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WATCH: No, Vaccinations Do Not Cause Autism

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WATCH: No, Vaccinations Do Not Cause Autism

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In 1998 a paper published in the journal The Lancet connected measles, mumps, and rubella vaccinations with the development of autism. Though the paper was later retracted, the myth persists and has led to a movement encouraging parents to reject MMR vaccinations for their children (while also encouraging lawsuits against the vaccine makers).

And that movement has led to both a waste of funds that could be used to research the disorder and likely even the loss of real human lives.

“I do not deny that we need to do more about autism,” pediatrician and health researcher Aaron Carroll said in the latest episode of his Healthcare Triage web series, where he reviews the history of the controversy, “but it has nothing to do with vaccines.”

Aaron Carroll

 

Screenshot via Healthcare Triage YouTube channel

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20 Comments

  1. daniel bostdorf January 24, 2014

    Oh this is very real…This myth has caused hundreds of thousands of children to become sick, some have died, with the very disease the vaccines were intended to stop.

    Myth making here has caused involuntary manslaughter….

    And believe it or not—there are other myth believers who believe that there is no global climate change either….and the world is flat….and that elephants can fly….and that we really never landed on the moon…and the sky is falling because of Obamacare…and Sheriff Joe Arpaio loves immigrants and only wants to help them to get back home…and….

    Reply
  2. gardenSalsa64 January 24, 2014

    Although it can be humiliating, civilization’s preservation and advance, along with our own personal preservation and advance, depend upon learning from our inevitable accidents.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf January 24, 2014

  3. sigrid28 January 24, 2014

    This is probably as good a place as any to point out that the ACA has been a tremendous aide to families and their members who have autism. Formerly, insurers considered autism a pre-existing condition for children and adults previously diagnosed, and refused expensive diagnostic work for those not yet diagnosed, many of them toddlers, even though early diagnosis and treatment can be very effective. Many state medicaid plans and most insurance plans excluded mental health benefits that individuals with autism require in order to be diagnosed and prescribed medications and treatments, even though autism is a lifelong pervasive developmental disability. As part of the ACA, mental health parity laws now protect individuals with autism, so that these necessary costs must be covered. As the ACA rolls out, discrepancies which have always existed on a state-by-state basis, may finally be addressed, such as an ongoing debate in the autism community about the usefulness of ABA therapy, one of the few ways the very young who have autism can sometimes become functional enough to join their peers in preschool and primary classrooms. Another benefit of the ACA is the chance for child and adolescent psychiatrists to make a living, so that more medical students will decide to join their ranks.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf January 24, 2014

      Nice thoughtful post….and the side issue is that the video pertained to autism and your post helps to encourage myth debunking….

      1. sigrid28 January 24, 2014

        As you are probably aware, the autism community here and abroad has been beset by many myths. Bruno Bettleheim invented the myth of the “refrigerator mom” and other psychologists found even more creative ways to blame parents: now the myth of faulty nurturing has largely been debunked. In the last decade, along with the vaccine controversy, diets have been explored and dietary supplements: both the myth of a cause in the environment has also largely been debunked. Rapid advances in psychiatric medications have helped many individuals on the autism spectrum and their families manage symptoms, as have traditional and novel therapies, also derived from psychiatry. Special education has done a very good job in schools of providing services for students between the ages of six and twenty-one, but often parents must pay for an expensive diagnosis ($1,000) before these services can be deemed necessary. Now the ACA is alleviating the staggering costs of diagnosis, making vital treatment possible before age six, and giving adolescents and adults the ability to pay for good follow-up care once they are out of school. Hopefully, gone are the days when diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder meant the end of solvency and sometimes sanity for all but the wealthiest American families.

