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Author Topic: MSM medical math
Colin JM0397
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The newest oxymoron. Or just plain morons in this case.
Can these reporters not simply put the numbers together and maybe form a question or two? Apparently not.
Mumps outbreak in NY, NJ tops 1,500 cases
They parrot the CDC's claims that
quote:
The mumps vaccine is 79 to 95 percent effective if two doses are given.
Humm, how is possible, then, that
quote:
Among 1,100 from the new outbreak, the CDC said 88 percent had gotten at least one vaccine dose, 75 percent had two doses.
Hey, if 2 doses isn't working, why not 3?
quote:
Health officials last month began offering a third dose in some schools where the outbreak has persisted. So far, cases are continuing.
Mike Adams' take on all this: http://www.naturalnews.com/028142_mumps_vaccines.html
quote:
But in this case, the 77 percent figure slipped out. And now intelligent observers are increasingly seeing the truth about these vaccines:

• Infectious disease vaccines simply don't work. If they did, then why did all these children who were already vaccinated still get mumps?

• Vaccines may actually increase your risk of disease. Notice that far more vaccinated children were stricken with mumps than non-vaccinated children?

• The people who administer vaccines never tell you that their vaccines don't really work. They tell you that you'll be "protected" with the vaccine, implying a near-100% level of protection (which is blatantly false).

• Even if you're vaccinated against a disease, you may still catch that disease anyway! So what's the point of the vaccine?

...The CDC also says that 2009 was a bad year for mumps outbreaks. They blame all the people who refuse to be vaccinated for causing these outbreaks. Their theory, of course, is based on the imaginary idea that mumps vaccines halt mumps infections. But once again, it's all imaginary! As we saw this week in New Jersey, most of the people who get infected in these outbreaks are the very people who were vaccinated!

If mumps vaccines actually worked, then what you should see instead is the mumps infection spreading among those who refused the vaccines, right? It's only logical.

In fact, if vaccines really work, then why should the vaccinated people be bothered at all by those who don't get vaccinated? After all, if their vaccines protect themselves from disease, then non-vaccinated people are no threat to them, right? So why are vaccinated people so pushy about forcing non-vaccinated people to get vaccinated?

The shocking truth about infectious disease and vaccines, however, is very different from what you're told by the drug companies (and the health authorities who pander to their interests): Some vaccines may actually promote the very diseases they claim to prevent!

That may be why 77% of those who recently got mumps in New Jersey were, in fact, the very people who were vaccinated against mumps. The vaccine may, in fact, weaken your immune system against future infections, causing you to become more susceptible to future outbreaks.



[ February 11, 2010, 06:46 PM: Message edited by: Colin JM0397 ]

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LoverOfJoy
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quote:
In the new outbreak, the first identified case was an 11-year-old boy who got sick in late June. He had just returned from the United Kingdom - where vaccination rates are lower and mumps is more common - before going to the camp in Sullivan County in upstate New York.
Sounds like they're implying that the lower rate of vaccinations in the UK allowed a vaccination-resistant strain to develop.
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Clark
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Seatbelts simply don't work. If they did, then why do people who wear seatbelts still die?

Seatbelts may actually increase your risk of injury. Notice that far more people wearing seatbelts are injured in car accidents than non-seatbelt wearers.

The people who make seatbelts never tell you that their seatbelts don't really work. They tell you that you'll be "protected" with the seatbelt, implying a near-100% level of protection (which is blatantly false).

Even if you're wearing a seatbelt, you may get injured anyway! So what's the point of the seatbelt?

---------------

There are relevant and thoughtful arguments to be made both for an against vaccines as they are administered in the US today. These excerpts, however, are not those arguments.

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yossarian22c
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Yeah, the key piece of data that was missing was the percentage of the population that was vaccinated. If 99% of the exposed population was vaccinated and 88% of those that got sick had been vaccinated then there is evidence of the vaccine working.
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scifibum
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Also: not every mumps virus is identical to every other mumps virus. Even if the vaccine offered no protection (and it sounds like in this case it did, because the percentage of kids vaccinated was probably very high)...it could be because of a new or different strain of virus.
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TomDavidson
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*holds his head* That article you linked, Colin, appears to betray a profound ignorance of statistical analysis. Even as it attempts to make an argument based on statistical analysis. It makes me feel kind of sorry for the author.
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Pyrtolin
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88 percent _of those infected_
75 percent _of those infected_
77 percent _of those infected_

Not of all people, just of those who were infected.

