There is no doubt that so-called autoimmune disease is the sleeping giant of the vaccine safety debate.  A damning 2013 report by the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy states that at least 5% of the population suffers with an autoimmune disease, making it more common than both cancer and heart disease.  Notably, this figure does not include the large number of Autism and other developmental disorder cases known to be of autoimmune origin.

Despite a large and growing body of evidence connecting vaccination with autoimmune diseases of every kind, promoters of vaccination continue to deny the connection except in rare instances.  A selection of case reports and studies documenting autoimmune diseases which have been connected with vaccination is provided at Appendix A.

Guillain-Barré Syndrome is one such autoimmune disease which authorities have accepted can be caused by certain vaccines.  The only debate which arises is the frequency with which vaccination causes this disease.

Melbourne mother-of-three, Kathy Watson-Jones, was left paralysed from Guillain-Barré Syndrome following a flu vaccine she was required to receive as a condition of her employment during 2015.

There are two key reasons why autoimmune diseases arising from vaccination are under-reported and hence why promoters of vaccination can comfortably continue to deny the connection.

Firstly, passive surveillance of Adverse Events Following Immunisation (AEFI) results in significant under-reporting.

It is generally acknowledged that adverse events are under-reported around the world, with estimates that 90-95% of adverse events are not reported to regulators.

Secondly, there is often a significant lag time between vaccination (the trigger) and the manifestation of symptomatic autoimmune disease.

In this respect, vaccination is the perfect crime in that the injury (autoimmunity) only appears long after the culprit has left the scene of the crime.

Although an active surveillance system (AusVaxSafety) for selected vaccines has been implemented in Australia in recent years, it would appear that the surveillance stops a mere three days post-vaccination, making it next to useless for detecting autoimmune diseases arising from vaccination.  What an absolute joke.

legislative instrument made under the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986 (Cth) and Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 (Cth) sets out the circumstances in which The Repatriation Medical Authority is of the view that there is sound medical scientific evidence to indicate that Guillain-Barré Syndrome and death from Guillain-Barré syndrome can be related to relevant service rendered by veterans, and others. (See section 4)

Section 6 subsection (d) states:

The factor that must as a minimum exist before it can be said that a reasonable hypothesis has been raised connecting Guillain-Barre syndrome or death from Guillain-Barre syndrome with the circumstances of a person’s relevant service is:

(d) receiving a specified vaccine in the period from five days to two months before the clinical onset of Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

Section 9 states:

For the purposes of this Statement of Principles:
a specified vaccine” means:

(a) influenza vaccine;
(b) hepatitis B vaccine;
(c) oral poliovirus vaccine;
(d) rabies vaccine; or
(e) tetanus toxoid.

Even the U.S. Vaccine Injury Compensation Program does not accept that Guillain-Barré Syndrome is caused by all of the above vaccines, and when it does accept that the disease was caused by vaccination (Influenza vaccine only), onset of the disease must have occured within 42 days of vaccination.

Given the Australian government has accepted that a number of vaccines – not just the Influenza vaccine – are capable of causing one particular autoimmune disease, then it must also acknowledge that many other autoimmune diseases can also be caused by a variety of vaccines.  At the very least, the general public must be informed that serious adverse reactions to vaccination do not just occur exclusively in the small window immediately following vaccination, but rather, may manifest weeks or months later.  The general public also has a right to know that they or their children may be one shot away from a serious autoimmune, disabling disease from which they may never recover.

However, if Australian health authorities were to concede the real extent of autoimmune disease arising from vaccination, arguably, they would be open to the charge that they are engaged in crimes against humanity.  For this reason, I won’t be holding my breath.

Appendix A

Autoimmune Diseases Associated with or Following Vaccination

*Parts of this list were sourced from the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network Submission to the Senate Inquiry into No Jab No Pay (Appendix C – The case for a plausible link between rising autoimmunity and vaccination)

Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (ADEM)

An autoimmune, demyelinating condition of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord).

2016, Baxter et al, Acute Demyelinating Events Following Vaccines: A Case-Centered Analysis, Journal of Clinical Infectious Disease

Transverse Myelitis

A systematic review found over 37 reported cases of transverse myelitis associated with different vaccines including those against hepatitis B virus, measles-mumps-rubella, diphtheria-tetanus pertussis and others, given to infants, children and adults.

2009, Agmon-Levin et al, Transverse myelitis and vaccines: a multi-analysis, Lupus

Type 1 Diabetes

The rise in type 1 diabetes since the rollout of mass vaccination in 1950s has been attributed to a major environmental impact.  A 2004 study noted that the proportion of high-risk susceptibility genotypes was increased in the earlier cohort diagnosed more than fifty years ago which supports an environmental hypothesis.

2004, Gillespie et al, The rising incidence of childhood type 1 diabetes and reduced contribution of high-risk HLA haplotypes, Lancet

A 2003 literature review found an increased risk of type 1 diabetes two to four years following vaccination with Hib, pertussis, and MMR vaccinations.

2003, Classen et al, Clustering of cases of type 1 diabetes mellitus occurring 2-4 years after vaccination is consistent with clustering after infections and progression to type 1 diabetes mellitus in autoantibody positive individuals, Journal of Paediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism

Narcolepsy /Cataplexy

A 2013 study found H1N1 vaccination was strongly associated with an increased risk of narcolepsy–cataplexy in both children and adults in France.