  4. Allan Richardson January 25, 2014

    Some political and business leaders seem to have a selective form of autism themselves: sociopathic inability to feel the pain of others.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      I posted a comment above that I need your opinion on…

    2. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      Please see my comment to Dalhia Lugo above…

  5. mbm January 26, 2014

    Myths begin & are perpetuated when people are lied to & get no answers. The association of vaccines with autism is not merely MMR but the ever increasing number of vaccines mandated for infants along with known toxins as preservatives & adjuvants, such as Thimerosol, formaldehyde, even peanut oil, among others, injected into a developing organism. The incidence of autism, ASD, learning disabilities & life threatening food allergies has increased both exponentially & alarmingly along with the astounding increase of vaccines required before the start of school. Add to this Big Pharma’s immunity from lawsuits and providing their own research on safety, efficacy and adverse effects and it is easy to smell a rat. Even the CDC protects the pharmaceuticals & suppresses evidence. While I have no doubt that the cause of autism is multi-factorial, there is no doubt that what started as a life saving measure has been tainted for greed, avarice & convenience. And let the evidence be damned in susceptible individuals. As we view the staggering numbers of ASD & life threatening food allergies unseen and unheard of just a generation ago, we owe it to our children to demand answers, whether they are easy or comfortable. We cannot rely on the FDA or Big Pharma to have our best interests at heart. It IS about money.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      Please see my comment to Dalhia Lugo above…

    2. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      I am no fan of big pharma either….but this article is about the discredited notion that vaccines cause autism….please see my comment above yours…

  6. Daliah Lugo January 28, 2014

    Mr. Sattler, I hope you’ll take the time to read my post on this issue: http://opinionandorder.blogspot.com/2014/01/the-nasty-vaccine-wars.html.

    Reply
    1. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      How about you post us your opinion on the issue here?

      1. Daliah Lugo January 28, 2014

        Thank you for posting my article. The hyperlinks contained in the original are no appearing, though. They point to the documents that support my statements.

        1. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

          I have replied to you above and posted your blog.

        2. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

          That is fair—your links are not connected….and I encourage readers to go there and read….thanks for the update…

    2. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      Actually—I will post your blog article contents. Rather than drive “traffic” to your blog. This way—readers here can directly comment about what you wrote here and not there.

      Your article:

      The Nasty Vaccine Wars

      Big Pharma is rolling out the big guns on the corporate media outlets with the battle cry: “Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism!”. Framing the argument this way is a disingenuous (dare I say lawyerly?) trick. Of course vaccines do not cause autism. Eating doesn’t cause obesity, either. Drinking doesn’t always cause alcoholism. But certain components of food and drink, and the way we take them, might lead to obesity or alcoholism. As more and more parents come forward with stories of their kids suffering seizures or regressing in their development after receiving certain shots, and more people gain access to information about the science, the law and the business of vaccination as it is practiced in this country today, the corporate media is taking its cue from Big Pharma and launching an all-out assault on vaccination dissidents. And what a nasty assault it is.

      The media offensive includes blogs with cute names like “Parents Who Vax” (vax? wax? get it? just how clever is that little play on words sprung from the mind of some marketing hack?). I hesitate to quote these people lest they take themselves more seriously, but I do it here to illustrate the kind of mean-spirited drivel being aimed at people who want to do nothing more than protect their children from harm. Check this out:

      I understand, to a point, where the anti-vaccine parents are coming from. Back in the 90s when I was a concerned, 19-year-old mother, frightened by the world I was bringing my child into, I was studying homeopathy, herbalism and aromatherapy; I believed in angels, witchcraft, clairvoyants, crop circles, aliens at Nazca, giant ginger mariners spreading their knowledge to the Aztecs, the Incas and the Egyptians and that I was somehow personally blessed by the Holy Spirit with healing abilities. I was having my aura read at a hefty price and filtering the fluoride out of my water. I was choosing to have past life regressions instead of taking anti-depressants. I was taking my daily advice from tarot cards. I grew all my own veg and made my own herbal remedies. I was so freaking crunchy that I literally crumbled. It was only when I took control of those paranoid thoughts and fears about the world around me and became an objective critical thinker that I got well. It was when I stopped taking sugar pills for everything and started seeing medical professionals that I began to thrive physically and mentally. Amy Parker, “Growing Up Unvaccinated” in “Parents who Vax”.She went on to say even more offensive things about learning to love our autistic children, but I will stop here because it’s not good for my health. But you see my point. It’s all or nothing. You either “vax” or you’re a crazy conspiracy theorist. Vaccinate your kids as instructed, set fire to your vegetable garden and get yourself a bottle of Prozac, and then you’ll be a responsible citizen like Ms. Parker here.