So, just looking at NYC, we can lowball (that works in your favor here, because it makes the infecting population larger in comparison, given that the article noted NYC and surrounding areas as the affected zone) the potential exposure at 8 million people. Of which 1500 were infected.

That gives us 0.01875% of the population infected; that's much better than the expected protection rate of 95% from two vaccinations. If 99% of people are vaccinated, then those numbers actually show that even among those infected, the unvaccinated represent a larger share in comparison to their proportion in the general population.

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Gaoics79
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quote:
*holds his head* That article you linked, Colin, appears to betray a profound ignorance of statistical analysis. Even as it attempts to make an argument based on statistical analysis. It makes me feel kind of sorry for the author.
I don't think it requires any special understanding of statistical analysis really. I just think that he hasn't thought this through carefully. I admit I was fooled too until I just worked it out in my head carefully.
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vulture
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
88 percent _of those infected_
75 percent _of those infected_
77 percent _of those infected_

Not of all people, just of those who were infected.

So, just looking at NYC, we can lowball (that works in your favor here, because it makes the infecting population larger in comparison, given that the article noted NYC and surrounding areas as the affected zone) the potential exposure at 8 million people. Of which 1500 were infected.

That gives us 0.01875% of the population infected; that's much better than the expected protection rate of 95% from two vaccinations. If 99% of people are vaccinated, then those numbers actually show that even among those infected, the unvaccinated represent a larger share in comparison to their proportion in the general population.

True up to a point. 0.01875% of the population is infected. But you don't know what fraction of the population were exposed.

If there are 1100 cases, 75% of which have 2 vaccinations, and 2 vaccinations gives you 79-95% immunity (call it 85% for the sake of argument), then that suggests about 5500 people with double vaccinations were exposed. As a handwaving figure that seems vaguely plausible; only the main friends of an infected person are likely to be exposed since mumps isn't massively contagious.

The quotes in the original article are total donkey testicles though in the way they try and 'interpret' the data.

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OpsanusTau
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quote:
appears to betray a profound ignorance of statistical analysis.
Not only a profound ignorance of statistical analysis, but also of epidemiology and immunology.

I have to go to class, but maybe I'll remember to post more on this later. It's entirely likely that I won't, though, so I'll just say that this article doesn't really make any sense at all.

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G2
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quote:
Infectious disease vaccines simply don't work. If they did, then why did all these children who were already vaccinated still get mumps?
Seemed to work pretty well for polio and small pox. Vaccines may not be 100% effective nor may they be as effective as advertised but they do work.
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yossarian22c
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Yes the vaccine does seem to work. Seeing that we went from this being a common childhood illness to 1500 cases being a news worthy outbreak. The scale of the numbers alone tells us that the vaccine has been fairly effective. I know that I personally have never known someone (that I am aware of) with measles, mumps, or rubella.* Considering these used to be common illnesses (and still are in the third world) I would say the vaccine has some positive benefit.

*This is anecdotal evidence but it can help balance out the anecdotal evidence against vaccine efficacy.

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Colin JM0397
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Can of worms: correlation is not causation.

On that note, what the hell is a can of worms? Has anyone ever seen a can of worms? Who thought canning worms is a good idea? Box of worms, styrene thing with plastic cap, even cup of worms at the bait store... But a can?
Or is it like the can of whoopass?

[ February 12, 2010, 01:42 PM: Message edited by: Colin JM0397 ]

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cherrypoptart
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I've seen a can of worms.

My grandfather and I used to electrocute the ground and take the earthworms that came up and put them in a can to go fishing. Neither here nor there. But you asked...

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Colin JM0397
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Makes sense. I was thinking more like "Starkist dolphin free worms packed in water". I guess back in the day before plastic and all that, you would use an old can... But it would have already been opened!
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Gaoics79
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quote:
Can of worms: correlation is not causation.
What would you suggest caused the extinction of the small pox virus (outside a CDC or Al Quaida laboratory), if not the small pox vaccine?
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vulture
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Correlation is not causation. For a genuine correlation (i.e. one that isn't merely coincidence) there are three possibilities: A causes B, B causes A, or A and B are both caused by C.