2013, Dauvilliers et al, Increased risk of narcolepsy in children and adults after pandemic H1N1 vaccination in France, Brain

Similarly, another 2013 study found that during the 3 years following vaccination there was a significantly increased risk for narcolepsy with cataplexy.

2013, Heier, Incidence of narcolepsy in Norwegian children and adolescents after vaccination against H1N1 influenza A, Sleep Medicine

It was reported in 2014 that the UK government would be paying $60 million pounds in
compensation to Narcolepsy/Cataplexy victims arising from this vaccine.

2014, Porter, Brain-Damaged UK Victims of Swine Flu Vaccine to Get £60 Million Compensation, InternationalBusiness Times

This strain is included in the yearly seasonal Influenza vaccine in Australia.

Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA)

Thirty-five percent of children with JIA experienced flare of the disease after influenza vaccination.

2012, Toplak, 2012, Safety and efficacy of influenza vaccination in a prospective longitudinal study of 31 children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis, Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology

Multiple Sclerosis

Five cases of Multiple Sclerosis associated with HPV vaccination.

2009, Sutton, CNS demyelination and quadrivalent HPV vaccination, Multiple Sclerosis

A 2004 study found a significantly increased risk of developing Multiple Sclerosis within three years
after Hepatitis B vaccination.

2004, Herman, Recombinant hepatitis B vaccine and the risk of multiple sclerosis: a prospective study, Neurology

A case following HPV vaccination.

2010, DiMario et al, A 16-year-old girl with bilateral visual loss and left hemiparesis following an immunization against human papilloma virus, Journal of Child Neurology

Vaccination of any type was associated with an increased risk of CNS ADS onset within the first 30 days after vaccination. The short-term increase in risk suggests that vaccines may accelerate the transition from subclinical to overt autoimmunity in patients with existing disease.

2014, Langer-Gould et al, Vaccines and the risk of multiple sclerosis and other central nervous system demyelinating diseases, JAMA Neurology

Immune thrombocytopenia (ITP)

Case of ITP following measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine.

2014, Owatanapanich et al, Measles-mumps-rubella vaccination induced thrombocytopenia: a case report and review of the literature, South East Asian Journal of Tropical Medicine and Public Health

A recent large study identified an increased risk of ITP following Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Varicella (MMRV) vaccine.

2015, Klein et al, Safety of measles-containing vaccines in 1-year-old children, Paediatrics

Case of recurrence of ITP following meningococcal vaccine.

2015, Amirifard et al, An unusual occurrence of Kleine-Levin syndrome in a man with refractory immune thrombocytopenic purpura: a case report, Journal of Medical Case Reports

Over 1000 cases following live and inactivated vaccines.

2011, Woo et al, Thrombocytopenia after vaccination: case reports to the US Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, 1990-2008, Vaccine

A 2014 literature review found 48 cases of ITP following Hepatitis B vaccination.

2014, Tarakji et al, Hepatitis B Vaccination and Associated Oral Manifestations: A Non-Systematic Review of Literature and Case Reports, Annals of Medical &Health Sciences Research

Macrophagic Myofasciitis

Has been attributed to bio-persistence of aluminium adjuvant in muscle at the injection site.  Aluminium is used as an adjuvant in a variety of vaccines on the Australian Immunisation Schedule.

2005, Shingde et al, Macrophagic myofasciitis associated with vaccine-derived aluminium, Medical Journal of Australia

2011, Israeli et al, Macrophagic myofaciitis a vaccine (alum) autoimmune-related disease, Clinical Reviews in Allergy & Immunology

Postural orthostatic tachycardia with chronic fatigue (POTS)

Case study associated with HPV vaccination.

2014, Shoenfeld, Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia With Chronic Fatigue After HPV Vaccination as Part of the “Autoimmune/Auto-inflammatory Syndrome Induced by Adjuvants, Journal of Investigative Medicine

Six cases associated with HPV vaccination.

2013, Blitshteyn, Postural tachycardia syndrome following human papillomavirus vaccination, European Journal of Neurology

21 cases associated with HPV vaccination.

2015, Brinth et al, Orthostatic intolerance and postural tachycardia syndrome as suspected adverse effects of vaccination against human papilloma virus, Vaccine

Enthesitis-related arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)

These cases were associated with the HPV vaccine. This was a case study in which 3 patients with autoimmune/auto-inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA) after quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccination (HPV) were evaluated and described. All the patients were women. Diagnosis consisted of HLA-B27 enthesitis related arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematous, respectively.

2015, Anaya et al, Autoimmune/auto-inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA) after quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccination in Colombians: a call for personalised medicine,Clinical and experimental rheumatology

Multiple sclerosis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)

A 2005 case control study found a significantly increased risk of these conditions in adults receiving
Hepatitis B vaccine relative to tetanus vaccine (control).

2005, Geier & Geier, 2005, A case-control study of serious autoimmune adverse events following hepatitis B immunization, Autoimmunity

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)

Five cases following secondary vaccination.

1999, Older et al, Can immunization precipitate connective tissue disease? Report of five cases of systemic lupus erythematosus and review of the literature, Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism

Ten cases of SLE following primary or secondary Hepatitis B vaccination.

2009, Agmon-Levin, Ten cases of systemic lupus erythematosus related to hepatitis B vaccine, Lupus