by Michael dEstries
Categories: Lifestyle
Tags: , , .

This summer will remembered for a lot of things (ah, Real Girls Eat Meat) — but one of the more contentious was the debate on vaccines for children. It kicked off with Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey attending a “Green Our Vaccines” rally in D.C., followed by actress Amanda Peet slamming parents who do not follow standard child inoculation schedules, passionate debate, and then relative calm.

Until now.

Jenny McCarthy is firing back at Amanda Peet in a new interview in Spectrum Magazine. The 35-year-old actress and mother of an autistic child said, “(Peet) has a lot of [nerve] to come forward and be on that side, because there is an angry mob on my side, and I like the fact that I can say she’s completely wrong.” She added, “I look at (Peet) now and say to myself, ‘That was me before I had autism in my life,’ and until she walks in our shoes, she really has no idea.”

Oh, snap!

In addition, the national autism advocacy group Autism United is calling for a boycott of all of Amanda Peet’s movies. “We want to send a clear message to her,” says Executive Director John Gilmore. “Our community will not support the continued misinformation that is funneled into the media by organizations like ECBT and the American Academy of Pediatrics. We are not against vaccines, rather we are for safe vaccines. Until they understand that, we won’t back down. Ms. Peet’s comments are deplorable and an apology will not suffice. We applaud Jenny McCarthy’s continued efforts and for speaking up for our community.”

[Update: Welcome Scienceblogs readers! Welcome Age of Autism Readers! Yes, the below poll has been influenced by many different sites -- and as such, it serves as a very poor feedback item. As some have mentioned, the best course of action going forward is to scrap polling on a topic like this one in favor of comments only. Thank you all for your insights on this. I also want to thank those from both sides who are commenting respectfully and listening to what people have to say.]

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About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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  • http://www.adammackwright.wordpress.com AdamMackWright

    Is this the new version of the abortion debate? You don’t agree with me so you must be a stupid, ignorant and mostly bad person?!?

    God i hate celebrities.

  • Greg Esres

    “an angry mob on my side…until she walks in our shoes, she really has no idea.”

    Uh, this is an example of rational argument?

  • Bob L

    All important medical issues are decided by angry mobs of ignorant laypersons who have their minds already made up. That’s always been the way science advances.

  • Jim

    To summarize: Amanda = awesome, Jenny = fail. Welcome to science.

  • http://dubiositysite.blogspot.com Bevans

    It’s not a matter of “what side do you believe is right”. It’s “what side IS actually right”. And that side is Amanda Peet’s.

  • sam

    I’ll trust science before McCarthy any day.

  • B

    McCarthy is an idiot.

  • FOM

    Peet is right. Parents who don’t vaccinate their children are parasites

  • Scott

    Jenny, having a child with autism does not make you any kind of medical expert. I am sorry you child has autism, but the evidence is clear…. VACCINATIONS HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH IT.

    You are literally killing people by scaring them away from the greatest life saving medicine with have.

  • http://terrbear.org terry

    yay science, boo mccarthy

  • Jorge Sixto

    Why is it that the Stupid Burns brighter with blondes?

  • http://tobascodagama.com Joshua

    The “safe vaccines” line that McCarthy uses is a total crock. Her movement is 100% anti-vaccine. It’s just that even she knows how insane it is to be fighting against one of the most successful public health initiatives since clean water, so she tries to hide her true agenda behind her “mommy instinct” crap and this malarkey about “greening” the vaccines.

  • Stephanurus

    So the mob rules. Is that it?

  • .

    “until she walks in our shoes, she really has no idea.”

    Until you educate yourself Jenny, you’ll be clueless and detrimental to the public health, AND cause harm to children worldwide. Your cause is destructive and puts money in the hands of incompetent fraudsters. Stop making yourself look stupid at best, though others picture you as crazy.

  • http://www.vomitcomit.wordpress.com thordora

    At this point, I’ll trust my cats over McCarthy.

  • lw

    @ AdamMackWright -

    Watch out, McCarthy has an *angry mob* on her side! I guess that makes up for the fact that she has no sound science to back up the claim that autism is caused by vaccines.

    I’ll also point out that lots of other things are on the rise besides vaccines and autism. For one, pirates.

  • Waldo McFroog

    McCarthy is so frighteningly ignorant it beggers belief. She pontificates about the subject yet fails to grasp even the most elementary science. This vaccine stuff has been debunked time and time again, yet McCarthy continues to advocate policies that HARM children.

    That she cites her ‘angry mob’ as though it were a good thing should tell you something.

  • hammy

    Dear McCarty:

    I’m glad you realize the only strength your position has is its mob. On the other side— facts. Facts tend to win out in the end.

  • http://www.thehungersite.com/ Rob the Lurker FCD BMWCCA

    Jenny, I’m sorry your child is autistic. I know you feel you need to lash out and blame something for your misfortune, but you’re just going to have to accept the fact that sometimes these things happen.

    Please stop trying make the world safe for influenza and other micro-organisms.

  • http://ronbailey.us ronbailey

    At least Peet has a few facts to back up her argument.

  • http://www.thehungersite.com/ Rob the Lurker FCD BMWCCA

    Oh, and please stop the thinly veiled threats of violence. They’re not nice.

  • Kristin

    Jenny McCarthy is a baby-killer because of all the children that will die from preventable diseases because their parents didn’t vaccinate after listening to her.

    Science has proven over and over again that the vaccines DON’T cause autism.
    Vaccines SAVE lives.
    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/09/yet_another_really_bad_day_for_antivacci_1.php

  • David

    “We are not against vaccines..” could have fooled me, you speak of support for safe vaccines and yet every objections you have raised in the past and present based on health impact has been demolished by evidence and good science. When one unsupported claim is totally and utterly dismissed, you move on to a new one – maybe it’s time to spot a pattern here?

    Seeing as our vaccines thus are proven safe, you should be for them by your own admission and yet you rail against them publicly at any chance you get.

    What drives you people, it certainly isn’t reason and evidence?

  • fatherdaddy

    I don’t know anything about Amanda Peet, other than her current stand for truth and science. I will do the exact opposite of boycotting her movies. I will seek out her movies and rent them. I will avoid anything with Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey, though. I used to respect Mr. Carrey. Now I realize he’s a freaking idiot and a pet to Ms. McCarthy.

  • JSug

    I don’t really care what a bunch of celebrities think. I’ll look at the dozens of peer-reviewed medical studies that have shown no link between autism and vaccines, or between autism and heavy metals, or between autism and thalidomide. Then I’ll look at the one study, from over 10 years ago, that suggests maybe there might be a possible link between this one vaccine and a gastric infection that kinda seems to be associated with autistic kids… and the 8 out of 10 co-authors of the paper that disagreed with that conclusion.

  • http://aboutkitty.blogspot.com/ Cat’s Staff

    I look at McCarthy now and say to myself, ‘That was me before I had rationalism in my life,’ and until she walks in our shoes, she really has no idea.

  • PEter

    I believe the SCIENCE! I like Amanda Peet for standing up for the science in a world where talk shows allow McCarthy to spew here ignorance and dangerous propaganda all over the screen, but I follow the SCIENCE.

    There is no link, that’s NO LINK, between vaccines and autism. Autism is sad. It is a terrible thing to have to deal with as a parent. Researchers agree that increases in autism rates are due to better diagnosis and a broadening definition of what is classified as autism.

    Vaccines prevent diseases. As more people refuse to vaccinate their children, the herd immunity that protects us will eventually reach a point that will allow outbreaks to occur. The W.H.O. estimates 242,000 deaths in 2006 from Measles. We don’t have this problem in the U.S. because of vaccines.

    Anti-vaccination people are a danger to everyone.

  • Mus

    “omg i gots me an angry mob and my child has autism!!!! so i’m right and i be an expert about the causes of autism!!!”

    Uhhh… wtf? talk about a non-sequitur.

  • Dave

    That was me before I had autism in my life,

    Be sure to let us know when you get a degree in epidemiology in your life, or perhaps a few well-designed studies.

  • eyesoars

    Does Jenny McCarthy trust witch-doctors too?

    Has she never talked to a grandparent, or anyone else who remembers what life was like before antibiotics and vaccines? Who lost children or brothers and sisters due to polio, whooping cough, or septicemia?

    Get a clue, Jenny. Your militant ignorance is not helpful.

    And I say this as the concerned parent of an autistic child.

    rj

  • marty

    “Oh, snap!”

    What? How is that an “oh snap” moment?

  • John

    So she has a kid with a disability. I, for one, would have felt a good deal of sympathy for her and her family if she had not squandered my good will by advocating a policy that, if followed, would kill children while doing nothing about the problem of autism.

  • keri

    @IW:
    “I’ll also point out that lots of other things are on the rise besides vaccines and autism. For one, pirates.”

    So we’re going to be seeing less global warming? Awesome!

    Also, I don’t understand the argument that autism is caused by vaccines. If that’s the case, then why are so so so many children vaccinated WITHOUT developing an autistic spectrum disorder? I may have Asperger’s Syndrome, but neither of my siblings are at all on the spectrum, and we all got the same exact vaccines as kids. (I’m firmly in the camp that it’s genetic, since I’ve family members who would probably have been diagnosed similarly had it been around when they were kids. And this would have been prior to vaccines being used so ubiquitously, thanks much.)

  • Dean

    Way to go Amanda Peet.

  • http://theradula.blogspot.com Kate

    As a mother with TWO autistic children, I find McCarthy’s ignorance appalling. Don’t we have enough difficulty in dealing with and understanding the Autism Spectrum without letting fad pseudo-science sway our families away from proper health care for our children?

    THERE IS NO SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE connecting immunizations and autism. Immunizations help keep our kids safe from dangerous diseases. Don’t they have enough to deal with without having to worry about illnesses that can be prevented?

  • azqaz

    Well, if it takes personal experience with autism to have some validity to your opinion, then with three people in my family with Autistic Spectrum disorders I can say Ms. McCarthy is a fool concerning this topic.

    There is no link between autism and vaccines. There is no evidence that can stand real scrutiny, just anecdotal stories that have no correlation of cause and effect. They used to kill people for being witches with about as much evidence as these people have that vaccines cause autism, that being none. Actually they just killed a woman in South Africa after accusations of witchcraft. Looks like stupidity is alive and well all over the world.

  • garth

    unreal…why did the author of this article feel like jenny mccarthy’s comments were anything but disgusting? she threatens someone with an “angry mob” and claims that, because she has an autistic child, she has some special knowledge about the science of vaccinations?
    the tone of this article is ridiculous and pro-ignorance.

  • JPS

    Science/Amanda Peet – 97%, Jenny McCarthy/Other Morons 3%

    …as of my vote.

    Although, Jenny is a celebrity. And her child does have autism. So, that must make her some kind of expert, huh? [/sarcsam]

    And what “misinformation” is that half-wit Gilmore talking about? Actual science? Why believe that when we’ve got an angry mob with a bunch of anecdotal “evidence” on our side?

    The science is in. Vaccinations GOOD. Jenny McCarthy BAD.

  • http://www.bynkii.com/ John C. Welch

    Yeah, but it’s an angry mob of people who think JENNY McCARTHY IS A GENIUS.

    Why do I picture a mob of Blinkin clones from “Men in Tights” all running in random directions screaming “I’LL SAVE YOU MASTER ROBIN!!!

    That’s a mob you can distract with a handful of shiny beads.

  • bsk

    I can’t believe Jim Carrey’s going insane over vaccines as well. Previously took him for one of the more intelligent actors.

  • http://anti-mattr.blogspot.com mathyoo

    I’ll also point out that lots of other things are on the rise besides vaccines and autism. For one, pirates.

    vaccines cause pirates, too? OMG Jenny McCarthy’s son is going to become a pirate!

  • http://blog.flada.com Ed Snyder

    McCarthy needs to look up the term “post hoc ergo propter hoc” before she opens her piehole with any further opinions on anything. It’s a common logical fallacy. It is a fallacy that Autism United and McCarthy clearly practice. The fact is that standard vaccination programs have saved hundreds of thousands if not millions of lives and spared many others from debilitating diseases. Even if there were a 1% chance of vaccines causing autism (in reality, no causal link has ever been established–just the opposite) it would be a risk well worth taking. Unless you like polio, smallpox, measles, mumps, rubella, hep A and B, pertussis, chickenpox, tetanus, etc. Vaccination programs have all but eradicated several of these diseases.

  • http://www.randomthinking.info Tom

    I have autism in my life (my son is autistic). But I don’t want Jenny McCarthy and her ignorance in my life.

  • J. Tode

    Poll mobbing is an important public service.

    Not in the sense that we are “Striking a blow for the truth” or any such nonsense, but rather, as an illustration of the inanity of web polls in the first place.

    For a poll to have any meaning at all, it needs to be taken from a representative selection of people, and questions need to be worded in such a way as to not point to a desired answer. This alone makes the vast majority of polls, even those that are thoughtfully constructed and carefully executed, useless. When a pollster calls on the phone, I say “no thank you” and hang up, as do a lot of people; only people of a certain character type will bother to take the time to answer them in the first place.

    But even given these facts, web polls are another creature entirely – an abuse of the very idea of polls, in that they are slapped up as a way for readers of a given site to feel like they’ve “participated” in a discussion. It probably increases the likelihood that your readers will come back to your site, which is the real reason they exist.

    That being said, this false connection between autism and innoculation is nothing more than hysteria, with no supporting scientific evidence. Those who promote it are irresponsible at best, and guilty of endangering the lives of children and the wellbeing of their parents at worst.

    I wonder, if I took the time to search, how many positive references to homeopathy I would find on this site…

  • jan

    Who does everyone think they are judging Jenny..And they believe the government will save them…Hello..

  • Corey S.

    This post is tagged “healthy living.” There is nothing healthy about advocating a link between autism and vaccines when no such link exists. Personal anecdotes that equate correlation with causation are no basis for science or medicine.

    I weep for the lack of critical thinking in this nation and around the world.

  • Nana

    Amanda Peet is right with dozens of studies to back her up. No need for an angry mob.
    If you say “No” to vaccines, you’re saying “Yes” to childhood diseases.

  • Atheist Chaplain

    As a father of a Son with an Autistic Spectrum disorder I can safely say that it was not caused by any vaccinations, and yes he received all the child vaccinations available. Unlike Jenny McCarthy, it seems that I at least did some basic research into the subject, and lately there is credible research that links Autism and Testosterone levels (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/7417.php) My Son goes to an ordinary school with ordinary children and there is no significant change in the percentage of Autistic children over the national average in that school, and ALL children at that school MUST provide evidence of immunisation against all the preventable childhood diseases before they can enrol to attend.

    Jenny McCarthy is nothing more than a nutter with an audience, unless she can provide credible scientific evidence for her claims then maybe she should SFU before she makes herself look even dumber

  • Liz

    Kate says: As a mother with TWO autistic children, I find McCarthy’s ignorance appalling. Don’t we have enough difficulty in dealing with and understanding the Autism Spectrum without letting fad pseudo-science sway our families away from proper health care for our children?

    end of quote.

    Hey call me the bitch but sometimes this is what it takes to get it through these people’s heads. Hey Kate! Why don’t you have another child vaccinate it and make it three for three!

    The government wouldn’t be making pay outs to people whose children are autistic as a RESULT OF VACCINATIONS.

    Good luck with that 3rd child. they say 1 in 100 kids is autistic now. Yet I have hundreds of friends who didn’t immunize their kids and NONE of them are autistic. Imagine that.

    But you keep telling yourself that. Go for number 3. 3rd times a charm. I have no sympathy for people who are so stupid they blindly trust the DRUG COMPANIES. Go talk to plenty of scientists AND doctors who disagree with you.

    Liz Finn (and yes my uncle is Tom Finn the attorney who helped many people in this country whose children died or fell ill (or became autistic) from Vaccines.

  • http://www.squidzone.ca Squid

    Liz says: Yet I have hundreds of friends who didn’t immunize their kids and NONE of them are autistic.

    And I know thousands of people who have been immunized and none of them are autistic.

    I also know a few adults who have suffered terribly with childhood diseases like mumps and measles that they could have been immunized against… if their parents hadn’t had a big dose of the anti-vax woo-woo when they were kids.

  • Spinoza

    “Good luck with that 3rd child. they say 1 in 100 kids is autistic now. Yet I have hundreds of friends who didn’t immunize their kids and NONE of them are autistic. Imagine that.”

    That is a textbook post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacious bunch of reasoning.

    Imagine THAT!

  • Aquaria

    Well, when your children die from measles, polio or mumps, Liz, then don’t ask for sympathy from anyone. You won’t deserve it, for killing your own children.

    BTW, how rich will you get off this fraud your uncle is perpetrating?

    You’re the lowest of the low, attempting to profit off the fear and ignorance of others, a fear and ignorance that will get people killed. It is getting people killed, right now.

    That’s all on your, and your uncle’s, hands. I’d tell you to live with it, but you’re too plug-ignorant to realize it.

  • bob

    “Hey call me the bitch”

    Okay. Bitch.

    You are completely wrong, paranoid, delusional, and directly contributing to the spread of disease and the deaths of innocents. You are a monster. And a bitch.

  • http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/ J

    Gee Liz Finn: Right trust lawyers over doctors and scientists. Want to change a physical law of the universe? Challenge it in court. Many of these doctors and scientists who agree with YOU sell autism “treatments”. Just like a drug company, but without testing nor oversight. People die as a result.

    Autism and vaccines are not linked. There have been studies done that demonstrate this. People like your uncle get money when they win cases. They don’t care what the facts are or who gets hurt or killed as long as they win.

  • Martin

    If people like Liz and Jenny McCarthy had their way, kids would still be dying by the millions from polio.

  • Kippur

    Liz Said: “Hey call me the bitch but sometimes this is what it takes to get it through these people’s heads. Hey Kate! Why don’t you have another child vaccinate it and make it three for three!

    The government wouldn’t be making pay outs to people whose children are autistic as a RESULT OF VACCINATIONS.

    Good luck with that 3rd child. they say 1 in 100 kids is autistic now. Yet I have hundreds of friends who didn’t immunize their kids and NONE of them are autistic. Imagine that.”

    Funny. There are millions of kids out there who ARE vaccinated and aren’t autistic. Think about you, yourself. I’m certain you were vaccinated. And your father. And your siblings if you have them, and your next door neighbors, that guy buying coffee ahead of you? What about him? They were most likely vaccinated and WITH those vaccinations that had mercury in them.

    So, how do you account for that one then?

  • stephanie

    dear liz: take a statistics class moron, that’s not how it works. and the only “doctors” who will agree with you are homeopaths and chiropractors who are so full of shit their eyes are brown.

    you should be ashamed of yourself for promoting the vile and homicidal stupidity of the anti-vaccine movement.

  • Pandora

    Hey Liz! You are a bitch! You also know nothing about Autism.

    There have been studies that show that there is no link between vaccines and Autism. The fact your friend’s kids don’t have Autism and didn’t get vaccinated, doesn’t mean squat. Hello, probability theory?

    Also the reason the number of cases has gone up is due to better diagnoses of Autism as opposed to an increase in prevalence. It happens when scientists learn more about a disorder.

    You’d know this if you actually bothered to research Autism.

  • Pingback: News From Around The Blogosphere 9.30.08 « Skepacabra

  • Madoc

    I find it funny that so many commenters address McCarthy directly, as if she would actually receive and read those notes.

  • http://sesshomaruisking.blogspot.com sesshomaru_haku

    HOLY CRAP LIZ! In that case, everyone in my country, Singapore, ought to be autistic because vaccines are the norm for children (who get shots in school)!…

    …And yet, not a single one of my friends is authistic. Or my classmates. Or anybody I know. Isn’t it strange?

    Oh, and your response was real civil, by the way.

  • Ichthyic

    Liz Finn (and yes my uncle is Tom Finn the attorney who helped many people in this country whose children died or fell ill (or became autistic) from Vaccines.

    congratulations!

    you’re legacy will be:

    thousands dead of previously eradicated infectious diseases, solely based on the fact that a lawyer can convince an ignorant judge to award damages based on shoddy thinking.

    put that in your crack pipe and smoke it, moron.

  • elbuho

    What an appalling, thoughtless, hurtful comment from Liz Finn. Surprising? No. Actionable? Possibly.

  • http://www.stereodax.com/luna/lunas-prose-ramblings Victoria

    So McCarthy thought she had an angry mob with her, did she ? I guess the science side has a bigger mob…

    Oh strike that, science sports a larger legion of people educated on the subject and who actually know what they’re talking about and can use solid reasoning !

    I don’t know but, even if PZ pointed the poll out to us, seems like there are still more people on the science side than the ‘mob’ side.

  • shonny

    McCarthy, – related to Joe?
    Same kind of self-righteous bullying ignoramus, so . . . ?
    Against stupidity even the gods fight in vain.

  • Justin

    Liz Finn:

    It’s been thoroughly studied — autism and vaccinations have absolutely nothing to do with each other. I don’t pretend to understand why demonizing vaccinations helps some people cope with having an autistic child, but it makes about as much sense as blaming astrology and the alignment of the planets.

    Autism and vaccinations are completely unrelated. Really, they have absolutely nothing to do with each other.

  • autism mom

    Re Liz Finn:

    The only thing your post demonstrates is your family’s genetic link to stupidity.

    Every decade or so, the anti-vaccine movement finds a new disease to flog–I’m old enough to remember when vaccines were the supposed cause of cancer, and AIDS.

    So now it’s autism. When that cash cow dies, the anti-vaccine lobby and the lawyers who profit from them will move onto some other disease. They will target and attempt to sell their snake oil to vulnerable and desperate parents searching for answers.

    I understand that there is a certain appeal to blaming vaccines, rather than accepting that sometimes, life hands you a less than ideal parenting situation.

    My child has autism. She was born with it–it’s part of her. She had mercury-free vaccines. So did every child in her occupational therapy group…none of us parents are particularly impressed with Ms. McCarthy.

  • Samantha Vimes

    Okay, yes, I got here from ScienceBlogs, but seriously, only children who are allergic to the egg proteins that are involved in vaccine manufacture, or such problems, have anything to fear from vaccinations, and for those who can’t have shots, herd immunity is needed to save their lives. Measles and polio, can kill or permanently disable; whooping cough can kill. Tetanus can kill in about the nastiest imaginable way.

    I know people with Aspergers, and autism-spectrum problem, that are too old for most of the childhood vaccines now available. So they didn’t get it from vaccines. Children with autism who had head measurements done as babies all– 100%– were notably above average in head size. This was before their immunizations could have begun.
    Autism is upsetting for the parents of children with it, and it’s understandable they want to find an explanation. On the other hand, it can’t be easy to be the parents of a child sick all the time with allergies, but they don’t seem to be fed the same sort of irrational bullshit explanations– maybe because “alternative practitioners” can’t make thousands chelating someone who can bee treated with antihistamines and a clean room to retreat to.

  • Ian Braidwood

    I have every sympathy with Jenny McCarthy’s predicament and that faced by all parents of autistic children, but that doesn’t change the fact that they are wrong about the facts. The MMR vacine has NEVER contaned thymerisol and the one study which showed a link was deeply flawed and so invalid.

    There is no evidence that children who are innoculated are more likely to develope autism and LOTS of evidence that children whoe aren’t vacinated will get ill.

    Furthermore, there is no reason to suspect the American Academy of Pediatrics of collusion and having an autistic child to license for slander.

  • Ian Braidwood

    Sorry, the last paragraph of my post should read:

    Furthermore, there is no reason to suspect the American Academy of Pediatrics of collusion and having an autistic child is no license for slander.

  • Fripity

    The fact is simple, tested, and undeniable. Vaccines DO NOT cause autism, and those raving IDIOTS that cannot seem to smash this into their brains are killing babies with the diseases we HAD eradicated. Celeberties are not scientists, and apparently, not thinkers either. Shut up and dance you silver screen monkeys. That’s what we pay you for.

  • Arno

    Actually, Liz, it is one per thousand. Also, I hope that if one of your unvaccinated friends does get a child with autism, you realize how wrong you were and immediately vaccinate your children before a minor disease like the measles kills them. Or, in the case of mumps, leaves the boys infertile.

    Also, keep in mind that autism is mostly genetic and does not show itself in young children until they are at least a couple of months old.

    ..and who the hell is Tom Finn?

  • HidariMak

    ‘Green vaccines’ aren’t a truth movement, it’s a conspiracy group. “A big, bad, evil coalition which includes the AMA, the AAP, the FDA, the CDC, the NIH, and dozens of other professional organizations and government health groups from all around the world are trying to poison our kids through a campaign of lies and misinformation, but WE know what the truth is, and some day science that isn’t found to be complete bunk after a few minutes of research will support us, but everyone should buy into our theories RIGHT NOW because WE KNOW THAT WE’RE RIGHT”.

    The best examples of “supporting evidence” against vaccinations here is the fact that you’re part of an angry mob (which are always bastions of reason), and that their child happened to have autism. “Going with the crowd” and “logical fallacies” are not what I’d want deciding the future of my kids, and if intelligent and informed research puts me against a loud and unreasonable lot, so be it.

  • Jim Marshall

    @Liz Finn; you’re not a bitch.

    You’re just lashing out because you’re ignorant and the facts scare you.

    Read some books with actual verificable facts in them. Join us.

  • romanus

    I have seen polls with egregiously loaded questions before, but this is the first time I have seen one that evidently is dishonestly intended to end with a particular result. I cast my ballot (evidently for the wrong choice) and was informed that I had previously voted. I had not, in fact had never heard of this poll until ten minutes ago. This site offers dishonest polls.

  • Beowulff

    I have to say, Liz is a sorry excuse for a human being. Kate, I hope you won’t have to deal with people like her too often; like you said, it’s hard enough without this crap. Good luck to you and your children.

    As to Liz’s “arguments”: there have been many studies done by universities from all over the world showing that vaccines and autism are not linked, so people don’t have to just take the drug companies’ word for it.

    Liz mentions Kate should talk to doctors and scientists that disagree with Kate, but she doesn’t suggest that Liz might talk to some doctors and scientist that disagree with Liz. She also doesn’t mention that the latter group vastly outnumbers the former.

    As for Liz’s friends who didn’t vaccinate her children and didn’t get autism: good for them, but they were probably just lucky. Unvaccinated children with autism do exist, and studies show autism rates to be the same as for vaccinated children. I just hope the luck of those friends will hold out and that they won’t have a measles outbreak among their children.

    And I’ve always wondered why people would be so distrusting of the drug companies just because they make some money on vaccines. Couldn’t they make lots more money by simply allowing people to get sick and then overcharge them on the then urgently needed, life-saving drugs?

    Finally, I’d like to thank Liz for reminding us that the drug companies aren’t the only party in this “debate” who have a financial interest. Certain lawyers are benefiting liberally from the vaccine-autism scare, and so are parts of the alternative medicine community. Maybe they just want to help people with autistic children, but then you should equally apply that argument to all doctors, scientists and pharmacists who don’t support a link between autism and vaccines.

  • caravelle

    they say 1 in 100 kids is autistic now.

    Cite please.

    Yet I have hundreds of friends who didn’t immunize their kids and NONE of them are autistic. Imagine that.

    Well I have hundreds of friends who DID immunize their kids and NONE of them are autistic either ! Imagine THAT !
    Hint : data is not the plural of anecdote.

    I won’t call you a bitch, but the nastiness isn’t giving you any points you know.

  • http://www.bynkii.com/ John C. Welch

    Gee Liz, that’s funny…

    I was vaccinated, twice actually, (thank you Air Force), didn’t get da autism.

    My son? Like a DART BOARD. No autism.

    My wife, her sister, no autism. In fact, by your “logic” every child ever vaccinated should have autism. Yet they don’t.

    As far as the “science” behind your viewpoints, well, first you have to stop changing the cause. But then, every cause you pick gets eviscerated, so I imagine moving the goalposts is the only tactic you have left. Are you even still in the stadium at this point?

    Man, it must suck to be you guys. All that work to keep your inane, illogical beliefs alive.

  • deep

    Liz you are forgetting something. Let’s say we ignore all the evidence that says there is no link between autism and vaccines (not like you are looking at it anyway). Don’t you think an immunized child is better than a dead one even if they develop autism? I have no sympathy for people who blindly trust ILLOGICAL PROPAGANDA TOTED BY A CELEBRITY.
    Honestly, I feel bad that you are putting your kids in danger but I feel much worse that by lowering the herd immunity you are putting everyone else’s kids in danger as well.

  • mrfun

    Liz, please educate yourself. Use wikipedia.

    It’s not too late to be rational and try to undo some of the baseless myths your uncle has promoted.

  • http://hatingautism.blogspot.com John Best

    The nerds who pretend to be scientists from Science Blogs can’t cure autism.

    But, parents who listen to actual scientists ARE curing autism. That means we addressed the right cause. That also tells us the science blog people are not being honest.

  • Aj

    “I look at (Peet) now and say to myself, ‘That was me before I had autism in my life’”

    Well that’s a flat out lie.

    Before she had autism in ‘her’ life, Jenny McCarthy believed her child was a super evolved spiritual wonder being who was going to save mankind (yes, seriously, look up her involvement with the Indigo Children). Her head was full of vicious anti-scientific twaddle before her child was diagnosed with autism.

    ‘New age’, rhymes with sewage.

  • http://ingles.homeunix.net/ Ray Ingles

    I do have autism in my life (a child with Aspergers) and I say McCarthy is flat wrong. And Liz… four kids, all vaccinated, only one ‘on the spectrum’.

    I’ve seen your kind of ‘logic’ from creationists. Pretty easy to recognize, actually.

  • Margerine

    I am quite surprised by this degree of wilful ignorance. “Green” ethics are essentially Science based so what is this nonsense doing here?

    Since the vaccine/autism scare in the UK media that resulted in people witholding it from their children London is now facing a startling increase in cases of Measles. Several other countries have experienced similar epidemics due decreased vaccination rates.

    Measles is 90% contagious in close quarters and has a mortality rate of 1/1000. In an outbreak your child will have a high risk of infection and may die.

  • Not Impressed

    Liz, the gummint hasn’t made any payouts to people whose children are autistic as a result of vaccinations. You might like to think that the Poling case is proof positive that this has occurred; in fact, HHS authorized compensation because the clinical evidence suggested that the child’s mitochondrial disorder was exacerbated by a vaccine reaction. Big difference.

    As for your uncle who self-published an antivaccinationist booklet 25 years ago (considering the tone of your comment, I’m guessing he read it to you as a bedtime story) — it looks like he’s showed up only twice in Vaccine Court, once in a case involving a living adult who received compensation, and also in a case involving a living child who didn’t. That’s not quite the boatload of dead and injured you’d like to make it out to be.

  • http://insidevaccines.com/wordpress/ MinorityView

    Love all the science you guys are citing! So, when a parent observes vaccine damage in an infant or child they should just be quiet about it? Not going to happen. Here is a question for you: Do you think vaccine damage is reported by doctors? Yes, no, maybe? Here is an article based on an actual study: http://insidevaccines.com/wordpress/2008/03/05/vaers-what-we-really-know-about-the-reporting-of-adverse-events/ (the results? “During 5 months, a total of 33,420 vaccinations were administered during 14,466 encounters. There were 5,914 follow-up contacts by vaccinees within 14 days of the vaccination visits; 686 (11.6%) generated an alert. Clinicians submitted VAERS reports for 23 of these (0.69 per 1000 vaccines doses), which is almost 6 times the dose-based reporting rate to VAERS (p.731).”)

  • http://www.cyberlizard.com CyberLizard

    Check out Paul Offit’s book “Autism’s False Prophets”. It’s a well-written concise history of the rise of the antivax movement and it’s subsequent debunking.

