WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) A post circulating on social media claiming to list the dangerous ingredients in flu shots isn't true.
The post begins by citing a quote from a doctor. The quote reads, "If a person has had five consecutive flu shots - their chance of contracting Alzheimer's disease is 10x higher than the non-vaccinated person." It's attributed to Dr. Hugh Fudenberg.
FactFinder 12 spoke with a Wichita infectious disease doctor who says there are zero clinical studies that demonstrate that claim. Further, Dr. Fudenberg had his license suspended back in the late 1990's after being found "guilty of engaging in dishonorable, unethical, or unprofessional conduct."
The order to revoke his license also says he has violated a variety of codes that threaten the safety of others and violate medical ethics. He was fined $10,000.
As for the ingredients listed on the social media post, Wichita doctors say only three are true - Thimerosal, Aluminum salts and Formaldehyde. However, doctors say they aren't as dangerous as this post makes them out to be.
For thimerosal, the claim is that it is mercury which can cause serious illness and stay in your blood for a long time. Wichita doctor Thomas Moore says the mercury is an ethylmercury which is different than the kind that makes you sick. Doctors say it's used to keep bacteria and fungi from growing and only stays in the blood a few days.
For aluminum salts, doctors say it's important to know how much of an ingredient is in the shot. While aluminum salts are present, doctors say there is more aluminum in your drinking water than in a flu shot. They said it's used to help the body fight the disease.
For Formaldehyde, it is true that in high doses it can be toxic or deadly. But again, it depends on the dose. Doctors say the formaldehyde is used to deactivate the virus meaning you cannot get sick from the shot. But in order to reach a dangerous dose, a person would have to have more than 10 million flu shots.