country (population 11.2 million), has managed to bring about remarkable achievements in health in the past 30 years despite difficult fiscal restraints and limited resources.”
MacDonald et al on Infectious Disease Management: Lessons from Cuba
Interestingly, Cuba actually makes most of their other immunizations.
So why would they be using expired vaccines?
Was it a mistake?
Did someone use a leftover vial that had become contaminated with bacteria? Were the vaccines not refrigerated properly? Is it an isolated issue or part of a bigger breakdown in their healthcare system?
With four other sick kids, the use of a contaminated leftover vial that was part of an original 10 dose vial becomes one possible scenario.
We might get some answers if the vaccine vials had not been thrown away after they were used, and are still available for testing.
In Chapias, Mexico, after two infants died in 2015 after getting multiple vaccines, a vial was found to be contaminated with the Staphylococcus hominis bacteria.
A few years later, in 2017, 15 children died in South Sudan when unrefrigerated vaccine was mixed with a syringe that was reused over and over for four days and given to kids by untrained workers.
Again, these are very rare and isolated cases. Remember that billions of doses of vaccines are given each year without problems, saving millions of lives.
Hopefully we will soon learn what really happened to these children in Cuba, especially as that will hopefully help to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Most importantly, don’t let these very rare tragedies scare you away from vaccinating and protecting your kids.
“The Cuban government has confirmed that five children suffered severe reactions and one of them — a 1-year-old girl — died after receiving a vaccine. The serum came from the same company in India that produced vaccines linked to the deaths of three other children following inoculations administered in Cuba in 2002.”
Child dies in Cuba after receiving vaccine made in India. It’s not the first time
We should remember what happened following the tragedy in Samoa. All vaccinations were unnecessarily suspended in the country for a time and MMR vaccinations were suspended for nine months!
The death of the girl in Cuba is a terrible tragedy, but folks shouldn’t make it any worse. There is almost certainly nothing wrong with the vaccines from India or any other vaccines in Cuba or anywhere else.
AV answer – all vaccines contain toxic ingredients!
2/3. What is MRC-5/WI-38?
These are immortalized cell lines that are used to make some vaccines. These cell lines are derived (they can replicate infinitely) from fetal embryo fibroblast cells from two electively terminated pregnancies (abortions) in the 1960s. The cells used today are descendants of the original cells.
AV answer – there are aborted baby parts in our vaccines!
4. What is vaccine court?
The Vaccine Court is part of the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) and decides if the claims should be compensated or dismissed, etc.
AV answer – vaccine court proves that vaccine injuries are real.
5. What is the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program?
AV answer – the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) proves that vaccine injuries are real.
6. What is the 1986 National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act?
The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 established the VICP, the Vaccine Injury Compensation Trust Fund, the National Vaccine Program Office, VAERS, and required that health care providers give a Vaccine Information Statement to anyone getting a vaccine.
AV answer – the 1986 National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act should be repealed because it removed all liability from vaccine manufacturers.
7. How has the CDC schedule changed since 1986?
The immunization schedule has changed to include vaccines to protect kids against meningitis, pneumonia, blood infections, severe dehydration, epiglottitis, and cancer from Hib, pneumococcal disease, rotavirus, hepatitis B, hepatitis A, chicken pox, HPV, and meningococcal disease.
AV answer – it has ballooned and exploded with 300 more vaccines in the pipeline!
8. How much money has been paid out by vaccine injury court?
AV answer – $3.5 billion dollars, which proves that vaccine injuries are real!
9. How many doses of vaccines are in the CDC schedule between birth and age 18?
By age 18 years, today’s kids get 54 doses of 13 vaccines that protect them against 16 vaccine-preventable diseases, with a third of those doses coming from yearly flu vaccines.
AV answer – 72 doses!
10. Do vaccines contain DNA from aborted fetal cell lines? If so, which vaccines?
Residual, highly fragmented DNA is sometimes found in vaccines that are made using the MRC-5/WI-38 cell lines.
AV answer – vaccines contain aborted fetal tissue.
11. Do any vaccines contain dog, monkey, pig, or human DNA?
Residual DNA, if found in vaccines, is not a cause for concern. It is typically a function of growing vaccine viruses in mammalian cell lines.
AV answer – dog, monkey, pig, and human DNA contaminate vaccines and will turn us all into mutant dog-monkey-pig-human hybrids.
12. What is an adjuvant?
An adjuvant in a vaccine can increase the body’s immune response to an antigen, allowing you to use a smaller amount of antigen, which is important, as it is the antigens that typically cause side effects.
AV answer – Adjuvants in vaccines have never been tested and they trigger vaccine injuries and disease.
13. What is an antigen?
An antigen is a substance, often part of a virus or bacteria, that can stimulate an immune response and the production of antibodies. Surprisingly, even though kids get more vaccines than they used to, those vaccines contain far fewer antigens than older vaccines.
AV answer – we don’t care about antigens anymore, because all of the other vaccine ingredients are toxic.