    I listened to the hype, got scared and didn’t vaccinate my daughter. Then I got educated, realized the absolute lack of basis for any of it, and got her shots caught up.

    Science. It works.

  • christine chavez

    Well, this is supposed to be an “eco-friendly” site and you all are in favor of putting TOXINS into our kids bodies????!!!

  • Don

    MinorityView,
    I do not see any reason anyone on this message board should be motivated to cite studies. It’s not as if most people, obviously including yourself, could read them in any critical manner anyway. There are different quality of studies ranging from very large, precise, well controlled studies all the way down to crap ones that have no scientific merit. If you were capapble of telling the difference then you would be on the other side of this debate.
    The fact of the matter is that there is absolutely no reason to believe that vaccines are in any way connected to autism. They are safe and the side effects and rare symptoms are well worth the price of the herd immunity to the vaccine.

  • Epinephrine

    There is plenty of evidence against autism-vaccine links, and while I won’t state that all vaccines are worth having for all people, for the most part there’s some solid epidemiology underlying their use.

    Anecdotes are pretty much pointless – the biases that come into play with anecdotes pretty much outweigh the data value they bring. That’s why experiment is necessary – clinical trials, adverse event reporting, double blind studies… science isn’t some big monster, it’s a way of examining the world.

    Don’t forget that those scientists against whom many of you are railing are people – people who are largely out there trying to help. I switched fields from mathematics to neuroscience, when my nephew was born with a brain tumour. I certainly don’t have an agenda beyond trying to help the public, but I don’t like to see bad science (or pseudoscience) propagated on sites like this – influential non-scientists giving opinions on medical subjects is a pretty sure way to end up hurting someone.

    If you want some reading on thimerosal and vaccines in infants, there was a 2008 paper on the subject:

    M. E. Pichichero, A. Gentile, N. Giglio, V. Umido, T. Clarkson, E. Cernichiari, G. Zareba, C. Gotelli, M. Gotelli, L. Yan and J. Treanor (2008). Mercury Levels in Newborns and Infants After Receipt of Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines. Pediatrics 2008;121;e208-e214

    and here’s one on vaccines and autism:

    S. K. Parker, B. Schwartz, J. Todd and L. K. Pickering (2004).
    Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines and Autistic Spectrum Disorder: A Critical Review of Published Original Data
    . Pediatrics 2004;114;793-804.

    The case for an autism-thimerosal link has been dismantled a number of times. Yes, there is still much to learn about autism, and bringing attention and funding to the study of autism (and its etiology) is a good thing – but concentrate on raising money to help scientists trying to work on the issues, rather than trying to spread pseudo science that undermines the real efforts being made by devoted scientists to help the public good.

  • IThinkForMyself

    Kristin said:
    “Jenny McCarthy is a baby-killer because of all the children that will die from preventable diseases because their parents didn’t vaccinate after listening to her.”

    And Pauly PrOffit isn’t a baby killer? Especially considering how his Rota-Virus vaccine killed all those kids.

    And vaccine preventable diseases are bad, yes. I agree 100%. Polio and some of the more deadly childhood diseases should be vaccinated for. But compare 10 vaccines when we were child to the 60+ vaccines our kids receive today. My goodness! How did we all survive childhood! We didn’t get all of these vaccines. Shouldn’t the majority of us be dead from these horrible childhood illnesses like Chicken Pox, mumps and measles? I mean, my goodness, in the 70′s, before these vaccines were common, they were just lining the streets with dead bodies of children who died from these diseases (sarcasm).

    Her point is, are all of these necessary? Are we shooting ourselves in the foot, as a society, by trying to prevent illnesses that are typical childhood illnesses that carry a relatively low risk. Oh, I know, you’re going to say that measles and mumps can have complications. How common are these complications? In 3rd world countries where they lack the medical technology, they are still fairly uncommon. In America, they are almost non-existent.

    By the way, all of you are forgetting that Hannah Poling was injured by vaccines. If it was possible for her to get injured by vaccines, then it is more than possible for other children to have the same result.

  • Kathy

    Now, who would you believe, Jenny being an eye witness and not having financial ties to pharmaceutical companies? Or, Amanda Peete and Paul Offit who make their living off vaccines.

    Bottom line is this: Why in the hell was my baby injected with more toxins in the first 15 months of his life than is deemed safe for a 550lb man says the EPA? Jesus, someone answer the question and someone take accountability. Neurological disorders didn’t go up 6000% for no reason … vaccines tripled and so did neurological disorders. If your child is one of the few who doesn’t have a life threatenting peanut allergy, asthma, ADD, ADHD, or ASD .. God bless you and go hide in the sand with Amanda Peete and her heatlhy baby. For the rest of us … 1 in 4 … we’ll stick with the truth and Jenny.

  • Diane

    To all those who vote for Amanda (who are really voting for the continuation of large amounts of vaccines) I say this: I pray your child never falls into the world of Autism. But if they do, I can assure you that Amanda Peet will NOT be there to help you pull them out of that world, but Jenny McCarthy and other advocates will. May you never need them.

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  • George

    Out of the studies that show autism was not caused by vaccination, which one does McCarthy have a problem with?

  • Epinephrine

    Kathy says: “Neurological disorders didn’t go up 6000% for no reason … vaccines tripled and so did neurological disorders”

    no, the definitions for certain neurological diseases were changed, resulting in more diagnoses.

    I work in health statistics. One neat little example is how cancer incidence works – when you improve the detection method, suddenly the cancer rate goes up. Of course, since cancers would eventually be caught, it’s a temporary effect. The detection method didn’t cause new cancers, it catches the cancers that weren’t getting detected.

    Same thing happens when you change the diagnostic criteria – suddenly there are more diagnoses. This doesn’t mean that the underlying rates actually changed at all. However, since many neurological conditions might not otherwise get caught, it isn’t a temporary effect, it will improve screening for all those to whom the new criteria are applied, resulting in an increased rate of diagnoses.

    When autism was introduced into the DSM-III the rates obviously went up; when the DSM-IV changed the criteria, expanding the list from 6 mandatory criteria to 16 optional criteria, this greatly increased the number of people that fit the diagnosis.

  • Crystal

    For all the idiots who commented you’ll pick science over McCarthy, McCarthy is spreading research backed information. Maybe if you got more than Playboy in your mailbox, you’d see that McCarthy is one smart bunny – unlike Peet who listened to one man about vaccines and thinks she knows it all now!!!

  • autism mom

    Re: Diane–

    As an mom of a kid with autism, Jenny McCarthy and others of her ilk aren’t there for me–Jenny McCarthy’s there for selling her books, marketing herself, getting Weight Watchers money, and for promoting her woo-woo idea of “Indigo Children.”

    Look, Jenny McCarthy thinks she’s cured her son’s autism by diet, and that he’s a special kind of ‘Indigo Child’–i.e., that he’s psychic….I want her far away from my kid…

    http://bigdumbchimp.blogspot.com/2007/09/jenny-mccarthys-kid-has-autism-and-shes.html

  • Lab tests, VAERS and Federal Court

    Few comments here show any understanding of immunization theory, vaccine injury, biochemistry, medical ethics, the politics of bureaucracies — myriad interwoven elements of the issue. Sadly most people seem capable only of reductionism and fearmongering.

    Investigating vaccine safety concerns is not equivalent to maligning shots. Simplified, is Ralph Nader anti-car? Is Meryl Streep anti-apple?

    Tens of thousands of parents are reporting problems with vaccines. Yet public health administrators, manufacturers, media and consumers inexplicably try to dismiss these reports with reflexive and fallacious arguments — preferring uncomplicated ignorance.

    Tragically that irresponsible inaction ensures continued injury to a subset of the population with genetic predispositions; note that Hannah Poling is not the only child with vaccine-induced autism who suffers from pre- or post-shot mitochondrial dysfunction.

    Educate yourself. Read testimony to the Federal Omnibus Autism Proceedings (the “vaccine court”) that’s looked at this issue since 2002. Verdicts are expected in 2009.

    Read vaccine injury reports to VAERS — the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System. Look atthe lab tests these families have as proof. The evidence will break your heart.

    Read David Kirby’s 2005 book “Evidence of Harm” and you’ll understand the political machinations that prevent U.S. citizens from seeing vaccine injury statistics in the CDC’s Vaccine Safety Datalink.

    Listen to people like Dr. Bernadine Healy, health editor for U.S. News and World Report. She was head of the Red Cross, and a director at the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Healy told CBS News last spring: “I think the government or certain public health officials within the government have been too quick to dismiss the concerns of these families without studying the population that got sick.”

    Jenny McCarthy is right — until you have walked in her shoes, you have no clue. Until you have done the reading necessary to understand this topic, or talked with doctors and chemists and parents affected by vaccine-induced autism, show a little compassion and keep your mind open.

  • Paul Johnson

    sigh…

    Doja A, Roberts W (2006). “Immunizations and autism: a review of the literature”. Can J Neurol Sci 33 (4): 341–6. PMID 17168158.

    Taylor B (2006). “Vaccines and the changing epidemiology of autism”. Child Care Health Dev 32 (5): 511–9. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2214.2006.00655.x. PMID 16919130.

    THE SKY IS FALLING THE SKY IS FALLING

  • Paul Johnson

    Or for those who are too lazy to investigate:

    The first:
    Conclusions There has (probably) been no real increase in the incidence of autism. There is no scientific evidence that the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine or the mercury preservative used in some vaccines plays any part in the aetiology or triggering of autism, even in a subgroup of children with the condition.

    The second:
    Our literature review found very few studies supporting this theory, with the overwhelming majority showing no causal association between the Measles-Mumps-Rubella vaccine and autism. The vaccine preservative thimerosal has alternatively been hypothesized to have a possible causal role in autism. Again, no convincing evidence was found to support this claim, nor for the use of chelation therapy in autism.

    Next time you find a study supporting your view it needs to be compared to the majority of studies. Anecdotal evidence or a single study is not proof of anything. Vaccines remain completely safe.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    The “safe vaccines” line that McCarthy uses is a total crock. Her movement is 100% anti-vaccine. It’s just that even she knows how insane it is to be fighting against one of the most successful public health initiatives since clean water, so she tries to hide her true agenda behind her “mommy instinct” crap and this malarkey about “greening” the vaccines.

    Indeed. The whole “Green Our Vaccines” bit is a brilliantly Orwellian distortion of science:

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2007/11/cries_the_antivaccinationist_why_are_we.php

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    For all the idiots who commented you’ll pick science over McCarthy, McCarthy is spreading research backed information.

    It depends on what you mean by “research.” If you mean studying at the University of Google to find antivaccination websites, then, yes, her information is “research-backed.” It’s just really bad research. On the other hand, if by “research” you mean quality science, clinical trials, and epidemiology published in peer reviewed journals and representing the consensus of the best scientists in this area, then, no, you’re full of crap. Jenny is in fact spreading pseudoscience. She thinks her Google knowledge trumps actually knowing science and studying the science. Truly, Jenny McCarthy is a perfect example of the arrogance of ignorance.

  • IThinkForMyself

    Paul Johnson said:
    “Next time you find a study supporting your view it needs to be compared to the majority of studies. Anecdotal evidence or a single study is not proof of anything. Vaccines remain completely safe”

    Really? Tell that to my son, who developed an encepalopathy after receiving his MMR and DTaP on the same day. This is noted in his medical documentation, by the way. Tell that to Hannah Poling. Tell it to Dr. Healy. Tell it to the thousands upon thousands of parents who are telling the exact same story.

  • AutismNewsBeat

    It’s not really a question “who is right -0 McCarthy or Peet”. A more serious question is “what does the science say”? On that score, the only one that matters, Peet is right. Jenny still thinks vaccines contain anti-freeze and ether. Nuff said.

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  • Twyla

    There is a whole lot of science showing a link between vaccines and autism, and the science is growing.

    There are also thousands of “anecdotes” from credible parents who witnessed their children’s vaccine reactions followed by regression into autism. This goes way beyond “post hoc ergo propter hoc”.

    Thimerosal is not the only cause of autism. Being overloaded with multiple viral vaccines (e.g.MMR+V) is not the only cause of autism. But vaccines definitely can cause autism. There are many suspect ingredients in vaccines, including high levels of aluminum, a neurotoxin, which has never been proven safe. Direct injections bypass the body’s normal immune and detox mechanisms in the lungs, skin, and GI tract.

    We are not against vaccines. We are concerned that too many vaccines overload some babies’ immune, neuro, and gastro systems resulting in an array of problems — from mild to serious. All medications carry the risk of overdose. If a little is good, that does not mean that a lot is safe.

    We understand the benefits of vaccines against illnesses such as polio and smallpox. But vaccinating all babies on the day of birth for Hep B? That’s crazy. That’s an example of faulty weighing of risks and benefits.

    Those of you who are so smug and holier-than-thou in declaring vaccines safe don’t know what you are talking about. Read the vaccine inserts. Read David Kirby’s book Evidence of Harm, and Dr. Bryab Jepson’s book Changing the Course of Autism.

    Jenny McCarthy is using her celebrity status to speak for thousands of parents and professionals who have seen that vaccines can cause autism, and that biomedical treatments such as diet and supplements can help many people with autism. Read her new book “Mother Warriors” for yourself. It tells a terribly important story. Thank you, Jenny McCarthy — mother warrior!

  • sam wight

    “Oh, I know, you’re going to say that measles and mumps can have complications. How common are these complications?”

    “By the way, all of you are forgetting that Hannah Poling was injured by vaccines. If it was possible for her to get injured by vaccines, then it is more than possible for other children to have the same result.”

    Hmm. In one case you wonder about likelihood, but in the other you completely ignore it. Why is that?

  • http://dirtyhairy.blogspot.com/ Dirty Hairy

    Twyla-20+ independent, peer reviewed studies debunking the vaccine myth isn’t enough to convince you?

    Just checking.

  • IThinkForMyself

    The Squid Zone said:
    “I must admit, I find it incredible that anyone would take seriously anything that comes out of the mouth of a B-grade soft porn / D-grade mainstream celebrity.”

    Oh, you mean like Amanda Peet?

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    There is a whole lot of science showing a link between vaccines and autism, and the science is growing.

    No there isn’t and it is not.

    There are also thousands of “anecdotes” from credible parents who witnessed their children’s vaccine reactions followed by regression into autism. This goes way beyond “post hoc ergo propter hoc”.

    The plural of “anecdotes” (in actuality, testimonials, not anecdotes) is not “data.” And, no, it does not go beyond post hoc ergo propter hoc.

    Jenny McCarthy is using her celebrity status to speak for thousands of parents and professionals who have seen that vaccines can cause autism, and that biomedical treatments such as diet and supplements can help many people with autism. Read her new book “Mother Warriors” for yourself. It tells a terribly important story. Thank you, Jenny McCarthy — mother warrior!

    No, Jenny McCarthy is using her D-list celebrity status and the much greater celebrity status of her boyfriend Jim Carrey to promote a view that, if it catches on, will lead to suffering and death of childrens–all based on pseudoscience, ideology, misinformation, and outright lies. McCarthy is too ignorant to know that there is no antifreeze in vaccines. She thinks the tiny amount of formaldehyde in vaccines left over from the manufacturing process is a threat, even though it is tiny compared to what people are exposed to in the environment every day and is smaller than the amount that the human body makes through normal metabolic processes.

    This is the only thing I “thank” Jenny McCarthy for:

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/07/thanks_jenny_mccarthy.php

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    It’s not really a question “who is right -0 McCarthy or Peet”. A more serious question is “what does the science say”? On that score, the only one that matters, Peet is right. Jenny still thinks vaccines contain anti-freeze and ether. Nuff said.

    Exactly right. Reality is what it is regardless of what pseudoscience mavens believe.

  • Epinephrine

    Twyla spake thusly: “… that biomedical treatments such as diet and supplements can help many people with autism.”

    Um… let’s see what an actual study has to say about these diets.

    Elder JH, Shankar M, Shuster J, Theriaque D, Burns S, Sherrill L. (2006). The gluten-free, casein-free diet in autism: results of a preliminary double blind clinical trial. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Apr;36(3):413-20

    “This study tested the efficacy of a gluten-free and casein-free (GFCF) diet in treating autism using a randomized, double blind repeated measures crossover design. The sample included 15 children aged 2-16 years with autism spectrum disorder. Data on autistic symptoms and urinary peptide levels were collected in the subjects’ homes over the 12 weeks that they were on the diet. Group data indicated no statistically significant findings even though several parents reported improvement in their children. Although preliminary, this study demonstrates how a controlled clinical trial of the GFCF diet can be conducted, and suggests directions for future research.”

    Now, that doesn’t mean that the treatment can’t work, but it throws some doubt on it. Studies of this type will be able to identify whether there are effects. This is the type of research you need to back up claims of effectiveness, but this study didn’t confirm any benefit.

    Slightly worse news:
    Hediger ML, England LJ, Molloy CA, Yu KF, Manning-Courtney P, and Mills JL (2008). Reduced Bone Cortical Thickness in Boys with Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. May;38(3):848-856.

    “Bone development, casein-free diet use, supplements, and medications were assessed for 75 boys with autism or autism spectrum disorder, ages 4–8 years. Second metacarpal bone cortical thickness (BCT), measured on hand-wrist radiographs, and % deviations in BCT from reference medians were derived. BCT increased with age, but % deviations evidenced a progressive fall-off (p = .02): +3.1 ± 4.7%, ?6.5 ± 4.0%, ?16.6 ± 3.4%, ?19.4 ± 3.7%, ?24.1 ± 4.4%, at ages 4–8, respectively, adjusting for height. The 12% of the boys on casein-free diets had an overall % deviation of ?18.9 ± 3.7%, nearly twice that of boys on minimally restricted or unrestricted diets (?10.5 ± 1.3%, p < .04), although even for boys on minimally restricted or unrestricted diets the % deviation was highly significant (p < .001). Our data suggest that the bone development of autistic boys should be monitored as part of routine care, especially if they are on casein-free diets.”

    This suggests some possible bone development issues in these samples of autistic children, and that the diet exacerbates the problem. I certainly would think twice before using a treatment that doesn’t have anything but anecdotal evidence backing it, but has demonstrated potential to interfere with normal bone development.

  • Nic

    Why are you “science” bloggers so afraid??? Jenny McCarthy saved my sons life, NOT his pediatrician. My son’s autism is almost completely REVERSED thanks to detoxification, a proper diet, and therapies. I just don’t get why you can’t believe that kids lives ARE being saved here?

  • Monika

    Looks like you all have taken good care of the science end of things. I am going to go out today and buy an Amanda Peet movie. Never heard of her before, but she sounds great!

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Twyla spake thusly: “… that biomedical treatments such as diet and supplements can help many people with autism.”

    Um… let’s see what an actual study has to say about these diets.

    Indeed. If PETA believes it, it’s probably a load of crap:

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/09/peta_even_more_impossible_to_parody_than.php

  • itsallaboutthemoney

    I agree with Jenny. Most of the epidemiology studies have serious flaws.
    Even Dr.Gerberding has admitted in front of a congressional panel that the CDC
    study released in 2003 is flawed. I wonder if you all are aware that the original version (1999)showed a significant correlation between Thimerosol containing vaccines and neuro problems among children. Then it was released 3-4 years later showing no association. We know about this because of a FOIA lawsuit brought against the CDC by an activist group named Safe Minds. Members of congress have approached the CDC for the original
    datasets to be studied by independent researchers and the CDC says that the datasets have been lost or destroyed.
    I find it very difficult to trust a group of people that cannot keep track of critical data.
    I also wish to mention that the study
    examining mercury levels in the blood of newborns does not tell the whole story.
    Yes, blood levels decreased quickly, but
    that does NOT mean that all the mercury
    was excreted. The researchers did NOT
    account for all the mercury being excreted from these children’s bodies.
    I know that everyone has been focusing in on mercury, but also there are high levels of Aluminum in the vaccines and that can be causing problems in some children.
    I am also mistrustful of the CDC because there is a study that is begging to be done that our health officials refuse to do and that is the vaccinated vs. unvaccinated study. Why has that not been done ?
    I have to admit, I always thought Jenny was just a ditzy blonde, but she’s really a smart cookie.
    Nobody wants their child to get a horrible disease, but there are harmful toxins that are in these vaccines that some children are not able to excrete efficiently.
    The science is there to support that hypothesis. You just have to take the time to look. There are studies of the biology of these children that show reduced levels of Glutathione. Glutathione is the body’s main molecule
    that binds to heavy metals and enables the body to excrete these toxins.
    I urge anyone who is interested in the vaccine- autism debate to listen to the audio clips that are on the Autism Omnibus website and hear the evidence presented with an open mind.
    Jenny is not an idiot, she HAS done the research. Our government officials have exposed an entire generation of children
    to highly toxic untested substances and will never admit that they have made the biggest screwup in medical history.

  • The Science Commenter

    Nic,

    I’m not so sure that autism can be completely reversed. There is data, however, that show some of the genes that may be faulty in the disease can be “turned on.” Behavioral therapy early in life has much to do with it as well. I haven’t read too many of the details, but some scientists speculate that if you track these individuals at various molecular levels, you might see a correlation of changes in mRNA and protein as a result of environmental stimulus.

    I’m sure diet makes things better, just as certain diets reduce symptoms of other diseases, such as Tourette’s and ADHD.

  • http://www.new.facebook.com/profile.php?id=524228128&ref=profile Catherine E. Tomlinson

    For ALL OF YOU that have propped yourselves up on pedestals by slamming Jenny and hailing ‘science,’ please vaporize NOW. Ignorant fools like yourself CLEARLY have NOT DONE THE RESEARCH it takes to understand how YOUR TAX DOLLARS are funding the debilitating gene pool that our society is becoming. Think lobbyists from pharmaceutical companies turning every shot into heavier pockets for mainstream pediatricians. Doctors will use scare tactics to coerce parents into thinking they’ve done the right thing. Who cares about Jenny McCarthy’s past, when she’s doing something quite honorable these days by putting forth news that can save children’s lives. She has learned a lesson & is now living it. Amanda Peet – really – can you blame her? Pharmaceutical companies JUST USED her as spokesperson to slam Jenny, and she went along w/ it. So if you really wanted to get into WHO STARTED IT – big pharma did, and Amanda is clearly gullible.

    MOM to a 6 month UNVACCINATED baby girl in Berkeley, CA.

  • Mike

    @IThinkForMyself

    “Really? Tell that to my son, who developed an encepalopathy after receiving his MMR and DTaP on the same day. This is noted in his medical documentation, by the way. Tell that to Hannah Poling. Tell it to Dr. Healy. Tell it to the thousands upon thousands of parents who are telling the exact same story.”

    If what you’re saying is true, it would be borne out in the longitudinal studies. It isn’t. This is PRECISELY why anecdote is not evidence, ever.

    There is not a single good study that even suggests the remotest link between MMR and autism, or thimerosal and autism. The study that got this whole thing going has been disowned by all but one of the authors, and the last author (Andrew Wakefield) is up on professional misconduct charges related to all of this.

    If you really care about the origin of autism and various encephalopathies, why are you wasting your time praising this ridiculous, debunked hypothesis? Go and spend your time and give donations to organizations that look for the real causes of these issues.

    Jenny McCarthy isn’t just wrong; she’s doing active harm by diverting attention from research into the real causes of autism.

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  • kr

    all of you that are so sure that the science is on the side of our vaccine schedule: could you kindly point me toward the safety studies of injecting mercury, aluminum, and live viruses into little babies? then how about show me the studies showing 6 vaccines containing 9 diseases are safe for a 2 month old. that would be great. because, for now, i don’t think enough SCIENCE exists on either side.

  • Kristyn

    It is amazing to me at the amount of people talking smack. A lot of you are slamming Jenny because she simply wants to GREEN our vaccines and take out the uneeded toxins. She does NOT want to do away with any vaccines. She understands how important they are!

    I am a proud mom of a 6 year old son with Autism. I also believe that CONTAMINATED vaccines caused my sons Autism. I know alot of you dont agree with that theory. But until you see a completelty normal child go from healthy and normal to autistic in a matter of days of recieving so many vaccines at once. You will NEVER understand what us mothers feel. We are not trying to Blame anyone. But when your child goes from fine to having a life long disabilty, it makes you think.

    I also agree that vaccines are VERY important. I am NOT against them. However I am against that many in one day. I believe these vaccines need to be broken up into smaller dosages so that these children are not getting OVER vaccined. The amount of Toxins in these vaccines are mind blowing. All we want is to make them safer and remove the toxins. Thats all Jenny wants. She is simply saying lets clean them up and test our children to see if their little bodies can handle that many vaccines.

    There is no need to name call Jenny. She just wants what every other mom wants. To have a happy and healthy child.

  • dyslexic_angeleno

    “[At Ecorazzi] we cover environmental, humanitarian, and animal rights issues as they relate to those in the spotlight. In the spirit of fair play, we’re quick to point how who’s slacking and who’s deserving of recognition.”

    Really? Then why don’t you stop promoting fear-mongering and neurobigotry and get your facts and science straight about autism and vaccines? Please google neurodiversity and see the ‘autism hub’ for further information so Ecorazzi can see precisely how they are ‘slacking’ in this area. Thank-you.

  • Mike

    @Kristyn

    “I am a proud mom of a 6 year old son with Autism. I also believe that CONTAMINATED vaccines caused my sons Autism. I know alot of you dont agree with that theory. But until you see a completelty normal child go from healthy and normal to autistic in a matter of days of recieving so many vaccines at once. You will NEVER understand what us mothers feel. We are not trying to Blame anyone. But when your child goes from fine to having a life long disabilty, it makes you think.”

    We don’t agree with the theory (and, frankly, this whole line of thinking does a great disservice to the noble word ‘theory’), because there is no evidence to support it.

    No amount of anecdote is evidence. Evidence comes in the form of studies that control for other variables that could have caused the observed effect, which anecdote absolutely does not do.

    “However I am against that many in one day. I believe these vaccines need to be broken up into smaller dosages so that these children are not getting OVER vaccined.”

    What you believe is irrelevant. All that matters is what is true. There is no evidence that multiple vaccinations is harmful. End of story. When this evidence is proffered, I will change my opinion. This is the way rational people think; let the evidence guide your opinion.

    “She just wants what every other mom wants. To have a happy and healthy child.”

    No doubt. But what she is doing, in reality, is making things worse by diverting attention (and, most importantly, money) from those people who wish to find the real causes of autism. She is doing active harm. When she is able to provide evidence to back up her point of view, we will take her seriously.

  • IThinkForMyself

    @Mike
    “If what you’re saying is true, it would be borne out in the longitudinal studies. It isn’t. This is PRECISELY why anecdote is not evidence, ever.”

    His official medical diagnosis is an encepalopathy caused by a vaccine-induced fever.

    Notice how I said OFFICIAL MEDICAL DIAGNOSES. That isn’t anecdote, that’s documented evidence. Also, Hannah Poling developed an encepalopathy caused by a vaccine. The government and HHS conceded that her autism was caused by the vaccine (don’t try to obfuscate…autism-like symptoms is autism).

    The reason why they haven’t found this in longitudinal studies is because, as Dr. Healy stated, they haven’t done any studies on these children who parents are claiming have regressive autism.

    And Jenny is doing what she feels is right. She wants this to stop happening to our children, and that includes yours if you have any.

    I’m still wondering how all of us made it to adulthood without all of these 60+ vaccines to keep us alive. Hey, back in the 70′s when there were only 10 vaccines on the schedule, we had to climb over the bodies to get to the Doctor’s offices (sarcasm).

  • http://www.humpday.com/brownian Brownian

    “If you really care about the origin of autism and various encephalopathies, why are you wasting your time praising this ridiculous, debunked hypothesis? Go and spend your time and give donations to organizations that look for the real causes of these issues.”

    Because it’s hard to garner sympathy as the mother of a victim of an oppressive regime if there isn’t a regime to rail against?

    @thinkformyself: Please be sure to write your memoirs and tell-all exposés. In the future, parents of whatever disease will then be used by the pro-pseudoscience anti-vaccine lobby will appreciate a manual on how to win fame and celebrity on the back of their child’s illness.

    By the way, I know you’re busy bandying anecdotes around (the same kind the tobacco lobby used to repress the link between smoking and cancer for decades), but in the interest of honest disclosure you really should thank the creationists for your screen name. Styling oneself “IThinkForMyself” in an attempt to posit yourself as some sort of outside-the-box free-thinker (when you’re really no more than a run-of-the-mill conspiracy theorist with a sob story) has been a hallmark of their strategy of deceit for years.

  • Epinephrine

    Itsallaboutthemoney wrote:

    “I also wish to mention that the study
    examining mercury levels in the blood of newborns does not tell the whole story.
    Yes, blood levels decreased quickly, but
    that does NOT mean that all the mercury
    was excreted. The researchers did NOT
    account for all the mercury being excreted from these children’s bodies.”

    Very good point, and one specifically made by the authors of the study. They call attention to this, and point out that more work needs to be done – but it was published in 2008. We have to wait for follow-up studies.

    Doing tests like this in animals is easiest, since one can ensure that we measure everything – parents are less likely to want their children monitored for days/weeks, saving all the urine and stool. Of course, then it raises comparability issues.

    So it is actually very difficult to study – but leaping to the assumption that it isn’t excreted isn’t responsible either.

    Whether the use of mercury in vaccines was a good idea or not, in the quantity that they were used, is a good question. But linking MMR and autism hasn’t been supported by science.

    Questioning the safety of medicine is smart. Resorting to anecdotal evidence rather than studies isn’t. I don’t think you’ll find a single person who would argue (rationally) against evidence based medicine – that we shouldn’t use drugs/vaccines without evidence of their effectiveness, and knowing the risks as well as possible.

    Medicine wasn’t always evidence-based; we see with the application of epidemiology to medicine that many treatments and approaches have been less than optimal. Yes, we should examine the evidence for the safety of drugs – but we can’t use anecdote to do so.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Nobody wants their child to get a horrible disease, but there are harmful toxins that are in these vaccines that some children are not able to excrete efficiently.

    Evidence for this assertion, please?

    (crickets chirping…)

  • Pavoreax

    People! I’m tired of reading all of this just-plan-wrong BS! There is one simple fact that so many of you seem to be missing:

    Anyone who is familiar with her earlier work knows that Jenny McCarthy is NOT A TRUE BLONDE!

  • Dave

    How sad that a celebrity wants to harm children by working against vaccinations.

    But posting this is a wate of time because responding to the crazies to point out their bad judgement makes them think they’re ‘onto something’ or that you’re attacking their children.

    Pathetic. Liz Finn especially.

  • Mike

    @IThinkForMyself
    “Notice how I said OFFICIAL MEDICAL DIAGNOSES. That isn’t anecdote, that’s documented evidence.

    No, it’s anecdote. Evidence comes from studies where other variables are accounted for. Expert opinion is not evidence; it is anecdote. When the doctor says “this is vaccine-induced”, and bases that finding on large studies that show that people who get vaccinated are more likely to have specific ailments (autism, etc), THAT will constitute evidence. But opinion, even of a physician, is not evidence.

    “And Jenny is doing what she feels is right. She wants this to stop happening to our children, and that includes yours if you have any.”

    Again, no doubt that is her intent. But unless there is evidence to back up her claim, she is simply diverting attention from efforts to find the real cause(s) of autism. In this way, she is doing active harm.

    And no, I don’t.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    It is amazing to me at the amount of people talking smack. A lot of you are slamming Jenny because she simply wants to GREEN our vaccines and take out the uneeded toxins. She does NOT want to do away with any vaccines. She understands how important they are!

    Really? Even though the dose makes the poison and there is no evidence that at the doses given anything in vaccines is harmful?

