Anyone consider career change to naturopathic medicine?

Discussion in 'Pharmacy' started by lcow2004, 09.24.14.

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  1. lcow2004

    lcow2004 7+ Year Member

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    I am already PharmD but this area seems to be getting popular but I don't know very much about this field? Anyone thought about this? What are good and bad about having a degree in naturopathic medicine (ND)?
     
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  3. zelman

    zelman 7+ Year Member

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    You can only practice in certain states and have a broad range of limitations/authority depending on the state. I know if you search you can find a specific list of drugs NDs can prescribe in VT and I believe they have a much broader authority in CA. Figure out where you plan on living until retirement and make sure you can practice there.
     
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  4. npage148

    npage148 Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    If you want to be an ND you might as well become a reiki master and sell crystals
     
  5. Matrix187

    Matrix187 7+ Year Member

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  6. MatCauthon

    MatCauthon 7+ Year Member

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    Bastyr is considered the cream of the crop naturopathic school. Look at their tuition prices: http://www.bastyr.edu/admissions/tuition-fees
    Would you really be ready to pay close to $40k a year for tuition for a career with no job market? If you are a naturopath, your career options are mostly limited to self-employed options. Look at the career options: http://www.bastyr.edu/academics/are...c-medicine/naturopathic-doctor-degree-program

    Naturopaths are only licensed in 17 states. Nothing a naturopath does is individual to being a naturopath. Naturopaths have to compete with chiropractors, acupuncturists, massage therapists, alternative MDs, nutritionists, nurse practitioners, and a legion of unlicensed alternative medicine people.

    I just think there are so many better ways to learn this stuff than to stick yourself into a naturopathic program. Nurse practitioner seems like a much better way to go. A lot of NPs integrate holistic medicine into their scope of practice. There are tons of post-graduate seminars and training programs available, and NPs can do just about anything. I know NPs that are doing nutritional IV therapy, functional medicine, bio-identical hormone replacement, botanical medicine, acupuncture, and bodywork. The validity of all of these techniques is debatable. But wouldn't you want to do them under a degree where you can actually be employed and have a license that is capable of billing 3rd party insurances?

    I'm very open minded to alternative medicine. It has helped me when nothing else could. But naturopaths should not be incurring medical school debt when they are not guaranteed a doctor's salary.

    Limiting debt is of huge importance. I'm not sure naturopaths have a very concrete way of being able to pay of their debt.
     
    Last edited: 09.28.14
  7. Digsbe

    Digsbe 5+ Year Member

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    I don't think NDs can bill much as far as insurance goes and in most states they can't get licensed to do any kind of legal practice. Even in such states I think their practice is limited to only using natural products (can't prescribe non-natural stuff). Pretty much all you could do is recommending non-prescription natural products and provide counselling for conditions and wellness, you can do that with a PharmD anyway so I don't see much point in going for an ND if you plan on working in one of the majority of the states where they have no legal licensure or practice parameters. The pay may not be that great either so financially it could be very bad decision.
     
  8. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    I wouldn't discount this practice. I know of a Chiropractor who is a Naturopath also and have seen him do some amazing things. He practices body energetics. He charges cash only and does very well.
     
  9. gwarm01

    gwarm01 7+ Year Member

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    Tell me more.
     
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  10. lcow2004

    lcow2004 7+ Year Member

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    Does he also have a chiropractor license?

    I guess I'm curious what the earning potential is for NDs. What is average?

    Also, can they practice in CA?
     
  11. All4MyDaughter

    All4MyDaughter SDN Mommystrator Staff Member Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    Biggest downside? Being a quack.
     
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  12. zelman

    zelman 7+ Year Member

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    Anyone who thinks natural products lack value should probably never recommend any quinolones, digoxin or statins (among many others). Not every drug was assembled like tinker toys of carbon atoms. Most come from a natural source or are modified derivatives thereof.

    Keep in mind that NDs are the people who were preaching fish oil use before Lovaza was an FDA approved drug. I'm sure you never refused a Lovaza Rx because it was quackery. Just because something is outside your specialty does not mean you should discount it. Successful NDs I've met are extremely capable providers, unlike many successful RPh's I've come across.

    Have some professional respect for fellow healthcare professions.
     
  13. All4MyDaughter

    All4MyDaughter SDN Mommystrator Staff Member Lifetime Donor SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    Sure, many drugs come from natural sources. I think the ones that are FDA approved have proven clinical value. The others? Well, their value is unproven.