      The vaccination agenda –like so much in our broken health care system — is driven by profit. Let’s examine the very first shot a baby gets, 12 hours after birth — a vaccine against Hepatitis B. The only reason every baby is expected to get this shot is because the mothermay have HepB. The only way a baby is going to be infected with HepB is to get it from her infected mother, because this is an adult disease transmitted through sexual activity, intravenous drug use or blood transfusions. Wouldn’t it be easier and safer to screen the mother for HepB and vaccinate only those babies with HepB positive mothers? Yes. It would also be less profitable for the vaccine makers, wouldn’t it?

      If you were born in 1983 and your parents followed the recommended CDC schedule, you received a total of 10 vaccines by the time you were 6 and ready to enter school. You were not vaccinated against Hepatitis B, chickenpox or influenza, among other diseases. A child born today is expected to receive a total of 36 vaccines between birth and age 6. The first shot (Hep B) is given on the day that child is born. Another HepB is administered at 1 month, and at 2 months that baby begins to get multiple shots at each doctor’s visit: 5 vaccines at 2 months, 5 again at 3 months and 6 at 6 months. At the one-year mark the baby gets the MMR (mumps, measles and rubella) combined vaccines, plus Hepatitis A and chickenpox. At 18 months, the baby gets 4 more including the influenza vaccine for the first time, and is expected to get yearly flu shots at 2, 3, 4 and 5. Chickenpox boosters are administered at 5 and 6 years old. If she’s a girl, at age 9 she might get Gardasil — the vaccine against the sexually-transmitted Human Papillomavirus, which may or may not be more effective at deterring cervical cancer than a yearly pap smear. Yet, are we a healthier population in 2014 than we were in 1983? Few would say yes. Scientists who look at international data can’t explain why the United States, who vaccinates its people more than any other country, still lags in infant mortality numbers behind countries like Japan, England, Spain, France and Cuba.

      Fact: Vaccines can cause harm, even death. That’s why in 1986 Congress passed the National Injury Vaccine Act, and created a “vaccine court” that has awarded millions of dollars in compensation to victims of vaccine injuries. This includes compensation to children who developed autism after suffering vaccine-related brain injuries.

      Fact: HepB vaccination has been linked to increased incidence of autism among boys.

      Fact: The rising prevalence of autism in the U.S. has been linked to the battery of vaccinations administered to very young children.

      Fact: In 1999, vaccine manufacturers agreed to remove the mercury-based preservative used in childhood vaccines. It is however, still being used in the influenza vaccines which are now administered to pregnant women and babies.

      Fact: Reputable physicians are putting forth alternate vaccination schedules that call for vaccinations a little later in a child’s life, and rejects combined shots (like the MMR) in favor of single shots spaced out over a period of time.

      While the scientific community is looking for answers, the corporate media is hung up on discrediting people like Andrew Wakefield and Jenny MCCarthy, who by now are peripheral players in the public discussion about autism. Articles about measles and whooping cough outbreaks in the U.S. are intended to scare us and they do, until you look a little further into the science and the numbers behind the headlines and learn things like, 8% of the 159 measles cases reported in 2013 had in fact received the prescribed vaccinations, and none of the cases reported resulted in death.

      A very interesting paper was published last summer in the North American Journal of Medicine and Science where a pediatrician, concerned about the growing number of autistic children she saw in her private practice, implemented a new vaccination schedule for her patients along with other measures (changes in diet, more breast-feeding and less use of antibiotics and acetaminophen). She has reported 0 cases of autism since 2005. The current prevalence of ASD in the general population, per the CDC, is 1 in 50. There are dozens of other reputable, peer-reviewed studies that confirm a link between current vaccination practices and neurological injuries.