    In any case, if Jenny isn’t antivaccine, why is it that she has repeatedly said that she would never, ever vaccinate again if she has another child. Why is it that she refuses to define what a “green” vaccine would look like or specify what it would take in terms of “greening our vaccines” in order to persuade her to vaccinate? It’s because she is antivaccine, pure and simple. Her “we’re pro-safe vaccine” stance is nothing more than a disingenuous justification for her antivax stance.

    The bottom line is that, no matter what is removed from vaccines, she will still never consider them “green enough.” That’s because she is antivaccine, her claims otherwise notwithstanding.

  • Mike

    @Epinephrine

    “Medicine wasn’t always evidence-based; we see with the application of epidemiology to medicine that many treatments and approaches have been less than optimal. Yes, we should examine the evidence for the safety of drugs – but we can’t use anecdote to do so.”

    Indeed, evidence-based medicine is a very new phenomenon. Heck, the randomized trial is only about 60 years old (thanks again, Austin Bradford Hill).

  • Kerry Maxwell

    I have two autistic sons, but I have no desire to walk in McCarthy’s shoes of ignorance. Angry mob indeed. McCarthy and Jim Carey get my vote for the Golden Douche-Nozzle Award.

  • kr

    Orac:
    many of us who vaccinated our children who became autistic afterward, and then treated those children for vaccine damage and they got BETTER say we wouldn’t vaccinate again. NOT the way it is today. Not with dirty vaccines. Clean them up, that’s what we ask, give us one in a day, and THEN we vaccinate. How is that ANTI-VACCINE? We’re screaming for the medical establishment to take out the unneccesary junk…we are working/screaming for BETTER vaccines, not NONE!!! Your arguments are so….so….void of fairness.

  • Matt
  • Ale

    And Jenny is doing what she feels is right. She wants this to stop happening to our children, and that includes yours if you have any.

    Well, she should learn to THINK and then do what she UNDERSTOOD to be right, in light of the epidemiological and biological processes involved. The problem is that she is unbearably ignorant, and with a propensity for pseudoscience and magical thinking.

  • John

    What is a “dirty” vaccine? What is a “green” vaccine? What is a “toxin”?

    “Vaccine skeptics” seem to raise more questions than answers.

  • Carolyn

    Jenny McCarthy speaks from experience as a parent with a child with autism.

    Let me explain in detail….

    She gave birth to a beautiful little boy. Got him vaccinated. Then he started having a serious medical issues (seizures etc) that resulted in autism.

    Autism is a medical issue not merely a developmental disability. Any parent with a child with autism can inform you of the many maladies that autism presents itself (asthma, immune disregulation, sensory disregulation, heavy metal toxicity, cerebral inflammation etc etc)

    Amanda Peet is speaking from no experience at all.

    Simply put. If you don’t KNOW autism. You have no right to speak on behalf of it. PERIOD.

    Her actions and words speak volumes to a group of parents that work tirelessly to give their children the best life possible. We are listening to her and the countless parents that are discounting our childrens health and well being.

    Our children are not going away. 1 in 150 A child is being diagnosed with autism every 20 minutes.

  • stephanie

    You idiots claiming your kids were cured: autism is a developmental delay disorder, not one which halts development entirely. Therefore, any improvements you may biasedly observe may be due to nothing but time.

  • Ruth

    I’m a scientist and the mother of 2 kids on the spectrum-does my vote count more? A benefit/risk analysis clearly favors vaccination. A generation of moms not vaccinated, exposed to rubella from unvaccinated kids will leave far more deaf, blind and retarded babies in the future. The time and money wasted on this should go to better supports for autistic adults and children. My kids are doing well without biomeddling.

  • Dave

    Carolyn,

    Amanda Peet speaks from experience as a parent with a child without autism.

    Let me explain in detail….

    She gave birth to a beautiful little girl. Got her vaccinated. Then she was fine.

    Why is this not equally valid experience? Why does Jenny have the right to form an opinion based off of her experience with her child while you dont give Amanda the right to form an opinion based off of her experience with her child? Amanda has exactly the same amount of experience as Jenny. Yet you value the opinion of one and discard the opinion of the other.

  • wiseone

    I see many here are able to deny reality. They have been trained from an early age to do what the man in the white coat says for he is wise and science is God.
    What is real is that doctors are simply human and make terrible decisions all the time, science has been polluted by money and politics since the beginning on this issue and vaccines cause autism, .
    Please try to use your own minds and learn to think for yourselves.

  • Mike

    @Carolyn

    “She gave birth to a beautiful little boy. Got him vaccinated. Then he started having a serious medical issues (seizures etc) that resulted in autism.”

    Post hoc, ergo propter hoc. Do you not see the flaw in this? No doubt you believe that the sun rises because the rooster crows.

    “Autism is a medical issue not merely a developmental disability. Any parent with a child with autism can inform you of the many maladies that autism presents itself (asthma, immune disregulation, sensory disregulation, heavy metal toxicity, cerebral inflammation etc etc)”

    Ok.

    “Amanda Peet is speaking from no experience at all.

    Simply put. If you don’t KNOW autism. You have no right to speak on behalf of it. PERIOD.”

    Wow. I’m a cancer researcher, but I’ve never had cancer; should I stop now?

    I know evidence, and the evidence tells me that there is no association between MMR and autism, or thimerosal and autism, or anything-to-do-with-vaccines and autism.

    “Her actions and words speak volumes to a group of parents that work tirelessly to give their children the best life possible.”

    No one is questioning her desire to help her kids and to help other kids. No one. But when you divert attention and money from efforts to find the real causes, you are doing active harm to the people you are hoping to help.

    “Our children are not going away. 1 in 150 A child is being diagnosed with autism every 20 minutes.”

    Ok, so let’s put our heads together and try to find out why. Let’s not get bogged down in pseudoscience and woo. Let’s let the evidence take us where it will.

  • Mike

    @Dave

    Carolyn,

    Amanda Peet speaks from experience as a parent with a child without autism.

    Let me explain in detail….

    She gave birth to a beautiful little girl. Got her vaccinated. Then she was fine.

    Why is this not equally valid experience? Why does Jenny have the right to form an opinion based off of her experience with her child while you dont give Amanda the right to form an opinion based off of her experience with her child? Amanda has exactly the same amount of experience as Jenny. Yet you value the opinion of one and discard the opinion of the other.”

    Bang on.

    You see, the problem with anecdotal “evidence” is that it tends to ignore those people who got the exposure but didn’t get the ailment. That is PRECISELY why we need large studies of people who did or did not get vaccinated, and then compare the rates of autism between them. So long as the participants are chosen correctly (i.e. so that all possible variables are accounted for), we can say that getting vaccinated does or does not correlate with increased risk of developing autism.

    If one child gets vaccinated and then develops autism, and another gets vaccinated and does not develop autism, which result should we give more “weight” to? Neither. We should look for more evidence from as many such individuals as possible. All of the studies that have done exactly that have failed to show any increased risk of devloping autism in those who have been vaccinated vs. those who have not.

  • Concerned autism parent

    “(Peet) has a lot of [nerve] to come forward and be on that side, because there is an angry mob on my side.”

    Are they going to beat Amanda Peet over the head with their strippers’ poles?

    I cast my vote for Amanda Peet, because our kids deserve good health care and immunization from vaccine preventable diseases.

  • http://therunman.blogspot.com jypsy

    JM: “You ask any mother in the autism community, we’ll take the flu the measles over autism any friggin’ day of the week”

    No Ms. McCarthy, not true at all. You do NOT speak for me, or many, many like me.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Simply put. If you don’t KNOW autism. You have no right to speak on behalf of it. PERIOD.

    Corollaries to this fallacious argument:

    I’m not black; so I have no right to speak about issues affecting African Americans, PERIOD!

    I’m not a woman; so I have no right to speak about issues affecting women, PERIOD!

    I’m not a banker, so I have no right to speak about the current financial crisis, PERIOD!

    I’m not a politician, so I have no right to speak about politics, PERIOD!

    You get the idea…

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Not with dirty vaccines. Clean them up, that’s what we ask, give us one in a day, and THEN we vaccinate. How is that ANTI-VACCINE? We’re screaming for the medical establishment to take out the unneccesary junk…we are working/screaming for BETTER vaccines, not NONE!!! Your arguments are so….so….void of fairness.

    What “toxins” would have to be removed from vaccines to persuade you it was safe to vaccinate. Be specific now. Vague answers like “toxins” are not enough. I want to know specific vaccine ingredients you consider to be toxins, along with evidence showing that they are toxic AT THE DOSE GIVEN IN THE VACCINE.

    I’ll wait.

  • John

    “wiseone”:

    “They have been trained from an early age to do what the man in the white coat says for he is wise and science is God.”

    Actually, no, science is way more reliable than God. Furthermore, science is precisely the opposite of what you seem to think it is: it’s approaching observations and opinions with absolute skepticism, not with blind faith.

    “What is real is that doctors are simply human and make terrible decisions all the time…”

    No shit. That’s why there’s practices such as double-blinding, randomization, placebo controls, and peer-review. That’s why unambiguous data always trumps personal observation. It is precisely because people are fallible and prone to error that science is necessary.

    “…science has been polluted by money and politics since the beginning on this issue”

    So? So that means any scientific findings on the issue are automatically wrong?

    “Please try to use your own minds and learn to think for yourselves.”

    Indeed, but don’t willfully ignore the cold, hard evidence. If I was abandoned on an island at birth and somehow survived to this day, I’d probably think the yellow thing in the sky was just a big dot on some firmament, or maybe a big flaming sky-turtle – who knows. But that’s where thinking for myself would get me without the chastening of science. As it is, however, I have all sorts of other people’s evidence to inform me, and I owe it to them and to the rest of humanity to consider it.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Well, she should learn to THINK and then do what she UNDERSTOOD to be right, in light of the epidemiological and biological processes involved. The problem is that she is unbearably ignorant, and with a propensity for pseudoscience and magical thinking.

    Not only that, but Jenny McCarthy demonstrates the arrogance of ignorance in thinking that her Google knowledge, feelings, and “mommy instinct” somehow trump science and epidemiology. Whenever I hear antivaccinationists call scientists “arrogant,” I have to laugh. What could be more arrogant that claiming knowledge you don’t have trumps enormous amounts of scientific evidence that argue against your position. That’s pretty darned arrogant to think that way.

  • gale

    I wouldn’t wish autism on anyone. But, I wonder how you’d feel if your perfectly normal, healthy child went in for routine vaccinations and had seizures and became completely non-verbal right after receiving them? What would you think? What would you believe? Because there are literally thousands of us that see this every day. And we and our innocent children, siblings and families will live with it for the rest of our lives.

    You are all entitled to your opinions as we are to ours. We never had the chance to walk in your shoes, nor you in ours.

    Feel lucky you don’t have to.

  • Bob

    There was a time those most educated in “science” ridiculed those who didn’t believe the world was flat…

    The arrogance of the posters on this site is rivaled only by the arrogance of the doctors and politicians — not to mention the pharmaceutical companies that own them — who got us into this mess. Follow the money.

    Just because YOUR child was one of the fortunate 149 out of 150 kids who did NOT develop Autism as a result of their vaccination, doesn’t make you somehow more intelligent than a parent of a child with Autism.

    FACT – my son was perfect for 15 months. He was smiling, talking, happy — his enthusism made the entire church laugh at his baptism. Within 10 days of his MMR vaccination he was a screaming tormenting child who wanted nothing to do with the outside world — and has not spoken a word in the four years since then.

    I ask you smug know-it-alls to do this: look at who is doing the talking and follow the money. There is so much money being made on vaccinations that there plenty to spread around to keep a lid on the true facts. There is also plenty to spend on biased “scientific” studies to “prove” that there is no link between vaccines and Autism. I live with proof every day.

    So you played Russian Roulette once and didn’t get your brains blown out? I guess that scientifically proves that there is no danger in the practice.

    Follow the money.

  • kr

    orac,
    this is what i’m talking about… you say:

    “I want to know specific vaccine ingredients you consider to be toxins, along with evidence showing that they are toxic AT THE DOSE GIVEN IN THE VACCINE.”

    I don’t have to give you evidence that potential toxic ingredients (let’s start with mercury and aluminum) are toxic. You have to give me evidence that they are SAFE AT THE DOSE GIVEN BEFORE injecting. That’s YOUR job, not mine.

  • Alexandra

    “You have to give me evidence that they are SAFE AT THE DOSE GIVEN”

    That’s been done. Repeatedly. Study after study demonstrates exactly that. You, however, simply ignore or deny all this evidence and revert to the same “arguments” about vague “toxins”.

    So no, if all the research is wrong, if there is something toxic there, it is up to you to demonstrate it, to point out exactly where the research is wrong.

  • annie

    Wow, I didn’t think there were so many people who bought into what we are spoonfed to be truth. I would assume that there are some free thinkers out there who actually do their own research and don’t always believe the things that are “scientifically proven”. I hope that there are others out there who realize that all the “scientific evidence” is made to be in favor of the the companies making the profit–Pharma companies and the like. Money,not our health, is more important to the powers that be. Until more individuals like Jenny McCarthy stand up for what is right, everyone will continue to get sick and stay sick. Isn’t this the kind of thinking that we try to teach our kids not to follow–well everyone else is doing it so it must be ok??? Wrong!!!!

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  • JackC

    @michael: Thank you – and you’re welcome!

    Amanda Peet Rules! “Oh Snap!” indeed!

    JC

  • Epinephrine

    …Jenny McCarthy demonstrates the arrogance of ignorance …

    Ignorrogance?

  • Paul Johnson

    Ithinkformyself said:

    Paul Johnson said:
    ““Next time you find a study supporting your view it needs to be compared to the majority of studies. Anecdotal evidence or a single study is not proof of anything. Vaccines remain completely safe”

    Really? Tell that to my son, who developed an encepalopathy after receiving his MMR and DTaP on the same day. This is noted in his medical documentation, by the way. Tell that to Hannah Poling. Tell it to Dr. Healy. Tell it to the thousands upon thousands of parents who are telling the exact same story.”

    I will tell that to all to all of them and more. That is anecdotal evidence. It is the most inconclusive bullshit ever.

  • liz

    hey all you science shits who wrote me nasty notes?

    i’m going one steop further. she should have learned after having her FIRST child vaccinated and getting autism to think twice before doing it to the second child. I bet it was the same doc who administered the shots. Yet *I* get yelled at for getting on her case? GO READ THE COMMENTS ON THIS BOARD FROM DOCTORS and parents whose children have autism as a result of vaccines. there is plenty of medical evidence to back this up. I’ve seen it happen first hand. What kind of crazy insane mob would close their minds so tightly that they wouldn’t even look at the info?

    Also Jenny McCarthy was on front of CNN today in an interview where she said she is into green vaccines. yes I was vaccinated but they were different back then and the schedule was different. do your homework people.

    don’t take your anger out on ME. Take it out on big pharma. take it out on parents who don’t listen and continue to over vaccinate their kids with these ridiculous schedules. and then end up with what? 2 ? 3? kids with autism.
    take some responsibility!

    LIZ

  • http://www.new.facebook.com/profile.php?id=524228128&ref=profile Catherine E. Tomlinson

    you guys are ASSHOLES!!!

    –the ones that blindly follow since.

    take it from bob :: follow the $$$$$$$$$

  • http://larianlequella.com Larian LeQuella

    Please all, take a moment to read a book called “Demon Haunted World” by Carl Sagan. Anti-science is much too accessible in this day and age, and sadly too many people mistake it for something rational because they just don’t understand basic principles. With a country that is only 28% scientifically literate if you have a college degree, and only 7% without one, you’d think that people who actually knew what they were talking about should decide these issues, not uneducated talking heads…

  • kr

    so, alexandra, i have to prove to a doctor that 330 mcg of aluminum and 25 mcg of thimerosal are unsafe for my 6 month old (just assuming that all he got were pentacel and flu shot in one day) before he won’t give them to me? or my doctor needs to “do no harm” and have the science in his hand that these TOXINS TOGETHER in this amount are safe before he injects them? are you being serious?

  • hil

    Wow there’s lot of responses, and so much passion behind them all! I wonder if there is a middle ground that can be reached? From my understanding no one knows what causes Autism in all cases, so who is to say that some children may have an adverse reaction to vaccines while most do not? I believe that vaccines are beneficial and have prevented a lot of disease, but I also think that by using science things like mercury can be removed without making the vaccins less effective. I also think there is no harm in spacing out vaccines instead of following the routine schedule. Instead of being so difinitive on this issue, McCarthy is right no no Peet is right, Science vs. Emotion etc., maybe we can accept that different people react to vaccines differently both medically and emotionally. If the amount of vaccines given at one time is what is going to prevent parents from adminstering them, instead of yelling at one another maybe we can look at alternative schedules that will still vaccinate children, but in a way that will not expose the immune system to so much at one time. I know some doctors are looking at alternative schedules to spread vaccines out over a longer period of time, here’s a link that discusses that if anyone is interested. http://vaccinations.suite101.com/article.cfm/alternative_vaccination_schedules

  • http://www.humpday.com/brownian Brownian

    “you guys are ASSHOLES!!!”

    Thanks, Cath. I hope the parents of all the kids that die from measles because you and the rest of your whiny, selfish, our-gut-feelings-trump-peer-reviewed-research suffering mommies club can’t be bothered to understand how science actually works take solace in your remarks.

    Besides, don’t you know vaccines cause AIDS, not autism? At least, that’s what your contemporaries in Africa are using to ensure polio remains a debilitating killer there. You should read their heart-warming stories about plucky mothers standing up to the man and his ‘science’. And if personal experience and anguish count for so much, as you and Jenny seem to think, well, then they must be right. In terms of deeply felt suffering, the parent of a child with AIDS beats the parent of a child with autism any day.

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  • Paul Johnson

    Brownian said:

    “Besides, don’t you know vaccines cause AIDS, not autism? At least, that’s what your contemporaries in Africa are using to ensure polio remains a debilitating killer there. You should read their heart-warming stories about plucky mothers standing up to the man and his ’science’. And if personal experience and anguish count for so much, as you and Jenny seem to think, well, then they must be right. In terms of deeply felt suffering, the parent of a child with AIDS beats the parent of a child with autism any day.”

    YEAH FOLLOW THE MONEY $$$$$$ the rich white man is trying to keep the black man down by putting aids in the vaccines!!!!

    Hell it least that is remotely possible, though totally absurd.

  • http://www.humpday.com/brownian Brownian

    “Wow there’s lot of responses, and so much passion behind them all! I wonder if there is a middle ground that can be reached? From my understanding no one knows what causes Autism in all cases, so who is to say that some children may have an adverse reaction to vaccines while most do not? I believe that vaccines are beneficial and have prevented a lot of disease, but I also think that by using science things like mercury can be removed without making the vaccins less effective. I also think there is no harm in spacing out vaccines instead of following the routine schedule. Instead of being so difinitive on this issue, McCarthy is right no no Peet is right, Science vs. Emotion etc., maybe we can accept that different people react to vaccines differently both medically and emotionally. If the amount of vaccines given at one time is what is going to prevent parents from adminstering them, instead of yelling at one another maybe we can look at alternative schedules that will still vaccinate children, but in a way that will not expose the immune system to so much at one time. I know some doctors are looking at alternative schedules to spread vaccines out over a longer period of time, here’s a link that discusses that if anyone is interested. http://vaccinations.suite101.com/article.cfm/alternative_vaccination_schedules

    The universe is not a kumbaya sing-a-long. Meteorology is an actively-researched field, but that doesn’t mean that the guy who thinks it’ll rain because a low-pressure system is forming in a region with moist air and the guy who thinks it’ll rain because he stepped on a spider are both ‘a little bit’ right.

  • hil

    “The universe is not a kumbaya sing-a-long. Meteorology is an actively-researched field, but that doesn’t mean that the guy who thinks it’ll rain because a low-pressure system is forming in a region with moist air and the guy who thinks it’ll rain because he stepped on a spider are both ‘a little bit’ right.”

    What is wrong with spreading vaccines out over a longer time frame if the vaccines happen? How is me proposing an alternative schedule the same thing as someone beleiveing an old wives tale?

  • http://blah.net Mike

    I am sad. Very sad for all of you that do not have the required critical thinking skills. No matter how we explain it you will never get it. Sometimes I feel like giving up, and just being ignorant like you. Seems like less work. Jenny = FAIL

  • http://www.humpday.com/brownian Brownian


    YEAH FOLLOW THE MONEY $$$$$$ the rich white man is trying to keep the black man down by putting aids in the vaccines!!!!

    Hell it least that is remotely possible, though totally absurd.”

    And as a result, governments in Africa spend tons on public health campaigns trying to convince people that No, the White Man didn’t bio-engineer HIV/AIDS and spread it via polio inoculations to keep Africa poor and servile.

    Thanks to the tireless efforts of people like Jenny McCarthy, those of us in public health get to spend valuable time and resources undoing damage so we don’t end up dealing with REAL epidemics of rubella that kill or disable millions.

  • Alexandra

    “so, alexandra, i have to prove to a doctor that 330 mcg of aluminum and 25 mcg of thimerosal are unsafe for my 6 month old … before he won’t give them to me?”

    Not at all. You can simply “opt out” as so many other people do. You can opt out because you think it’s unsafe or you can opt out because the fairies at the bottom of your garden told you to. But if you want us to change the way vaccination is handled for everyone else then yes, you do have to have some actual evidence to back up your position. Ignorance and fear are not enough.

  • njoriole

    So, Jenny McCarthy “has an angry mob” on her side? Well, that certainly settles that! After all, everybody knows how rational and well reasoned an “angry mob” is, when they come to their anger and rage (and then, when they decide to act out against those who they perceive as having angered them in the first place). Really, one does not have to be an idealogue of any stripe to feel for Ms. McCarthy, because I would not wish autism on anyone, or on anyone’s child. The grief,anger, guilt, etc. that must run through a parent in those circumstances must be incalculable. Nevertheless, that is no reason to allow Big Brother bullying (in the form of an angry mob or otherwise) to dictate public policy. Let the science be known, and act accordingly.

    (Same as aboe, but without the typos)

  • http://www.humpday.com/brownian Brownian

    “What is wrong with spreading vaccines out over a longer time frame if the vaccines happen? How is me proposing an alternative schedule the same thing as someone beleiveing an old wives tale?”

    hil, I was aiming more at your ‘maybe both sides are right’ tone. Rereading your comment, I see I might have jumped the gun a bit, or at least failed to acknowledge your proposal.

    If the spacing out of vaccinations doesn’t reduce the efficacy of vaccination campaigns, or encourages parents who otherwise wouldn’t to vaccinate their children, then that certainly is an alternative worth considering, especially as a harm-reduction strategy.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    I don’t have to give you evidence that potential toxic ingredients (let’s start with mercury and aluminum) are toxic. You have to give me evidence that they are SAFE AT THE DOSE GIVEN BEFORE injecting. That’s YOUR job, not mine.

    Nice try shifting the burden of proof. However, you’re the one making wild claims about “toxins,” not me, and I simply asked you to back up what you said. Obviously you can’t.

    I, however, can. Here’s a primer:

    http://vaccine.chop.edu

    That’s just to start. There’s lots more where that came from, straight from the peer-reviewed scientific literature, if you like, but I’m starting simple.

    Feel free to demonstrate to me that the data there is incorrect. Again, please show your sources.

  • Hil

    hil, I was aiming more at your ‘maybe both sides are right’ tone. Rereading your comment, I see I might have jumped the gun a bit, or at least failed to acknowledge your proposal.

    If the spacing out of vaccinations doesn’t reduce the efficacy of vaccination campaigns, or encourages parents who otherwise wouldn’t to vaccinate their children, then that certainly is an alternative worth considering, especially as a harm-reduction strategy.

    Thank you for re-reading. I’m a natural peace maker hence the let’s all get along tone:). My mother is a nurse that has worked in the NICU and Peds. for over 20 years and from what she has told me the schedule is more for convenience then efficacy. By scheduling them based on routine check ups it limits the amount of trips parents have to take to their doctor. I think an alternative schedule would help ease fears which would lead to a greater likely hood of vaccinations in those cases.

  • HidariMak

    There are three important points which I failed to make earlier.

    1. DO SOME RESEARCH. And for the record, “I read on a blog”, or “someone quoted part of a study”, or “a celebrity said” is not research. If you see a study which reports something, get information on the full study. Completely different meanings can be obtained by seeing statements out of context, which is how a lot of these counter-claims appear credible at first glance.

    2. This can be inferred from what I just typed, but get the full details about whatever anomaly that you’re stating. For example, seeing how autism was diagnosed in kids before and after the spike, which vaccines have or don’t have whatever suspect elements (like thimerosal), what studies have been done on it, what links have been investigated, the results of all relevant research, etc.

    3. For every choice, there’s consequences. Decide the real risks of the vaccines, AFTER RESEARCH? What risk of permanent organ damage and/or fatalities can occur as complications of what the vaccine fights? In my case, mumps led to damage to the pancreas, which caused the development of juvenile diabetes, which itself has led to failing kidneys, retinopathy (which led to the necessity of getting vitrectomy and cataract surgery), the requirement of regular heart medication, and the likelihood of future amputation due to circulatory issues. If the mumps vaccine was ready in time, I’d have had none of those worries, since there is no family history of diabetes. But I was lucky, Some kids who get measles, mumps, and so forth die before they get better.

    In short, don’t go with a mob. There are mobs for Holocaust deniers, flat earthers, 9/11 conspiracy theorists, and so on, so don’t assume that you don’t have to think if there are others spouting the same thing. It’s the lives of children that you’re arguing about here, so do more than just believe that you’re right.

  • Mike

    @Gale

    “You are all entitled to your opinions as we are to ours. We never had the chance to walk in your shoes, nor you in ours.”

    You may be entitled to your opinion, but you are not entitled to be right.

    If my child had autism, I would want to know why; no doubt. But I would want to know the real reason why, not cling to some ridiculous hypothesis that has been falsified time and time again. Deluding yourself into thinking vaccines cause autism doesn’t get us any closer to finding the real causes.

  • Mike

    @Bob

    “There was a time those most educated in “science” ridiculed those who didn’t believe the world was flat…”

    And how, exactly, did we learn that the world wasn’t flat? Was it pseudoscience and woo that convinced us? Of course not; it was science, doing what science does: refining the body of knowledge when new data comes it. Once again, this is how one thinks rationaly. I’ll be happy to admit vaccines increase the risk of developing autism, just as soon as the evidence shows this to be the case.

    “I ask you smug know-it-alls to do this: look at who is doing the talking and follow the money. There is so much money being made on vaccinations that there plenty to spread around to keep a lid on the true facts. There is also plenty to spend on biased “scientific” studies to “prove” that there is no link between vaccines and Autism. I live with proof every day.”

    Even if every autism researcher were getting gold-plated toilets from the drug companies, that, in and of itself, would not invalidate the data. You would still have to show WHY the data are poor. For instance, is there a variable that is not being looked at or controled for properly?

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    “You are all entitled to your opinions as we are to ours. We never had the chance to walk in your shoes, nor you in ours.”

    You may be entitled to your opinion, but you are not entitled to be right.

    I prefer, “You are entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts.” :-)

  • http://dickmanfam.blogspot.com Hillary

    Science? Really? You’ll put your lives and the lives of your children in the hands of science? Science is great, but scientists make mistakes too, just like the rest of us.

    I don’t have a kid with autism. Both of my children are nearly up to date on their vaccines. Despite this, I know vaccines aren’t as great as these supporters of “science” are making them out to be. I was vaccinated against Typhoid and still came down with the disease. That’s the only vaccine problem I’ve experienced, but it’s enough for me to know that vaccines aren’t perfect.

    Let’s be reasonable adults and quit acting like they are.

  • Mike

    @Annie
    “I hope that there are others out there who realize that all the “scientific evidence” is made to be in favor of the the companies making the profit”

    Evidence for this??? Or are you just making stuff up? You realize that even if this were true, it wouldn’t invalidate the data per se, no?

  • http://fac-staff.seattleu.edu/dohertyd Davis

    There was a time those most educated in “science” ridiculed those who didn’t believe the world was flat…

    Really? And when was that? Educated people have known the world was not flat since the time of the Ancient Greeks. What we call “science”, as a specific field of education, is not nearly that old.

    It’s telling that you’re so wrong, you can’t even get your analogies correct.

  • Mike

    Funny how most people trust the hell out of science at 35,000 feet. Funny how very few people ever call 911 and ask for the alternative therapy ambulance.

    Facts remain facts, even when they don’t suit our personal politics. Real rational thinkers accept that, and are willing to say “I was wrong”. As a scientist, I’ve been wrong many times; most of the time, it was me proving myself wrong through the acquisition of new data.

  • Mike

    @Hillary

    “Science? Really? You’ll put your lives and the lives of your children in the hands of science? Science is great, but scientists make mistakes too, just like the rest of us.”

    Fair enough.

    If you ever wind up in the emergency room, be sure to tell the physicians to avoid using science at all costs, ’cause you don’t trust it.

    You could tell that to the air ambulance pilot too on the way to the emergency room.

    Science has been wrong; and science right itself by accepting new facts. If you show the evidence that vaccines cause autism, I’ll believe it. You’ll be using the scientific method to show it, and I’ll believe it.

    Like Orac, I await the evidence…

  • Laura

    I tried to vote, but it said I already had voted???

    Anyway, for the record, I vote for Jenny! I too, have a beautiful son injured by vaccines. He suffers from serious immune dysfunction brought on by over-vaccination and vaccination with deadly toxins. Those of you who think that vaccines are infalible do not have to live with the consequences, my son does.

    It is a fact that at least 25% of the population cannot effectively rid themselves of toxins, especially when overloaded by so many in one day. Thimerosal is not completely out of children’s vaccines. They now reccomend the flu vaccine, most of which contains thimerosal, for just about everyone. They still manufacture vaccines with thimerosal, then filter it out, so the vaccines still contain small amounts. Then, there are other toxins, aluminum, formaldehyde, MSG, and genetic material from other species to name a few. When is the last time a human came down with Mumps, Measles, and Rubella at the very same time?? What about those three and polio at the same time??? You want science, real science, to tell you about genetics and how they respond to constant toxic onslaught, you will need to look someplace other than the FDA and CDC, who are nothing but paid spokespersons for Big Pharma.

    Check out Martha Herbert at Harvard, Boyd Haley at U. of Kentucky, Jill James and Arkansas Childrens Hospital. UCLA Mind Institute. There are so many doing real science about autism that they make the FDA and CDC look like snake oil salesmen from the 18th century.

    My child hurts everyday because of vaccines. He did not deserve to be sacrificed for anybody or anything.

    Laura

  • garth

    you know this dovetails nicely with my advocacy group, Fathers Against Recalcitrant Turtles. I had a turtle years ago, and it was fine. Then, I stepped on a nail, and it became incredibly hard to deal with, refusing every request. It’s obvious that stepping on nails makes turtles difficult to deal with. The Big Nail lobby in Washington doesn’t want you to know the truth!

  • Alexandra

    “I know vaccines aren’t as great as these supporters of “science” are making them out to be. I was vaccinated against Typhoid and still came down with the disease.”

    Anyone suggesting to you that vaccines are 100% effective is simply wrong. That’s why you should pay attention to the actual science and not just to the opinions of “supporters” of either (or any) position.

    To Asimov it: People who think vaccines are 100% effective are wrong. People who think that vaccines are therefore worthless or dangerous are wrong. If you think that these ideas are equally wrong then your position is wronger than both of them put together.

  • garth

    I’d still like to know exactly what “michael” was getting at with his “Oh, snap!” comment. Is he in favor of angry mobs attacking people?

