The overall underreporting factor for is easily calculated for parenterally administered drugs (like the modRNA vaccines):

[Overall underreporting factor] = [Total number of doses administered] / [Total number of reports]

There were 613 million doses administered by October 5th according to Bloomberg. According to VAERS there are 892,655 filed reports about vaccinations before that point in time.

613000000 / 892655 = 686.7

This is the precise overall underreporting factor.

Now if we look at the report proportions for headaches, we find that roughly 22% of these reports mention headaches. If we look at the little reliable data there are on the subject, this more or less lines up with the incidence proportion.

If a symptom's incidence proportion is equal to it's report proportion, then the symptoms URF is equal to the overall URF. Let's assume 22% is correct for both report and incidence proportion. Then the URF for headaches is also 686.7.

Now unfortunately there are medical concepts which incidence proportions are higher than their report proportions (or vice versa). Bell's palsy is one such case, since it received media attention. It differs by a factor of 4.4.

However I consider the incidence proportions determined in some studies no more reliable than the report proportions I see in VAERS. This is a side effect of being familiar with the data. VAERS is pretty randomized.

At an underreporting factor of close to 1000, we can imagine that there are countless factors influencing a person's decision to report a side effect. The quality of the event is just one factor and not a very critical one it seems.

Unless we are talking about extreme cases like death, we can safely assume the proportions more or less line up.

But even if we divide all report proportions by 100 we are still talking about inacceptable risks for many patients who aren't particularly at risk to suffer a severe course of disease. The highest overrepresentation factor I found was not a 100, but 4.4 for Bell's palsy.

I agree that we don't need to know the underreporting factor, but it can have a use in pointing out the limitations of the adverse event reporting databases. I think it is useful for showing people that these databases are only capturing a small proportion of the problem.

Oh btw, despite being a smartass here, I still liked your approach to the issue. It's just much simpler than that.

We never needed to know the underreporting factor, because it 's specific to each of the 30k or so MedDRA descriptors occurring in VAERS reports.

This Steve Kirsch guy is either endlessly arrogant and much less mentally agile than he claims to be or he was trying to hinder our progress in understanding what's going on.

Most of the scientific publication talking about the underreporting factor are just trying to mislead us. It is the wrong approach.

The URF is a dead end. Once we figure it out for one symptom, we don't need it anymore because we already know the incidence when we know the URF. But this does not bring us any closer to figuring out the other incidence proportions because it is specific to every medical concept.

edited Dec 4, 2022The overall underreporting factor for is easily calculated for parenterally administered drugs (like the modRNA vaccines):

[Overall underreporting factor] = [Total number of doses administered] / [Total number of reports]

There were 613 million doses administered by October 5th according to Bloomberg. According to VAERS there are 892,655 filed reports about vaccinations before that point in time.

613000000 / 892655 = 686.7

This is the precise overall underreporting factor.

Now if we look at the report proportions for headaches, we find that roughly 22% of these reports mention headaches. If we look at the little reliable data there are on the subject, this more or less lines up with the incidence proportion.

If a symptom's incidence proportion is equal to it's report proportion, then the symptoms URF is equal to the overall URF. Let's assume 22% is correct for both report and incidence proportion. Then the URF for headaches is also 686.7.

Now unfortunately there are medical concepts which incidence proportions are higher than their report proportions (or vice versa). Bell's palsy is one such case, since it received media attention. It differs by a factor of 4.4.

However I consider the incidence proportions determined in some studies no more reliable than the report proportions I see in VAERS. This is a side effect of being familiar with the data. VAERS is pretty randomized.

At an underreporting factor of close to 1000, we can imagine that there are countless factors influencing a person's decision to report a side effect. The quality of the event is just one factor and not a very critical one it seems.

Unless we are talking about extreme cases like death, we can safely assume the proportions more or less line up.

But even if we divide all report proportions by 100 we are still talking about inacceptable risks for many patients who aren't particularly at risk to suffer a severe course of disease. The highest overrepresentation factor I found was not a 100, but 4.4 for Bell's palsy.

Thanks for all your comments.

I agree that we don't need to know the underreporting factor, but it can have a use in pointing out the limitations of the adverse event reporting databases. I think it is useful for showing people that these databases are only capturing a small proportion of the problem.

edited Dec 4, 2022Oh btw, despite being a smartass here, I still liked your approach to the issue. It's just much simpler than that.

We never needed to know the underreporting factor, because it 's specific to each of the 30k or so MedDRA descriptors occurring in VAERS reports.

This Steve Kirsch guy is either endlessly arrogant and much less mentally agile than he claims to be or he was trying to hinder our progress in understanding what's going on.

Most of the scientific publication talking about the underreporting factor are just trying to mislead us. It is the wrong approach.

The URF is a dead end. Once we figure it out for one symptom, we don't need it anymore because we already know the incidence when we know the URF. But this does not bring us any closer to figuring out the other incidence proportions because it is specific to every medical concept.