      It occurs to me that too often we get caught up on the technical terms used to describe some of the deficits a child with autism experiences — things like “difficulty with social interaction” and “impaired communication skills” — and in doing that we obscure the reality of what ASD parents and children deal with on a daily basis. Here is just a sampling of things a parent of a typical child takes for granted: A hug from your child. Going to a movie or a restaurant with your child. Sentences that start with “Hey, Mom, guess what?”. Your child making friends. These common, everyday things “just happen” for the vast majority of kids, with little or no effort on the part of the parents. Not so for children on the spectrum. If these things are to happen to our kids we parents must make the happen, often through very structured therapy, and with varying degrees of success. Often we learn to live without some, or many of these things. Add to this a variety of health conditions that range from low muscle tone to incontinence to seizures.

      My child has never brought a friend home. She has never tasted ice cream. Every year, her blowing-out-the-candles picture feature her shielding her ears from the sound of people singing “Happy Birthday”. This is as basic as things get in the world of parenting and believe me, if you go through this experience it will challenge your most deeply-held notions of what it is to be a parent. It will rock your world. You will not be the ethereal creature you thought you would be when you bought your copy of “What to Expect when You’re Expecting.” Your child will have this condition for the rest of her life, and you will become a warrior for your child. And as you search for ways to help your child and others like her, you will learn to question everything and inform yourself, and will not be so easily swayed by the latest headline on the CNN crawler.

      I don’t know any “anti-vaccine” parents. I know parents who are concerned about putting things in their children’s bodies that might cause them irreparable harm. So let’s lay off the accusations and the judgments and focus on the science. There is no Us vs. Them. Let’s pretend we are a village and care for all our kids equally and make them as healthy as science –not profit– will allow.

    3. daniel bostdorf January 28, 2014

      Actually—I will post your blog entry so that we can comment on it here directly and not at your blog:

      The Nasty Vaccine Wars

      Big Pharma is rolling out the big guns on the corporate media outlets with the battle cry: “Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism!”. Framing the argument this way is a disingenuous (dare I say lawyerly?) trick. Of course vaccines do not cause autism. Eating doesn’t cause obesity, either. Drinking doesn’t always cause alcoholism. But certain components of food and drink, and the way we take them, might lead to obesity or alcoholism. As more and more parents come forward with stories of their kids suffering seizures or regressing in their development after receiving certain shots, and more people gain access to information about the science, the law and the business of vaccination as it is practiced in this country today, the corporate media is taking its cue from Big Pharma and launching an all-out assault on vaccination dissidents. And what a nasty assault it is.

      The media offensive includes blogs with cute names like “Parents Who Vax” (vax? wax? get it? just how clever is that little play on words sprung from the mind of some marketing hack?). I hesitate to quote these people lest they take themselves more seriously, but I do it here to illustrate the kind of mean-spirited drivel being aimed at people who want to do nothing more than protect their children from harm. Check this out:

      I understand, to a point, where the anti-vaccine parents are coming from. Back in the 90s when I was a concerned, 19-year-old mother, frightened by the world I was bringing my child into, I was studying homeopathy, herbalism and aromatherapy; I believed in angels, witchcraft, clairvoyants, crop circles, aliens at Nazca, giant ginger mariners spreading their knowledge to the Aztecs, the Incas and the Egyptians and that I was somehow personally blessed by the Holy Spirit with healing abilities. I was having my aura read at a hefty price and filtering the fluoride out of my water. I was choosing to have past life regressions instead of taking anti-depressants. I was taking my daily advice from tarot cards. I grew all my own veg and made my own herbal remedies. I was so freaking crunchy that I literally crumbled. It was only when I took control of those paranoid thoughts and fears about the world around me and became an objective critical thinker that I got well. It was when I stopped taking sugar pills for everything and started seeing medical professionals that I began to thrive physically and mentally. Amy Parker, “Growing Up Unvaccinated” in “Parents who Vax”.She went on to say even more offensive things about learning to love our autistic children, but I will stop here because it’s not good for my health. But you see my point. It’s all or nothing. You either “vax” or you’re a crazy conspiracy theorist. Vaccinate your kids as instructed, set fire to your vegetable garden and get yourself a bottle of Prozac, and then you’ll be a responsible citizen like Ms. Parker here.