  • Biomedical Mom

    Firstly, you people “need a life.” The fact that you’re up at 2,3,4:00 am and spewing nastiness online is not only wrong, it’s pathetic. If you want to be ignorant enough to believe everything the government gift wraps for you, then you deserve everything you get. And I hope it’s good! What’s peculiar is that since you agree with the junk studies that say there is no link, you say “I believe, so there” But if anyone disagrees with the junk studies pronouncing no link, you want people to give you written or verbal data. Can you spout any of the data yourselves? It is a huge fact that the studies conducted on the link issue were rife with conflicted interests: sponsored by the Fed or Big Pharma. There is too much money riding on keeping the vaccine program blameless. Only the most naive person would believe that the CDC or Big Pharma would never lie to us. GREED. I can’t believe that people (like you) are worked up about this. If you are vaccinated, why are you so worried about the people who aren’t? Is it because you know the efficacy of the vaccines is poor? So you don’t feel protected, awwww shucks. Why don’t you go get another shot then? Parents who have lost their children to the US vaccine program have to live with the reminder of their mistakes every day for the rest of their lives. Us parents who have chosen to seek recovery for their children after vaccine injury (like me) should be applauded. If your child was susceptible to vaccine injury, I would hope that you would do everything in your power to protect that child. What makes you susceptible is your genetic make-up. Just like you carry susceptibilities to cancer, MS, Alzheimers, etc. It’s really that simple. So, the many simpletons out there who doubt it can actually understand if they choose to educate themselves. And, one more thing, it’s not just HG that’s the problem. It’s the AL, formaldehyde, bacteria, viruses, biological tissue that are injected into our childrens’ immature immune systems that are the problems. If you don’t think your child with ADHD, auditory processing issues, sensory deficiencies, learning disabilities, asthma, eczema, etc. are not vaccine-injured, think again.

  • DADvocate

    Amanda Peet kicked butt in “Saving Silverman.” I’m not about to vote against her.

  • Mrs. Schaarschmidt

    To those responding here with autistic children: please understand that no-one here is minimizing the tragedy of having an autistic child. There is not a lack of sympathy here. But sympathizing with your plight does not equate with jumping onto the bandwagon of panic that is spread by people who do not understand all of the facts.

    Your child had immunizations, and your child is autistic. However – your child wore diapers and your child is autistic. The diapers did not cause the autism. There is no grand conspiracy among diaper manufacturers to cover up their fault. The fault simply does not exist.

    Scientists want to study autism and it’s causes and treatments. Spending time, money, and resources going over the same ground is taking away time, money, and resources doing research that will actually help your children.

    Before reacting in panic over half-facts and scary stories, think hard about where you want your research resources going. I would think that you would want them going to where they could actually help your child.

  • John

    Follow the money? How about we follow the money that was being paid to Andrew Wakefield, the researcher who first published claims of an MMR-autism link? How about we follow all of the money David Kirby’s gained and stands to gain from book sales and speaking engagements?

    http://www.salon.com/books/review/2008/09/22/autism/index.html

    But you know what? That’s unfair. It doesn’t matter that Wakefield was being paid for his research. It DOES matter that his research was unethical and his results tainted and biased.

    It doesn’t matter that Kirby made money off his book. What matters is that he’s wrong, and won’t own up to it.

    And please, “everyone’s entitled to their own opinion”? Yes, of course that’s true, but it doesn’t give your opinion any validity.

  • sam wight

    @Bob

    “There was a time those most educated in “science” ridiculed those who didn’t believe the world was flat…”

    What time was that? Who was ridiculed?

    Aristotle is credited with some of the early observational evidence for a spherical earth. If he was ridiculed for it, I’m betting it was by the likes of Jenny McCarthy. But the indications are that the concept was pretty widely accepted by that time.

    And the flat-earthers today? Are they more like scientists, or more like Jenny?

  • John

    “Science? Really? You’ll put your lives and the lives of your children in the hands of science?”

    As opposed to the alternative? Fuck yes.

  • Spunk-Monkey

    It’s no contest. Amanda Peet’s side of the argument is supported by an overwhelming body of evidence produced through scientific investigation which has survived peer-review and independent verification across multiple disciplines of the scientific and medical communities (in the United States as well as several other countries). Jenny McCarthy’s side is based on nothing more substantial than her tearful pleas on Oprah.
    If McCarthy really wanted to convince anyone, she’d quit whining to the talk-show circuit long enough to investigate this with enough rigor to pass a basic science fair. All of her wildest claims could be proven if there’s any validity. The scientific and medical communities would be eternally grateful! They love being proven wrong; think of all the new questions it would raise, the scientific misunderstandings that would be put to rest, and so many new avenues of study it would open up! If McCarthy provide any evidence that counter that which backs up Peet’s side, i’m fairly sure she’d be the first Playboy model to be awarded the Nobel Prize. Just think how more interesting the Nobel laureate ceremonies would become…

    What’s scarier than the slightest potential of giving a child autism? The idea that years of meticulous, independently-verified research spanning multiple scientific and medical disciplines study could be nullified by a desperate parent looking for a scapegoat.

  • http://missivesfromthefrontallobe.blogspot.com Katharine

    Hey anti-vaxers -

    I’ll be laughing when you’re screaming as your kid dies of measles. Your kid doesn’t deserve to die, but you deserve a mocking.

  • Fred Nurke

    I believe Black Sabbath said it best:
    “You’ve nothing to say
    They’re breaking away
    If you listen to fools…
    The Mob Rules”

  • HC

    “My angry mob makes me brave AND right?’

    Dear god, is JM trying to satirize herself or is she simply that outrageously, belligerently stupid?

    I’m sorry her kid has autism but lashing out like an uneducated knuckle-dragger at one of the most important innovations in medical science and public health worldwide, using stupidly emotional rhetoric and making veiled threats about mobs and all in defence of a thoroughly debunked idea – that vaccines cause autism – isn’t going to help her child or those like her child one whit.

    Amanda Peet is right. Unless you like iron lungs, kids dead from encephalitic measles and recurrences of other diseases that used to kill and maim – and are now thought of as ‘harmless’ or ‘mild’ because of vaccination – *vaccinate your children*.

  • Jennifer Scalia

    There is no scientific evidence that the current amount of vaccinations are safe. There are no 10 year double blind placebo studies to prove it. It cannot be SCIENTIFICALLY proven that it does or does not cause Autism. All we have are statistics from both sides. Julie Gerberding, Head of the CDC, did state on a live CNN interview, that vaccinations are known to trigger Autism in certain children. As far as the “genetics” theory is concerned, if you were to research The true meaning of Autism you would find that people with Autism are incapable of forming social/intimate relationships therefore do not pro-create. However, it is safe to say that we are witnessing an epidemic that needs to be properly addressed. Ruling out vaccines as a possible accessory would be counter productive.

  • Alexandra

    “Biomedical Mom” (oh the irony!) says “If you are vaccinated, why are you so worried about the people who aren’t? Is it because you know the efficacy of the vaccines is poor?”

    It is because we understand that individual vaccines are not perfectly efficacious but that a greatly increased protection comes through “herd immunity”. That you don’t understand such a fundamental aspect of this makes it crystal clear that you are simply not informed enough on the issue to be making such important decisions for anyone. And, as it happens, you are not only making ignorant choices about your own children’s health, you’re also putting the health of all of our children at risk.

  • cindy

    Parents, you don’t need the “science”. Just go with your gut instinct about your child. Don’t let anyone, not a doctor, not your government, not ANYONE, make you ignore what you FEEL is RIGHT for YOUR child. Search everything out first. Talk to parents on both sides and let your instincts guide you. You have to trust your instincts. Get informed on both sides of the issues of everything and then go with you feel is right for YOU. I had gut feelings about things and let our doctor swade me to go against it. I was put down for wanting to trust it. Stand strong. Another time, I was given some advice from a doctor and felt very strong after searching it out that it was right for me and it was! Just trust how you feel once you search it out at all possible angles. Anyone who discourages you from finding out for yourself and researching more to gain knowledge, is someone you should be cautious of when making decisions about you or YOUR child’s well-being!

  • Corey

    Hey my son was vaccinated and is developmentally advanced (despite being a premie). Does that mean vaccines helped him?

    It’s the same logic as the anti-vac crowd is using…

  • http://www.ecorazzi.com michael

    “I’ll be laughing when you’re screaming as your kid dies of measles.”

    Whoa.

  • Mike

    @Jennifer Scalia

    “There are no 10 year double blind placebo studies to prove it.”

    There are no RCTs to prove that parachutes save lives during free fall.

    Here’s a meta-analysis: http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/327/7429/1459

    “All we have are statistics from both sides. Julie Gerberding, Head of the CDC, did state on a live CNN interview, that vaccinations are known to trigger Autism in certain children.”

    Once again, opinion is not evidence. Show me a single longitudinal study, beside Wakefield’s original 12 person “study”, that shows that autism risk is correlated with vaccination of any kind.

    I await the evidence…

    “However, it is safe to say that we are witnessing an epidemic that needs to be properly addressed. Ruling out vaccines as a possible accessory would be counter productive.”

    We are witnessing a revolution in the diagnosis of autism and autism-like disorders. What is the evidence that, given equivalent diagnostic parameters, that autism rates have increased in the last, say, 20 years?

  • Mike

    @Corey

    “Hey my son was vaccinated and is developmentally advanced (despite being a premie). Does that mean vaccines helped him?”

    By Jenny McCarthy logic, undoubtedly.

  • KM

    So sad to see the hate on this board. Until your child becomes sick, you’ll never understand what autism families have gone thru. Fact – Autism is on the rise, didn’t exist in medical literature before 1940. Big Pharma, Gov’t and AAP are covering their tracks because they can’t afford to be wrong. Good luck in your choice.

  • Geoffrey Hughes

    @Biomedical Mom “The fact that you’re up at 2,3,4:00 am and spewing nastiness online is not only wrong, it’s pathetic.”

    Do you even know about timezones and places outside of the US?

    Not everyone commenting here resides in the US and even if they were, the US has multiple time zones.

    The times shown respond to the timezone of the server when the comment was posted and not the local time of the person doing the posting.

  • O. Pleeze

    Jennifer Scalia wrote:
    “There is no scientific evidence that the current amount of vaccinations are safe.”
    There’s a lot of evidence that polio and measles aren’t safe though.

    By the way, you don’t have to hear from both sides. That’s not how science works. Someone does a study to see if the vaccines and/or the additives cause autism and publishes results. You have to analyze each study individually. No one of any repute (which is the reason that people are telling you guys to ignore blogs that reinforce your own personal feelings about something) picks a “side” and then tries to prove it or disprove it. This isn’t a legal thing or Fox “News”, it’s how chemicals affect the body. Like it or not, real studies have shown that there is no connection. Physiology doesn’t rely on a mob consensus.

  • Gotta Laugh

    The Age of Autism is decrying the “poll mobbing” of this site.

    Very funny, given that they try the same thing repeatedly with internet autism polls.

    The main difference: scienceblogs have a MUCH bigger turnout.

  • Danio

    MICHAEL:

    I have been following your dialogue with the Pharyngulistas, and I just wanted to thank you for being open minded enough to realize that reliable education is a very valuable tool, and for considering that, both sides of an argument may not have equal weight.

    I have managed, with considerable difficulty, to watch Jenny McCarthy being ‘interviewed’ on national news broadcasts this week as she promotes her book and her ‘mother warrior’ meme. So far, none of these ‘serious journalists’ have challenged her views very much, nor have they even brought on a health professional or biomedical researcher to counter her unscientific arguments. As a professional scientist, this saddens me greatly. The scientifically intractable nonsense she is spouting is sickening and harmful. For example, she clearly sates in the CNN interview, that any parent with an autistic child would ‘gladly take the flu or the measles over autism any day of the week’. This is a chilling pronouncement, and I fear that it will not be long before the fruits of her self-promoting labors will allow many parents to become more familiar with the deadly and disabling consequences of preventable diseases reappearing in epidemic proportions.

    Anyway, thanks again for your commitment to objectivity.

  • Mike

    @Cindy

    “Parents, you don’t need the “science”. Just go with your gut instinct about your child. Don’t let anyone, not a doctor, not your government, not ANYONE, make you ignore what you FEEL is RIGHT for YOUR child.”

    Yes, and then watch the herd immunity dissolve, and watch the measles outbreak commence.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Hey anti-vaxers -

    I’ll be laughing when you’re screaming as your kid dies of measles. Your kid doesn’t deserve to die, but you deserve a mocking.

    Trolling like that was really utterly unnecessary and vile.

  • stephanie

    You know what’s really nice? There are children and adults out there who are actually deficient in antibody production and rely almost entirely on herd immunity. When that goes to shit, Jenny McCarthy and company should feel really proud for murdering them with their stupidity. Good job morons.

  • Alexandra

    “Until your child becomes sick, you’ll never understand what autism families have gone thru.”

    So? Whether or not vaccines cause autism is a matter of fact. Facts are not dependent upon the emotional experiences of the beholder.

    “Fact – Autism is on the rise, didn’t exist in medical literature before 1940.”

    Fact – the rate of autism diagnosis is on the rise. That this is due to an increase in autism is speculation, and rather uninformed speculation at that.

    Fact – prior to 1940 autistic people were described in the medical literature as schizophrenic, retarded or mentally ill. What changed is how they were described, not their condition. A rose by any other name…

  • KM

    @ Alexandra -

    Then, go get your flu shots, boosters and the new Gardisil and see how you feel. Helpless infants can’t make that choice…

  • KM

    Oh P.S. How many families did you know growing up that had schizophrenic, retarded or mentally ill children? Not the current rates.

  • D. C. Sessions

    Parents, you don’t need the “science”. Just go with your gut instinct about your child. Don’t let anyone, not a doctor, not your government, not ANYONE, make you ignore what you FEEL is RIGHT for YOUR child.

    You mean like these parents, doing what their “gut instinct” told them was RIGHT for THEIR children?

    http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2008/07/04/20080704parker0704.html

    (Yes, that’s a 6 kg three-year-old.)

  • Alexandra

    “Then, go get your flu shots, boosters and the new Gardisil and see how you feel. Helpless infants can’t make that choice…”

    How is that an argument against vaccination? Helpless infants can’t strap themselves into car-seats either, that is why informed adults take steps to protect them. In exactly the same way informed adults protect these “helpless infants” from dangerous disease by getting them vaccinated.

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    Despite what everyone is screaming about on both sides of this issue, we simply do not know with any scientific certainly whether vaccines play a role in the development of autism or not. Period.

    If you look at the studies that have been done by the mainstream medical community, they are limited to studies about thimerosol and studies of the MMR shot in particular. That’s it. Even if we take all those studies at face value, we still haven’t answered the question.

    No one has ever studied the timing of the vaccines, giving so many at one time, starting babies so young, giving so many in such a short period of time, etc. Even if we completely take thimerosol and the MMR off the table, there are still many unanswered questions.

    And, shockingly, the most basic study has not been done anywhere, ever: There are no mainstream studies that compare vaccinated and unvaccinated children to see if their neurological outcomes are statistically different. Rep. Carolyn Maloney has recently introduced a bill to the House that would require this study to be done. (By the way, such a study was done by Generation Rescue and it indicated that vaccinated boys were as much as three times more likely to have a neurological diagnosis (ADHD, Autism, etc.) than unvaccinated boys. Curiously, they did not find the same differences between vaccinated and unvaccinated girls.)

    Anyway, the point is this: without that very basic study, we simply don’t know if vaccines play a role. So, all of the people who are yelling that they are on the side of science should realize that there are real and essential gaps in the scientific information. If you are a true follower of science, then at best you can say “we just don’t know.”

  • Spunk-Monkey

    I’m confused. Why would McCarthy claim that any parent with an autistic child would “gladly take the flu or the measles over autism any day of the week” when she also claims she can cure autism with her Flintsone chewables?

  • Anon

    I didn’t realize there were so many stupid people in the world until I heard about this debate. Vaccines causing Autism? Seriously? Do some damn research and educate yourself on the issue from BOTH SIDES, and you’ll see that any ties between Autism and vaccines are false to the core. I can’t express how deeply sorry I feel for the world, because without children vaccinated we now run the risk of having huge outbreaks.

    In this case, ignorance is thinking your saving your child, while in reality your putting your own child at greater risk, and thousands if not hundreds of thousands of other children and adults at risk because of your stupid belief. GET REAL.

  • Cathy R.

    Geez, sure rather have an autism epidemic than a measles outbreak. The latest ‘outbreak’ was under 200 people, half of them unvaxxed. Oh – that means half of them were vaxxed. hmmm…
    Once again, we are not anti-vax – most of our kids are fully vaxxed. We are for a safer schedule, and safer ingredients. And stop bullying parents, if my child has a seizure after a serious of shots – don’t tell me not to worry and bully me to have more without looking at this child’s health. That is what is happening. And if parents are not vaccinating because of what Jenny is saying – she’s not to blame. The establishment (gov’t, CDC, industry) are – they all lost our confidence. If they all were straight with us from the beginning (as they were in Japan when they pulled the MMR after a jump in autism after it’s introduction) then we would have a little more confidence in ‘them’. But in the US there is just a little too much butt covering that has to happen given our litigious nature.

  • Mike

    @KM

    “So sad to see the hate on this board. Until your child becomes sick, you’ll never understand what autism families have gone thru.”

    No hate at all. And whether or not I have experienced this has nothing to do with the evidence. I would think that those that HAVE experienced it would be MOST motivated to find the real causes, and less likely to accept ridiculous debunked hypotheses in place of real science.

  • Mike

    @KM

    “Oh P.S. How many families did you know growing up that had schizophrenic, retarded or mentally ill children? Not the current rates.”

    What is the evidence that, given identical diagnosis parameters, that autism rates have increased in the last 20 years? Don’t obfuscate any further. Just point me to the evidence that suggests that there has been a real increase in the rates of autism over that time.

  • Cathy R.

    Scienceblogs has a bigger turnout because you are not cleaning poop out of your vcr (poop humor for the ASD parents out there).
    Educators who have been educating for 25+ years say they have never seen children with such high, complex needs in the school system in their lives (mainstreaming been around for most of their careers). Pediatricians are saying the same thing. You can continue the debate a regarding reclassification, but if you dig (numbers and interviews) you will see that this is not a reclassification issue.
    Also, look at when autism became defined – 1943. By someone who was a child psychologist – had seen a lot. This autism was “new” had different qualities – hence a different name.

    We are not going to change each others minds – it is fun sparring – but if it gets this ugly on a website, it shows the reason NOTHING can get done to get to the bottom of what is really going on. And believe me, you will care when these thousands, sorry – hundreds of thousands, of autistics individuals cannot care for themselves and the gov’t is caring for them via your tax dollars. I actually think that is what is going to solve this crisis – the same thing that caused it – greed. Someone is going to get tired of paying for this mess and get to the bottom of it. The insurance companies are already sniffing around…only time will tell

  • http://elainevigneault.com Elaine Vigneault

    Good for Jenny.

  • TheProbe

    What does a dumb blond call hair coloring?

    Artificial intelligence.

    Why are all blond jokes funny? Truth.

    Jenny whines about “toxims” Just look at her toxic make-up.

  • HidariMak

    @Mike, D.C. Sessions

    Regarding Cindy’s comment of “Just go with your gut instinct about your child”, to her credit, also said… “Search everything out first. Talk to parents on both sides and let your instincts guide you.” That’s also what Amanda Peet did, according to her interview in CookieMag.

    @Cathy R.

    It looks like you didn’t do any research into why there are more cases of autism being diagnosed. The doctors are just getting better at finding it. The American Association of Pediatricians changed their screening criteria shortly before those numbers went up, and as a result, kids with autism were less likely to be classified as being behaviorally different for other reasons.

    Multiple studies have also already been carried out, comparing autism rates between vaccinated versus unvaccinated, the onset and severity of autism between the two groups, and so forth. And in all cases, no difference was found between those with and without vaccinations.

    Unless you want to argue that this is such a super massive conspiracy as to involve all scientists and medical labs contacted on all matters of the issue in all parts of the world, evidence to the contrary is needed to argue against vaccinations. Science is not about reaching a predefined conclusion, it’s about gathering the evidence to support an argument. And so far, the argument is against those who decry the perils of vaccinations.

  • RG

    Nice going Ecorazzis! The first time I visit your site I am insulted with snide comments when I don’t choose the correct answer to your poll. I won’t be back, but thanks for turning me on to Scienceblogs.

  • Corey

    @juryisout

    Actually, yes we do. It’s the exact same certainty we have the the Modern Synthesis of Evolution and Genetics is true.

    @CathyR

    Scienceblogs has a such a high turnout because people who like science also tend to hate bullshit stupidity.

  • http://fac-staff.seattleu.edu/dohertyd Davis

    Parents, you don’t need the “science”. Just go with your gut instinct about your child.

    Stephen Colbert? Is that you?

    Seriously, this sounds like advice from the G.W. Bush School of Truthiness.

    The funny thing about science is that it is far more successful than “gut instinct” at determining what is and is not correct. Cf. quantum mechanics, evolutionary biology, and all of mathematics. Oh, and pretty much the entirety of modern medicine.

  • http://cantmakeadifference.blogspot.com Steven

    Just because your child is autistic it doesn’t give you the right to be a complete dumb ass. That right, you get free with being Jenny McCarthy.

  • Twyla

    Orac -
    Thanks for your comment on 10/1/08 @ 7:01 p.m. Seriously.

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    HidariMak:

    Really, I am not trying to provoke anyone or inflame this debate, but if you do some research you will see that you are not correct. There has not been even one study comparing fully vaccinated to completely unvaccinated children.

    What I think you are confusing (and many people do, so you are not alone) is that there have been studies (a lot of them)that looked at children who did and did not get the MMR, and there have been studies that looked at the various amounts of thimerosol children got in their shots as compared to their neurological outcomes. Thimerosol and the MMR have been looked at from many different angles, but in all these cases, all the children in the studies were vaccinated with many, many vaccines. That is completely different from looking at kids who got all the shots as compared to kids who got no shots. Do you see the difference?

    Let’s just assume for argument’s sake that there is something else going on. Suppose there is something about giving a newborn baby a Hep B shot when they are only a few hours old, for example, that causes a problem. Well, then you could exhaustively study every angle of the MMR and thimerosol and you won’t pick that up because all the kids in your study will have had the Hep B at birth, as is currently mandated.

    The whole purpose of Rep. Carolyn Maloney’s bill is to mandate that this vaccinated/unvaccinated study be done because it has never been done. Do some research and you will see what I am saying.

    There have been many studies so far but they have only focused on two specific areas. The extent of the mainstream research thus far has not touched on the many other possibilities. If the right studies aren’t getting done, then there is no way to gather the evidence to support the argument.

  • ed

    “Poll mobbed” by folks who actually UNDERSTAND science.

    Good for us!

  • Peter

    Vaccines do not cause autism. If you want to run a site dedicated to praising those that do good for others and shame those that do wrong, standing up to the anti-vax nutballs should be a prime issue for you.

    Just because McCarthy et al. claim to want to “green” vaccines, that doesn’t mean what they are trying to do is actually beneficial.

    THERE IS NO REPUTABLE SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE SHOWING VACCINES CAUSE AUTISM.

    This is anti-science quackery.

  • cak

    Preservatives like Thimerosol do not add to the effectiveness of the vaccine — it is not necessary to have this ingredient to have a successfully working vaccine — it is only to add to the shelf-life. We Americans pay enough subsides to the drug companies that manufacture these vaccines, thru the form of taxes converted to their R&D, that there is no reason for them to not willingly have removed it long ago.
    My heart goes out to you and your son Jenny & I am walking in your shoes.

  • cindy

    Has anyone have information on the role calcium plays in autism. Many Kids improve when they are taken off dairy products and milk replacements. It is common to hear that many of the children with autism are huge milk drinkers. My kids were addicted to it. They haven’t had milk in over a year or calcium supplements and their calcium is checked regularily and is normal now. They started eating better too when we eliminated milk. They gained weight and grew after 18 months of no weight gain.
    I know of kids that have Timothy’s syndrome and autism. When they were treated with caclium regulation drugs for arrythmia their cognitive function improved and the autistic behaviours went away.

  • onein6billion

    “Your poll mobbing is indeed impressive.”

    Of course. A lot of people care about science and read PZ. Why did you stop the poll? I’m sure we could have gotten to 98% at least.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/insolence Orac

    Has anyone have information on the role calcium plays in autism. Many Kids improve when they are taken off dairy products and milk replacements. It is common to hear that many of the children with autism are huge milk drinkers.

    There’s no good evidence that casein-free (milk-free) diets help autistic symptoms:

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/09/peta_even_more_impossible_to_parody_than.php

  • Prunesquallor

    jury is out:

    You’re a scientific ignoramus (and so is Carolyn Maloney). Before you start arguing for a vaccinated versus unvaccinated study, crack open an introductory epidemiology textbook and read it. Then — if you have an IQ higher than pastry — you’ll figure out why such a study is almost impossible in the U.S.

  • Julie

    Jenny McCarthy don’t say no to vaccination, she asks for safer vaccines, and they are not safe! Some of them contain many times more mercury (Thimerosal) than the amount acceptable, and if you cumulate the vaccines received by a child, this amount cumulates also, which can trigger Autism (not the only cause). There should be no heavy metal in the vaccines.

  • moon

    i’ll not vaccinate my son…after the first one he had seizures for the following twelve months…he has not been sickly, in fact, his sisters (now grown) were far less healthy, got sick more often, than he does…and despite those who would call us ignorant about wanting green vaccines, not immunizing him has not exposed others to disease, as he has not had any to pass on…the boy hardly gets a sniffle!…i’ve voted on the site for jenny’s side…what harm can there be in seeking ‘safe’ vaccination products and timetables for our children? what part of conflict of interest don’t folk understand when citing so-called studies funded or sometimes even run by big pharma!

  • http://www.ecorazzi.com michael

    “Of course. A lot of people care about science and read PZ. Why did you stop the poll? I’m sure we could have gotten to 98% at least.”

    Who stopped the poll? Nobody did.

  • Mike

    @jury is out

    “Anyway, the point is this: without that very basic study, we simply don’t know if vaccines play a role. So, all of the people who are yelling that they are on the side of science should realize that there are real and essential gaps in the scientific information. If you are a true follower of science, then at best you can say “we just don’t know.””

    Fair enough, but that’s a far cry from “vaccines cause autism”.

    What we scientists (and supporters of science) are saying is “there is no evidence to suppory the hypothesis that vaccines increase the risk of developing autism”, and that statement is absolutely true.

    By the same token, however, there is also no evidence to suggest, for instance, that flying a kite increases the risk of developing autism; the question is unanswered.

    Should we, therefore, remain neutral on the safety of kite flying? Of course not; there is no a priori reason to even suspect that kite flying causes autism. We could do the study, of course, but no one suspects we would find anything interesting that deviates from chance.

    So why is the vaccines/autism question any different? What is the a priori rationale for thinking that vaccines increase the risk of developing autism? Why are vaccines different than kite flying?

    For most anti-vaxers, I suspect that it goes back to the fact that they’re simply looking for something to cling to. Wakefield comes out with this absolutely ridiculous study, the media buys into it, and boom, you have panic (and measles epidemics). Nevertheless, the fact remains that there is still no evidence to suggest that vaccines increase the risk of developing autism. Moreover, I would suggest that there exists no a priori reason to even think that they would. Without that, you’re just flying a kite.

  • http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/10/02/big-pharma-ties-wants-to-shut-down-vaccine-conspiracy-theories.aspx?source=nl Julie

    Big Pharma Ties Want to Shut Down Vaccine ‘Conspiracy Theories’
    Very important article about this vaccination controversy and you’ll understand a little bit more what lies behind – If you want to know if something is really the truth, just look who exactly is saying it…

  • http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/10/02/big-pharma-ties-wants-to-shut-down-vaccine-conspiracy-theories.aspx?source=nl Julie
  • Mike

    @Julie

    “Very important article about this vaccination controversy and you’ll understand a little bit more what lies behind – If you want to know if something is really the truth, just look who exactly is saying it…”

    Once again, if you’d been paying attention, you would have learned that even if all of this were true, it would not invalidate the longitudinal studies that have conclusively shown effect of vaccination on the risk of developing autism.

    We’re still waiting for the evidence, by the way. I promise you that as soon as you can provide the evidence, all of the scientists and science supporters on this site will rush to your defence, and take up this cause. If vaccines are causing autism, we should eliminate them and look for alternative methods of protecting ourselves from measles, mumps, and rubella, each of which is incredibly harmful.

    Of course, without that evidence, we should be doing absolutely nothing, because vaccines do their job nicely.

    So the ball is in your court. Don’t obfuscate; don’t blame drug companies. Just show us the evidence that makes you think that vaccines cause autism. That way, we can all see it and evaluate it rationally.

  • Mike

    @Julie

    A little digging on the mercola.com site you provided shows that at http://www.mercola.com/article/vaccines/references.htm, he dicusses this paper as evidence FOR the autism/vaccine link(http://tinyurl.com/4jcy3z). Unfortunately, this “paper” is simply commentary piece in the Lancet which followed the Wakefield business. The commentary says:

    “We were surprised and concerned that the Lancet published the paper by Andrew Wakefield and colleagues1 in which they alluded to an association between MMR vaccine and a nonspecific syndrome, yet provided no sound scientific evidence. The commentary by Robert Chen and Frank DeStefano2 points out the serious flaws in the paper.

    We acknowledge that anecodotal reports may sometimes contribute to the generation of hypotheses, but risk factors for rare conditions, such as those described, can only be identified by well designed epidemiological studies.

    This publication provided a platform for the expression of views about MMR vaccination that have no proven scientific foundation: this could have damaging effects on public and professional confidence in vaccines in general. The MMR vaccination programme has been successful in this country, and we are now at a point when the elimination of measles is a real possibility. If, as a result of this paper, parents reject MMR vaccine, this could lead to a re-emergence of measles infection with associated deaths and permanent neurological damage among young children, and a resurgence of rubella infection leading to a rise in congenital rubella births and terminations of pregnancy. Has nothing been learned from the experiences with pertussis vaccine in the 1970s?”

    Perhaps Dr. Mercola should do a better job of “vetting” his references.

  • Christy

    why are you all so angry at moms who love their children and do not want to see the same thing happen to others? What do you say to moms who witness their children immmediately regress right after their shots? I saw my son hospitalized the day after like so many others, what do you expect me to think????I do not get to talk about autism and then go to lunch, it is 24-7 nightmare, and these “autism false prophets” are the only ones who have give my son hope. And he is amazing us everyday. So shout on in your own world…we will continue to fight for our kids. I am not angry, simply determined to heal my son…and you have nothing to offer me!!!!

  • Dyce

    I heard a lot of girls have reported episodes of “bleeding” within a few weeks of getting their Gardasil shot.

    I guess the toxins in the vaccine cause menstruation. And, unless you’ve “walked in the shoes” of someone who has been menstruating, you aren’t qualified to contest this.

  • Mike

    @Christy

    “I saw my son hospitalized the day after like so many others, what do you expect me to think????”

    We expect you to use the same rational thinking you use in every other area of your life. We expect you to not to active harm by promoting a hypothesis that is demonstrably false.

    “And he is amazing us everyday. So shout on in your own world…we will continue to fight for our kids. I am not angry, simply determined to heal my son…and you have nothing to offer me!!!!”

    I’m thrilled that you’re so determined. You are precisely the kind of person we need to help fight this. But why waste your time and energy on something that is simply false? Why not support research into the real causes of autism? Do you want real hope, or do you simply want to make yourself feel better?