So either:

a) vaccinations cause the incidence of a disease to be reduced

b) a naturally occurring decrease in the incidence of a disease causes vaccination programs

c) some external factor causes the existence of vaccination programs and the incidence of the associated disease to drop.

Correlation isn't automatically causation, but when there is a plausible mechanisms (the way vaccines actually work) and the other possible causes of correlation look decidedly questionable, then that supplementary data makes inferring causation pretty reliable.

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Colin JM0397
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V - that's simplistic and doesn't meet the logic test.
There are many other possibilities there. B is a non-factor and A was caused by C. Or neither B nor C caused A, so we’re back to trying to find cause X.
-----------------------
There is plenty of info that shows the steady decline in specific diseases, such as smallpox, was already going on pre vaccination. Of course, that in and of itself proves nor disproves nothing. However, it is yet another factor to keep in mind.

Also, as is the case with H1N1 rates in Canada, in some cases there is evidence that points to a worsening of cases when vaccinations are taken into account. What’s going on there? No one seems to be overly jumping on studying that one – at least not that we’d know from the MSM.

Anecdotal, so again proves nothing, but it's interesting. I'll have to dig up the reference and report, but there was a case in the 1930's in Missouri, IIRC, where the entire state medical board was found guilty of causing panic and falsifying information. They claimed a pandemic was coming, which got everyone scrambling for the shot, then many folks contracted the disease from the vaccinations. Health officials tried to say "see how right we were? We saved so many more through our vaccine program." However in trial, it came out that those who contracted it had received the vaccine, and it was a manufactured panic,

Some in the anti-vaccine crowd claim this model is still used today. IE vaccine-induced illnesses being more frequent than infections of non-vaccinated. The old "it would have been so much worse if we hadn't vaccinated X amount of people". I don’t know about that – just relaying what I’ve read.

For a proper analysis, we simply need to look at the infection rates of those vaccinated vs. those not vaccinated, yet those numbers are rarely released. Hence why folks like Mike Adams are calling the Mumps data a big oops on the MSM's part - for the fact they slipped and let out those very interesting numbers.

[ February 12, 2010, 04:38 PM: Message edited by: Colin JM0397 ]

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MattP
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quote:
... the fact they slipped and let out those very interesting numbers.
Did you miss the multiple comments here about how those numbers weren't all that interesting?

Knowing what percentage of a group of infected individuals was vaccinated tells us *nothing* about the efficacy of the vaccine.

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Colin JM0397
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It’s quite simple, but some of you want to make this more difficult than it is. Without even using a calculator I can say definitively, in this case, more people who received the CDC-recommended 2 shots for a Mumps vaccination have a higher infection rate than people who are under-vaccinated (1 shot) or did not have the vaccination. Rates of exposure, population, and even CDC stats on the efficacy do not matter.

Use that 1100 number as a sample of those infected. Take the low number of 75% with both shots. That means, in raw numbers, 825 infected had both shots, and the other 275 infected had 1 shot or none.

That means there is a 3-to-1 ratio of vaccinated people to non/under-vaccinated who are coming down with this strain of Mumps. Might mean "nothing" to some of you, but I find it highly interesting.

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Wayward Son
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But without knowing the number of people who were exposed but did not come down with the symptoms, what does it tell you?

If 100,000 fully vaccinated people were exposed, but only 275 non/under-vaccinated people were exposed, that would indicate the vaccines work extremely well, wouldn't it? [Wink]

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DonaldD
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Colin, was the number of people who received 0, 1, 2 and 3 shots reported (e.g., X thousand received no shot, Y thousand received 1 shot, Z thousand people received 2 shots, etc)?
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OpsanusTau
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quote:
That means there is a 3-to-1 ratio of vaccinated people to non/under-vaccinated who are coming down with this strain of Mumps. Might mean "nothing" to some of you, but I find it highly interesting.
*blink*

Really?

Because it's not. Or, it's interesting to ME, but probably not in the way you think it is.

Look at it this way:
If out of every four people who came down with mumps in this outbreak, three were vaccinated and one was not, that means that the rate of non-vaccination in this particular sub-population (those who actually got sick with mumps) was 25%.

