Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Editor's Choice

A tough nut to crack

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: (Published 27 January 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:0-h

Rapid Response:

Merck's missing mercury memo

The BMJ will, I hope, continue to call it as it sees it, but may I
suggest some caution when it comes to covering Myron Levin's report in
today's LA Times

'91 Memo Warned of Mercury in Shots

Something along the lines of

'By a total coincidence, the 1991 memo, which said inter alia that 6-
month-old children who received their shots on schedule would get a
mercury dose up to 87 times higher than guidelines for the maximum daily
consumption of mercury from fish, was entirely accidentally omitted from
the documents originally disclosed'

would do. After all, it's not as if Merck would ever withhold safety
information on any of its products, would it?

On second thoughts...

Stevie M Gamble

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

10 February 2005
Stevie M Gamble
retired HMIT