Serious Adverse Reactions to Hepatitis B Vaccine Found to Outnumber Cases of the Disease

About ten years ago, the United States government recommended – and most states mandated – that infants should be vaccinated against hepatitis B before being discharged from the hospital after birth. Apparently, little consideration was given to the fact that this vaccine contained mercury as a preservative, or to the fact that infants may not have a sufficiently mature immune system for the vaccine to work appropriately. Hepatitis B is primarily a sexually transmitted disease, most common in promiscuous adults, and is also found in users of intravenous drugs. Historically, this disease has been rare among American children, with the highest incidence found among newborns whose mothers were infected.

The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) recently released an independent analysis of government statistics on reported cases of serious adverse reactions to the hepatitis B vaccine and cases of the disease in children. Looking at children under the age of 14, 872 serious adverse reactions to the hepatitis B vaccine were reported in 1996 alone, including 48 deaths. By contrast, only 279 cases of hepatitis B were reported nationwide in that age group in the same year. Considering children under the age of 5 from only 8 states, there were 106 serious adverse reactions in 1997, including 10 deaths, versus 25 cases of the disease.

It should also be noted that adverse reactions to vaccines are typically underreported, either because it is difficult to link the timing of a vaccine to the reaction, or because of a pro-vaccine bias. In addition, these vaccine-related events do not include possible long-term consequences, such as an increase in the prevalence of autism, which remain unproven.

According to the NVIC report, the hepatitis B vaccination program was recently discontinued in France after it was linked with increased rates of infantile asthma, auto-immune diseases and eczema. The NVIC also reported that, according to a national poll, two-thirds of Americans want the right to make informed, voluntary decisions about vaccinations. To read the entire press release, visit

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