- Recent research into the type of flu shots administered
on campus has shown they contain a potentially toxic preservative, but
health officials say the benefits of the shot outweigh the risks.
- The toxic metal mercury is used as a preservative in
an ingredient called thimerosal, which is used in the flu shots being given
at SAIT, as well as most common vaccinations and shots.
- The SAIT clinic uses a pharmaceutical flu shot that says
on the vial; list of ingredients: contains 0.01% of thimerosal, which is
about 25 to 50 mcg.
- This preservative was found to be so toxic to pregnant
women and infants, that the California State Senate became the second state
in the US to pass a bill prohibiting doctors from giving vaccines containing
thimerosal to pregnant women and children under three. The State passed
the bill with the understanding that thimerosal may cause neurological
conditions and diseases. US flu shots contain approximately 25 mcg of thimerosal.
- Affheen Remtulla, the Influenza Health consultant at
the Calgary Regional Health Board, says that it is hard to pinpoint whether
or not people are having direct adverse reactions to thimerosal in the
- She says that studies have shown the safety of the shots
and that the benefits far outweigh any potential risks.
- Remtulla refused to comment on the decision by the California
State Senate to outlaw shots with thimerosal.
- The University of Calgary's Faculty of Medicine conducted
studies on mercury's effect on humans and found that rapid damage to nerve
cells occurred from minute amounts of the metal. The scientists involved
in the studies concluded that mercury causes neurological damage consistent
- "All these toxic effects have been shown on the
brain," said University of Calgary doctor, Naweed Syed. He says the
amount of mercury used in the study was close to the same amount used in
the flu shot administered at SAIT.
- "So far I have not had any adverse reactions to
the flu shot," said Valerie Nemeth, a SAIT student who went to the
SAIT health clinic last week and received a shot. She was not aware that
mercury was in her flu shot.
- Some of the side effects listed on the SAIT clinic consent
form are: fever, headache, muscle soreness, and swelling at the injection
site. There is no mention of the possible neurological effects reported
by the U of C studies.
- Prior to receiving the flu shot at the SAIT clinic, a
questionnaire and consent form must be completed. Two questions on the
form ask if the patient is allergic to thimerosal and if the patient has
any active neurological diseases.
- The clinic will not administer the shot to anyone allergic
to thimerosal and says that women in their first trimester of pregnancy
should consult with their physician before being immunized.
- Canadian Association of Naturopathic doctors member,
Helena Ovens, says that absolutely no one, of any age, should be taking
the flu shot. She says that is its very toxic and potentially damaging.
- For the past couple of weeks the SAIT Health Clinic has
administered roughly 150 flu shots to staff and students and they have
almost run out. The clinic gets the shots from pharmaceutical companies
via the Calgary Regional Health Board.
- Calgary Regional Health Board has instituted an incentive
for families with children. If a child is under 23 months old, he/she will
receive a free flu shot, as well as anyone in the household.
- The Institute of Medicine completed its immunization
safety review back in 2001 and strongly recommended removing all mercury
from vaccines as part of an effort to reduce the exposure children have
to mercury. The review found no evidence that the thimerosal in vaccines
causes autism, attention deficit disorder, speech delays or other problems
- How Mercury Causes Brain Neuron
- University of Calgary study of Mercury neurological damage