  • Tracy

    I am more than a little appalled that the the responses here are filled with such hateful personal attacks against anyone posting here who doesnt agree with their personal views. From reading the posts I do believe that no one has actually read any of McCarthy’s books to see that no one is being told NOT to vaccinate their children. Someone rallying to find safer “greener” vaccines for our children and then being ridiculed with such meanspirited personal attacks even to the extent of the color of her hair seems “moronic” to me. To fight the good fight for what you believe in is more of what this country needs. A vaccine that is safe for one person very well could not be “safe” for another. I am not a doctor nor in the medical field but it makes sense to me that since peanut allergies are very real to some individuals that we wouldn’t want to give those who are a vaccine with peanuts in it. That doesnt meant they arent safe for everyone else. So consider if there were a chance that these vaccines contained even a trace of a substance that would cause a severe problem with even a small amount of kids. Wouldnt it be great to find out and help these kids? An interesting briefing happened on Capitol Hill last week on Autism I encourage everyone to read it. I dont know if vaccines had anything to do with my son’s Autism, but I do believe that something more than genetics is going on here and shouldn’t we all do more to unite and find the facts than call each other names? We need to dig deeper into Environmental pollutions, vaccines, genetics & our food sources to find out more not only about Autism, but many other horrible diseases that are affecting our families & friends.

  • Corey

    Science time! For those of you who don’t know, there are no genes for brain development (or skeletal either). Genetics prescribe a pattern of cell division, biochemical production, cell migration, and cell death. The development of neurological structures is, in effect, congenital (i.e., not directly caused by genes). Now, bear in mind that there are billions and billions of neurons in a brain. The neurons may have hundreds of connections across the entire organ. Think about that for a second. The number of connections may outnumber the number of atoms in the known universe. Moreover, connections are added all the time.

    In order to have a functioning brain (in the way we understand) all of those connections need to be made and function correctly. In some ways, it’s a wonder that it works at all (except we have billions of years of evolution to weed out the worst problems).

    Now…someone mentioned regressions of their autistic child after a shot. I mentioned neurological development for a reason. Autistic people do not think or process information in the same way that non-autistics do. They have a qualitatively different experience of the world. That means even simple stimuli like pain would elicit a different result than in normal people. Heck, my non-autistic son cries for more than a few minutes after he gets a shot.

    Until your child undergoes a double blind study that compares vaccination against saline solution, you cannot say the vaccine causes a “regression.” There’s also bias in your observations as you may be looking for that behavior, so ambiguous responses you may interpret as “regression.”

    FYI: I’m a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology.

  • http://www.maggotpunks.com Doug

    I like to get my medical facts from a woman with fake tits who posed nude in porn rags. Who needs science when you can get your information from celebrity endorsements.

  • Chris

    Please vaccinate your children. There is *plenty* of evidence measles can kill or disable – and no evidence a vaccine can.

    If vaccines are the cause of autism, why have autism rates continued to rise even as *less* parents are vaccinating their children?

  • Sam

    I’m not sure if this has been mentioned but some may find it interesting to know that the other reason for the increases in the number of dianosises of autism is not only the improved methods for detection but also the realisation that it is part of a spectrum and this spectrum being widened so that many who previously may not have been considered autistic are now classed as such.

    read from the following link for more
    http://www.newscientist.com/channel/health/mental-health/mg18725121.900-the-autism-epidemic-that-never-was.html

  • karennd

    All truth goes through three stages:

    1) First it is ridiculed
    2) Then it is violently opposed
    3) Finally it is accepted as self-evident

    There is sure a lot of ridiculing going on here!

    It took over 2,000 years for humans to give up the practice of bloodletting, even though it kill more than it helped. They would just blame the death on the disease instead of the bloodletting.

    The doctor who introduced handwashing to hospitals was ridiculed and died as an outcast within his profession.

    Don’t believe the autism studies sponsored by drug companies or the government. It is all about the money to them. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/03/01/recent-autism-studies-do-not-actually-vindicate-vaccines.aspx

    Check out the information on smallpox vaccinations provided by Dr. Blaylock at http://poisonevercure.150m.com/vaccines2.htm . He uses a lot of data & statistics. Do you know we killed a lot of third world people with our forced smallpox vaccinations? 1/3 of the vaccinated died in the Phillipines.

    “From the only complete series of official records in Europe, the diminished smallpox mortality parallels to that of decreased use of the vaccination. One of the most severe epidemics occurred after the use of compulsory vaccination. Not before.”

    How can injecting mercury, aluminum, and other toxins into our kids be good for them?

    There is one doctor, pediatrician I believe, who was totally pro-vaccinations and had his first 3 children vaccinated on schedule. They all developed autism. The fourth was not vaccinated and did not develop autism. He is finally a convert. I cannot find the article about him now. If anyone else finds it, please post it.

    Also, many think that the only Amish who are autistic were vaccinated – http://www.whale.to/vaccine/olmsted.html .

    Don’t be blind, angry sheep. Read “A Shot in the Dark” if you dare and try to put holes in his logic. The government thinks it is much more important to find out what is happening to our bees, than what is happening to our children!

    For those who say, but I know thousands of kids who have been vaccinated and not developed autism. What kind of argument is that? Even with the bee colony collapse disorder going on, some bees are surviving. Some kids are more susceptible, obviously. That’s why it is becoming more and more common for families to have multiple kids with autism.

    For those of you with autistic children (and not all are caused by vaccinations, there are many toxins in this world), I want to recommend the reversingautism yahoo group. This group provides inexpensive things to try that have helped many people, even parents who had literally tried everything before with no results and gone bankrupt in the process.

    Despite everything I said, I am not a big fan of Jenny. But I did vote for her over Amanda, as I am less a fan of her. At least Jenny is fighting for her kid and for everyone’s kids. Her son is not truly ‘cured’ of autism, btw, he is just better able to learning from his therapy now — which is a very big thing and great.

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  • BKP

    I wonder how much coke and other drugs Jenny McCarthy has put her body through over the years before she finally decided to settle down. I’m sure the pure oxidative and free radical stress had no impact on her body, and that she is a perfect vessel of child bearing……

  • Mike

    @Tracy

    “I am not a doctor nor in the medical field but it makes sense to me that since peanut allergies are very real to some individuals that we wouldn’t want to give those who are a vaccine with peanuts in it. That doesnt meant they arent safe for everyone else. So consider if there were a chance that these vaccines contained even a trace of a substance that would cause a severe problem with even a small amount of kids.”

    I agree. Peanut allergies are real, insofar as we have evidence that peanut antigens can cause massive immune responses (i.e. the a priori reason to test the hypothesis) and we have epidemiological and clinical evidence that peanuts can cause potentially life-threatening anaphylaxis.

    So what is the analogous evidence that these vaccines are harmful, even to a small subset of the population? Give me that, and I’ll be on your side.

  • cindy

    to ORAC
    Seeing is believing, however, there is evidence about the roll diet plays and autistic behaviours.. SCIENTIFIC..peer reviewed.

    http://www.cbc.ca/health/story/2007/09/27/autism-study.html

  • Danny’s Sister

    The landmark Danish study that all pro-vaccine Dr. point to does not apply to the US or UK because the they do not use the same chemicals in there vaccines. Futher more no study in the last 10 years has stated that there is no link between vaccines and autism, they have said that more studies are need to prove or disprove it.

    Beyond that, we are a society that thinks we know everything, but can’t cure the common cold? I think asking for safer, chemical free vaccines is not alot to ask. Ms. McCarthy isn’t asking for this to save her own son, the damage has already been done, she is trying to help protect OTHER people’s children. I think that is something that should be admired and NOT attacked!

  • Erwin Alber

    I am totally on-side with Jenny, although she’s obviously putting on a dumb blond act when she says that the crap needs to be taken out of vaccines. Vaccine ARE crap! In other words, if one were to take all the crap out of them, there would be nothing left!

    Have a read of this information about the current state of vaccination voodoo medicine:

    Or hear it online:
    http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/PRNvideo.php

    Multi-award winning British journalist, Janine Roberts, will unveil
    new reports on the gross contamination of our children’s vaccines and
    the hidden agenda by so-called vaccine experts. Gary and Janine will
    discuss controversies surrounding our need to reassess vaccines and
    the meaning of viruses entirely. This program will challenge the
    entire basis of our vaccine program. A selection of alarming
    documents will be revealed including NIH official transcripts never
    before reported.

    In these revealing documents, top named scientists at our leading
    institutions speak frankly in the absence of the press about the
    methods used to make our licensed vaccines, saying they contain
    mutagenic DNA fragments that “may cause cancers and autoimmune
    diseases” as well as possibly “prions and oncogenes”- brain proteins
    and a protein for encoding cancer. None of these, they say, can be
    removed. The vaccine manufacturers cannot even meet the new lowered
    standards of purity for vaccines.

    Also present in our vaccines, they add, are many viruses from other
    species, proteins, enzymes, toxins and RNA fragments. They state that
    chicken leukosis virus is widely present in the measles vaccine and
    has not been removed. It is to this already dangerous brew that such
    neurotoxic chemicals such as mercury and aluminum are added.

    Janine Roberts reports that among the contaminants in the polio
    vaccines there were many monkey viruses, as the poliovirus for the
    vaccine was produced from the kidneys and testicles of wild-caught
    monkeys, with tens of thousands slaughtered for the purpose, with
    their cells grown in incubators and the polio vaccine filtered off.
    _______________________________________

    How delicious! It’s such a waste to inject this stuff into babies when one could be eating it!

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    (I am ingnoring Prunesquallor, since I have no time or respect for people who cannot disagree respectfully – and that goes for everyone who has behaved so disgracefully on this board. You should all be ashamed of yourselves.)

    Mike:

    You are right. There are millions of things you *could* study but why do so if there is no good reason? It would be a waste of time and money. But what makes you think there is no good reason here?

    The fact that the rates of autism have dovetailed with the increases in the vaccine schedule is reason enough to study this. Yes, I know you can argue that the increase is due to broader definition and reclassification, and it may be, but that too is just a theory. What if it is the other way around and the broader definition is simply coincidental to an actual increase?

    Many studies have come about when people start noticing corelations. Then from a corelation, you go after causation. The government has always insisted thimerosol was safe and there was no evidence to the contrary, but yet it went and did several thimerosol studies to try to prove its safety. There is a strong (and no longer small) contingent of people and even some doctors (albeit doctors not in step with the mainstream) who are very vocal in saying they see or suspect a correlation. But to question vaccine safety puts such fear in the hearts of the medical establishment (for very good reason) that these reports are not taken as seriously as those of people who said “I took thalidomide and now my baby has problems. Could the two be related?”

    For everyone concerned about falling vaccination rates (and I am one of those people, by the way) a large, objective, independent, replicated, well-designed study showing no statistical difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated kids would put the issue to rest, or would certainly go a long way toward doing so for many people. And in my book, that would be time and money well spent.

    Now, having said that, I recognize that this is very difficult to study on many levels so i don’t know that I am hopeful that we will ever know the answer. First, no one wants to ask for volunteers to be double-blind vaccinated or given a placebo. Regardless of the study outcome, you would be endangering one of the two groups. But we could look at older children. Compare those with philosophical vaccine exemptions (to weed out confined gene pool issues) to those who have been fully vaccinated. You could do this anonymously through school or HMO records.

    Finally (and I think this is the real reson this hasn’t been done): The vaccinated/unvaccinated study would tell you whether there seems to be some involvement with the vaccines – but even if the answer was yes, that study would not inform us about what the issue is (is it an ingredient, the combination of shots, the timing, vaccines combined wiht some other environmental risk factor, etc.). There are too many variables. And so, what if we found from that study that there is some involvement, what then? Without knowing what the problem is, no one would want to vaccinate and these diseases really would come back. And I think that is exactly why this study hasn’t been done.

    I am not one of those people who sees conspiracies everywhere. I have to believe there are many good and real scientists at the NIH and the CDC who would very much like to see this question really get answered. But, I think they see the risk to the public health as being too steep if, in fact, the answers are not what we all hope and vaccines are not as safe as we have always been told they are.

    So, back to the point of my original post: when the scientists say that this has been exhaustively researched and no link has been found, I say that is misleading. It is true no link has been found in their resarch to date, but there is much that has been excluded from their research. And you’re not going to find it if you aren’t standing where you can see it. Now, that doesn’t mean there is a link; but it does mean we do not yet know.

  • karennd

    Look at this http://www.naturalnews.com/024369.html, the FDA is going to spend several years investigating the dangers of tattoo ink.

    Where’s the exhaustive study of the dangers of vaccines?

    Tattoo ink, btw, also has thimerosal in it (the same form of mercury that is in vaccines).

  • Kristi

    You may not like Jenny, but she is helping parents become more incharge of THEIR child’s health by encouraging them to ask questions and research what is IN each vaccine INSTEAD OF ACT LIKE SHEEP AND DO WHAT THEY ARE TOLD WITHOUT THINKING FOR THEMSELVES. Most doctors only know what they are told by the pHARMaceutical companies about each drug or vaccine they buy to administer to children and adults. And those medical professionals that DO know the truth don’t vaccinate themselves or their family – they just won’t openly admit it b/c vaccines are BIG $$$.

    Believe what you want, but when it comes down to it, those that don’t vaccinate aren’t childishly name-calling those that do vaccinate.

  • dyslexic_angeleno

    Danny’s sister said:
    “Ms. McCarthy isn’t asking for this to save her own son, the damage has already been done, she is trying to help protect OTHER people’s children. I think that is something that should be admired and NOT attacked!”

    No, no that’s NOT what she’s doing. She is certainly not ‘protecting’ my child and I would like her STOP the damage she is doing right NOW. I just watched her on GOOD DAY LA. It’s very clear that Ms McCarthy is projecting her own guilt and inadequacies onto the AAP, the CDC and the vaccine program. She is an individual in need of intensive psychotherapy and psychotherapeutic help and should not be voicing her every.single.little.though all over the media. She is angry, in pain and has no coping skills. She a woman over 35 who still refers to herself as a “girl” and thinks the entire world needs (and wants) to come to her rescue. Why so many people want to play a part in her personal and distorted fantasy is truly disturbing.

  • billy

    What science? There is no study that compares the unvaccinated to those that recieved the 1991 mercury loaded schedule, where infants recieved 100 times the Epa’s safe daily dose in a single day.

    On top of that 3 studies show that autistic kids have abnormal urinary porphyrin showing a specific pattern of mercury poisoning.

    Add to that Dr. Lewitson and 11 other scientists injected monkeys with the same thimerosal load into monkeys, all monkeys became brain damaged, while the controls didn’t.

    All these people rely are mostly European studies where they never recieved such high doses of mercury, and the Autism rates were so low, that epideimological study wouldn’t catch it.

    In America there was never a recall on thimerosal vaccines or enforcment of the CDC’s reccomendation, it wasn’t a law, so there is no clear date when mercury was removed. Nobody’s done a random sample of Doctors offices in say 2003 to compare the rate of Thimerosal containing vaccines vs Thimerosal free vaccines being administered.

  • CJ

    Amanda Peet has no clue what it’s like to watch her own child suffer at the hands of the government/big pharma. I watch my child struggle EVERY day due to the unsufferable acts of the drug companies that line their pockets from injuring thousands of babies every day. Parents have been telling them for years that the vaccine schedule is killing the souls of our children. GREEN OUR VACCINES! THE CHILDREN WHO ARE INJURED ARE TODAY ARE OUR FUTURE.

  • http://www.RupertTheSwan.com Phoebe

    I don’t see how this is a “green” issue, nor why it’s on Ecorazzi.

  • Spunk-Monkey

    @Jury is Out
    It’s almost entertaining watching you move the goalpost, over and over again. You have been provided with plenty of information, but rather than considering it openly and critically you spend your time looking for chinks in the armor, ways to counter it. That only implies to me that you are married to your position, whereas those of us who support scientific inquiry are only interested in refining our truthful understanding.

    We’d be quite happy if you could prove us wrong; we just have a higher quality standards for evidence.

  • IThinkForMyself

    Moving the goalposts? That’s funny! The parents who all believe that vaccines caused their children’s autism have always claimed that one thing is the cause; vaccines. You talk about moving goalposts when you inept people claim that it is old sperm, drunk mothers, too much TV, refridgerator moms…the list goes on and on and on.

  • Neill Raper

    Regarding to the poll mobbing. Your polls were useless in the first place. The selection bias was just tipped towards two other blogs in addition to yours.

  • BENJOVIAN

    So what would happen if we started a vaccination for Autism?

  • Spunk-Monkey

    @CJ

    I wonder if YOU have any idea what it’s like watching people like you, people with no honest understanding of what’s going on here, ranting from the sidelines, arguing against those who actually and support and investigate the known verifiable science that actually DOES help THOSE OF US WHO HAVE CHILDREN WITH AUTISM!!?? No? Then let me tell you what it’s like.

    Your efforts to replace GENUINE research and efforts of inquiry with your discredited anti-science paranoid conspiracy bull#### *IS* a vicious and selfish attack against our autistic children, just as much as if you tried to run them down in a crosswalk.

    And by the way, all that homeopathy and vitamin therapy and cell salts and bio-feedback and aromatherapy and herbal alternative medication and etc etc etc that people like you who consider this a “big pharma” conspiracy issue like to push as viable alternatives? It’s all garbage. It only provides soul-crushing false hopes, it wastes our time, it steals our money, it prolongs the pain for our families and children, and it draws effort and resources away from genuine research intended to help millions of children.

    Get it, CJ? YOUR POSITION SUPPORTS MY CHILD’S PAIN.

  • Mike

    @jury is out

    “The fact that the rates of autism have dovetailed with the increases in the vaccine schedule is reason enough to study this.”

    But they haven’t. Show me the data that shows that, given identical diagnositic parameters, that autism rates have increased. Show me the data that shows that, despite an overall DECLINE in vaccination rates, that autism rates have followed suit.

    As always, all we’re asking for on the science side is the evidence. Show me the evidence.

    “Many studies have come about when people start noticing corelations. Then from a corelation, you go after causation.”

    I’m not even asking for causation studies here; I’m not asking for evidence from a randomized trial. Even a single large, well-controlled cohort or case-control study showing an effect would suffice. But you don’t even have that.

    “The government has always insisted thimerosol was safe and there was no evidence to the contrary, but yet it went and did several thimerosol studies to try to prove its safety. There is a strong (and no longer small) contingent of people and even some doctors (albeit doctors not in step with the mainstream) who are very vocal in saying they see or suspect a correlation.”

    And if that were true, it would be borne out in the studies. It is not.

    “For everyone concerned about falling vaccination rates (and I am one of those people, by the way) a large, objective, independent, replicated, well-designed study showing no statistical difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated kids would put the issue to rest, or would certainly go a long way toward doing so for many people. And in my book, that would be time and money well spent.”

    I’m sorry, are you asking for a randomized trial of vaccinations vs. placebo, with autism rates as an outcome? That’s completely unethical. We cannot randomize people to the non-vaccinated group, because that would be subjecting them to undue risk of measles, mumps, or rubella. It’s the same reason we cant do a randomized trial of cigarette smoking with lung cancer as an outcome.

    The alternative would be a large prospective cohort study, where you follow a large group of people over time and look at autism rates in those vaccinated vs. those unvaccinated. Unfortunately, the number of people who do not get vaccinated is (thankfully) very small, so you wouldn’t get useful results (i.e. you can’t detect differences with small sample sizes).

    So, we do prospective cohort studies on different populations. Thimerosal vs. thimerosal-free vaccines, for instance:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14519711?ordinalpos=9&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    Alternatively, you do a retrospective study, where you look at correlations between vaccination rates and autism in populations:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15877763?ordinalpos=5&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16818529?ordinalpos=3&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    So I’ve given you three studies, one of which is a prospective cohort (probably second only in quality to an RCT) that test this hypothesis. All of them report the same thing. All I’m asking from you is for a single large study that shows the opposite. That wouldn’t overturn the mountain of evidence against the hypothesis, but it would be a start.

    Any way you slice it, you come to the same conclusion: there is no link between vaccination and autism.

    “Compare those with philosophical vaccine exemptions (to weed out confined gene pool issues) to those who have been fully vaccinated. You could do this anonymously through school or HMO records.”

    You’d have massive sample size issues with a study like this. Autism is rare (relative to the size of the population), so you’d need a very large sample size to get meaningful data. You’d need to recruit virtually every non-vaccinated child in a country the size of the United States. All this for a hypothesis that isn’t supported by a lick of preliminary data.

    “So, back to the point of my original post: when the scientists say that this has been exhaustively researched and no link has been found, I say that is misleading. It is true no link has been found in their resarch to date, but there is much that has been excluded from their research.”

    But don’t you see that there are things that SHOULD be in the preliminary data if the hypothesis is true, but aren’t seen? I agree with you; the best study would be vax vs. non-vax. But there is no reason to think that a real relationship between vaccination and autism, should one exist, would NOT be shown in the other studies (particularly in the large prospective cohorts).

    “And you’re not going to find it if you aren’t standing where you can see it. Now, that doesn’t mean there is a link; but it does mean we do not yet know.”

    But this is true of virtually everthing. You’re asking us to prove a negative. We’ve given you study after study of high quality data that all points in the same direction. How much negative data is enough before you conclude that there is no link?

  • karennd

    Spunk-Monkey,

    Just curious, what science has helped your child? I am sincerely interested.

  • Mike

    @IThinkforMyself

    “The parents who all believe that vaccines caused their children’s autism have always claimed that one thing is the cause; vaccines. You talk about moving goalposts when you inept people claim that it is old sperm, drunk mothers, too much TV, refridgerator moms…the list goes on and on and on.”

    Science never moves the goalposts. We simply ask to see the evidence.

    We can demonstrate that the diagnostic tools used to identify autism and autism-spectrum disorders have changed dramatically in the last 25 years, and we can demonstrate that the increase in the diagnosis of these diseases is almost enitely due to this effect (that, and better access to care).

    Where is the evidence that autism is caused by vaccines. I have yet to see a single person on this thread be brave enough to come forward and present the data and explain why it is consistent with the hypothesis. I’ve referenced several studies showing the opposite, all with different designs, carried out in different parts of the world by different researchers. That is a hallmark of the scientific method: reproducibility.

    So it seems the no-link side has plenty of data to support it.

    I ask again: stop obfuscating and show us the data.

  • Mike

    @CJ

    “Amanda Peet has no clue what it’s like to watch her own child suffer at the hands of the government/big pharma. I watch my child struggle EVERY day due to the unsufferable acts of the drug companies that line their pockets from injuring thousands of babies every day. Parents have been telling them for years that the vaccine schedule is killing the souls of our children. GREEN OUR VACCINES! THE CHILDREN WHO ARE INJURED ARE TODAY ARE OUR FUTURE.”

    Once again, whether or not Amanda Peet has “any idea” is irrelevant. The evidence is not dependent on emotion.

    Show us the evidence. Please. Anyone???

  • BENJOVIAN

    Autism vaccines for everyone!!!!!

  • Alan C

    Here is a post from the Age of Autism site, responding to a perfectly polite request for information (in “Amanda Peet, How Much Are They Paying You?”):-

    ————————————-

    TO DAVE: THE F’ING TROLL

    Hey, sidewinder, we all know a troll here when we smell one. So, you want hard science? You’re going to wait on responses to a blog question before helping your child?

    As was pointed out to you, the “hard science” can be found by anyone with an open mind. It’s a conscience you seem to be in need of.

    Either you’re a troll for asking such a question in such a manner, or you’re inhuman.

    Wait–same thing.

    Posted by: David Taylor | October 01, 2008 at 05:44 PM

    —————————————-

    All messages on that site are moderated, so the fact that this message was allowed through tells you everything you need to know about the mentality of the people who run that site.

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    @CJ

    Once again, a reply with an unnecessarily snarky tone….what is up with the people on this board?

    I am not moving any goalposts. There are no inconsistencies in my posts – my point has always been that we simply don’t yet know the answer because the studies have not been done. That doesn’t mean there is a link – but to make statements that science has answered this question is just plain wrong.

    This is more complex than some of you want to acknowlege. If the studies have not been done that might get to the answer, then of course there is no scientific evidence. That is very different from saying that comprehensive studies have been done and we can confidently say there is no link. It is also very different from saying there is a link. We just dont know.

    You’ve obviously made assumptions about me so it will probably surprise you to know that I have 2 small children and I have fully vaccinated them, because I err on the side of science and, like you, I have not seen conclusive studies showing a link. But, I am not ignorant enough to think we can assume there isn’t one based on the extent of scientific evidence that is available to date. If you aren’t looking in the right places, you won’t find anything.

    So, I go on the only hard evidence I have today, which is that shots keep the illnesses away. But I cross my fingers when my kids get their shots and I wonder and worry because, as a believer in science, I realize that this question has NOT been answered by a long shot. And I find it disturbing that the government, and anyone claiming to be a believer in science, can’t acknowledge that we still don’t really know the answer.(Bernadine Healy, the former head of the NIH has recently called the government out on this and she was right.)

    When so many people are so passionate about this issue (as evidenced by these inflamed posts on this board) and when something as critical as the public health rides on this debate, I think the government should want to do more. As I said the last time, I doubt we will ever have this answer in my lifetime because there is no solution should the govenrment get an answer it doesn’t want.

    PS: both my kids are on the spectrum. Were they affected by vaccines? I simply don’t know – and neither does anyone else.

  • billy

    “Hey anti-vaxers -

    I’ll be laughing when you’re screaming as your kid dies of measles. Your kid doesn’t deserve to die, but you deserve a mocking.”

    Dr. Orac, presents a false dillema, most people just want no Thimerosal in any vaccines, not even trace amounts for adults and kids, not to not get vaccinated.

    It’s sad when someone who claims to be all about science uses pathetic straw man fallacies.

    There should be a recall and ban of Thimerosal from all vaccines, even trace amounts, they banned it from all veterinary vaccines, but I guess doctors care more about dogs than humans.

  • dyslexic_angeleno

    @jury is out:

    “PS: both my kids are on the spectrum. Were they affected by vaccines? I simply don’t know – and neither does anyone else.”

    The government has done an enormous amount already to investigate this and to then attempt to address the public health issue surrounding it. We could argue all day about the kind of job they’ve done, but they have certainly spent enormous time on this issue. I try my best to be dispassionate about this matter in order to assess properly: In all scientific probability, your kids were NOT remotely negatively affected by vaccines. The fact that you have two children on the spectrum should already be leading your thinking in another direction entirely. I think your argument is with yourself.

  • karennd

    I’ve tried 3 times to post a comment about studies and it’s not showing up. Weird.

  • karennd

    I’ve tried 4 times now. So I will try to post it in pieces and see if it makes it this time.

    How about the Hanah Poling case?

    How about this study?
    http://www.jpands.org/vol11no1/geier.pdf

  • karennd

    This one? http://articles.latimes.com/2004/jun/09/science/sci-autism9

    http://www.autismwebsite.com/ari/newsletter/iom.htm

    The IOM’s report conclusions were seriously altered in the press.

    The IOM report actually said: “Although the committee has concluded that the evidence favors rejection of the causal relationship at the population level between MMR vaccine and ASD, the committee recommends that this issue receive continued attention…. its conclusion does not exclude the possibility that MMR vaccine could contribute to ASD in a small number of children…”

  • karennd

    http://www.autismwebsite.com/ari/vaccine/thimerosalreferences.htm – Partial list of studies linking thimerosal to Autism

    http://www.autismwebsite.com/ari/vaccine/MMRreferences.htm – Partial list of scientific studies linking the MMR vaccine and autism

  • karennd

    I, personally, do not believe vaccines cause every case of autism but they certainly add to the toxic load. I think genetically modified foods play a big part also.

    Okay, I posted it in pieces. Two are awaiting moderation for some reason.

  • IThinkForMyself

    Alan C:

    And Orac’s hate site and all of the other places that you and the rest of the vaccine mafia go to never act like this? Oh, wait…that’s right, you can’t act like that because you’re “science.” Hypocrisy; got some?

    To Mike:
    Science never moves the goalposts? OMFG, I’m in tears over her. Thanks for that laugh. You gotta give it to the pro-safe vaccine crowd; they’ve said it was vaccines from almost day one, and they’ve stuck with it. You guys can’t get your damn story straight. Which is it? Old sperm? Drunk moms? Refridgerator moms? Lead paint? TV? Which goalpost is it?

    And none of your “studies” you supplied prove that vaccines are innocent of the damage. Not 1.
    These epidemiological studies you claim are “irrefutable proof” were said to be essentially useless by Gerberding, that the data was misleading.

    So, again I say this. Hypocrisy: Got some?

  • http://BrainyBlonde.com erin

    I think you all should go out in the pasture. That’s right. ALONG WITH THE SHEEP who follow blindly. There is medical evidence that shows the rigorous vaccine schedule could be tied to autism. Why must you people kiss the ass of the Pharma companies (who have a hand in controlling the scientists- yes it’s true WAKE UP) and not even give the other evidence a chance?!?

    My heart goes out to all who posted on here about their children who have gotten autism as a direct result of vaccines- whether it be the additives or the schedules.

    Oh and to the woman who said that tattoos also have mercury in them. WE ARENT TATTOOING NEWBORNS!

    erin

  • karennd

    Hey, erin, I am anti-vaccines. I was just pointing out that the FDA is going to investigate tattoo inks for safety and will put several years into that. I wish they would put that much time and effort into investigating the safety of vaccines.

    What if they conclude that tattoos aren’t safe because of the thimerosal? Then it definitely isn’t good in our vaccines!

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    @dyslexic_angeleno:

    My argument is with myself? Not sure what that means…

    Surely genetics are at play here. No question. That’s why everyone doesn’t have autism, regardless of any possible environmental triggers. I don’t dispute that and, in fact, discovering the genes connected to autism is an essential area of research which we can only hope will lead to prevention and treatment one day. The fact that I have 2 kids on the spectrum tells me we have a genetic vulnerability in our family for sure. But it does not exclude the fact that there may very well be environmental triggers to which we are genetically susceptible, whenother families are not. The anecdotal fact that my husband and I come from large families but this has never been seen before to anyone’s knowledge would seem to point to the influence of a modern environmental factor, though of course I know that does not prove anything to me or anyone else. That surely isn’t science…but it does make you think.

    And I don’t dispute that there have been a lot of studies done. BUT, again, those studies have been limited to thimerosol and the MMR. As I said, even if we take every one of these many studies at face value, there are still MANY unanswered questions. None of those studies, for example, tells us whether multiple shots at one visit are safe. None tell us whether starting the shots before a baby even leaves the hospital is safe. None tell us whether getting 20 shots in your first 6 months of life is safe, or whether there might be a particularly vulnerable period of developmental during which a vaccine reaction migth cause encephalopathy leading to autism.

    And my issue with how the government communicates the public health issue is that they are misleading. To say the question has been “asked and answered” is just not true. It leads to the kind of mistrust that we see in these posts.

    Again, I vaccinate my kids. I just wish there was more comprehensive science to make me feel more comfortable about it.

  • Alan C

    IThinkforMyself:
    1. I don’t know anything about Orac’s site,

    2. I do not condone trolling (including your own) on ANY site,

    3. I have never been involved in this issue until this poll came up. My only concern is that people act in accordance with the scientific evidence, not dubious anecdotal evidence. At the moment it seems to indicate that the vaccines do not cause autism. If it turns out that the opposite is true then I will change my opinion, so I am not one of your “Vaccine Mafia”, but it is clear that no amount of evidence will convince you that you are wrong.

  • Spunk-Monkey

    karennd:

    Sorry to disappear; in between meetings at the moment. I’ll have a chance to respond later today (without the massive venting i aimed towards CJ). ;-)

  • HidariMak

    @jury is out
    “What I think you are confusing (and many people do, so you are not alone) is that there have been studies (a lot of them)that looked at children who did and did not get the MMR, and there have been studies that looked at the various amounts of thimerosol children got in their shots as compared to their neurological outcomes.”

