Dr. Gary Goldman initially called attention to these findings during the inaugural meeting of Physicians for Informed Consent (PIC) back in 2017. He described how the country's chickenpox vaccination program altered the epidemiology of shingles, alongside the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) manipulation of data to conceal the unwanted outcomes that occurred.
Goldman explained that before the universal chickenpox or varicella vaccine was introduced in the U.S. in 1996, 95 percent of adults had experienced natural chickenpox when they were children and developed lifelong immunity. Subsequent exposures to natural chickenpox prevented or postponed shingles.
Adults started developing painful, blistery rashes when the vaccination drives started. Exposure to the varicella-zoster virus (VZV) resulted in a rash, which is commonly considered chickenpox. To battle the increase in shingles cases, the Zostavax injection was rolled out.
"We had 300 surveillance units – daycare centers, schools, physicians, clinics, hospitals – reporting to us … this community of 300,000 would report cases of chickenpox to us. So really, we were going to produce perhaps some of the best data ever collected in history of this disease of varicella," Goldman said at the time. (Related: Vaccinating against chickenpox often causes shingles, even in children.)
Goldman assured that chickenpox is a benign disease, stressing that a person has "a greater chance of dying from a strike of lightning than from chickenpox."
Meanwhile, shingles manifests as a painful rash that can be so sensitive that just air or clothing rubbing on it would be painful. It also has many manifestations affecting nerves throughout the body. Goldman cited Bell's palsy – paralysis on one side of the face – as caused by herpes zoster or shingles, with some even mistaking it for a heart attack.
At the time of Goldman's presentation, 75 percent of varicella medical costs were related to shingles and 25 percent were linked to chickenpox – reflecting the fact that the former was a far greater medical issue than the latter. Moreover, chickenpox follows a naturally occurring downward trend in cases – peaking over three to five years and decreasing by as much as 50 percent without the need for vaccines.
The epidemiology analyst also blasted the CDC for deceiving the American public.
"The CDC themselves with these financial conflicts of interest. The data manipulation that goes on – you can call that pseudoscience [or] quackery. There's no more truth," he said. "I would say a good percentage of studies that you can pick out, there’s a fundamental methodological flaw in there to promote vaccination."
Goldman served as the editor-in-chief of Medical Veritas, a reviewer for the Journal of the American Medical Association and various other published studies. He is also a member of the editorial board of Research and Reviews in Biosciences.
He had also participated in a CDC-funded study about the effect of the widespread use of chickenpox vaccines in California between 1995 and 2002. In 2005, Goldman published a major paper warning that the decline in the incidence of chickenpox would lead to an increase in children developing shingles – courtesy of the chickenpox injections given to them.
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