Harmful effects of vaccines

I saw an article on NRK – the publicly owned news source in Norway – about people organizing to bring attention to how the corona vaccine harmed their health.

That’s understandable. And it’s a complex situation.

We know that vaccines – like any medicine – can harm our health. Even the most apparently innocent medicine, like painkillers, can seriously harm our health. In a few out of a large number of cases, it does. That’s well known. The authorities and doctors need to make this clear since it seems that some are surprised by this. (I also understand they don’t want to unduly worry people or induce them to make decisions based on what happens to only a very few people.)

I assume that often, the harmful effects of the vaccine come from the body’s reaction to it. If so, that’s a parallel to what happens when our body reacts to the virus itself leading to the post-viral syndrome/CFS form of long-covid. It seems that the body can respond to either vaccines or the actual virus in a way that harms our health. (For me, an interesting question is whether these two groups are the same people. If someone’s body responds strongly to the vaccine, would their body have responded equally strongly to the actual virus? I imagine it’s difficult to figure this out.)

As many will point out, correlation is not causation. Some of the ones who think their health was damaged by the vaccine make a wrong connection. What happened with them would have happened anyway, vaccine or no vaccine. It had a different cause. We don’t know how many this applies to.

So yes, it’s important to take this group seriously. They have health issues, these need to be addressed, and it’s important to sort out what’s going on with them. (Likely a diversity of causes.) It’s also important that people understand that any medicine can cause serious health issues in rare cases, and that includes vaccines as much as any other medicine.

I imagine anti-vaccine folks and conspiracy theorists will jump on this. And, in reality, they have little to no reason to. In rare cases, any kind of medicine causes serious health problems. That’s well known. There is also the usual correlation-versus-causality discussion which is valid and important to take seriously. (It’s equally important to not use it to dismiss valid concerns.)

Image by me and Midjourney


INITIAL DRAFT

HARMFUL EFFECTS OF VACCINES

I saw an article on NRK – the main news source in Norway – about people organizing to bring attention to how the corona vaccine harmed their health.

That’s understandable. And it’s a complex situation.

Of course, we know that vaccines – like any medicine – can harm our health. In a few cases, it does. That’s well known. The authorities and doctors need to make this clear since it seems that some seem surprised by this.

I assume that the harmful effects of the vaccine come from the body’s reaction to it, just like the long-term effects of some viruses. Some experience long-term effects of the vaccine. Some experience long-term effects of the virus itself. The body can respond to either in a way that harms our health. (For me, an interesting question is if these are the same people. If someone’s body responds strongly to the vaccine, would their body have responded equally strongly to the actual virus? I imagine it’s difficult to figure this out.)

As many will point out, correlation is not causation. Some of the ones who think their health was damaged by the vaccine make a wrong connection. What happened with them would have happened anyway, vaccine or no vaccine. We don’t know how many this applies to.

Vaccines are not unique there.

…..

I imagine anti-vaccine folks and conspiracy theorists will jump on this. And, in reality, they have little to no reason to. In rare cases, any kind of medicine causes serious health problems. That’s well known and nobody is hiding anything. There is also the usual correlation-versus-causality discussion which is valid and important to take seriously. (It’s equally important to not use it to dismiss valid concerns.)

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