Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday Rants: Swine Flu Again

There seems to be more talk about swine flu and H1N1 vaccine in the news that anyone can digest. Unfortunately, a big chunk of all this "chatter" is misinformation, spread by usual sources: TV shows (Oprah), web sites (Natural News), and just simple, unconnected, unrelated anegdotes (remember, anegtotal evidence is NOT data).

A lot of the misinformation comes from a simple fact that most of the people just simply do not understand how viruses, our immune system, and vaccines work. There is a lot of great sources out there, one of them here: How do vaccines work?

As always, Science-Based Medicine Blog comes to the rescue with very relevant and timely information:
Some of our more astute readers may have noticed that we are paying influenza slightly more attention than other topics of late. That’s because this situation is new, rapidly changing, and covers more areas of science and medicine than one can easily count. It’s also a subject about which the general public and media are keenly interested. This is an outstanding learning and teaching opportunity for us as a professional community. Unfortunately, it is also fertile ground for confusion, fear, and misinformation, and a playground for those who would exploit such things.
9 Reasons to Completely Ignore Joseph Mercola and Natural News
More Nonsense from Dr. Jay Gordon
Flu Vaccine Efficacy

All the above are excellent reads, with multitude of great information.