The current flu season has reached epidemic proportions in the United States and is showing signs of the severity expected when the current flu strain was identified. Unfortunately for those who received the flu vaccine, the current flu’s variety of H3N2 virus is not well matched to the annual flu vaccine.
Conventional authorities suggest that getting the flu shot, even at this late date and even with a mis-match, might be helpful should you get the flu. Where on earth are they getting this advice? Not from the medical literature, where you can read studies such as this one in which those immunized against influenza had more than four times (!!) as much non-flu respiratory illness as those immunized with placebo. Or this study in which prior vaccination with a certain trivalent vaccine increased the risk of the 2009 flu variety.
The flu shot’s ineffectiveness is not limited to years of mis-match: the Cochrane Register of Controlled Trials reviewed 50 reports, involving more than 70,000 people, and observed:
- In the “relatively uncommon” case where the vaccine matched the annual flu variety, the rate of influenza was 4% for the unvaccinated and 1% for the vaccinated, so 3 less people out of every 100 would become ill.
- In the more common scenario of vaccine/flu mis-match the corresponding numbers were 2% sick among unvaccinated for 1% of the vaccinated, thus 1 less person per 100.
- Most remarkably and contrary to every source that recommends vaccines, vaccination had a modest effect on time off work and had no effect on hospital admissions or complication rates.”
I have a new “health tonic” this year which I will try out if I feel some illness approaching and let you know it works. For now, however, I will stick with my tried and true methods for avoiding the flu and recovering from illness should it strike you!