14. Which arms of the immune system do vaccines stimulate?
It actually depends on the vaccine, but this is about the differences between innate (nonspecific and without memory) and adaptive immunity, which typically interact with each other, whether it is to create natural or vaccine induced immunity.
AV answer – I don’t care which arm you try to give it to them, my kids aren’t getting vaccinated!
15. Which arms of the immune system do natural diseases stimulate?
AV answer – vaccines cause autism. If it isn’t the MMR vaccine, then it is thimerosal, or maybe aluminum. Or it could be glyphosate. It is definitely vaccines though.
19. What is glyphosate? Is it in vaccines?
Glyphosate, a weed killer (Roundup) made by Monsanto is not in any vaccines.
AV answer – because glyphosate is everywhere, including in vaccines, half of all children will be autistic by 2025.
20. If your child is injured who will take physical, emotional and financial responsibility?
If a child has a true vaccine injury, compensation from the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) will hopefully help with your financial responsibilities.
AV answer – you can not sue vaccine manufacturers, so they have no liability if your child is injured by a vaccine.
21. What was the Supreme Courts statement on vaccines in 2011?
In 2011, the Supreme Court decided Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, in which they used the infamous unavoidably unsafe terminology, which has been misunderstood by anti-vaccine folks ever since.
AV answer – the Supreme Court said that vaccines can never be safe.
22. Can you find a study showing vaccinated vs unvaccinated health outcomes?
Yes, yes I can. A large study, “Vaccination Status and Health in Children and Adolescents Findings of the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS),” found that unvaccinated kids weren’t healthier, they just had more measles, mumps, rubella, and pertussis.
AV answer – the Mawson study (published in a pay-to-publish journal after being retracted two other times) proves that unvaccinated (homeschooled) kids are healthier than vaccinated (homeschooled) kids.
23. Can you find a safety study proving it is safe to inject multiple vaccines?
Yes, yes I can. There are many studies that prove that it is safe to give multiple vaccines at the same time.
AV answer – vaccines have never been tested together.
24. Do vaccines shed?
A few vaccines do shed, including the rotavirus vaccines (in stool, so wash your hands when changing diapers) and oral polio vaccines, which haven’t been used in the United States since 2000. Although FluMist can shed, since the vaccine contains attenuated viral strains of the flu that are temperature-sensitive, it isn’t a problem, except maybe for someone who is severely immunocompromised.
AV answer – our unvaccinated kids are at risk during shedding season!
25. Which vaccines can shed for up to 6 weeks?
The oral polio vaccine, which hasn’t been used in the United States since 2000, can likely shed for up to 6 weeks. This type of shedding is one of the reasons this weakened live virus vaccine is preferred over the inactivated polio vaccine when polio is still common in an area. In areas with poor hygiene and sanitation, the shedding (in stool) can lead to a type of passive immunization and improved herd immunity!
AV answer – shedding season is coming!
26. Which vaccines are live virus vaccines?
Attenuated, live virus vaccines which contain a weakened version of a virus include MMR, Varivax (chicken pox), the rotavirus vaccines, FluMist, the yellow fever vaccines, the oral polio vaccine, and vaccines against typhoid, cholera, adenovirus, and smallpox.
AV answer – unvaccinated children are at risk from shedding if they are around kids who have gotten a live virus vaccine, especially during shedding season.
27. What is the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP)?
This is the same thing as the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) in question 5…
AV answer – we need to repeal both the NVICP and the VICP!
28. What is SV40?
Simian virus 40 was found to contaminate polio vaccines from 1955 through 1963. Fortunately, it has not been found to cause any disease in the folks who got those vaccines.
AV answer – vaccines are contaminated with monkey viruses and cause cancer.
29. What is MTHFR and how does it affect the body’s response to vaccines?
True MTHFR gene mutations rarely cause homocystinuria. Folks are more likely to hear about MTHFR polymorphisms, which are typically normal and have no affect on vaccines or anything else.
AV answer – no one should not get vaccinated if they have MTHFR mutations or signs of MTHFR.
30. What is an acceptable amount of aluminum to be ingested per day versus the aluminum content in the Hep B shot given at birth, 2 months, and then again at 4 months?
Although there are limits on aluminum that premature neonates and infants getting daily intravenous fluids and IV feeding solutions over prolonged periods of time, that doesn’t mean that aluminum in vaccines that infants get every few months isn’t safe. It is. And they are.
AV answer – infants are getting toxic amounts of aluminum in their vaccines!
31. Can someone who was vaccinated for pertussis still spread pertussis after being exposed to it? If so, for how long?
Maybe. A study in baboons said it is possible. More importantly though, you are much more likely to get pertussis if you are unvaccinated, will have more severe symptoms, and will likely get more people sick.
AV answer – vaccinated people are the ones starting pertussis outbreaks.
32. What is the death rate from measles in the past 10 years in the U.S. compared to the death rate from the MMR vaccine in the past 10 years?