Is the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine causing a major outbreak of Japanese encephalitis in Australia?!
Take a look at the new viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!
Claim : Pfizer Vaccine Caused Japanese Encephalitis In Australia!
People are claiming that the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is causing the major outbreak of Japanese encephalitis in Australia.
Truth : Pfizer Vaccine Does NOT Cause Japanese Encephalitis At All!
This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS created by anti-vaccination activists, and here are the reasons why…
Fact #1 : Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine Does Not Contain Any Virus
The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is an mRNA vaccine, not an inactivated virus vaccine, or attenuated virus vaccine.
It does not contain a live or deactivated virus, and therefore cannot possibly cause any viral infection.
Fact #2 : Japanese Encephalitis Is Caused By JEV
Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a viral infection that causes inflammation of the brain.
It is caused by the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) – a Flavivirus, which is not remotely related to the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.
Fact #3 : Japanese Encephalitis Spreads Through Mosquitoes
The Japanese Encephalitis Virus primarily spreads through mosquitoes, especially of the Culex type.
Mosquitoes become infected if they bite an infected animal, like birds or mammals. Infected pigs, in particular, are a high-risk, because they have very high levels of the virus in their blood.
However, humans cannot get directly infected by JEV-infected pigs, or by eating pork even from infected pigs. We can only get infected if we are bitten by mosquitoes infected with JEV.
This is quite different from COVID-19, which mainly spreads through respiratory droplets from infected humans.
Fact #4 : Japanese Encephalitis Was First Documented In 1871
Japanese encephalitis is not a new disease. It was first documented in Japan, in 1871. Hence, its name.
Fact #5 : Japanese Encephalitis Is Mainly Limited To Asia
Since it spread from Japan in the 1870s, Japanese encephalitis regularly causes outbreaks in Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific.
It has also caused infections in Australia – a risk that increases with climate change that allows propagation of mosquitoes into formerly temperate climates.
So it is not surprising if Australia is currently suffering an outbreak of Japanese encephalitis.
Fact #6 : Pfizer Vaccine Was Administered Worldwide
I should now point out that the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine has been, and continues to be, administered worldwide.
If the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine causes Japanese encephalitis, these cases would be found worldwide, not just restricted to Australia and Southeast Asia.
Fact #7 : Pfizer Documents Do Not Show Vaccine Side Effects
These fake news are based on the accidental / intentional misinterpretation of Pfizer documents that were recently released by the US FDA.
Specifically, people are pointing to the nine pages of potential “adverse events” listed in the “List of Adverse Events of Special Interest” (AESI).
However, that was NOT a list of side effects caused by the Pfizer mRNA vaccine.
Rather, that was a list of 1,291 potential side effects that Pfizer was specifically looking for in the reports of adverse events.
Think of it as a shopping list of adverse events that everyone agreed that Pfizer should be looking out for.
Even if these adverse events did occur, scientists still need to find out if they actually occurred because of the vaccine, or some other causes.
Fact #8 : AESI List Not Specific To Pfizer Vaccine
The Adverse Events of Special Interest list is not specific to the Pfizer mRNA vaccine. It’s actually stated on Page 16 of the document.
That’s why the list includes diseases involving other viruses – Herpes, MERS, Varicella; as well as “exposure to SARS-CoV-2” and other “communicable disease”.
These AESIs are usually specified before clinical trials even begin, although new ones may be added later.
Fact #9 : Pfizer Document Showed No New Safety Concerns
The fake news creators also
falsely claimed that the document showed that the Pfizer vaccine caused 1,200 deaths.
If you read the Discussion and Summary + Conclusion sections, you will see that the data :
- did not reveal any “novel safety concerns or risks”
- support “a favourable benefit risk profile” of the vaccine
In other words – the Pfizer document pointed out that despite looking for 1,291 potential dangers, they found no new risks from the vaccine.
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