    Lovaza is an FDA approved product.
     
  14. owlegrad

    owlegrad Uncontrollable Sarcasm Machine Staff Member SDN Administrator 7+ Year Member

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    Do NPs recommend vaccines? Because if they do I could never recommend one.
     
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  15. BidingMyTime

    BidingMyTime Lost Shaker Of Salt 10+ Year Member

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    I'm not much of a believer in naturatherapy. Herbals, sure, no doubt many of them work (unfortunately, there is no standardization in doses between brands, which make it hard to do recommendations). Chiropracty? Sure, at least the physical therapy component of it, the magical energy movement is malarkey. Homeopathy? Basically a placebo, although some homeopathy stuff may have a very small benefit just because it contains non-FDA approved ingredients (ie Prosecea cream which is homeopathy, but which contains sulfa.) Accupuncture, placebo effect. Crystals? Ridiculous, unless one believes in the supernatural, in which case, why not save money and just pray?

    There are plenty of pharmacists who like to promote quack therapies. You don't need a ND to do this (maybe it would give you street cred among the true believers, but I wouldn't pay for that.) As a pharmacist, you already can promote natural remedies, and there are many independent pharmacists who do just that.

    Still, there is no doubt the placebo effect is strong, so there will always be a market for recommending natural therapies. If you are really interested in this, I would just do self-study, and look into owning your own pharmacy where you can sell whatever natural therapies you want. I would hope you would be responsible enough not to sell natural therapies that have been shown to cause actual harm (ear wicking for one) and not to mislead people away from conventional therapies (ie telling people all they need is Vitamin C, not chemotherapy for their cancer.)
     
  16. BidingMyTime

    BidingMyTime Lost Shaker Of Salt 10+ Year Member

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    Earning potential? Well, the skies the limit, you could be the next Deepak Chopra. Or Dr. Oz (he might as well be a ND with all the quack therapies he promotes)

    Realistically, a ND is going to make far, far less, than a Rph/PharmD makes. Most ND's are going to make their money by basically owning a natural product shop, and how much they make will depend on how good a business person/salesperson they are. If you combine the 2 to run a independent pharmacy/natural goods store, you will probably make a good living (again dependent on how good a business person/salesperson you are.)
     
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  17. BidingMyTime

    BidingMyTime Lost Shaker Of Salt 10+ Year Member

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    But what if it was a homeopathy vaccine? That would be OK, wouldn't it? Don't acupuncturists give homeopathy vaccines?:shrug:
     
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  18. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    What I do find mildly entertaining is that 5 years ago I would've found myself making the same comments from others I've read here. Mocking what we don't understand or don't accept on the internet has become an American pastime. You really do think you have it figured out at 30. Certainly there are charlatans out there. You have to search long and hard to find the great practitioners as in any profession. When you do find them you have to seriously rethink what you've come to know. We have been herded into Western medicine like cattle. Many of these techniques have been used in Eastern medicine for centuries.

    The NP/chiropractor I know did not have his children or his grandchildren vaccinated for anything. His children are in their 20's now. They are not maimed or sickly and have never been. They walk among us with full confidence that their immune systems are strong. I know it's a small sample size. It's just one example of what I've seen him do. He has combined multiple disciplines into one. He's a very unique practitioner. You don't run into people with this knowledge often.
     
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  19. npage148

    npage148 Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Well. I'm glad (kinda) that they are able to exploit our rigorous vaccination programs so their offspring don't have to suffer horrible death and illness due to their parents ignorance
     
  20. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    Herd immunity is a myth. Do a little research. There have been plenty of outbreaks in heavily vaccinated populations in the last 10 years. If vaccines really worked then the 95% wouldn't have to worry about the 5% who aren't vaccinated.
     
  21. Digsbe

    Digsbe 5+ Year Member

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    Do they advocate against vaccines? I've met chiropractors and we've had one lecture in our school to discuss their philosophy and training and I can respect them for what they know. I have a friend from undergrad who is in an ND program. She's very intelligent and we've discussed what school is like and they do learn anatomy, physiology, diagnostic principals, the basics of a physical and treatments from a natural standpoint. They're both educated.

