Vaccine Assumptions - Are They Safe?
By Sherri Tenpenny, DO

Vaccine Assumptions - Are They Safe?

Webster’s dictionary defines dogma as “a doctrine; a positive arrogant assertion of opinion.” And medical dogmas certainly abound. Many have survived for decades simply because a declaration was made and never disputed. Over time, the claim was assumed to be a fact.

The classic example of an unquestioned dogma was the long held notion that the sun rotated around the earth. In 1530, Copernicus challenged this by asserting that the earth rotated on its axis once daily and traveled around the sun once yearly, a fantastic concept for the times and considered to be absolute heresy. For his efforts, Copernicus was imprisoned, subjected to a trial by the Inquisitioners, and finally forced to withdraw his evidence to save his own life.

The modern day equivalent is challenging the conventional mindset that vaccines are “safe and effective.” The Inquisitioner, often the family pediatrician, forces parents to make vaccination decisions under threat of expulsion from the medical practice, or worse, under threat of reporting them to the county Children’s Services Administration for being “medically neglectful.” The State buttresses this position by enacting vaccination laws that deny a tax payer funded public education unless children are first injected. Vaccination is asserted unquestionably as the only effective way to keep your child healthy.

But is it the truth?

Vaccination is a medical intervention that is assumed to be protective. Assumptions regarding the effectiveness of medical treatments abound. A report published by The Government Accounting Office (GAO) concluded in 1978 that “only 10-20% of all procedures currently used in medical practice have been shown to be efficacious by controlled trials.(1) Putting that in perspective, 80 to 90% of the “usual and customary” practices assumed to be effective have no scientific proof that they work. Unbeknownst to many, vaccination falls into this category.

As for assumptions about safety, contrary to what has been written in government literature and in pharmaceutical industry package inserts, vaccines have never been proven to be safe by clinical trials.

When a safety study involving a medication is performed, a new drug is compared to a benign placebo such as a sugar pill. However, when a vaccine study is conducted, the new vaccine is not compared to an inert compound such as a shot of sterile water. Instead, the new vaccine is compared to another vaccine with a “known toxicity profile.” This practice began during the massive Salk polio vaccine trials in 1954 in which the first placebo vaccine was to be a flu shot.(2) The practice has continued to the present day. If the numbers of reactions (side effects) are similar between the new vaccine and the old vaccine, researchers declare the experimental vaccine to be “as safe as a placebo.” But it isn’t as safe as sterile water, a true placebo. Serious side effects that arise in the research study are deleted by a stroke of a pen. A trial involving a combination vaccine, Comvax®, illustrates these points.

Comvax, approved for use in October, 1996, is a vaccine that combines the Haemophilus influenza vaccine (HiB) and the hepatitis B vaccine into a single shot. During the safety trials, this new vaccine combo was compared to a “placebo” that consisted of injecting the vaccines as two separate shots. Side effects were described as follows:

“During the study, 17 children (1.9%) had an event within 14 days of vaccination that met one of the defining criteria of a serious adverse experience. These experiences included seizure, asthma, diarrhea, apnea (stopped breathing) [and many others.] Virtually all of these adverse experiences were classified as serious because they involved a hospitalization. None was judged by the study investigators to be causally related [caused by] Comvax® or the [other two vaccines given separately]. In addition, three deaths among participants in this study were attributed to sudden infant death syndrome that occurred more than 14 days after administration of a dose of vaccine (29, 31, and 38 days, respectively.) Again, none was judged by the investigators to be related to vaccination.”(3)

The parameters of the study included documented adverse reactions that occurred within 14 days of the babies receiving the shots. Since the deaths occurred outside of this parameter, a stroke of the pen negated damaging evidence and the new vaccine was reported to be “well-tolerated and safe.”

The next time you hear the expression that vaccines are “safe and effective,” hopefully you will have a different perspective on this phrase.
(1) Assessing the Efficacy and Safety of Medical Technologies. Washington, D.C. Congress of the United States, Office of Technology Assessment, Publication No. 052003-00593-0. 1978. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402
(2) Klein, Aaron. “Trial by Fury.” Charles, Shribner’s Sons. 1972. pg. 89
(3) West, David., et. al. “Safety and immunogenicity of bivalent H. influenza type b/hepatitis B vaccine in healthy infants. Ped. Inf. Dis. J 1997;16:593-599.

Dr. Sherri J. Tenpenny is respected as one of the country’s most knowledgeable and outspoken physicians regarding the negative impacts of vaccines on health. Through her education company, NMA Media Press, she spreads her vision of retaining freedom of choice in healthcare, including the freedom to refuse vaccination.

Her three hour DVD, Vaccines: The Risk, The Benefits and The Choices , her new book FOWL! Bird flu: It’s Not What You Think, and many other books, tapes and materials are available at

Information about her medical clinic can be found at

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