    At most, that is a rather minor point though. What about the multiple other points raised by myself and others, including that…

    - Autism diagnosis rates went up after the screening method for autism stopped dismissing now-accepted signs of autism

    - Autism diagnosis rates didn’t drop when vaccination rates dropped

    - Outbreaks in measles, a disease which can cause permanent harm and even death in children, has gone up, likely in connection with vaccination rates dropping (http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/08/21/measles.outbreaks.ap/index.html)

    - Outbreaks in mumps and other diseases which could be cured by vaccinations, which can lead to permanent organ failure or death, will increase (if they haven’t already)

    - Dozens of scientific studies from various health and medical groups around the world have looked specifically for a connection between vaccinations and autism, without a single one yet being found

    - The overwhelming large number of professional doctors and scientists who have studied the data, and are claiming that there is no link between vaccines and autism (http://www.chop.edu/consumer/jsp/division/generic.jsp?id=84662) (http://www.aap.org)

    - The lack of support BY THOSE WHO UNDERSTAND THE SCIENCE towards the anti-vaccination movement, unexplained short of “one super massive super secret conspiracy”

    - Proof that endangering and even killing children is called for, through a single solid connection between vaccinations and autism (and no, “after this… therefore because of this” is only proof of a logical fallacy)

  • http://www.ecorazzi.com michael

    To those posting link (Sorry, Karen), please know that anything with more than two links in it will be rejected with spam controls. Please divvy up your posts to accommodate! Thanks.

  • Patti

    Power to the sheeple!

    Ignorance is bliss.

    I hope everyone here is happy with there heads in the sand.

    OBEY!

    Beleive what you are told with out question. Do not do your own research!

    Vaccines are not safe. Babies die every day.

    Vaccines are not effective. Science shows this.

    Before vaccines were introduced there was no Autism.

    Amish people do not vaccinate. Amsih people don’t have kids with Autism.

    who pays for scientific research? Pharmeceutical companies do.

    WAKE UP SHEEPLE!

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    @HidariMak:

    Not sure you read my subsequent posts….I am not saying that I know or even think vaccines cause autism, and I have and continue to fully vaccinated my kids (who are both on the spectrum, by the way). I am just saying that if you objectively review the accepted science, we still don’t really know the answer. That doesn’t mean the answer is that there is a link (which is why I do vaccinate) – but it does mean that we really don’t know for sure. And so I take issue with all the people who claim to be standing on science but make misleading statements about how this has been studied and put to rest – because it hasn’t. And I really take issue with people who claim to stand on science yet make insulting comments to others in its name, as has been so evident on this board.

    It is no small point that the studies have examined only thimerosol and the MMR and have excluded many other areas. The studies to date would NOT get to the other issues I’ve raised (multiple vaccines at once, timing of rounds of vaccines, etc.). It may be that so much time and energy has gone into debating thimerosol and the MMR that we have missed something else about vaccines entirely.

    I agree that dropping vaccination rates have prompted increases in various diseases and that this will only increase as rates continue to drop. And that is very dangerous. No argument there. But that has nothing to do with whether they cause autism or not.

    And I agree that austism rates increased as the diagnostic criteria changed, and surely that must account for some of the increase….but concurrent with that is also the increased vaccine schedule. Your “after this…therefore because of this” criticism can also be applied to your willingness to accept the increase as solely attributable to the change in criteria. It *might* be that the wild increase in autism is a combination of the two: better diagnosis and a real increase due to new environmental factors. Again, science hasn’t been able to show us exactly what is happening and to what extent either factor is responsible for the increase. And even mainstream medicine is now saying that the current thinking is that austism begins with genetic susceptibility but may be exploited by environmental exposures.

    My whole point is that we don’t know. As I said in my example (and this is just an example to make a point so don’t go to town on the specifics): imagine for a moment that autism is caused by giving a Hep B shot to an infant that is only 12 hours old. Maybe, because some children have a genetic predisposition to autoimmune disorders, it causes an autoimmune reaction in the form of encephalopathy that causes damage that starts development to deviate from the normal path, ultimately resulting in autism. If that were true, none of the studies that have been done would catch that because all the kids would have had that very first mandated shot.

    Now, of course, it is unlikely that there is any one particular shot or moment that is to blame for every kid, even if shots are involved, because there would likely be different tipping points for different kids. That’s why this is so darned hard to study. So many variables at play.

    Anyway,I am just saying that I keep an open mind. I vaccinate my kids but it is with some trepidation because the hypothesis really isn’t so crazy and for sure has not been put to rest.

    (By the way, peer reviewed mainstream studies have shown a link between autism and family history of autoimmune disorders and the study of autism and immunology is now an accepted, mainstream area of research. (See research by Andrew Zimmerman at Johns Hopkins). If we know the immune system is somehow involved in at least a significant subset of the autistic population, is it really so much of a stretch to immagine that vaccines, which profoundly and permanent affect the immune system, might then therefore be somehow involved too? And again, if it isn’t thimerosol and it isn’t the MMR specifically, but instead it is some haywire autoimmune response triggered by vaccines, then none of the previous studies would have shown that.)

    I hope they figure it all out….I am not optimistic that they will any time soon.

  • Anonymous Antivaccinationist

    Wow, such vitriol – and Orac being surprisingly gentle, and almost respectful. Certainly not the insolence I’m used to.

    That said:

    @HidariMak, of the dozens of studies you purport to disprove the link between austim and vaccines, how many of those are epidemiological? Epi studies will not exonerate the role of vaccines in autism.

    Can you please provide me one, only one, double blind, randomized vaccine study that proves that vaccination prevents the spread of disease. Simply because vaccinated people don’t present the way unvaccinated people do, doesn’t mean they aren’t equally capable of spreading disease and ALSO sick. Asymptomatic carriers of disease mingling about the herd might be just as dangerous to those “compromised” persons that can’t be vaccinated don’t you think? At least unvaccinated people show symptoms so you know they are sick, which, of course, is awfully helpful when applying epi spin.

    What diseases do vaccines “cure”? And exactly how are you able to determine that those that fall ill from a vaccine available disease (and were not vaccinated), wouldn’t have gotten sick even if they had been vaccinated? There are very many well documented instances of vaccine failure, primary and secondary, and that said – it’s a bit of strawman, and quite specious.

    Thanks in advance,
    AA

  • Pingback: Jenny McCarthy slams Amanda Peet for vaccine stance | Gfeen.com

  • Teresa

    I read all of these posts and it’s the prosafe vaccine people vs the anti-prosafe vaccine people. It’s hate and venom towards parents seeing their children improve on biomedical treatments aimed at injuries brought on by vaccines/toxins. Those injuries include damage by mercury and aluminum, bacteria(Strep and clostridia),viruses, vision and hearing issues, gastrointestinal issues,and inflammation of gut and brain, and more. The anti folks use anger and sarcasm and then claim to be scienceblog people–Orac, Autismnewsbeat..et al but they repeat the same antics and NO science. this post summed up the anti groups message–and what a sad and screwed up message that is-this is hardly science and boders on a religious fanatical zealousness that sees only what it wants to see:

    “bob says on October 1st, 2008 at 12:54 am
    “Hey call me the bitch”

    Okay. Bitch.

    You are completely wrong, paranoid, delusional, and directly contributing to the spread of disease and the deaths of innocents. You are a monster. And a bitch.”

  • http://BrainyBlonde.com erin

    Karen. My apologies. I read way too many posts on here (with these pro PHARMA people spamming our board (yes, as far as I’m concerned it’s spam. You’ve never posted here before or on other threads. Spam spreading sheep.

    Anyway, Sorry Karen I see now you were pointing out that the FDA is investigating the tattoo ingredient also in vaccines. Even all the MORE reason for the sheep on here to wake up and say wow, maybe i shouldn’t be shooting up my babies with killer drugs.

  • cindy

    For parents sincerely looking to help their childrens autism. We did and now our children have recovered. A diet of whole organic fruits vegetables and meat had the biggest impact. Sites that helped us tremendously.
    stankurtz.com
    taca.org
    peacanbread.com
    Children have and are recovering. We have two little boys that are living proof of this. We also have lots of doctors support and these doctors are from highly respected hospitals.

  • Twyla

    “Jury is out” – thank you so so much for your calm and thoughtful posts. All the best to you and your family. And Biomedicalmom, and a few others too…

    It seems that quite a few vaccine defenders posting here believe that epidemiology is the only valid form of science. Epidemiology has an important role to play in looking for causes of illness, but results of these studies can vary widely based on study design – e.g. statistical methodology and selection criteria.

    Some of the autism studies seem to be based on very simplistic assumptions, as if there is only one cause of autism, and as if this cause will cause autism in everyone.

    I don’t know why those who are so opposed to the “post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy” are so enamored of epidemiology, which can only show statistical correlation (or lack thereof) not causation (or lack thereof). Epidemiology only gives a clue, e.g. “everyone who got sick had eaten raw tomatoes” – which is enough to prompt further investigation.

    Throughout history, science has also been based on empirical observation, not just number crunching.

    There seems to be an assumption that we parents should not think for ourselves and not make decisions for ourselves if we are not scientists. We should just allow doctors and scientists make decisions for us, and put our own minds and eyes on hold.

    If you looked out the window and you saw that it was raining, would you say, “Gee maybe I should bring my umbrella,” or would you say, “Well to me it looks like rain, but what do I know – I better wait until a meteorologist tells me the weather.”

    Likewise, we observe our children, and we see how they react – positively or negatively – to various foods, drugs, activities, therapies… Thousands of parents witness their children with autism functioning better on the GFCF diet, but so many “experts” keep saying, “Don’t try the diet because it has never been proven effective.” So we should sit passively and do nothing until we receive instructions from scientists, who are not even paying attention?

    Oddly, many of those on this blog who claim to have a higher understanding of science express themselves in rude, crude, hostile, emotional, thoughtless ways which seem incompatible with rational open-minded thought processes.

  • Prunesquallor

    jury is out,

    You should be ashamed of yourself for being so ignorant. Buy an introductory epidemiology textbook and read it, you moron! Then you can comment without embarrassing yourself.

  • Bob

    @Twyla: Studying medicine and disease is a bit more involved than looking an clouds. My god, what a dumb analogy.

    Let’s see what the antivax movement suffers from:
    anecdotal evidence
    belief bias
    confusing association and causation
    denialism
    conspiracy mongering

  • Twyla

    I don’t know why many people posting here seem to believe that the idea is so outlandish that vaccines could cause adverse events including brain damage. As Dr. Bernadine Healy (former head of the NIH) said in U.S. News & World Report on 4/10/2008, “Go back 40 or 50 years. The medical literature is replete with reports of neurological reactions to vaccines, such as mood changes, seizures, brain inflammation, and swelling. Several hundred cases of the paralytic illness Guillain-Barré after the swine flu vaccine were blamed on the government and gave Gerald Ford heartburn—but eventually led to the vaccine court.”

    Sharyl Attkisson of CBS News found prior cases where the government had compensated children for vaccine-induced brain injury including seizures and autism. Oddly, our governmental agencies have not been tracking or investigating vaccine adverse events to see which or how many babies went on to develop autism.

    Sharyl Attkisson of CBS wrote on 5/12/2008, “According to Healy, when she began researching autism and vaccines she found credible published, peer-reviewed scientific studies that support the idea of an association. That seemed to counter what many of her colleagues had been saying for years. She dug a little deeper and was surprised to find that the government has not embarked upon some of the most basic research that could help answer the question of a link… The government has a dataset of unvaccinated children available. It has published more than one survey of parents of undervaccinated and unvaccinated children (to find out why the parents are choosing not to vaccinate). It would seem simple to use those same families to measure their rate of autism/ADD. Also, why hasn’t the government used vaccine court as a resource to ask the autism/vaccine question. There, nearly 5,000 families have self-selected as believing their children’s autism was caused by vaccines. Many have expressed willingness to let their children’s medical records be released and studied; but nobody in the government has been interested.”

    There’s an interesting article about Dr. Paul Offit at http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/health/july-dec02/offit_smallpox.html. He talks about why he believes we should not start giving the small pox vaccine again. He says that the risks of the vaccine outweigh the very small-to-none risk of coming down with smallpox. Nobody has been known to come down with small pox on the planet earth for the past 25 years.

    He describes the risk of the vaccine as follows:

    “But they can get an infection of the brain, called encephalopathy or encephalitis. If they have eczema, they can have sometimes a severe and occasionally fatal disease called eczema vaccinatum. And this is very common that one can inadvertently touch the site that was inoculated and then touch the eye and have an infection of the eye, which can rarely be quite severe. In patients who have decreased capacities to fight infection, there is a disease called ‘progressive vaccinia’ where in fact the disease is overwhelming and it is the cause of death.”

    This is so much like what many parents of children with autism report as vaccine reactions: encephalitis, eczema, and chronic infection with the virus from the vaccine (such as measles).

    Yes, this is the same Dr. Offit who so vigorously defends out current vaccine program. Why doesn’t he apply this risk-benefit to other vaccines? For example, most newborns have no chance of coming down with Hepatitis B, which is transmitted through bodily fluids, e.g. through sex or shared needles. The only way babies would be exposed is through their mothers or via blood transfusions. Do we really know what is the effect of a vaccine a few hours after birth? Especially on a susceptible infant with a vulnerable immune system or deficient detox ability?

    As more and more vaccines have been added to the schedule, it seems to me that the number of vaccine injuries has increased.

    Studies have found inflammation in the autopsied brains of people with autism which was not present in non-autistic brains. Inflammatory markers have been found in the spinal fluid of people with autism. People with autism suffer from high rates of food allergies, and often come from families with histories of auto-immune disorders. There is a lot of evidence of immune system involvement in autism.

    Pet owners and veterinarians are reporting the same vaccine reactions in pets as humans have seen in their children with autism, such as inflammatory bowel disease and seizures. Just a coincidence?

  • Twyla

    There is an interesting study by a nobel prize winning scientist in 1913 who did some cruel experiments injecting various substances into dogs http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/1913/richet-lecture.html.

    He wrote: “Phylaxis, a word seldom used, stands in the Greek for protection. Anaphylaxis will thus stand for the opposite. Anaphylaxis, from its Greek etymological source, therefore means that state of an organism in which it is rendered hypersensitive, instead of being protected.

    “To make this plain, we will consider the example of a subject that has received a poison.

    “Let us suppose the dosage to be moderate and that after a few days the subject is, or at least appears to be, normal. If, at this point, a further injection is given of the same dosage of the same poison, what will happen?

    “There are three possibilities.

    “The first and simplest is that there has been no change in the organism and that in receiving the same dosage as one month previously, exactly the same phenomena will result, in exactly the same conditions. Naturally this is what happens most of the time. Specialists and doctors work on this assumption when they repeat the intoxication at one month intervals.

    “The second possibility is that the subject has become less sensitive. In other words, the preceding intoxication has produced a certain condition of tolerance or non-sensitivity. This will mean that a stronger dose is necessary at the second injection to give the same results…

    “These two cases, of unchanged sensitivity or stability, and of diminished sensitivity or habituation, have been known since long. Now I have shown that there is a third possibility, frequently to be observed in certain conditions which I have specified: this is of heightened sensitivity. The first injection, instead of protecting the organism, renders it more fragile and more susceptible. This is anaphylaxis…”

    “We are so constituted that we can never receive other proteins into the blood than those that have been modified by digestive juices. Every time alien protein penetrates by effraction, the organism suffers and becomes resistant. This resistance lies in increased sensitivity, a sort of revolt against the second parenteral injection which would be fatal. At the first injection, the organism was taken by surprise and did not resist. At the second injection, the organism mans its defences and answers by the anaphylactic shock.”

    This scientists found that individual animals varied greatly in their responses.

    What does this have to do with autism? The point is, injections of various substances can cause a variety of immune system reactions. And these reactions varied in individual animals, just as vaccines tolerated by one child can over-sensitize the immune system of another.

    He mentions work of other scientists: “Rosenau and Anderson, two American physiologists, demonstrated in a noteworthy piece of work that the phenomenon of anaphylaxis occurs after every injection of serum, even when the injection is minute, for example of 0.00001 ml which is an infinitely small amount but nevertheless sufficient to anaphylactize an animal. They quoted examples of anaphylaxis from all organic liquids: milk, serum, egg, muscle extract.”

    No wonder kids today have so much asthma, allergies…

  • Dyce

    Twyla,

    You’ve hit the nub of the whole vaccine issue here (Risk/benefit).

    Each vaccine has its own risk to benefit equation. Vaccines like smallpox, with their known side effects, are deemed to be not essential because the risks of acquiring the disease are essentially nil, and if everyone got the vaccine there would be a substantial morbidity from vaccine reactions.

    For hepatitis B, there is I agree perhaps no necessity for newborns to get the vaccine and I see no reason why it could not be given later. However, many studies have shown it can be given quite safely to newborns.

    For the common childhood infectious diseases, we know vaccination confers considerable more benefit than harm. This holds true even if it were decided that a small proportion of autism cases could be triggered by vaccination, by the way.

  • http://fashioncenter.com jury is out

    @Prunesquallor

    The minute you name call and speak so disrepectfully, you negate anything you say to people who are behaving rationally and politely (and you actually embarras yourself). Your rantings and name calling are the opposite of how a scientist would approach this discussion. Your behavior is disgraceful. Good luck to you; I suspect you will need it.

    @everyone else:
    Lots of interesting points all around and much to think about….I wish all our children well…. Signing off now for good…

  • karennd

    Cindy,

    Good post and website recommendations. I would like to recommend http://www.reversingautism.org and the first step is, yes, an all organic diet. Take care.

  • Mike

    @Patti

    “who pays for scientific research? Pharmeceutical companies do.”

    Not mine. I have been a cancer researcher for nearly 10 years, and I don’t receive a dime from pharma. Virtually all grant money for basic and clinical research comes from government and charitable sources. So almost all of the preclinical research (which is the bulk of research in most fields) is completely free from pharma money.

    That said, large phase III and IV clinical trials are, indeed, sponsored by drug companies. They have to be; they cost hundreds of millions of dollars to run. So you might think that would be a conflict of interest, yes? Thing is, all clinical trials have to be registered; the questions that will be answered have to be logged BEFORE the trial starts, and the methods to be used are completely laid out. This has two benefits: (a) it allows us to look at trials and pre-judge the quality of the data that will come out of them (and fix the trial if it needs fixing), and (b) it means that the results will not get shoved in a drawer; the results have to be reported.

    Now this is all for randomized clinical trials. Drug companies are involved, and there certainly have been instances of deception and out-and-out fraud. But that is not the norm at all.

    On the other hand, most longitudinal epidemiological studies (which consitute all of the evidence against the autism/vax hypothesis) are carried out by academic researchers who do not have ties to pharma.

    Moreover, I should point out that even if all research was paid for by pharma, that would not, in and of itself, invalidate the results. The onus would still be on you to provide evidence to that end, and merely saying “pharma paid for it” does not refute the results one iota.

  • Mike

    @Erin

    “There is medical evidence that shows the rigorous vaccine schedule could be tied to autism. Why must you people kiss the ass of the Pharma companies (who have a hand in controlling the scientists- yes it’s true WAKE UP) and not even give the other evidence a chance?!?”

    So post the evidence. Post a link to the original studies that support your hypothesis. These studies should take the form of large cohort or case-control studies, rather than opinion or anecdote, which, as we have establish, are not evidence.

  • http://hotmail.com more to consider

    Here are two things to consider:

    (1) Generation Rescue did a survey comparing vaccinated to unvaccinated children. The survey was done by a reputable market research firm and used the same methodology that the CDC used to determine the 1/150 rate of autism. The sample size was not small.

    http://www.generationrescue.org/survey.html

    They found a correlation between autism (and other neurological conditions) and vaccination in boys in several age groups. They did not find the same correlation with girls. They are not a research institution and, to their credit, they point out themsleves the various ways in which the study results might be challenged. But that doesn’t mean the results are flawed for sure. They might be…but they might not be.
    This survey does not prove anything but it does indicate that further research should be done.

    (2) There are likely many autisms. Regressive autism may very well be completely different from infantile autism (where kids do not regress but rather manifest delays from the beginning.) Perhaps vaccines are implicated in some cases of autism but not all of them. If that were the case, a lot of the studies done to date would fail to tease that out. The autistic kids in most of the studies (maybe all the studies…I don’t know about that) are all lumped together, so the kids whose autism was not triggered by vaccines would be diluting the pool results. You could even have a significant percentage of kids who were vaccine injured but, because you also have a significant number with a different kind of autism who were not vaccine injured, your studies would not pick up the risk to the first group.

    I think Bernadine Healy hit it on the mark when she said we need to study the kids who got sick.

  • Arne Sahlberg

    “Cindy,

    Good post and website recommendations. I would like to recommend http://www.reversingautism.org and the first step is, yes, an all organic diet. Take care.”

    From the site in question! Read it from the person who makes the claim itself:
    “The compilation and analysis of the evidence in these research’s summaries are the sole opinion of the author and should not be taken as an absolute conclusion of the fact.

    The papers presented in this site are the work of Andrea Lalama in an effort to find answers for her own son’s autism and her sole experience, please do not act based on the information provided. This site is for educational purposes only.

    You should only act based on advice provided by your medical doctor.”
    http://www.reversingautism.org/hypotheses.html

    Please don’t take reversingautism.org seriously. There is to good evidence that any food causes autism! Thise site is just plain bad.

  • karennd

    All natural health websites have that type of disclaimer. Check the bottom of mercola’s website or naturalnews.com. They have to or they get in trouble.

  • Twyla

    Dyce said, “For the common childhood infectious diseases, we know vaccination confers considerable more benefit than harm. This holds true even if it were decided that a small proportion of autism cases could be triggered by vaccination, by the way.”

    No, we don’t know that. Today’s vaccine reactions are simply being denied — summarily dismissed — not studied. With autism rates last measured as 1 in 150 by the CDC — and even higher rates reported by many school districts, who fight overdiagnosis to avoid the tremendous cost of educational services — if vaccines even only contribute to a portion of autism, that is extemely significant, and probably higher than the rates of complications from what used to be common childhood diseases.

    Children today are also experiencing high rates of autoimmune diseases such as diabetes, and other learning disorders such as ADD, and other immune disorders such as asthma and severe allergies. These are very serious, lifelong, life changing conditions. Asthma and severe allergies require constant medical management, and can be fatal. Diabetes causes lifelong dependency on injected insulin, and may shorten lives due to conditions such as kidney failure.

    It seems to me that these days there is an exageration of the risks of communicable disease while ignoring the risks of adverse reactions to vaccines. There is a series of interesting articles by Mark Blaxill on the subject of weighing risks and benefits, starting at http://www.ageofautism.com/2007/11/congratulations.html.

    My own daughter had a febrile seizure a couple of days after receiving the MMR at the same time as the Varicela vaccine, followed by a month of high fevers. At the time (8 years ago), it did not occur to me to link her seizure and the vaccines. Our pediatrician did not report the incident to VAERS.

    Many parents say that when their baby suffered a vaccine reaction the doctors told them this was coincidental and did not report it. The parents who went ahead and reported it themselves then spent months or even years waiting for review of their case, and nobody from any medical or governmental agency was interested in investigating what happenned and learning from the event.

    I grew up at a time when everyone came down with measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, mumps, and the flu, and I never knew anyone who suffered a lasting effect. Yes, complications can occur, but they are much rarer than today’s autism rates. Perhaps we should vaccinate for the measles virus by itself, and vaccinate for mumps and rubella at a later age. Mumps can cause sterility in adolescent & adult males, but it is generally not dangerous for children. Yes, very rare cases of deafness — but maybe that’s better than high rates of autism?

    As for rotavirus, I have never ever known anyone who had a problem with this virus. Is there really a justification for adding this to the already crowded infant schedule? Even a temporary hospitalization for diarrhea would be better than lifelong conditions linked to over-vaccination.

    There seems to be an assumption that we can just keep adding more and more vaccines to the schedule without ill effects. And no wonder — Dr. Paul Offit thinks that babies can withstand 10,000 vaccines.

    As many have pointed out, there may be many substances in vaccine that can cause a variety of reactions in susceptible children. So, to simply do a statistical study of one group of vaccinated children compared with another group of vaccinated children does not exonerate vaccines.

    I understand the value of vaccines. I am not anti-vaccine. We are raising concerns about vaccine safety, such as: too many vaccines in a limited time frame at a very young ate, untested ingredients (e.g. aluminum, thimerosal), and no evaluation of conditions that increase the likelihood of adverse reactions (e.g. egg allergy — who knows whether their baby has an allergy to eggs? — or family history of immune system disorders).

    It makes me mad that when people raise these concerns, many immediately try to turn the issue around to be an attack on all vaccines. I am not saying that we should do away with all vaccines. I am saying that currently there is inadequate safety monitoring and failure to address adverse reactions.

    Financially, there are too many interests lined up on the side of more & more vaccines and denial of problems. Professionally, many have a lot at stake if problems such as the autism/vaccine link are admitted.

  • Mike

    @More to Consider

    “1) Generation Rescue did a survey comparing vaccinated to unvaccinated children. The survey was done by a reputable market research firm and used the same methodology that the CDC used to determine the 1/150 rate of autism. The sample size was not small.

    http://www.generationrescue.org/survey.html

    These people need to learn to spell “methodology”.

    First, this study has not been peer-reviewed. I’m not an epidemilogist by training, so I would like to see some real epidemiologists have a crack at this. That having been said, there are some fundamental flaws here.

    Did the researchers control for other possible confounding variables? For instance, did they correct for geographical location, income, exposure to other agents, possible genetic factors at play in founder populations (such as the Amish), etc? There is no indication of this that I can see. This is a serious flaw.

    Did the researchers control for a possible recall and sampling bias? That is, have they controlled for the fact that people who already believe that their child’s autism is caused by vaccination are more likely to (a) participate in this study, and (b) tell their personal medical histories to an automated polling service? The PROPER way to do this study is to use medical registries; you avoid polling people altogether, because, frankly, people misremember and have selective memories.

    I am not at all against this type of study; in fact, I think it would be reasonably easy to do. You look at population registries for vaccinations and autism, and ask if the rates are different between those who got vaccinated and those that did not.

    Oh wait, it has been done, and has been published in a peer-reviewed journal (indeed, one of the best peer-reviewed journals): http://tinyurl.com/3ujexn

    Can you explain why this study is not sufficient. It has a large sample size, properly controls for variables (other than just gender), and doesn’t involve interviews.

    This has also been done for thimerosal vs. non-thimersoal vaccines: http://tinyurl.com/4mcaoh

    Given the massive methodological issues with the “study” you published, and given the two excellent, peer-reviewed studies I’ve just given you, where, exactly, does the controversy lie?

  • Mike

    @Twyla

    “My own daughter had a febrile seizure a couple of days after receiving the MMR at the same time as the Varicela vaccine, followed by a month of high fevers.”

    Would those things have happened if she had not received the vaccine? Explain, with rationale.

  • Mike

    @Twyla

    “I grew up at a time when everyone came down with measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, mumps, and the flu, and I never knew anyone who suffered a lasting effect.”

    Measles: 345000 deaths worldwide in 2005

    Mumps: generally not lethal, but causes severe encephalitis; over 160000 cases per year in the US prior to the development of the vaccine

    Rubella: again, not generally lethal, but causes severe childhood morbidity, and, prior to the vaccination, affected nearly 1/100 live births

    Chicken pox: I could actually go either way on the varicella vax; probably not necessary due to lack of common and serious mortality or morbidity, and possible increase in morbidity of adult-onset varicella in vaccinated individuals.

    Flu: Up to 500000 deaths worldwide every year, in non-pandemic years, along with severe morbidity in millions

    All of these things can be prevented with vaccines. The evidence of this is enormous. Without very strong evidence to suggest that vaccines are having harmful off-target effects, they should not be stopped.

    So once again, I ask for the peer-reviewed studies that show the link.

  • http://hotmail.com more to consider

    @Mike

    First of all, I said myself that the Generation Rescue survey was proof of nothing. And I also admited, as so did they, that there are many ways that you could criticize these data. But that still doesn’t mean that the data are not pointing to soemthing real. It needs to be studied more.

    Second, “oh wait, it’s been done”…well read more carefully. The first study you put forth looks exclsuively at kids who did and did not get the MMR. It does nothing to study the many other aspects of possible vaccine involvement. The sceond study is looking at thimerosol amounts. Again, it does not and could not get to the question fo whether there is a genetically vulverable subset of kids who are harmed in some other way from vaccines.
    There are no studies comparing fully vaccinated to fully non-vaccinated kids.

  • http://vaccinesexposed.blogspot.com/ Dawn

    Go team McCarthy! I do hope that Amanda’s vaccine ignorance did not harm her daugher. Isn’t her daughter like 19 mo. old and not talking? Amanda got her “info” from a vaccine-patent holder who receives money from MERCK! I feel sorry for her. By the way, with scientists being the biggest polluters these days, what the heck are they doing on a “Green” website other than causing some trouble?

  • Corey

    @more to consider

    I will add to Mike’s criticisms. The problem is that the “study” was conducted by a market research firm. I will state up front that they do not have the expertise to conduct epidemiological research. The statistical models used in epidemiology are vastly different than those used in market research. Take my word for it. I’m a market researcher (Ph.D. in Psychology) who’s studied a few of the statistical models used in the life sciences (HLM being one).

    Then…the counties were selected by Generation REscue! No! That in and of itself is a fatal flaw. They want to make general statements about autism. Fine…you have to do a national sample…preferably with a random digit predictive dialer.

    Moreover, I see strong evidence for selection bias. The survey itself connects vaccines and children’s health. Anti-vaxers (who clearly have strong feeling) will be far more likely to opt in. The language does not disguise the nature of the study which is needed for a “controversial” topic.

    And I see your post about you stating there are problems but that “still doesn’t mean that the data are not pointing to soemthing real.” Actually, yes it does. As I stated earlier, I would never…ever ever ever never publish a study with biases that clear with the conclusions that Generation Rescue wants to promote. Nor is the raw data available. Given the data they do give (tabulation reports), I’m willing to be that Generation Rescue doesn’t have the statistical know-how to conduct a real analysis.

    Moreover, going to a market research firms is dubious at best. Market researchers typically will not know what the epi concerns are (I myself have only a vague understanding and that’s because I know MPH).

  • Mike

    @More to Consider

    “First of all, I said myself that the Generation Rescue survey was proof of nothing.”

    I agree. Then why post it, except to further obfuscate?

    “Second, “oh wait, it’s been done”…well read more carefully. The first study you put forth looks exclsuively at kids who did and did not get the MMR.”

    So can we at least agree that this study provides strong evidence that the MMR vaccine does not increase the risk of developing autism? Even that would be a huge step forward.

    “The sceond study is looking at thimerosol amounts. Again, it does not and could not get to the question fo whether there is a genetically vulverable subset of kids who are harmed in some other way from vaccines.”

    I concur. But once again, can we at least agree that this study provides strong evidence that thimerosal-containing vaccines do not increase the risk of developing autism and ASD?

    There may well be a subset of individuals who are genetically predisposed to a sensitivity to vaccines. If that were the case, large twin studies would be the way to go. But if the predisposition is rare, you would need enormous sample sizes to see it. It would simply get lost in the noise of the data.

