Rebuttal to article in New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM)

(NaturalNews) In the January 13, 2011 the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), slipped away from its historically solid scientific moorings with the printing of "The Age-Old Struggle against the anti-vaccinationists," by Poland and Jacobson. This reply is limited to just a few points; with so much misinformation in their article, it is not possible to address it all in one rebuttal.

The idea that one disease, (cowpox) could prevent infection by another disease, (smallpox) was a rumor amongst dairymaids. Veterinarians and country physicians of the time knew the rumor was not true and it could easily have been disproved by simply asking patients with smallpox if they had had cowpox. But Jenner, although informed otherwise, was unwilling to believe the idea was false. He went ahead to test the theory on a single subject by spreading pus from cowpox sores into cuts he made in the arms of an eight-year old boy. The boy not only became ill, he developed ulcers on his arms that took months to heal. A few weeks later, he spread smallpox pus into more cuts. The boy did not get smallpox and thus the idea of smallpox vaccination was born.

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