    However, someone can be very very educated but if their perspective coming from that education has a bias that pushes the whole "sound medical science is wrong because of "toxins" or "non-natural preservatives" or "genetically modified..." and any other buzzword those against a scientific approach to medicine may toss around then really they aren't practicing in a sound way. There can be error with omission, someone can be taught all the wonders, magic and healing powers of natural therapies under some feel-good guise of "it's healthy because it comes from nature" and that "synthetic pills and chemicals are all bad toxins to your natural body" but if they aren't given a well rounded view beyond negative things about a scientific approach to medicine then really their education is lacking. Part of being a competent practitioner is knowing about the alternatives and making sound judgments, not being taught one perspective and using a personal bias fueled by some feel-good mentality that predetermines that modern medicine and a solid scientific approach are inherently bad and that other things are better or inherently good because they come directly from nature or have been used traditionally in the past.
     
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  22. gwarm01

    gwarm01 7+ Year Member

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    Your tag says you are a pharmacist, so I will assume you have taken a statistics course. In fact, your mention of sample size would support that. Assuming you understood what you were taught, why would you then think this constitutes any sort of evidence? It would be the equivalent of me claiming cigarette smoking prevents cancer because my grandfather has smoked for sixty years and is still alive and cancer free.

    There is a big leap from agreeing that many natural products work or have medicinal benefit, to believing in mysticism such as energy meridians/healing crystals, or ideas with no scientific merit such as homeopathy. As a learned individual who has been educated in the sciences, you should have the tools at your disposal to make these judgments.
     
  23. Ackj

    Ackj 7+ Year Member

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  24. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    This is not mysticism. I haven't mentioned healing crystals. Despite the flu vaccine having weak efficacy studies and not being more effective than placebo you still recommend everyone over the age of 6 should receive it. This is something you do not understand. You have been trained in Western medicine and you and your patients go where your insurance company tells you to go. I don't think you need me to tell you that they do not always place your health as their #1 priority. They do all they can to discredit other health practices. There are certainly charlatans in every profession. You really have to search to find the great ones.
     
  25. DruggieDoRight

    DruggieDoRight 2+ Year Member

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    Wow.

    I think you need to peer review your studies before you start spouting this garbage. This is extremely dangerous to your patients as a health professional.
     
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  26. gwarm01

    gwarm01 7+ Year Member

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    To be clear, when I say "mysticism" I am speaking of energy meridians and the concept of "chi" or life force. That is very much in the realm of mysticism.
     
  27. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    I want you to take 20 minutes and read the CDC website about influenza. I want you then to debate me on two topics. First there is no established VE for the flu vaccine. Second the mortality of influenza + pneumonia remains unchanged (8.8-9.1% in 99-00 vs 5.5-9.9% in 12-13) despite a higher vaccination rate due to vaccinations being available at pharmacies. It is your job as a healthcare professional to present the patient with the facts and let them make the decision whether or not a treatment is necessary.
     
  28. CynicalIntern

    CynicalIntern 7+ Year Member

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    Heres' the thing. Let's assume the point that you're making here, that the flu shot does nothing for you and is a scheme by big pharma and western medicine to stab people for fun and make profits for pharma.

    It's at most 32 dollars (I think WAG charges the most for it still, unless someone has passed them up) a year for placebo effect peace of mind. Whereas, you, in this thread, are advocating the practice of a chiropractor. If we want to talk about peer reviewed science and the like, the evidence of chiropractors is much worse than the "no evidence" of flu shots. And if someone can make it the entire year not spending any more than 32 dollars at a Chiro, then their chiro probably hates them for not following up with them every two weeks like they "should"
     
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  29. sakigt

    sakigt Junior Member 10+ Year Member

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  30. chme

    chme

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    Hey have you ever received reiki from a reiki master? Ever practiced it? Hard to tell by your comment but it's highly effective and interesting. Why judge?
     
  31. radio frequency

    radio frequency 2+ Year Member

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    It's all that positive energy, right? Hilarious. But hey, if it works for you, the only side effect I'd expect is a lighter wallet.
     
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  32. chme

    chme

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    Ok so you've obviously never tried it. Don't criticize something you've never tried! As a reiki master who also has a foot in the world of western medicine it's very effective and supplements my practice a great deal. Go get a session and then let me know what you think. :)
     
  33. Jibby321

    Jibby321 Ready or Not...... 2+ Year Member

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    I prefer voo-doo myself.
     