I don't know offhand exactly what the rate of mumps vaccination in the general population is, but I think it's well over 90%. That means that in the larger population, the rate of non-vaccination is less than 10%.

Do you see how the non-vaccinated (who make up less than one-tenth of the population as a whole) are over-represented in the group infected with mumps?

I have neither the time nor the inclination to run the statistical analysis for significance on this, in which we would determine the probability of getting an actual outcome (25% of a population non-vaccinated) as different as this from the expected value (less than 10% non-vaccinated)in a random sample of the larger population.
My guess is that the probability would be low - if anyone else (?) knows how to run this analysis, please do, but I have other stuff to do.

Look, the point of vaccination is NOT that it makes any individual guaranteed immune to the disease. There's always a possibility that your immune system will fail to respond to the vaccine, so any individual who is vaccinated getting sick shows nothing.
But on a population level, we expect to see lower rates of infection among those exposed who are vaccinated than among those exposed who are not. (This is the way people usually talk about it, but it's very difficult to get this information, since it's hard to know in a non-laboratory setting who was exposed. In the research I'm currently working on, we know who was exposed and who was not because we exposed them ourselves, but those are cows and the disease is an annoyance, and you can't do that with people and a disease that can result in sterility and other nasty complications.)

Alternately, we expect to see lower rates of vaccination among those who are infected and higher rates among those who are not infected. (This is what we see here, though it's a little bit of a mental exercise to think about it that way.)

Or yet another way of putting it, we expect to that there are (edited to add: proportionally more, obviously!) more non-vaccinated individuals among the sick than there are in the general population. That is exactly what we see in this case.

It's not particularly interesting, because we know from hundreds and hundreds of studies that vaccines work, and how they work, and this result is exactly what was expected in light of what we know. Though it's always nice to have more supporting data.

(In fact it is also, and maybe even more nice to have contradictory data, since then someone gets to figure out why the expected didn't happen in a particular case, and has to make the "why" fit with the body of other knowledge that we have. But that is, sadly, not what appears to be happening here.)

As always, if any part of that is unclear I am happy to do my best to clarify.

[ February 12, 2010, 06:54 PM: Message edited by: OpsanusTau ]

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hobsen
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When I was growing up in the late 1940s almost all children contracted mumps and measles and chickenpox sometime during their childhood. This was such an expected part of growing up that some parents would deliberately expose their children to sick brothers or sisters, thinking it was better for the whole family to be sick at once, and that these diseases might be more dangerous if the children contracted them as adults.

But it was also well known, especially for mumps, that even having a full blown case of the disease as a child did not necessarily provide lifelong immunity. Usually it did, but now and then an adult would get mumps after having had it as a child. Usually such an adult would get a lighter case than expected, however, as he would have retained at least partial immunity. But the point is that, if even having mumps in childhood does not necessarily provide permanent immunity, why would anyone expect that any vaccine would do so? It reduces the chance a child will contract the disease, and usually provides protection later, but it can hardly be expected that it will always do so. Actually, the decline in adult infections today may be more because adults are now rarely exposed to children sick with these diseases than because their childhood immunizations are still effective years later.

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vulture
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quote:
Originally posted by Colin JM0397:


That means there is a 3-to-1 ratio of vaccinated people to non/under-vaccinated who are coming down with this strain of Mumps. Might mean "nothing" to some of you, but I find it highly interesting.

As OT has said; it does actually mean nothing; not enough information is given to support any conclusion whatsoever. If you find it interesting, then you have misunderstood the numbers.

I have a collection of dice, some with 6 sides, and some with 20, and all dice are fair (equal probability of throwing each number) and are numbered 1-6 or 1-20 respectively. So a 6-sided dice has a 1 in 6 chance of throwing a 1, and a 20-sided dice has a 1 in 20 chance of throwing a 1. If I then tell you than I threw some dice, and found 5 1's on 6-sided dice and 38 1's on 20-sided dice, then you have exactly the same information as in this article (with the proviso that you know the odds in my example). In the case of dice it is blindingly obvious that you can't say "I there are 38 1's thrown with 20-sided dice, therefore they have to have a higher chance of throwing a 1 than the 6-sided dice" - which is exactly the kind of argument you are making with the vaccines. It isn't "interesting" data - it is completely insufficient to draw any conclusions whatsoever from, until you can add in other necessary data as OT did.

