Antivaxxers have been known to tout out a risk of contracting Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS) as a reason to avoid all vaccines, and to be clear at one point in the 1970s there was a risk associated with a specific flu vaccine. However vaccines have changed, and according to a recent study that involved millions of patients, there is no discernible risk of contracting GBS after a vaccination.
The study, which was recently published in the Journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, determined the odds ratio of various vaccinations ranged from 0.7 to 1.4 with a 95% confidence interval. Therefore simply put... there is no evidence linking vaccines to GBS.
So how do you think antivaxxers would react to such a study? Surely they would at least mention it right?
Nope - a visit to "Vactruth.com" finds zero references to this study. Maybe they should change their name to "Vacnotquitethetruthbutonlywhatwewanttotellyou.com" instead.
So how about our friends over at ThinkTwice.com... they claim they just want people to be informed of the risks of vaccination so they would have no reason to hide this information right? Nope... they don't have a single reference, although they do include several references to the debunked claims about other vaccines causing GBS (it seems they are willing to post anecdotes, but they shy away from peer-reviewed science).
How about NaturalNews.com? No luck there either... they have several articles speaking of the issue with flu vaccines in the 1970s, but no mention of current science produced on the issue. Apparently the last 40 years if scientific research aren't all that important when you have an agenda to push.
An interesting point about NaturalNews is how often they continue to claim vaccines are associated with GBS as if it continues to occur and how they don't even bother to look for any study that might prove or even suggest such a link. In some cases, they won't even make the claim about vaccines causing GBS directly, but rather they will make statements such as "some experts say" vaccines can cause GBS etc. as well as making claims that new vaccines will cause GBS even before the vaccines hit the market.
Then again... NaturalNews isn't really known for relying upon science and has even been known to post unpublished 'studies' while presenting them as accepted fact. They have also made it clear they aren't fans of vaccines for any reason, even going so far as to claim that vaccines are a "total hoax". Needless to say they aren't shy about their obvious bias.
So what does all of this mean? Well for starters it tells us that these "vaccination information" centers aren't really concerned with telling the whole story about vaccines and rather they are simply concerned with hiding legitimate science from the people who happen to frequent their pages. That in itself isn't really news as we have known that all along, but what does this particular study mean to antivaxxers?
The simple reality is, studies like this one are just more nails in the coffin of the arguments that vaccines cause more harm than good. As antivaxxers make claims about vaccines, they are repeatedly and routinely shot down time and time again. They have people like Andrew Wakefield claim vaccines cause autism, and he is later found to be nothing more than a fraud. They claim vaccine ingredients such as thimerosal cause autism, yet studies show the rate of autism doesn't change one bit after thimerosal is removed from practically all childhood vaccines. They try to blame the aluminum content of vaccines as being a potential killer, yet fail to acknowledge the amount of aluminum in our bodies and in the environment around us. They complain that vaccines cause conditions such as GBS, and studies overwhelmingly show that not to be the case. They claim the Amish don't get autism because they don't vaccinate, and research proves that not only do the Amish vaccinate, they also have been known to have autism.
Whether it be the argument about "too many, too soon" or the debunked claims about vaccine safety it seems the only things antivaxxers are really good at is not paying attention, and putting their fingers into their ears while yelling "na na na na, I can't hear you". Yet these are the same people who complain when they aren't taken seriously within the medical and scientific community. Isn't it ironic?