    Another good study design would be to genotype (i.e. DNA fingerprint) vaccinated autistic/ASD children, their parents, and their siblings versus non-vaccinated autistic/ASD children, their parents, and sibling, and look for genetic markers that are associated with vaccine-related autism (if such a thing exists) vs. sporadic (i.e. non-vaccine related) autism. This would require far fewer individuals, and could answer the question. Though, if there was no common genetic component identified, would that put the question to rest? What amount of negative data would be enough?

    All that having been said, I’ve still yet to see any a priori reason for suspecting there is any predisposition at all.

  • Dyce

    Twyla, you seem to down play the potential for harm from the infections “because you never knew anyone who had alasting effect”. As Mike says above, you are kidding yourself if you think that consequences are trivial.

    I am tired of hearing how awful vaccine reactions are (such as febrile convulsions which your own child had) when we know from clinical studies that a febrile convulsion is 20 times more likely to occur with a measles infection than it is with MMR.

    Some facts to consider:

    For every million children NOT vaccinated with MMR, you can expect to see the following happen:

    1 million cases of measles.
    1 million cases of mumps.
    1 million cases of rubella.
    200 thousand admitted to hospital with complications.
    70 thousand get otitis infection.
    20 thousand have a febrile convulsion.
    50 thousand get pneumonia.
    1.5 thousand get mumps encephalitis.
    One thousand get brain damage from measles encephalitis.
    One thousand babies will be born with congenital rubella syndrome.
    500 will become sterile.
    200 will DIE.

    These are based on the rates of complications known in the USA/UK at the time vaccination for measles, mumps and rubella were introduced – rates that would recur if MMR vaccination stopped.

    Now what would happen if every child had MMR, and a tiny proportion of cases of autism were caused by MMR itself? First decide how many cases to blame on MMR. Leave aside all the cases you blame on thimerosal/other vaccine factors, toxins in the environment, all the cases due to congenital problems, all the cases caused by hereditary/genetic factors, and what do you say? Would 10% be a figure you might agree to?

    Then for every 1 million kids vaccinated with MMR you would see the following:

    One thousand have a febrile convulsion.
    600 get ASD.
    (based on an autism rate of 6 per thousand and 10% caused by MMR)

    How can you possibly assert that the complications of the diseases are “rarer” than the chance of autism?

  • Mike

    @myself

    Before correcting people’s spelling of “methodology”, I should learn to spell “epidemiologist”.

  • Dyce

    Whoops, meant to say 100 babies born with congenital rubella, not 1000.

  • karennd

    jmho, childhood diseases are part of God’s design to boost our immune system and good food & sanitation will help any country much more than jabbing them with chemicals and toxins. The smallpox global vaccination program killed many children worldwide. I don’t want to fight, just stating my opinion.

    http://www.newmediaexplorer.org/sepp/2003/07/22/forced_vaccination_ordered_by_uk_court.htm

    He allowed two “expert witnesses”, Dr. Conway and Professor Kroll, supporting the vaccine industry, to turn the hearing into an advertisement for vaccination. Sumner was very impressed with the committees that the two served on and regarded them as leading experts in the field. Amongst Kroll’s statements was “… before 1988 when the MMR jab was introduced, research shows that that more than half of the acute measles death (sic) occurred in previously healthy children who had not been immunised.”

    VACCINE REALITY

    No research supports the above statement: there are NO cases where any healthy child has been killed or permanently damaged by measles. The deaths which have occurred have been in children who were severely malnourished, previously ill and who had their measles badly managed, ie suppressed, by the medical orthodoxy.

    There is NO evidence that any vaccine is safe or effective: the only large-scale scientifically valid trial concerning a vaccine, the BCG, resulted in more TB in the vaccinated group than in the controls.

    The basis for the world wide multi-billion dollar vaccine enterprise is the myth that the smallpox vaccine was a health measure. The shot was an unmitigated disaster, causing tens of thousands of deaths world wide and a colossal legacy of late onset disease conditions: it should have seen a permanent ban on any and all vaccines. None of the relevant graphs show any benefit from vaccination as to disease declines.

    ALL vaccinated children are vaccine damaged: it is merely a question of time, location and degree. Vaccine side effects, as recorded on warnings included in the drug packaging, include severe diarrhoea, encephalitis, anorexia, anaphylaxis, arthritis, fever, seizures, Guillain Barre Syndrome, SSPE and death.

    Measles, mumps, whooping cough are NOT dangerous diseases. They rather are Nature’s way of clearing inherited and acquired disease tendencies and of providing immunity to the child and, subsequently, to her children.

    All of this is totally at variance with the testimonies given by Conway and Kroll, whose views were praised by Sumner as being “based on learning and research”: unlike the views of Dr Jayne Donegan, acting for the mothers. The highly learned male judge and his equally eminent male advisors were in agreement that no alternative anti-Establishment nonsense on the subject of God-given, life saving vaccines had any place in that courtroom. “… I was rather taken aback by the rudeness and personal comments made by Dr Conway in his answer to my first statement. I can see now that it was part of a basic strategy: if the witness can be discredited then what they say can be discounted”, said Dr. Donegan.

    Over 2,000 cases of UK litigation, concerning the MMR vaccine alone, are now pending. The damage caused includes Crohn’s Disease, epilepsy, autism, ME, MS, diabetes, hearing and sight defects etc etc.

    • http://wiskeytangofoxtrotoscar.blogspot.com/ James

      Wow!

      I’ve never seen a more concentrated example of woo and ignorance of basic fact; ever.

      Let’s start at the basic premise and work from there. I don’t know if you are social Darwinist, a eugenicist or just a just a very special species of crank but again wow, what ever your founding philosophy is it is seriously flawed. Disease organisms did and do infect perfectly healthy individuals. That’s there niche.

      In the fullness of time both pathogen and host may find some kind of equilibrium that from a Darwinian perspective is sustainable; but to claim this to be some sort of perfection gives the term “Panglosian” a bad name.

      To claim the survivors of this process are in some way superior to those who end up dead or damaged is an abandonment of any kind of moral reasoning. It is to be cold and flippant in a way that boggles the mind.

      What you are proposing that we return to some idealized purer past before medicine itself was created. Small problem with that idea; it means a whole lot of dieing and massive amounts of misery. It also means a life expectancy pegged at twenty five years. It means most children dieing before their first year of life and very few children living past five. It means dieing of such fun diseases a typhoid, whooping cough, rabies, cholera, tetanus, yellow fever and polio.

      But let us leave those minor quibbles aside; what is tens of thousands of pointless deaths between a few friends? No let us really get into the meat of this argument: your complete lack of understanding of the immune system and how it works.

      If you understood some of the salient facts there in no way you could have posted this drivel. Inoculations activate the “healthy” immune system in way that protects the recipient against a pathogen in way that is much safer and with fewer side effects than exposure than the pathogen will.

      Let’s take your example of Small Pox and run with it; shall we? Before inoculation Small Pox was a killer, it laid a vast swath of death all over the world. Those who were not killed were horribly and literally scarred for life. The pock-mark scars of the disease disfigured its victims for life. That you would claim that this was of no matter is revelatory of how ignorant you are of both Medical and general history.

      The history of how Small Pox was eliminated is the history of how preventive medicine grew and learned and improved over the years. From the baby steps of using cow-pox as a prophylaxis to the present day you can trace the improvement of the art. Did some people die in the process? Guilty as charged, but that had much more to do with the primitive state of inoculation in the early years than anything else. Morbidity, that would be dead bodies piling up for those who don;t understand such Medical-Sciencey things, was always much worse for the actual disease than it was for the analogue inoculation.

      As for the claim that Whooping cough is not a dangerous disease; are you freaking stoned?! Whooping Cough kills, it has no cure, the only sure treatment for Whooping Cough is prevention. That would be inoculation and what is called “herd immunity.” Real babies die and real mothers are heart broken from this “not dangerous” disease. Before you type such nonsense you really do need to check with a legitimate government agency like the CDC. Those nice people are paid by tax dollars and have no connection with “evil PHarma.” Oh, I forgot, they are part and parcel of your all-singing, all-dancing, conspiracy-without-end-amen.

      Final point litigation proves exactly nothing. People sue for all sorts of inane, foolish, and idiotic reason. There will always be some barrister in the U.K. or some ambulance chasing lawyer in the U.S. more than willing to take your cash to mount any case no matter how frivolous.

  • KA

    I can’t beleive how unkind most of you people are. Do you have a child with Autism? I do. I can’t say for sure it was caused by a vaccine, but I do beleive it is a host of causes, genetics and toxins included. Would you inject mercury into your babies?? I am NOT AT ALL anti-vaccine and neither is Jenny. But don’t all kids deserve a safer schedule and toxin free vaccines? Umm, I’d also take chicken pox or the flu any day over austism. Maybe SOME vaccines just aren’t as necessary as others such as Polio. All I can say 36 vaccines before age 2 on my premature, severely asthmastic son certainly didn’t help him. If I knew what I knew now, that it could have possibly been triggered by a vaccine, I would have made different choices, and done them more slowly.

  • Mike

    @karennd

    “jmho, childhood diseases are part of God’s design to boost our immune system and good food & sanitation will help any country much more than jabbing them with chemicals and toxins.”

    Why couldn’t god have simply given children functional immune systems to begin with, and be done with it?

    Other than to comment on that little nugget, I’m going to leave the rest of your foil-hattery alone…

  • Mike

    @KA

    “I can’t beleive how unkind most of you people are. Do you have a child with Autism? I do.”

    So? Does that make you better able to evaluate the evidence suggesting a probable cause?

    “I can’t say for sure it was caused by a vaccine”

    Quite right. You can’t. In fact, you have no evidence whatsoever that it was.

    “I do beleive it is a host of causes, genetics and toxins included.”

    Evidence?

    “Would you inject mercury into your babies??”

    I would if it came in the form of thimerosal-containing vaccines, which have not been shown to be linked to autism or ASD. If you’d like to provide real evidence to the contrary, we’re still listening.

    “But don’t all kids deserve a safer schedule and toxin free vaccines?”

    The ones we have now are non-toxic.

    “All I can say 36 vaccines before age 2 on my premature, severely asthmastic son certainly didn’t help him.”

    Would your son have developed severe asthma without these vaccines? Provide rationale for your response.

    “If I knew what I knew now, that it could have possibly been triggered by a vaccine, I would have made different choices, and done them more slowly.”

    You don’t “know” this; you believe it, based on no evidence. Again, provide evidence and we’ll get behind your cause, 100%.

  • Jason

    This is ridiculous. Now I hate pharmas more than most (just to make the point that you can be against privitized medicine, but still pro-vaccine), but being anti-vaccination is anti-science in its worst form. Vaccinations are, perhaps, the most significant medical science contribution to society, and dumbasses like McCarthy want to abandon a proven medical practice in favour of unfounded superstition. Next she will be telling us to consult our homeotherapist to properly release our Ki energies to cure cancer.

    These people act like science isn’t an open, transparent process based on empiricism. They dont realize that the human body consists of cells, and antibodies, and that things like the word ‘energy’ are scientific priciple, not something you can gain by attaching a ‘magic’ bracelet to your wrist. It’s bad enough that you risk spreading diseases, but that your unknowing children will have to pay for your madness is a sickening prospect.

  • karennd

    God (or nature or the universe, whatever one’s belief) did provide humans with functional immune systems, but man is destroying it with the toxins in our environment (including our food). Read the Pottenger Cats study and the famous book “Nutrition and Physical Degeneration”.

    I will not respond to your name-calling.

  • IThinkForMyself

    karennd,
    He’s just one of the Holier-than-thou-because-I’m-a-scientist-man members of the Vaccine Mafia. I hear they have pictures of Paul Offit that they regularly sacrifice babies to.

    In other words, he’s a troll, plain and simple. He’s worse than many of the religious fanatics that you see blowing themselves up in the middle east. Any questioning of his sacred Vaccine Religion, and you’ll get insulted.

    Personally, I appreciate your message, and I wish you and your child well. But, it is best not to feed the trolls :)

  • karennd

    hee hee, thanks for that!

  • Trent1492

    Hello Karend,

    “God (or nature or the universe, whatever one’s belief) did provide humans with functional immune systems.”

    You are absolutely clueless about how disease has impacted human society in the past. Prior to modern vaccines and sanitation efforts; epidemics use to sweep through cities and entire regions.

    Try looking up the following epidemics:

    1916 Polio Epidemic in NY: 10,000 injured and 2,000 killed.

    The Third Bubonic Pandemic of 1855 to 1959: 12 million killed.

    1793 Yellow Fever Epidemic in Philadelphia: 10,0000 Killed.

    I could go on and on but I do not want to belabor the point that immune systems are not perfect and prior to the mid-twentieth century humans died in large quantities due to infectious disease. Does that mean epidemics are a thing of the past? No. Yet, to insist on some never existed perfect world where measles and other infectious agents where, but a minor inconvenience, is ahistorical nonsense.

  • karennd

    Let’s start with polio.
    ———————————-
    The pesticide theory can be used by historians as a tool for the discovery of evidence of mass poisoning. In the table below are examples of such use:
    Polio Epidemic Pesticide Event
    1887: The first polio epidemic (Sweden) 1873: Patent of first pesticide sprayer
    1874: invention of DDT
    1874-1887: first relatively large group of pesticide developments.
    1908: A polio epidemic within northwestern, Massachusetts that occurred in three manufacturing towns, all within 20 miles of each other. A thorough study in 1909 concluded that polio is non-contagious, and that the port of entry for the virus is probably food, milk, and water. No exclusively breastfed infant acquired polio. By far the highest polio incidence was in an upstream town with 3 cotton mills. No toxicological investigation was made. As usual, the gathering of data was based upon the infectious disease model. 1907: The first high-volume production of carbon tetrachloride begins in the U.S. Carbon tet was used as a fumigant, insecticide, herbicide, and cleaning solvent. Used in cottonseed oil extraction. Cottonseed byproducts can be used in dairy fodder.
    1916: The polio epidemic in NYC region 1915, Hooker Chemical and DOW begin first high-volume production of chloral benzene, at Niagara Falls. 8,500 metric tons per year.
    1921: FDR acquired polio in the Bay of Fundy, off the remote island of Campobello, Canada. Campobello is directly downstream from several major industries that dumped organochlorines, lead, arsenic, and mercury. 1972, the Bay of Fundy was the chosen as the site for an study of high DDT levels in porpoises.
    1942-1962: The Great U.S. Polio Epidemic 1942-1962: Referred to as the era of “Pesticides As Panacea”.
    1945: U.S. troops in the Philippines: Polio epidemics took casualties second only to battle casualties. Troops in Philippines were doused with DDT. Surrounding population was unaffected by polio.
    1958: Polio epidemic (136 victims) in New Jersey (Essex, Hudson, Bergen Counties) The CDC PolioPacket (1959) omitted describing the environment, which included the area of the Bayonne and Linden petroleum refineries. Nevertheless, the prime focus (lab work) revealed that the poliovirus could only be found in 65% of the victims. Their “polio” had to be recategorized, thus driving the polio incidence down immediately.
    1952: Philippines, polio epidemics.
    1964: Philippines, 383 humans and 25,000 dogs per year died of rabies. Rabies is a paralytic CNS disease, physiologically and symptomatically similar to polio, with a different virus assigned to it. Landsteiner was originally quoted as observing the similarities and has been criticized for that opinion. Philippines, under W.H.O. policy, continues with DDT/BHC for agriculture and DDT for malaria anti-mosquito campaigns.
    India: Continues with high polio incidence. Human rabies deaths are estimated to be 10,000 per year (circa 1980). India as of 1980 used persistent pesticides and has lagged far behind developing countries in banning these.
    Underdeveloped and developing countries continue with polio epidemics. Underdeveloped and developing countries continue with persistent pesticides.
    Sri Lanka has high polio rates and the highest rabies rate in the world, 140 human deaths out of 11.5 million population per year (circa 1980). In 1980, the U.S. had a population of approximately 360 million with a rabies incidence per year of from 0 to 2. Sri Lanka ranks among countries with highest rates of acute pesticide poisoning, and in 1980 allowed DDT imports. As of 1995, DDT is listed as banned in Sri Lanka, according to PANNA.
    June, 1983: U.S. legislation allows re-entry of DDT for use in insecticide blends. March, 1984: Post-polio is recognized as an emerging epidemic in former polio victims. Post-polio cases today are estimated to be 600,000.
    Nigeria (Africa): 2003-2004, highest polio case count worldwide. WHO designates Nigeria its #1 target (worldwide) for DDT malaria campaigns. These campaigns were not in effect for many years prior.

    PANUPS (5/19/95) reports:

    In Paraguay, an extensive 1990/91 study of paralysis of the limbs in children, originally thought to have been brought on by polio, suggested that monocrotophos [OP pesticide] drift from nearby cotton fields was the most likely culprit.

    Other Examples

    The irrationality of vaccination programs extends far beyond polio. Smallpox, claimed to be virus caused and the first disease conquered by vaccination, provides us with data for a strong anti-vaccination stance. The following graph is generated from two tables found in the bibliography of John Pitcairn’s, The Fallacy Of Vaccination (1911):

    If one is searching for evidence of causation then vaccination obviously causes disease. Similarly, this is found to be so in the next example.

    Before discovering the following smallpox data from Emerson’s epidemiological compilations of New York City, I was under the impression that Western pesticide usage had begun approximately 1873. The following epidemiological chart convinced me that the date must have been closer to 1868. Later, I found in Zimmerman et al, DDT, Killer of Killers that 1869 is the date for first pesticide implementation in the West (though there are earlier instances, see Pesticide Introductions), thus demonstrating again how epidemiology can be used to discover data regarding pesticide production and population exposure. To this day, pesticide production data is repressed by government and industry.

    Summary Hypothesis

    Vaccinations, and proofs of virus causation, are similar phenomena. They both use injections of virus material to provide images of a context of impending toxic doom to the body. Before the wholly artificial event of injection existed, impending toxic doom was the only interpretation available to the body for the presence of large amounts of virus — in view of the cellular S.O.S. response to toxicity, described in the Overview. Thus, the presence of exceedingly large amounts of injected virus material should be expected to generate a radical response: inflammation, proliferation of viruses, genetic recombination, and the self destruction of tissue, tissue which would be regarded as portals of entry — for poisons. It should not be expected to generate such a radical response repeatedly, because the body learns not to be tricked. Thus we have “immunization” and artificial proofs of its efficacy.

    The Challenge

    Modern Medicine is hereby challenged to find a polio epidemic that was not preceded by mass poisoning. It is further challenged to include toxicological data in its reporting of disease. The chemical industry is challenged to allow tracking of its production and distribution. The laws forbidding dissemination of pesticide production data should be repealed. All pesticide use (place, date, type, quantity, purpose) must be registered and toxic chemical content in food should be labeled. The same goes for genetically engineered crops. Pesticide registration would facilitate epidemiology, making it truly meaningful and useful.


    from Sheri Nakken, former R.N., MA, Hahnemannian Homeopath
    Well Within & Earth Mysteries & Sacred Site Tours (worldwide)
    Vaccination Information & Choice Network (new website)
    http://www.wellwithin1.com/vaccine.htm

  • karennd

    1793 yellow fever in Philadelphia was, unfortunately, a perfect breeding ground for this epidemic with the crowding, unusually hot and dry weather, excessive numbers of mosquitos (and they did not know that was what spread it), etc.

    http://www.eyewitnesstohistory.com/yellowfever.htm

  • Trent1492

    Hello Karend,

    When will you actually stay on topic? You insisted that immune systems are “God’s way” of perfecting the immune system. Yet, you ignore all of the people who have suffered pain, injury and death from disease. Why do you have a hard time acknowledging historical fact?

  • karennd

    Excerpts from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2004/09/01/eating-symptoms.aspx

    Then as now, allopaths were eager to lay blame for these diseases on microbes, until — surprise, surprise — limes cured the “limey” British sailors of their scurvy, and we saw that Vitamin B3 prevented pellagra, while Vitamin B1 prevented beriberi and Vitamin D prevented rickets.

    As usual, allopathy corrects itself long after the natural physicians are already healing patients. In fact, evidence now shows that even bubonic plague, which allopathy still attributes to bacteria known as Yersinia pestis, was more likely to strike those with low Vitamin C intakes.
    —————————————
    Nothing is perfect, but vaccines just make things worse. We should learn how to work with our bodies and boost their amazing healing abilities, instead of adding toxic substances that create side effects that we cannot predict.

    Unfortunately, our biggest problem is too many people. It makes it tough to avoid epidemics – crowding, sanitation, not enough healthy food. Those are what we need to tackle and manage population growth as well. Watch all 8 parts of “The Most Important Video You Will Ever See” on youtube and you will understand when I say “we are at 1 minute till 12″

    Signing off and going back to real life. It’s been fun.

  • Jason

    Homeotherapy: not a real discipline
    Its about the equivalent of being a witch doctor, a voodoo practitioner, a faith healer, or a level 4 cleric.
    Again, things like the word ‘energy’ and ‘bodily fluids’ aren’t supposed to be new age buzz words: they are scientific definitions that can be measured empirically.

    Karennd, all you’ve done is list a rather ambiguous chronology of cherry picked events, that show no direct causation, lacking in empirical evidence, and are barely even fused together well enough for even the most demented conspiracy theorist to tolerate.

    Homeopathic healers are either 1) stupid beyond reason, or 2) evil beyond decency. Their studies always fail under controlled experiments, they lack scientific explanations, and most have a lack of understanding of basic human biology. They make shit up about ‘good and bad chi’ and hope people are dumb enough to shell out cash.
    Stupidity is the fuel of evil.

  • Trent1492

    Still ignoring the topic, eh?

    Let us do some fact checking.

    “1887: The first polio epidemic (Sweden) 1873: Patent of first pesticide sprayer.”

    Do the epidemic and pesticide occur in the same geographic locality? Where in Sweden is this epidemic and where is this pesticide first used? Does Polio break out in a city first or the country side? What pesticide was being used in Sweden at the time? DDT? If so how do you eliminate the “correlation” fallacy?

    Are you aware that DDT is not used as a pesticide till the 1930′s? Did you know that the man who won a Noble Prize in 1948 was for the discovery of DDT as pesticide in 1939?

    Here take a look:
    http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/1948/

    So let us just walk thought your chronology and what hold up.

    I am still hoping at some point your going to respond on the It-Is Good- To Have Disease Becuause It Good For You, line of argument.

  • karennd

    last comment

    trent,

    I am staying on topic. That’s not what I said, you have misquoted me. I called our immune systems functional, not perfect.

    I used to believe like you. But not anymore. We killed many people with smallpox shots. Sometimes epidemics were ended with sanitation efforts, then they attributed them to the shots. Read beyond the governmental reports.

    Many people suffer and die every year from drugs and doctors. Are you ignoring them?

    http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2003/01/15/doctors-drugs-part-two.aspx

    No need to answer, I will not be here. I am tired of poking the bear. :)

  • Trent1492

    Correction for my last post.

    So let us just walk thought your chronology and what hold up.

    Should be: So let us just walk through your chronology and see what holds up

  • Trent1492

    “I am staying on topic. That’s not what I said, you have misquoted me. I called our immune systems functional, not perfect.”

    What you have been saying implicitly is that disease has not been much of a problem for humanities history.

    BTW, you going to explain how a man born in 1899, can get a Noble Prize in 1948, for the discovery of DDT as a pesticide in 1939. When you insist that it was used as pesticide in the 1870′s?

  • http://BrainyBlonde.com erin

    wow Jason how ignorant your comments are (which ironically call people “ignorant”) there are plenty of medical doctors who take on a holistic approach (like Dr. Joseph Mercola Mercola.com, Dr. Dean Ornish -Oprah’s medical doctor) Dr. Andrew Weil just to name a few. They are not all witch doctors or “stupid” (real big words there, lol)

    Do your homework before posting such idiotic statements. And I encourage you and the rest of your friends kissing the asses and swallowing the pills of big pharma to go back to your “science” pro drug site since you have no business on an intelligent progressive eco friendly site.

  • http://BrainyBlonde.com erin

    Teresa your post was right ON. Except it might be a wee bit confusing to some people when you call the people anti- pro safe (anti pro gets a lil confusing ;) But Teresa is correct folks. People are looking for alternatives whether this be SAFER vaccinations, a SAFER schedule or for some no vaccinations and the science people are attacking them yet they bring no hard science to back up why current vaccine and vaccine schedules are completely “safe”. My God people open your mind a little bit. Drugs and vaccines (gasp!) aren’t always good. How brainwashed have you become?

    And I agree with you Teresa that the pig “Bob” who posted the comment to the woman calling her a bitch and a monster (and worse) is completely uncalled for. Bob you should be ashamed of yourself! GET A LIFE. not another vaccination.

    Erin

  • Ichthyic

    there are plenty of medical doctors who take on a holistic approach (like Dr. Joseph Mercola Mercola.com, Dr. Dean Ornish -Oprah’s medical doctor

    so much woo, so little time.

    Have Oprah fill you in on the real value of “The Secret” sometime.

  • Spunk-Monkey

    testing, my follow-up for karennd would not post. Hrmmmm, conspiracy? ;-)

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    To re-start. Jenny McCarthy wants Amanda Peet to experience what it’s like to be a mother of someone on the Spectrum. Well guess what. My mother has been in Jenny’s shoes – and she is on Amanda’s side. Jenny has an Aspie son now and she can’t change that no matter what she does.

    Jenny’s anti-vax campaign is poorly focused. The vaccines are not the problem. The way they are administered is the problem. Doctors aren’t being properly controlled. The CDC can’t tell them what to do. They can only advise. And the schedule is not intended to be followed to the letter. And yet McCarthy is claiming in effect that they are. She should get off the CDC’s back.

    Anyway, once the issue of giving five vaccines at once is sorted out we will see no more problems – and Autism prevalence will remain the same and not drop.

    And I’m sure there was polio before there was any toxic stuff just by the way. And the other diseases as well. There were no medical records kept prior to the Renaissance and even then fear kept proper reporting down as recently as the early 20th century.

    Vaccines have lengthened lives. Fact. I’d much rather be on the Spectrum than have any of those diseases that vaccines prevent.

  • mike

    This isn’t about vaccinations being the right thing to do, because they have definitely proven to wipe out diseases. The issue here is that there were certain vaccinations containing mercury which were introduced in the 90s. Statistics have shown the rate of autism has skyrocketed after that point. This is the real issue. Those stats have not been disputed but science and drug companies refuse to change. It is partly because they don’t know what is causing it. Hard as it is for some to believe but scientists don’t have the answer for everything. Do they have cures for AIDS or Cancer?

  • Kim

    I definetly believe in vaccines – I’m on Jenny McCarthy’s side for safe vaccines.
    I question the early ages for recomended vaccines. After all these vaccines are chemicals and should we be polluting our babies when they don’t even have immune systems yet?

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Actually the issue here is that people like Jenny McCarthy go on and on about vaccines causing autism because they want to blame someone for their child being autistic and see a perfect scapegoat in vaccination because the symptoms of autism start to manifest at about the time a child gets their MMR vaccine. They talk about this so often and convince other people that they are speaking the truth when in fact there is no evidence whatsoever that supports their claim.

    And then those parents who believe this rubbish either don’t vaccinate their kids, opening them up to many possibly fatal diseases, or put them through pointless chelation therapy because they believe that “the mercury will give them autism” or that it will “cure” their kids.

    So basically the issue is that people who can’t be bothered spending their time verifying claims made by ignorant people are putting their kids at risk.

  • Twyla

    Wildly -
    If you think there is no evidence of vaccine harm, and no evidence of a link between vaccines and autism, you are the one who is ignorant. I will write more later…

  • http://www.camsvoice.com Lisa

    We (Jenny and mom’s like her) are only crazy until a child you love is affected by Autism (and vaccine injuries), then I’m certain you will seek us out for the truth and answers about how to heal your beloved child. We are used to these types of rude comments and attitudes that are being thrown around on this site. While it hurts (because we know that these attitudes are preventing children from getting well and allowing more children to become affected) we can handle it and will be there to help you and your child when the time comes and you need help because we are not speaking up out of malice but out of love for our children and yours.

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Do NOT use the word “heal”. Autism is not a disease. It is a condition that is genetic at it’s base – and has nothing whatsoever to do with thiomersal. The evidence of harm from that is a myth. The real area you should be looking at when it comes to regression (not causation) is sensory overload. That fact will prove that whatever Twyla writes is based on the true ignorance of the matter. Wildly is spot on.

    Lisa the answers aren’t here on this blog. The answers are elsewhere – away from falsehoods like mercury poisoning.

  • http://www.camsvoice.com Lisa

    quote from Timelord: “Lisa the answers aren’t here on this blog. The answers are elsewhere – away from falsehoods like mercury poisoning.”

    This is truly spoken from ingnorance and not science or experience. I have lost my child TWICE now as a direct result of mercury poisoning. The first time when he was a toddler and received a high dose of mercury in his vaccines. We then HEALED him. He MEDICALLY recovered. This is FACT. He lost his autism label and the other medical disease that he also had as a result. After being recovered/healed….there was an accident at his school in which my child was exposed to high doses of mercury and again became acutely mercury poisoned. He immediately regressed and his autism (behavior and medical symptoms) returned. He is again being treated for mercury poisoning and is again recovering for a second time.

  • Twyla

    Is there proof that vaccines can cause autism? Is there proof that vaccines are safe? These are complicated questions. There is a lot of research of various kinds out there, and any study can be dissected and criticized. Although there is a lot of research, some of the most important kinds of research have not been done.

    I am not a scientist. I am not even a mother who witnessed her typically developing toddler’s post-vaccination regression into autism. My autistic son has a genetic condition along with autism. He showed signs of autism from birth. Was this because he received a Hepatitis B vaccine containing thimerosal on the day he was born? He turned blue a little while after this vaccine and had to be resuscitated by the hospital staff. Was this a vaccine reaction? We will never know for sure. His genetic condition is usually accompanied by great language skills. Would he be speaking in full sentences now if he had not received so many vaccines, many containing thimerosal? We will never know.

    However, thousands of parents have witnessed their typically developing toddlers’ regression into autism immediately following adverse reactions to vaccines. These vaccine reactions included features accepted by mainstream medicine as sometimes caused by vaccines, such as seizures and high fever and encephalitis. A study in the New England Journal of Medicine which used to be cited on the CDC web site found an increased risk of febrile seizures after the MMR and also after the DPT. A more recent study found an even higher number of seizures after the Proquad vaccine, which combined the MMR with the varicela vaccine. The CDC says that febrile seizures are harmless. But that is because when febrile seizures are followed by an ongoing seizure disorder and/or autism, this event is no longer classified as a febrile seizure; instead it is called epilepsy or autism, and is considered by agencies such as the CDC to be genetic.

    At any rate, one of the biggest kinds of evidence is the testimony of thousands of parents, such as:
    - those who have filed claims under the Autism Omnibus proceeding, and
    - those who recently marched on Washington D.C., and
    - those whose stories are told in the books “Evidence of Harm” by David Kirby and “Unraveling the Mysteries of Autism” by Karen Serroussi, and
    - those who called Robert F. Kennedy Jr. from around the world with similar stories after his article about vaccines and autism was published in Rolling Stone magazine, and
    - those whose VAERS reports were recently read by Dan Olmsted and by CBS news – reports of vaccine injury causing regression into autism filed before this issue was being publicized, and
    - those who are members of so many autism organizations including TACA, A-CHAMP, National Autism Association, SafeMinds, Generation Rescue, Autism United…

    Many of you who are posting on this blog dismiss these accounts as “anecdotal” and therefore not worthy of any notice. This attitude seems to be shared by the agencies who should be paying attention and investigating. It would be quite unfortunate if the FDA and CDC had this attitude when there are reports of, say, food poisoning. Instead, reports of food poisoning are investigated until the source is discovered.

