Epidemiology: The government may let you have a smallpox injection, if you choose. Should you get one?
By Rebecca SklootPosted 12.03.2002 at 5:47 pm 0 Comments
Getting a potentially deadly vaccine for a disease that has been totally eradicated would have sounded crazy to most Americans until recently. Forty years ago, routine smallpox vaccines killed 1 in every million Americans vaccinated: an acceptable risk, because smallpox killed millions worldwide. But after the disease was eradicated in the 1970s, health officials discontinued the vaccine, which is now considered too dangerous for general use. Today, with weapons-grade smallpox possibly in the hands of our enemies, citizens face important