      The vaccination agenda –like so much in our broken health care system — is driven by profit. Let’s examine the very first shot a baby gets, 12 hours after birth — a vaccine against Hepatitis B. The only reason every baby is expected to get this shot is because the mothermay have HepB. The only way a baby is going to be infected with HepB is to get it from her infected mother, because this is an adult disease transmitted through sexual activity, intravenous drug use or blood transfusions. Wouldn’t it be easier and safer to screen the mother for HepB and vaccinate only those babies with HepB positive mothers? Yes. It would also be less profitable for the vaccine makers, wouldn’t it?

      If you were born in 1983 and your parents followed the recommended CDC schedule, you received a total of 10 vaccines by the time you were 6 and ready to enter school. You were not vaccinated against Hepatitis B, chickenpox or influenza, among other diseases. A child born today is expected to receive a total of 36 vaccines between birth and age 6. The first shot (Hep B) is given on the day that child is born. Another HepB is administered at 1 month, and at 2 months that baby begins to get multiple shots at each doctor’s visit: 5 vaccines at 2 months, 5 again at 3 months and 6 at 6 months. At the one-year mark the baby gets the MMR (mumps, measles and rubella) combined vaccines, plus Hepatitis A and chickenpox. At 18 months, the baby gets 4 more including the influenza vaccine for the first time, and is expected to get yearly flu shots at 2, 3, 4 and 5. Chickenpox boosters are administered at 5 and 6 years old. If she’s a girl, at age 9 she might get Gardasil — the vaccine against the sexually-transmitted Human Papillomavirus, which may or may not be more effective at deterring cervical cancer than a yearly pap smear. Yet, are we a healthier population in 2014 than we were in 1983? Few would say yes. Scientists who look at international data can’t explain why the United States, who vaccinates its people more than any other country, still lags in infant mortality numbers behind countries like Japan, England, Spain, France and Cuba.

      Fact: Vaccines can cause harm, even death. That’s why in 1986 Congress passed the National Injury Vaccine Act, and created a “vaccine court” that has awarded millions of dollars in compensation to victims of vaccine injuries. This includes compensation to children who developed autism after suffering vaccine-related brain injuries.

      Fact: HepB vaccination has been linked to increased incidence of autism among boys.

      Fact: The rising prevalence of autism in the U.S. has been linked to the battery of vaccinations administered to very young children.

      Fact: In 1999, vaccine manufacturers agreed to remove the mercury-based preservative used in childhood vaccines. It is however, still being used in the influenza vaccines which are now administered to pregnant women and babies.

      Fact: Reputable physicians are putting forth alternate vaccination schedules that call for vaccinations a little later in a child’s life, and rejects combined shots (like the MMR) in favor of single shots spaced out over a period of time.

      While the scientific community is looking for answers, the corporate media is hung up on discrediting people like Andrew Wakefield and Jenny MCCarthy, who by now are peripheral players in the public discussion about autism. Articles about measles and whooping cough outbreaks in the U.S. are intended to scare us and they do, until you look a little further into the science and the numbers behind the headlines and learn things like, 8% of the 159 measles cases reported in 2013 had in fact received the prescribed vaccinations, and none of the cases reported resulted in death.

      A very interesting paper was published last summer in the North American Journal of Medicine and Science where a pediatrician, concerned about the growing number of autistic children she saw in her private practice, implemented a new vaccination schedule for her patients along with other measures (changes in diet, more breast-feeding and less use of antibiotics and acetaminophen). She has reported 0 cases of autism since 2005. The current prevalence of ASD in the general population, per the CDC, is 1 in 50. There are dozens of other reputable, peer-reviewed studies that confirm a link between current vaccination practices and neurological injuries.

