Thiomersal also thimerosal is an mercury compound established as a n antiseptic and antifungal agent. The pharmaceutical corporation Eli Lilly gave thiomersal the trade name merthiolate. It has been used as a preservative in vaccines, immunoglobulin preparation, skin test antigens, ophthalmic, and nasal products, and tattoo inks. Its use as a vaccine preservative is controversial, and it is being phased out from routine childhood vaccines in the United States, the Europe and Canada. Pharmaceutical company claim that the reason thimerosal was added to vaccine was to prevent introducing bacteria like Staphyloccus from being introduced with the vaccine. In 1928, 21 children died from “infected” diphtheria vaccine that lacked the preservative thiomersal. Thiomersal was chosen as an additive because it does not reduce the potency of the vaccines that it protects. Thiomersal is not needed and not used in more-expensive single-dose injectables. In the United States and other affluent countries, thiomersal is no longer used as a preservative in routine childhood vaccines.
Several vaccines that are not routinely recommended for young children do contain thiomersal, including DT (diphtheria and tetanus), Td (tetanus and diphtheria), and TT (tetanus toxoid).
Eliminating the preservative, thiomersal, in multi-dose vaccines, primarily used in developing countries, will lead to high cost and requirement of refrigeration which the developing countries can ill afford, the UN’s final decision is to continue adding thimerosal in “developing countries” vaccines.
Thiomersal is very toxic by inhalation, ingestion, and in contact with skin with a cumulative effects. Parents see thiomersal as a cause for increasing rate of autism as more vaccines in the childhood were required.
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