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  34. The Cutest Ponytail

    The Cutest Ponytail Account on Hold Account on Hold

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    If there's no problem with old-school flu shots then why this?

    http://www.flublok.com/index.html

    From LEE HIEB, M.D.:
    1. Since 2005 (and even before that), there have been no deaths in the U.S. from measles, but there have been 86 deaths from MMR vaccine – 68 of them in children under 3 years old. And there were nearly 2,000 disabled, per the aforementioned VAERS data.

    2. In countries which use BCG vaccinations against tuberculosis, the incidence of Type I diabetes in children under 14 is nearly double. (“Infectious Disease in Clinical Practice” no. 6 pages 449-454, 1997)

    3. As reported in Lancet in 1995, inflammatory bowel disease (i.e. Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis) is 13 times more prevalent in persons vaccinated for measles.

    4. In a nested case-control study within the General Practice Research Database (GPRD) in the United Kingdom, patients who had a first MS (Multiple Sclerosis) diagnosis recorded were compared with controls. The authors concluded that immunization with the recombinant hepatitis B vaccine is associated with a threefold increased risk of developing MS (Hernan et al., 2004). No increased risk of MS was associated with other vaccines, which included tetanus and influenza vaccinations.

    5. In 1982 William Torch, a prolific researcher and publisher on Neurologic topics, presented a paper (later published) at the American Academy of Neurology reviewing SIDS deaths. He reported that in 100 consecutive cases, 70 percent of SIDS deaths occurred within three weeks of pertussis vaccination. In very convincing confirmation, a Japanese prefecture stopped vaccinating after associating SIDS with the pertussis vaccine.." There's a lot more.

    Perhaps one of the best perspectives on the whole vaccination paradigm is provided by Dr. Harold Buttram, M.D., FAACP:


    "As one of today’s senior citizens who grew up in a Midwestern state in the 1930s, and as a doctor who has treated many children, I may have a special vantage point of time and experience in regard to the changes that have taken place in the health of America’s children since the relatively innocent times of the 1930s. At summer camps in the New Mexico Mountains that I was fortunate to attend, no boy had allergies, none was on medication, and no boy was ever sick with the common ailments of today. It was much the same in schools. I don’t recall ever seeing a child with easily recognized behaviors now described as hyperactivity (ADHD) or autism.



    Today in stark contrast, approximately one-third of our youngsters are afflicted with the 4-A Disorders (Autism, ADHD, Asthma, and Allergies), as described and documented by Dr. Kenneth Bock. School budgets are being strained to the breaking points in providing special education classes for autistic and learning disabled children. Allergy problems are proliferating, as indicated by long lines of children at school nursing stations for their noontime medications.



    Could today’s infant and childhood vaccine programs, with their steadily increasing numbers of vaccines, be a contributory cause of this ominous health trend? As reflected in the U.S. Congressional Hearings (1999 to December 2004) on issues of vaccine safety, in which major deficiencies in vaccine safety testing were disclosed, it is a real possibility that vaccines may be one of the major, if not the major cause of this trend."
     
  35. PhoenixFire

    PhoenixFire 5+ Year Member

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  36. MountainPharmD

    MountainPharmD custodiunt illud simplex 10+ Year Member

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    When being a Chiropractor isn't quite enough quackery for you...go for the gold and full on quackery by becoming a naturopath!
     
  37. zelman

    zelman 7+ Year Member

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    This is an interesting anecdotal observation, though obviously not conclusive. The first thing that comes to mind is that might contradict this is the practice setting. Are there more children with psychiatric illnesses now, or were they all just institutionalized before? Or were they killed off by dangerous treatments like insulin-induced seizures? Does anyone know if these factors played a significant role?
     
  38. Psyche Estrelle

    Psyche Estrelle Fear and Loathing in Los Angeles 7+ Year Member

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    I'm surprised this guy hasn't been ripped apart by SDN yet ;)

    You'd probably be better off talking to people who don't have a medical education.
     
  39. The Cutest Ponytail

    The Cutest Ponytail Account on Hold Account on Hold

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    Having an allopathic medical education can be a handicap when getting to the truth sometimes.

    It'll be interesting to see the postmarketing surveillance for Flublok. What if there is no Guillain-Barré syndrome with Flublok? The industry is going have some [​IMG]

    What disturbs me is the socially-engineered reflexive dismissal many medical professionals have regarding concerns of vaccinations when they have the knowledge base to realize that vaccines are not pure biologicals. How are vaccines different from say Humulin? Forteo? Rebif? rTPA? Procrit? You'd think they would have concerns about the parenteral administration of potential haptens. What is GBS? It's an autoimmune disorder. That's a clue.