      It occurs to me that too often we get caught up on the technical terms used to describe some of the deficits a child with autism experiences — things like “difficulty with social interaction” and “impaired communication skills” — and in doing that we obscure the reality of what ASD parents and children deal with on a daily basis. Here is just a sampling of things a parent of a typical child takes for granted: A hug from your child. Going to a movie or a restaurant with your child. Sentences that start with “Hey, Mom, guess what?”. Your child making friends. These common, everyday things “just happen” for the vast majority of kids, with little or no effort on the part of the parents. Not so for children on the spectrum. If these things are to happen to our kids we parents must make the happen, often through very structured therapy, and with varying degrees of success. Often we learn to live without some, or many of these things. Add to this a variety of health conditions that range from low muscle tone to incontinence to seizures.

      My child has never brought a friend home. She has never tasted ice cream. Every year, her blowing-out-the-candles picture feature her shielding her ears from the sound of people singing “Happy Birthday”. This is as basic as things get in the world of parenting and believe me, if you go through this experience it will challenge your most deeply-held notions of what it is to be a parent. It will rock your world. You will not be the ethereal creature you thought you would be when you bought your copy of “What to Expect when You’re Expecting.” Your child will have this condition for the rest of her life, and you will become a warrior for your child. And as you search for ways to help your child and others like her, you will learn to question everything and inform yourself, and will not be so easily swayed by the latest headline on the CNN crawler.

      I don’t know any “anti-vaccine” parents. I know parents who are concerned about putting things in their children’s bodies that might cause them irreparable harm. So let’s lay off the accusations and the judgments and focus on the science. There is no Us vs. Them. Let’s pretend we are a village and care for all our kids equally and make them as healthy as science –not profit– will allow.

  7. Allan Richardson January 28, 2014

    Several of the anti-vaccination activists have claimed that the increasing number of diseases for which vaccination is recommended is a ploy to get more profits. A more reasonable interpretation is that as diseases that were not prevalent become more prevalent, and as vaccines are developed for diseases that are already prevalent, and dangerous, it becomes POSSIBLE to protect against more diseases. It took more than two centuries (primarily because of the logistics involved) from the time that Dr. Edward Jenner developed the first smallpox vaccine until the last case of smallpox was documented in the 1970s. We no longer vaccinate every child for smallpox because it no longer exists in the wild (although some have suggested that, since there are still frozen samples of smallpox that COULD be turned into weapons by someone, perhaps we should resume). Polio was a devastating disease in the early 20th century, which was wiped out (in the US and other developed nations) by the Salk and Sabin vaccines. There is currently no vaccine effective against HIV/AIDS. When one is developed, will anti-vax activists complain that there are now THIRTY-SEVEN vaccines being “pushed on the public to make more profit?”

    Historically, the protection of the population against most diseases has been able to tolerate a small minority of people who refuse vaccination, because of something called “herd immunity” (yes, the phrase seems to be demeaning, but it is literally true). Since most infections are not spread by patients who are immune, the number of paths of infection cut off by vaccinated individuals makes it more difficult to infect unvaccinated individuals. But SOME diseases have recently been shown to be able to RESIDE IN immune individuals without making them sick. So a vaccinated person COULD pass along an infection to an unvaccinated person, or even pass it to ANOTHER vaccinated person, causing an entire group (or “herd”) of people with immunity to become reservoirs of infection for the next person without immunity to enter the group.

    As for the hepatitis vaccine, did the objector consider that a newborn may need the vaccination to protect against FUTURE infection? Even if the mother is clean, there may be a father, grandparent, nanny, or relative waiting at home who is (perhaps unknowingly) infected, or anyone who may care for the baby in its first year. Any one of these individuals may infect a sharp implement and accidentally penetrate the baby’s skin. The cost of the vaccination (even if there were NO insurance coverage) is much less than the cost of a cure later (even WITH insurance coverage of the cure!), ASSUMING that the baby (or by that time, older child) CAN in fact be cured.

    Vaccination is, first of all, INSURANCE. No one complains about their car insurance premium being “wasted” when they don’t have an accident; but they are grateful to have paid them if they do!

    Reply

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