Vaccination from - information about vaccinations
Vaccination from - information about vaccinations

8. What about polio? Wasn't it eliminated due to vaccination?

It is commonly believed that the Salk vaccine was responsible for halting the polio epidemics that plagued American children in the 1940s and 1950s. If so, why did the epidemics end in Europe, where polio vaccine was not so extensively used? Robert Mendelsohn, M.D., How To Raise A Healthy Child In Spite Of Your Doctor (Chicago: Contemporary Books 1984)

During the polio epidemic of the 1950's, after the vaccine was introduced, the criteria of diagnosis for paralytic polio was drastically altered so that the number of reported cases was guaranteed to fall. For example, in Canada a 1958 Dominion Bureau of Statistics annual report revealed, "It may be noted that the Dominion Council of Health at its 74th meeting in October 1958 recommended that for the purposes of national reporting and statistics the term non-paralytic poliomyelitis be replaced by 'meningitis', viral or 'aseptic' with the specific viruses shown where known."

Another example of such statistical manipulation may be found in figures from the Los Angeles County Health Index: Morbidity and Mortality, Reportable Diseases:

Date Viral or Aseptic Meningitis Polio
July 1955
50 273
July 1961 161 65
July 1963 151 31
September 1966 256 5
(5 year median)
October 1966 312 3

So while diagnoses of polio diminished, diagnoses of meningitis increased! According to the report: "Most cases reported prior to July 1, 1958 as non-paralytic poliomyelitis are now reported as viral or aseptic meningitis." Since the polio vaccine "worked" these kids couldn't have polio, it had to be meningitis!

In testimonies given at US Congressional Hearings in 1962, Dr. Bernard Greenberg, head of the Department of Biostatistics of the University of North Carolina School of Public Health, testified that not only did polio increase substantially (50 percent from 1957 to 1958 and 80 percent from 1958 to 1959) after the introduction of mass vaccination programs, but statistics were manipulated to give the impression of the effectiveness of the Salk vaccine. Dr. Greenberg gave the following reasons why it appeared that polio decreased after the vaccine was given: ·

* Redefinition of an epidemic: More cases were required to refer to polio as epidemic after the introduction of the Salk vaccine (from 20 per 100,000 to 35 per 100,000 per year) ·

* Redefinition of the disease: In order to qualify for classification as paralytic poliomyelitis, the patient had to exhibit paralytic symptoms for at least 60 days after the onset of the disease. Prior to 1954 the patient had to exhibit paralytic symptoms for only 24 hours. Laboratory confirmation and the presence of residual paralysis were not required. After 1954, residual paralysis was determined 10 to 20 days and again 50 to 70 days after the onset of the disease. "This change in definition meant that in 1955 we started reporting a new disease, namely, paralytic poliomyelitis with a longer lasting paralysis," testified Dr. Greenberg. ·

* Mislabeling: After the introduction of the Salk vaccine, "Cocksackie virus and aseptic meningitis have been distinguished from paralytic poliomyelitis, whereas prior to 1954 large numbers of these cases undoubtedly were mislabeled as paralytic polio," explained Dr. Greenberg.

(Intensive Immunization Programs, Hearings before the Committee on Interstate & Foreign Commerce, House of Representatives, 87th Congress, 2nd Session on H.R. 10541, Washington DC: US Government Printing Office, 1962; pp. 96-97)

Nor is the polio vaccine as safe as we have been led to believe. According to the US government's Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) records in a little less than a five year period the number of individuals hurt or killed from the oral polio vaccine (OPV) are as follows:

The number of vaccine associated events that occurred 13,641

The number of events requiring emergency room visits


The number of life threatening events

The number of events requiring hospitalization 1,726
The number of events with unknown recovery status 1,695
The number of events resulting in permanent disability 133
The number of events resulting in death 540

(The above from Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) OPV Vaccine Report. Master list of lot numbers reports from 7/1/90 through 5/31/95. Prepared by the National Vaccine Information Center operated by Dissatisfied Parents Together (DPT) March 1994 Report).

In addition, there is suspicion that as a result of the use of the polio vaccine the virus has mutated and is causing today's epidemic of chronic fatigue syndrome (myalgic encephalomyelitis). For all this, how many cases of polio were prevented?


"The greatest threat of childhood diseases lies in the dangerous and ineffectual efforts made to prevent them through mass immunization…

read more

copyright © 2001-2002