    Just for kicks use this tool http://wonder.cdc.gov/vaers.html

    Search by event category and manufacturer. What blew my mind is how dangerous the FluMist is. Holy crap!
     
  40. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    I'll tell you why. Because they can't.
     
  41. suntzu

    suntzu 7+ Year Member

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    I miss the good old days
     
    Last edited: 02.22.15
  42. JoBreeze

    JoBreeze 2+ Year Member

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    The downturn in the pharmacy labor market has surely changed the umm... "thoughts" that are shared on the sdn pharmacy forum.
     
  43. Dred Pirate

    Dred Pirate 2+ Year Member

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    he has been - he spreads horrible myths and does a diservice to all of us "professionals"
     
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  44. WVUPharm2007

    WVUPharm2007 "Bubs Depot!" 10+ Year Member

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    What the hell kind of stupidity is going on in this thread?
     
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  45. Dred Pirate

    Dred Pirate 2+ Year Member

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    typical SDC fun - come on - you know every thread devolves into 1 of 4 topics:
    1. job market sucks
    2. residency vs non-residency
    3. the flu shot
    4. we hate CVS
     
  46. BidingMyTime

    BidingMyTime Lost Shaker Of Salt 10+ Year Member

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    Um, that was probably because of the much higher infant and child death rate. Many children with allergies died, or were so chronically ill, they weren't attending a summer camp. The fact that children with chronic ailments are alive & functioning is 2015 is a testament to modern medicine. I don't believe "everything" I hear from science, and I'm not gung-ho on the flu shot (because it does have a low effective rate), but the idea that vaccines are not effective is contradicted by all of history. People routinely died of all kinds of communicable diseases that are not prevented by vaccines. And yes, they died of these diseases even when they had good hygiene. Seriously, do you know how many American's died or were left chronically disabled by polio in the 1950's, before the polio vaccine was introduced? Do you really think 1950's Americans were living in dirt and grime, since I know anti-vaccer's like to claim that cleanliness will prevent communicable diseases? (hint, public plumbing WAS available for most people in the 1950's, and even in the few rural areas that didn't have it, people did have outhouses and knew to wash their hands-they certainly weren't throwing their excrement in their drinking water.)
     
  47. Unchained

    Unchained 5+ Year Member

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    Our drinking water and sewage systems were not very well separated here in the 1950's as one would like to think. There were signs along the Hudson River in the 1950's saying "Do not swim. Polio may be present". Also the dangers of the polio vaccine are well documented. Even Jonas Salk testified in 1977 that the majority of the Polio cases in the US since 1961 were caused by the vaccine. In present day India there have been incidence of mass paralysis after vaccinations for polio.

    Also how come despite massive vaccination efforts in India and Africa over the last 50 years does Polio still exist. It's because their raw sewage is mixed with their drinking water.

    If you examine charts of the incidence of polio you can see that it was in decline before the vaccine was produced.
     
  48. Dred Pirate

    Dred Pirate 2+ Year Member

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    OMG, not you again - I thought you disappeared
     
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  49. MountainPharmD

    MountainPharmD custodiunt illud simplex 10+ Year Member

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    A special kind!
     
  50. VCU07

    VCU07 Member 10+ Year Member

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    To answer the original question: No
     
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  51. BidingMyTime

    BidingMyTime Lost Shaker Of Salt 10+ Year Member

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    I'm not sure how a sign along the Hudson River is evidence of poor sanitation, quite the opposite, it seems to say that people were quite aware of problems and warned others (certainly drinking water coming into houses would have been treated.)

    Yes, oral polio vaccine can cause polio, which is why the safer injectable form was introduced. Even so, the fact that in 1961 most cases of polio were caused by the vaccine, is evidence of the wide-spread effectiveness of the vaccine--obviously, as a disease is eliminated, then ones chances of getting that disease from the vaccine (if possible, as in the case of the oral polio vaccine) are greater than getting the disease--the benefits of the vaccine still outweigh the risks.


    Because in spite of "massive" vaccination efforts in India & Africa, many, many, many people in these countries are Unvaccinated.

    As for polio being in decline, all infectious diseases tend to spike and decline (but never really go away), until vaccines, with vaccines, diseases can be kept at minimal levels (or even completely irradicated, as in the case of smallpox.)

    Speaking of smallpox, if vaccines don't work, what is your theory on how smallpox came to be eradicated?
     

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