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TomDavidson
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*nod* That's precisely why I complained about statistical analysis. The article is presenting these numbers as if they can be used to reach a damning conclusion, when in fact they only appear interesting if you don't actually know anything about statistics.
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Colin JM0397
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More info is necessary. OT's 90% immunization rate is a guess, not a known number. Sure, it makes the non/under immunized more represented if she is accurate.

But what if the vaccination rate is 75% in this group of 1200?
Then we have 900 vac to 300 not/under, which gives us that same 3-1 ratio. In that case, we could infer the vaccine makes no difference.

Let’s say vaccination rate in this 1200 is less than 75%. What’s that mean?
Then we see a higher incidence of those vaccinated represented in this sample, which then brings up a very troubling possibility that the vaccine not only doesn’t matter, but it leaves a person more likely to contract the disease.

However, those guesses are no more or less valid at this point until several more questions are answered.

I could see 90% being accurate in a group under 15 or so, but that number would start dropping as we add in older people in the mix.

I never said that 3-1 figure proves/disproves anything. It's interesting, which means I find it worthy of looking further into. Some of you want to split hairs, fine. These figures in and of themselves mean nothing... yet. However, they are part of a puzzle that, IMO, needs to be put together.

[ February 13, 2010, 01:14 PM: Message edited by: Colin JM0397 ]

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PSRT
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More measles numbers
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Colin JM0397
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Better info from the CDC, but still no rundown on overall immunization rates: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5905a1.htm
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MattP
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quote:
However, those guesses are no more or less valid at this point until several more questions are answered.
Exactly. That's what everyone has been trying to say, while Mike Adams is spinning it as a some sort of indictment of vaccines. It's absolutely meaningless. It's a numerator without a denominator. It's *undefined*.
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MattP
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This article claims at least 90% for each of the vaccines it surveyed, including MMR: http://children.webmd.com/vaccines/news/20080904/childhood-vaccination-rates-high
(Sourced to a CDC report)

[ February 13, 2010, 01:37 PM: Message edited by: MattP ]

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Originally posted by Colin JM0397:
But what if the vaccination rate is 75% in this group of 1200?
Then we have 900 vac to 300 not/under, which gives us that same 3-1 ratio. In that case, we could infer the vaccine makes no difference.

You have to look at more than just that 1200- you have to look at everyone who was exposed and didn't get it, the people beyond those 1200, and what the vaccination ratio was in that population.
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OpsanusTau
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quote:
But what if the vaccination rate is 75% in this group of 1200?
Um.

Didn't you say that the vaccination rate is 75% in this group of 1200? That is what we DO know.

The other thing that we DO know is the vaccination rate for mumps (well, MMR at least) in the population at large. Or someone knows it. According to that one link it's above 90%.

What we do NOT know is the following two facts:
1) How many people were exposed to mumps total.
2) The vaccination status of those particular people.
This is the information that would allow us to actually test the hypothesis of vaccine efficacy.

We can use the known rate of mumps vaccination in the general population to extrapolate a probable vaccination rate in the exposed population, which unless we have some reason not to is an okay thing to do for the purposes of thinking, though it has some problems.
We could also probably make an estimate of how many people were exposed, and I think vulture did that a little bit upthread.

However. From what we DO know, we could run the kind of statistical analysis I suggested and see if the over-representation of non-vaccinated individuals amongst the infected is significant. It's possible that it IS significant, in which case the data that we have would show corroborate vaccine efficacy. It's possible that it's NOT significant, in which case the data would not corroborate vaccine efficacy. Neither outcome would be surprising here. If I felt like it (which I don't, because it's not an interesting question), I would run the numbers and see which of these we have in this case.

However, I can't think of a way that this data could support a hypothesis that the vaccine makes infection MORE likely.

You don't have to keep arguing this. It's okay, you misunderstood the statistics, you're totally wrong. Happens to all of us. There's no reason to be embarrassed about it, and you don't even need to admit "defeat" or whatever. But really, there's no reason to keep talking about it.

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Pete at Home
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"The other thing that we DO know is the vaccination rate for mumps (well, MMR at least) in the population at large. Or someone knows it. According to that one link it's above 90%."

IIRC, that MMR number varies considerably in certain locales, b/c of the influence of Wakefield and b/c of stories, well, like mine. I'm curious what the actual vax rate was for the locales where the outbreaks occurred.

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vulture
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:

IIRC, that MMR number varies considerably in certain locales, b/c of the influence of Wakefield and b/c of stories, well, like mine. I'm curious what the actual vax rate was for the locales where the outbreaks occurred.

I had the same thought; uptake of vaccinations might well cluster (due to clustering social subgroups, certain regions being vaccinated by agencies with differing resources / philosophies, people sharing concerns pro-/anti- with their neighbours), and disease spread certainly clusters, so it is quite possible that the vaccination rates amongst any given subset exposed to mumps could by systematically different from the gross population averages.
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Colin JM0397
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As I said, your point is only valid if you can prove your 90% claim. It's an unknown. You can’t point to the national averages because we are not talking about an average group here. If you want to stand by your guesses, that's fine, but I'd prefer the hard numbers. If you can't be bothered to find them, that’s fine, but don’t get all uppity because I pointed out that you are making a guess. You choose not to hear what I have said – which really isn’t much. More to the point, you choose to hear something I'm not saying.

There's still no info on the total number of vaccinated in that community. The 75% only refers to those infected. What we don't know is the overall rate in that community. The national numbers don't tell us that.

Perhaps Ricky can enlighten us here - what's the Orthodox Jewish view of vaccinations?

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OpsanusTau
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quote:

IIRC, that MMR number varies considerably in certain locales, b/c of the influence of Wakefield and b/c of stories, well, like mine. I'm curious what the actual vax rate was for the locales where the outbreaks occurred.

Yep. People are always confusing correlation with causation and making questionable choices based on incorrect or insufficient information and whatnot (that is what humans do!), and for these as well as other reasons, vaccine refusal DOES tend to cluster by geographic location. That's one of the things that I meant when I said
quote:
We can use the known rate of mumps vaccination in the general population to extrapolate a probable vaccination rate in the exposed population, which unless we have some reason not to is an okay thing to do for the purposes of thinking, though it has some problems.
Thinking that this geographic or cultural location might be prone to vaccine refusal is an example of a reason not to so extrapolate.
Or even if we did decide to assume similar vaccination rates because we didn't know of a reason not to, we might not be correct to do so, which would be a problem.

It is okay to make assumptions for the purpose of allowing ourselves to think about an issue, as long as we make sure to remain aware that it is an assumption that may not be correct.

In conclusion, I don't think we have enough information about this particular scenario to say much of anything about it; and even if we had more information, it's hard for me to see how we could say anything very interesting with it.

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MattP
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quote:
More to the point, you choose to hear something I'm not saying.
You said this:
quote:
quote:
The mumps vaccine is 79 to 95 percent effective if two doses are given.
Humm, how is possible, then, that
quote:
quote:
Among 1,100 from the new outbreak, the CDC said 88 percent had gotten at least one vaccine dose, 75 percent had two doses.

It's been answered multiple times. The implication that the latter quote contradicts the former quote isn't supported by any data that you have presented.
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OpsanusTau
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quote:
As I said, your point is only valid if you can prove your 90% claim.
WHAT point is only valid? The point that the numbers don't show at all what you said they do?
Sorry, you're wrong about that.

I hope that I acknowledged that I was, in fact, pulling an estimate out of the air with the ~90% for the purpose of a small thought experiment to show how, if we had more information, we could actually say something about what happened here. (I certainly MEANT it to be clear that I was making an estimate!) And that yes, the rate of vaccination in the population of those exposed is an unknown, as is the population size of the exposed. That's what I was saying. That was my point.

And far from saying "not really much", you said the following:
quote:
I can say definitively, in this case, more people who received the CDC-recommended 2 shots for a Mumps vaccination have a higher infection rate than people who are under-vaccinated (1 shot) or did not have the vaccination. Rates of exposure, population, and even CDC stats on the efficacy do not matter.
But that first part an incredible misinterpretation of the available data, which is what everyone here has been trying to say to you. And the second part shows such an astonishing ignorance about meaningful ways of thinking about these sorts of things that I'm actually still sort of boggled.
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TomDavidson
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quote:
However, they are part of a puzzle that, IMO, needs to be put together.
May I ask why you think there's a puzzle?
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