    I have to go now. I haven’t even gotten into the subject of scientific studies. More later…

  • annie

    I am the mother of an autistic child. We are a minority of people – you will see our numbers reflected in the number of responses for Jenny M. Jenny is right. We must be extremely cautious about vaccines. This is another topic, but would be shocking to those who believe vaccines are so safe for everyone. If you are ever blessed as we are to have an autistic child I seriously doubt your comments would be so heartless, hurtful and rude. We are talking about the most precious, innocent and vulnerable gifts of life here and they are deserving of every safety measure as they cannot protect themselves. That does not always mean vaccinating them. Some children have adverse affects from vaccinations while others do not. Have a heart for the parents who were simply trying to do what they were told and the outcome was different from normal. They only want parents to know the truth before they make decisions.

  • http://www.GemTal.com Rick

    The vaccine debate is already over – Julie Gerberding – head of CDC stated VACCINES CAN CAUSE AUTISM – with mitochondiral disorders. Search YouTube for the actual CNN interview.

    Thousands of parents have improved their children and even lost the diagnosis of Autism just by changing the child’s diet.
    (see Autism Research Institute -ARI site)

    Many have also successfully chelated the heavy metals, including Mercury, to recover their kids.

    see http://www.generationrescue.org for detailed explanations about statistical manipulation by pharmaceutical companies who paid for and/or carried out testing. Like having Tobacco Companies test cigarettes for causing lung cancer. They said it doesn’t. Remember?

    Search for the Simpsonwood Hearings to see what was really said behind closed doors in an illegal meeting, all revealed in docs recovered using Freedom of Information Act.

    Above all, we all want what’s best for our kids. Let’s make sure vaccines are not part of the problem.

    Peace & Love,
    Rick

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Twyla

    I never said that there was no evidence of vaccine harm. Just that there is no relationship between vaccines and autism.

    It would be good if you could cite the second study better. But it looks like you have misinterpreted the results of the first one, which is entitled “The Risk of Seizures after Receipt of Whole-Cell Pertussis or Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Vaccine” and found:

    “There are significantly elevated risks of febrile seizures after receipt of DTP vaccine or MMR vaccine, but these risks do not appear to be associated with any long-term, adverse consequences.”

    The later study, which I’m assuming is “MMR Vaccination and Febrile Seizures” found that “MMR vaccination was associated with a transient increased rate of febrile seizures but the risk difference was small even in high-risk children. The long-term rate of epilepsy was not increased in children who had febrile seizures following vaccination compared with children who had febrile seizures of a different etiology.”

    So, basically what we have here is that yes, the MMR vaccine does increase the risk of febrile seizures, but it doesn’t have any long term effects.

    Yes, most of that evidence is anecdotal, however the problem isn’t that it is anecdotal, it’s that these parents have jumped to a conclusion without any evidence. Studies have shown the opposite to what they claim, yet it seems that you want us to ignore those and accept these parents, because, and I’m assuming this, they must have a far greater understanding of the science involved then scientists who do this for a living.

    Personally I can’t believe that you are mentioning the Rolling Stone article, an article that has 5 paragraphs of corrections on the online copy because of the poor research done by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

  • Darin

    Vaccines don’t wipe out diseases. They create diseases. Doctors simply start calling old diseases new names such as Guillain-Barre or aseptic meningitis for polio. Besides that, normal childhood diseases are developmental stages. It’s only a recent phenomenon to fear chicken pox or the mumps or rubella or even measles.

    Doctors can call symptoms anything they want. It’s not science, it’s opinion. That’s why people go for second “opinions.” If someone’s been vaccinated then that automatically rules out a certain diagnosis, even if the symptoms are exactly the same.

    The medical community will never look to see if their holiest of products are destroying lives. The cognitive dissonance would be overwhelming for those who deeply believe they are saving millions of lives.

    Jenny McCarthy has awakened through the suffering put on to her family like thousands of others. Autoimmune conditions will continue to debilitate millions because the vaccine community will never, ever look deeply at the ramifications of their products. All the SIDS, SBS, autism, juvenile diabetes, juvenile cancers, intestinal/digestive conditions, skin conditions, asthma, severe allergies will just remain a big mystery.

  • http://parents.meetup.com/465/ Kellie Bischof

    Side effects of vaccines should not be minimized, ignored and denied by the medical community. Unfortunately, they are, and parents therefore do not have the opportunity to make a truly informed choice regarding their children’s preventative healthcare.

    Kudos to Jenny for promoting awareness of this issue…and shame on Amanda Peet.

  • kr

    Lisa says:
    (I have lost my child TWICE now as a direct result of mercury poisoning… …high dose of mercury in his vaccines… …We then HEALED him… …He lost his autism… …an accident at his school in which my child was exposed to high doses of mercury and again became acutely mercury poisoned….”

    You know, this isn’t funny. Either you are cruelly spreading misinformation in ways offensive to parents who genuinely deal with autism on a daily basis, or you’re dangerously dilluded.

  • Twyla

    In the Foreword to the book, “Changing the Course of Autism”, author Bryan Jepson, M.D. describes how after his son was diagnosed with autism, his wife got on the internet and learned about various biomedical treatments such as dietary intervention and supplements. Dr. Jepson believed that this was all a waste of time and money. He was initially uninvolved, because he did not think these interventions would help his son, but he humored his wife because he figured the expense was a small price to pay for his wife’s need to do something.

    But, he says, “when she told me about the possible link to vaccines, I could no longer be impartial. After all, this was striking at one of the few areas of preventive medicine that physicians are passionate about. Vaccines are good! They eliminate life-threatening disease! I have seen first-hand how vaccines have successfully turned fairly common serious illnesses into rare, interesting cases. Wasn’t autism just one more of those coincidental childhood illnesses that the crazy anti-government people were opportunistically using as an excuse to push their agenda?

    “I looked at the research, largely to prove to my wife that the theory was unfounded. The further I looked, the more interested I became. And before long, I realized that this theory of a vaccine-autism link wasn’t driven by the whims of angry activists or the wallets of vitamin manufacturers. Rather, it was based on real science with a strong foundation of biological plausibility, led by knowledgeable and motivated physicians, research scientists, and parents of autistic children, all of whom weren’t afraid to question dogma.”

    This book contains a 55-page long list of studies on both sides of this debate. I wish I could do this science justice, but I am neither doctor nor scientist, and I have neither time nor space for a terribly long post. I will just mention a few highlights, and recommend the book highly.

    Dr. Jepson discusses the following:
    - The rate of autism has increased dramatically, and this is not just due to factors such as diagnostic substitution.
    - Autism is not just genetic. It does involve genetic susceptibility to environmental triggers.
    - Many people with autism suffer from immune system dysregulation. Studies show:
    o higher rates of autoimmune issues among family members of people with autism than those without.
    o excessive inflammation (including study by Vargas et al re: neuroinflammation in the brain)
    o shifting of the immune response from “Th1” towards “Th2” response, which means decreased ability to fight off intracellular organisms such as viruses and more prone to allergies, and autoimmunity.
    o imbalance of the cytokines that activate and turn off inflammatory responses, such that the inflammatory cycle continues even after the original microorganism has been eliminated.
    o food allergies.

    Dr. Jepson thoroughly discusses research regarding the MMR. He cites studies in Japan and in the U.S. where vaccine-strain measles virus was found in a high percentage of biopsy tissues of autistic children with enterocolitis. In another study, 68% of a group of 28 autistic children tested positive for measles-virus antigen in the cerebral spinal fluid, while all but one of the control samples tested negative for the virus. (This one control group child had lymphoma and leukiemia.) He discusses the biological plausibility of an MMR-autism connection, and potential problems with giving the three viruses together (measles, mumps, and rubella).

    Dr. Jepson also discusses impaired ability to detoxify as a factor in autism, and impaired biochemical processes in the body such as methylation. He discusses thimerosal and mercury in depth.

    I don’t believe this book mentioned an interesting study by a team of cell biologists, toxicologists and molecular bioscientists at the University of California, Davis, connecting thimerosal with disruptions in antigen-presenting cells known as dendritic cells obtained from mice. This study provided evidence that dendritic cells show unprecedented sensitivity to thimerosal, resulting in fundamental changes in the immune system’s ability to respond to external factors. See http://www.ehponline.org/docs/2006/8881/abstract.html.

    O.K., it’s after midnight and I need my sleep. I haven’t done this subject justice, but I just felt that I had to say something in response to the oft repeated claim that “there is no science” on the side of a vaccine-autism link.

    Go to http://www.generationrescue.org for a lot of info on (and analysis of) studies on both side of these issues. Also go to the “w w w .putchildrenfirst . org for more info, including some of the studies that have supposedly “proven” vaccines safe. (I can’t provide a third link or this post would be filtered, so remove the blanks.)

    Also, read:

    Evidence of Harm by David Kirby,

    Children with Starving Brains: A Medical Treatment Guide by Jaquelyn McCandless, M.D., and

    Healing the New Childhood Epidemics – Autism, ADHD, Asthma, and Allergies by Kenneth Bock, M.D. and Cameron Stauth

  • Jrans

    The increase in the number of vaccinations since the early 90′s (from 8? to 36) coincided with the increase in ASD,allergies,asthma,childhood diabetes–all point out to autoimmune disorder.What does it tell you? the immature immune system of the newborn is overly stimulated (due to multiple vaccinations)to the point where the body is attacking its own.Is there ever a study made on how these vaccines interact with each other or how it would affect to a subset population ?No.Instead the CDC/offit continously make reference to the old studies (epidemiological studies, not clinical studies)which Gerberding recently stated were weak and therefore not a reliable data.The other studies were inconclusive! To say that there is NO link is just flat out LIE.Medical community is supposed to listen to their patients not invalidate them.If hundreds of thousands of parents tell them the same story over and over again,is it not common sense to at least LISTEN and do an intensive study to these vulnerable group of children? As Dr. B. Healy said recently….we should explore into this area more and NOT be afraid of what the outcome will be.
    Until further reliable studies are done this issue will never be resolved.There will be more lives ruined and families broken.You will not understand how devastating this illness is until you live with it 24/7.

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Twyla said;
    “At any rate, one of the biggest kinds of evidence is the testimony of thousands of parents, such as:
    - those who have filed claims under the Autism Omnibus proceeding, and
    - those who recently marched on Washington D.C., and
    - those whose stories are told in the books “Evidence of Harm” by David Kirby and “Unraveling the Mysteries of Autism” by Karen Serroussi, and
    - those who called Robert F. Kennedy Jr. from around the world with similar stories after his article about vaccines and autism was published in Rolling Stone magazine, and
    - those whose VAERS reports were recently read by Dan Olmsted and by CBS news – reports of vaccine injury causing regression into autism filed before this issue was being publicized, and
    - those who are members of so many autism organizations including TACA, A-CHAMP, National Autism Association, SafeMinds, Generation Rescue, Autism United…”

    Pinpricks, Twyla. For every thousand parents you are talking about, there are tens of thousands silently seething at the foolishness of the clear minority.

    * The Autism Omnibus will fail.
    * The march made fools of those who participated
    * Kirby is a money making charlatan (I don’t know Serroussi, but if it’s the same rhetoric the same applies)
    * Rolling Stone Magazine???
    * Olmsted jumps on little bits and won’t do proper research. CBS has since backed down from that line from what I’ve seen.
    * And the best organisations are the ones who get positive things done. I’m yet to see one in the United States because the majority won’t stand up and fight against this panic, thinking it will just blow over.

    There should be an investigation – into this foolishness because it is affecting vaccination numbers. And that is a health threat far worse than any other.

    And Generation Rescue should be avoided at all costs. Their leader is a first class lunatice – and I’m talking about Brad Handley.

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Lisa said;
    “This is truly spoken from ingnorance and not science or experience. I have lost my child TWICE now as a direct result of mercury poisoning. The first time when he was a toddler and received a high dose of mercury in his vaccines. We then HEALED him. He MEDICALLY recovered. This is FACT. He lost his autism label and the other medical disease that he also had as a result. After being recovered/healed….there was an accident at his school in which my child was exposed to high doses of mercury and again became acutely mercury poisoned. He immediately regressed and his autism (behavior and medical symptoms) returned. He is again being treated for mercury poisoning and is again recovering for a second time.”

    No, your child was not poisoned by mercury IF he or she is Autistic. Your child was never healed. What you are dealing with is sensory overload – not mercury poisoning. IF your child was Autistic the best you got was a reduction to Aspergers, which to the US education system is “recovered” (which is a crock). Concentrate on the correct source of the problem otherwise you will never get anywhere.

    Ignoring what I say is true ignorance, because I have done the research and I know what the issue is. You can’t refute it. Either you are dealing with sensory overload, or your child was never Autistic. And NEVER EVER say you “lost” your child. That’s pathetic and says to me that you don’t want an Autistic child. Too bad – you’ve got one, and you can’t change it. In fact – by calling your child “lost”, that’s tantamount to abandonement. Think about it.

  • Dyce

    @Twyla
    You point out that children are at greater risk of having febrile convulsions following vaccines such as MMR (than the prevailing background risk).

    You seem to think febrile convulsions are a very bad thing.

    I am not necessarily disagreeing with you, but if this is what you believe, then why do you IGNORE the fact that if a child gets natural measles infection (which ALL will do in the absence of vaccination), the reported risk of a febrile convulsion is TWENTY time higher than the risk from the vaccination?

    The fact is that the disease poses more risks for this than the vaccine, and I wish you would acknowledge this simple fact.

  • Twyla

    Dyce -
    A few decades ago, back when all children came down with measles because there was no vaccine, the rate of autism was about 1 in 10,000, compared with 1 in 150 (or more) today. It is often speculated by vaccine defenders that a case of the measles is more likely to cause autism than the MMR vaccine, but this is not consistent with history.

    My point is not that febrile seizures cause autism, but that they are a symptom of the impact of the vaccine on the immune system. “Wildly” mentions statistical comparisons of children who have febrile seizures after vaccine with other groups of children. It is quite possible that many children become autistic and/or epileptic without having febrile seizures, and many children have febrile seizures without becoming autistic or epileptic. As Dr. Bernardine Healy pointed out, it can be hard for epidemiology to tease out info on a relatively small, susceptible, heterogeneous group of children. But the point is, so many parents of kids with autism are saying that something happened after the vaccines, and often the accounts include febrile seizures. The fact that the medical literature confirms the incidence of febrile seizures after vaccines is evidence in favor of one link in the chain of events that went: vaccines, fever, seizures, inconsolable crying, then loss of language and social skills, and health issues such as IBD and eczema and food allergies. Other studies document the high rate of immune system dysfunction among people with autism, especially regressive autism. These are pieces of a puzzle which is taking shape, although not complete.

    And recent studies have shown adverse effects of our vaccine schedule on animals. I know you will say that those studies are worthless, but saying it doesn’t make it true.

    As far as RFK Jr.’s article in Rolling Stone, yes there were typos. And I did not cite his article as a scientific reference. I mentioned him as a witness who heard so many independent reports of vaccine injury followed by autism, from all over the world. But, in spite of the corrections which were conscientiously made, his article stands a very important one. Let the readers decide for themselves — see http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/7395411/deadly_immunity/

    For a recent interview with RFK Jr. in Spectrum magazine, go to http://spectrumpublications.com/april/may-2008/rfk-jr.html.

  • Dean

    The pictures at the top are interesting with Jenny looking forlorn or angry and Amanda smiling happily.

    There is a great deal to question with vaccines. A friend’s 7 year old recently passed away from leukemia. He was also severely autistic. This young man was developing completely normally until he received a series of shots. He developed a very high fever, screamed like crazy and within a days was a completely different child. He “disappeared.” The mom knows it was the vaccines that created this and ultimately lead to his death.

    Many will just say this is anecdotal and doesn’t hold a candle to the “science.” We now have thousands and thousands of anecdotes like this. Do we just ignore them all and say the “science” is right and people’s stories don’t matter. Our stories are our lives.

    A friend of mine is a pharmaceutical researcher and he said we will never know the true safety of these products for two reasons. One, the testing period is too short to fully understand any long term ramifications, and there are patent time limits and second, there are so many products on the market that there is no way to physically test all of them against each other. In many ways it’s just a crapshoot.

    Children’s hospitals are full of patients. These children are very ill and they’ve all been vaccinated (at least a vast, vast majority). Are we creating new illnesses that are even more devastating then the old ones we have limited?

  • Twyla

    Why was RFK Jr’s article published in Rolling Stone, instead of a more prestigeous publication? A very interesting article from the Columbia Journalism Review about news coverage (or lack thereof) on these issues can be found at http://cjrarchives.org/issues/2005/6/schulman.asp.

    It’s truly amazing to me that thousands of people recently marched on Washinton D.C. to protest vaccine safety issues, and there was almost no coverage of this event on TV or in newspapers. A march this size on any other issue would have garnered headlines.

    It also amazes me that there is hardly any coverage of the Autism Omnibus proceedings. These proceedings are worthy of daily coverage when in session. For news of these proceedings go to http://www.Ageofautism.com.

  • Twyla

    Timelord -
    You say, “No, your child was not poisoned by mercury IF he or she is Autistic.” That makes no sense. The official definition of autism has no mention of causes. Autism is defined as impairments in communication and social skills, and repetitive behaviors. Yes, I am paraphrasing — that’s not an exact quote — but the point is, regardless of cause, autism is described by behaviors. Autism may have many causes.

    Frequently parents of kids who have recovered from autism are told, “Well then, apparently your child was never really autistic” even though their child was diagnosed by one or more leading professionals.

    You also say, “And NEVER EVER say you ‘lost’ your child. That’s pathetic and says to me that you don’t want an Autistic child. Too bad – you’ve got one, and you can’t change it. In fact – by calling your child ‘lost’, that’s tantamount to abandonement.”

    Believe me, if you had a child who was happy, talking, learning, playing, and socializing, and then suddenly s/he was in his or her own world, uncommunicative, unhappy, and not playing or learning or socializing, — you too would feel that your child was lost. Calling the child lost certainly is not abandonment. Many parents have worked extremely hard to find treatments that helped their child to regain language, social skills, happiness, and the ability to learn and participate in society. Just today there is yet another such account at http://www.ageofautism.com/2008/10/autism-recovery.html. How dare you cast aspersions on parents who are working so hard to help their children.

  • Dean

    Researchers who prove that vaccines are safe are under TREMENDOUS pressure to do so. If they find out otherwise, are they ever going to be hired again by the pharmaceutical companies that pay for the research?

    These companies just go to other countries to do their research if things look iffy. Besides that, side effects can be left out or minimized or test subjects can be taken off the role if things are going bad. To not think unscrupulous things happen in research when millions or even billions of dollars are at stake is foolish. Money can manipulate at a conscious or even unconscious level. The need for prestige can do the same.

    Just the simple fact that vaccine researchers refuse to utilize real placebos says enough about the validity of the research.

  • Dyce

    “A few decades ago, back when all children came down with measles because there was no vaccine, the rate of autism was about 1 in 10,000, compared with 1 in 150 (or more) today.”

    That is historically true if one accepts that these incidence rates are measuring the same illness. They are not, and it is disengenuous to say that the improved criteria for diagnosis and altered thresholds of diagnosis and higher awareness of the problem has not altered diagnostic rates.

    Have you read “Unstrange Minds” yet?

    “It is often speculated by vaccine defenders that a case of the measles is more likely to cause autism than the MMR vaccine, but this is not consistent with history.”

    This is entirely consistent with history if one accepts that MMR does not cause autism. On this point we will have to disagree.

    “My point is not that febrile seizures cause autism, but that they are a symptom of the impact of the vaccine on the immune system.”

    You clearly have no idea what the pathophysiology is that leads to febrile convulsions are – they are not caused by impacts on the “immune system”. Even if we accepted this (incorrect) point, please explain why natural infection is twenty times more likely to cause a febrile convulsion than vaccination is, and why, in your book, this does not imply a similar “impact on the immune system”. You can’t have your cake and eat it, you know.

    “As Dr. Bernardine Healy pointed out, it can be hard for epidemiology to tease out info on a relatively small, susceptible, heterogeneous group of children.”

    Can’t you see the paradox in what you are saying. On one hand, you suggest that 1 in 150 kids has autism (provoked by vaccines). Yet somehow this massive epidemic of vaccine-associated illness never appears to register on any proper epidemiological studies. Not even a teeny weeny little blip.

    This must tell you something. It tells me that IF vaccines trigger autism, they do so in such a tiny subgroup of susceptible kids that the impact is not discernible on a population basis against the background noise. Ergo, autism cases reported to occur after vaccination are mostly due to a combination of recall and confirmation bias, plus coincidence.

    “Other studies document the high rate of immune system dysfunction among people with autism, especially regressive autism.”

    Please cite references for these studies showing a “high rate of immune system dysfunction”. I think you are trying hard to put all your theories together in a plausible way, but you are using kindergarden science to do so.

  • Jennifer from Vermont

    When I was pregnant with my son I wouldn’t even eat a piece of fish for fear of mercury exposure but received the flu shot when I was 5 months pregnant. I was so naive and trusting of my doctor. I was actually proud of giving my son his vaccinations, I felt like I was doing a great job as a parent. By the time I started questioning the vaccine schedule it was too late for my son. Now I have to live with the guilt. I don’t believe that vaccines are the only reason my son has autism but I do know they did contribute to the problems we have had. I hope Amanda Peet never has to swallow the bitter pill of having your precious child diagnosed with autism. I pray every day that autism stops now, that other parents never have to feel this pain. Please, if you’ve never had a child with autism, refrain from the put downs and name calling. Jenny Mccarthy and Generation Rescue give parents hope for the future and incredible ideas to pull our children out of autism!!! Thank you!!

  • Corey

    I see the anti-vax people haven’t read my post on brain development.

    Hello. People. Go read it. I will admit to be well off on the number of connections…I deliberately engaged in some hyperbole. There are ~100 Billions neurons and on the average 10K synapses per neuron-that’s 10 quadrillion connections.

  • cr

    Read “Evidence of Harm” by David Kirby. There is PLENTY of REPUTABLE science out there re: the vaccine/autism connection. There IS a connection. Not every child should get the current vaccine schedule. Some kids just cannot handle it. It’s NOT “one size fits all”.

    If people educated themselves on BOTH sides of this debate, they would see that the autism/vaccine connection is very strong and would insist that the pharm companies/CDC/FDA do SOMETHING to make vaccines safer. Educate yourselves about what is IN vaccines. They CAN be made SAFER. The reason why they are not made safe is due to it being cheaper to manufacture the way they are today. If consumers would insist on safer/better product than it would be best for EVERYONE in the long run. Someday a lot of these children with autism will not have parents to take care of them anymore and they will become a burden on society. The health insurance companies are putting pressure on the CDC and FDA to “fix” the vaccine problem. They KNOW that the connection is VALID.

    DO your own research and read the studies that support BOTH sides of the issue before you start bad mouthing Jenny McCarhty. Amanda Peete is Dr Offit’s “puppet”. Dr Offit has a financial interest in getting all children fully vaccinated.

  • ThoJ

    Read evidence of harm and there’s lot’s of reputable science for the autism/vaccine link?

    Which is it? Evidence of Harm presents a lot of half-baked (at best) science by people who would be taking a step up if they made it to third-rate scientists. Seriously, that book has done more harm than vaccines.

  • Maria

    First of all our family has a had documented vaccine injuries…
    Im the 80′s one of our relatives almost died from the DTP shot.
    She had the shot…then within hours had Infintile Mioclonic siezures and then Hipps arithmia…She was in the hospt for months.
    What helped her was something called ATCH gel.
    The pwder didnt work.
    The doctor gave her medical excemptions because she cant handel them.
    Its doesnt make sense that every person can have vaccines.
    Vaccines are needed but they need to be cleaner vaccines.
    If there are no such thing as reactions to vaccines..why is there Vaccine court and why has the govput billions in reserve for it and why have people been awarded money!!!!!!!!!!
    Why is the max you can get according to the Vaccine court..250k if you die from a vaccine…Lovely!

  • Spunk-Monkey

    karennd: “Just curious, what science has helped your child? I am sincerely interested.”

    I started preparing a list of our experiences in answer, but this quickly grew into a long history into our diet, experiences, and how we set about learning about our child’s autism. It’s a bit longer than would be helpful for the current discussions, and would eventually be a distraction to the current threads… related, but as i don’t have a lot of free time to participate, the long version may best be dropped. I have no wish to toss in controversy and run away, but these are the experiences of my family, and those of other close families in our neighborhood, church, school district, etc…

    One one hand, I’m embarrassed by some of the things we and other families have tried. It’s normally much easier to investigate alternatives, but when it means further erosion of the home, schoolwork and your child’s self esteem, some of these are hard to justify. I wish I had kept full notes so I could have shared the experiences; some of the stories might have made for an interesting book.

    [continued next post]

  • Spunk-Monkey

    Jeez, guess i’m not allowed to post my experiences.

    Does this mean i can blame it on the anti-vax conspiracy? ;-)

  • Jimmy

    >> If there are no such thing as reactions to vaccines..why is there Vaccine court and why has the govput billions in reserve for it and why have people been awarded money!!!!!!!!!! <<

    Because there is such a thing as a vaccine that has not been looked after properly, maybe? It happens. Is that the fault of the vaccine? No.

  • http://909shot.com richard

    MY child has been DAMAGED BY VACCINATIONS..
    research into vaccines, you’ll be shocked.
    Check out http://909shot.com

    THE PROBLEM IS REAL, PEOPLE!

  • Dyce

    Maria, I am sorry one of your relatives had a severe reaction to vaccines. None of the “pro-vaccine” proponents here would ever dipute that vaccine reactions can happen. They clearly do and that is the reason there are things like vaccine compensation schemes.

    What is clear is that the risks of a severe vaccine reaction is very small. Vaccines do so much good that overall, it makes sense to take the small risks entailed in order to give your child protection.

    The argument that “Vaccines are not 100% safe, therefore it is better to give nothing” is a fallacy (sometimes called the “nirvana” fallacy). If this were universally applied, it would mean you never treated your child with antibiotics for meningitis, because “the antibiotics might cause a reaction”. It is quite illogical to persuade other parents not to treat their children “until ‘safer’ antibiotics are developed”.

    No medical advances would ever have been made if one only seeks perfection. Today, 80% of leukemia is curable – this advance came about by incremental improvement in the drugs and methods of giving chemo. If 40 years ago people just threw up their hands in hopless frustration saying lets not give chemo because it has side effects, no-one today would be able to cure leukemia.

    Yes we would all like to have safer vaccines which have fewer reactions. This is one of the reasons there were moves to remove vaccines such as the old whole cell pertussis, and replace it with the less risky acellular vaccine, or to change the makeup of the rubella vaccine so there were no episodes of vaccine-induced encephalitis (even though the rate occuring with the old Urabe strain vaccine was actually still much LESS than the rate of encephalitis from natural rubella!).

    I have great sympathy for those who have experienced reactions. But to argue (incorrectly) that vaccines provoke certain illnesses and to use this to persuade people not to vaccinate their children is wrong, wrong, wrong.

    I hear some people hear say “what’s the big deal with 100 cases of measles?”. Well in Europe, dozens die each year from epidemics of measles – not in poor countries with no decent medical system, but in countries like Germany and Switzerland. If no-one vaccinated and measles returns to the USA there will be hundreds of deaths each year (between 500 and 800) from this infection alone.

    People like karend have a quaint view of these illnesses, saying they never hurt anyone and are just nature’s way of making us healthier. This is complete and utter *****, and it’s time some people here realised this.

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Do NOT read Kirby’s book if you want to learn the truth, people. Even he is backing off his original claims because the evidence against it is mounting – as it should.

    The autism/vaccine connection only exists in the minds of those who refuse to accept Autism as genetic in origin. This is a basic error that needs to be corrected if true understanding of the condition is to be achieved. That belief in this furphy is based in conspiracy theory and deserves no respect whatsoever.

    I have had no contact with mercury. Yet I am formally diagnosed as Aspergers. Explain that one, people!

    Jennifer, look again at your medical history and widen it into psychology. You will then see the widened options for your child’s regression, and your guilt should pass. You can’t feel guilty for something you knew nothing about. Why should you? That’s not fair to you, and further your guilt may be impacting on your son.

    Twyla;
    “That makes no sense. The official definition of autism has no mention of causes. Autism is defined as impairments in communication and social skills, and repetitive behaviors. Yes, I am paraphrasing — that’s not an exact quote — but the point is, regardless of cause, autism is described by behaviors. Autism may have many causes.”

    All of which are genetic in origin. Mercury poisoning is not genetic in origin. True mercury poisoning does NOT result in Autistic behaviours that result in a diagnosis – because the damage is wider and takes in areas that do not involve the DSM. If there are DX’s happening purely on DSM consistent behaviours, then there are medical professionals out there who aren’t doing their job properly. General practitioners have no business DXing Autism because they aren’t qualified to do so. Does that make sense of my comment now?

    “Believe me, if you had a child who was happy, talking, learning, playing, and socializing, and then suddenly s/he was in his or her own world, uncommunicative, unhappy, and not playing or learning or socializing, — you too would feel that your child was lost.”

    Rubbish! The child CHANGED! That’s the same as saying a child is lost when they hit puberty! Be realistic!

    “Calling the child lost certainly is not abandonment.”

    You bet it is! I go back to the above analogy about puberty. Now think about this – why do teens run away from home? Hmmm? Because they feel ABANDONED! (That’s one reason anyway – there will be others of course – but that’s the one that gets missed most often)

    “Many parents have worked extremely hard to find treatments that helped their child to regain language, social skills, happiness, and the ability to learn and participate in society. Just today there is yet another such account at [link]. How dare you cast aspersions on parents who are working so hard to help their children.”

    Working hard to do what? I will cast aspersions on parents who have panicked and are looking for a quick fix when there isn’t one. Real hard work starts with one basic admission – that your child is on the Spectrum for life. Until you do that, you aren’t working hard at all. You’re taking short cuts that will lead to dead ends that you can’t see – yet. The way to achieve inclusion is to educate society into acceptance – to assimilate. And to barge into Washington and tell them to increase the funding to the health system across the country….oh I don’t know, about TWENTY FOLD?!! That’s why parents panic – no support! Come down to Australia and you’ll get a better idea of the difference. We still have holes in ours but at least we aren’t third world like you guys. And take doctors out of the free market economy. They don’t belong in there.

    By the way, Paul Offit gets paid because of people like you casting dispersions on the vaccination system as a whole. That’s what I mean by free market economy. He shouldn’t, but he has to because of idiots like Generation Rescue destroying the vaccine base and the only way to get any American to fight back is to pay them. Pathetic! Bring back socialism!

  • tex

    Look at all the heroes claiming to be scientests.

    1) Do you know what causes autism?
    2) Do you have a cure?

    Until you do, you have no right to challenge parents with autistic children.

    Science does not tell us what causes autism, nor how to cure it. So dont use science in an argumnent when it has no answers.

  • tex

    Where is the evidence that vaccines cause autism?

    Where is the evidence that vaccines do NOT cause autism?

    You want to prove that vaccines dont cause autism, then find us the cure.

    And until you do, stop picking on poor parent suffering every day with autistic kids.

    Shame on the fanatics that prefer autism over measles

  • Corey

    Tex wrote:

    [blockquote]Look at all the heroes claiming to be scientests.

    1) Do you know what causes autism?
    2) Do you have a cure?

    Until you do, you have no right to challenge parents with autistic children.

    Science does not tell us what causes autism, nor how to cure it. So dont use science in an argumnent when it has no answers.[/blockquote]

    Hey Tex. You’re fantastically, amazingly wrong.

    Autism is most likely a “problem” of “wiring” in the brain. I’ll note there are “high-functioning” autistics who also have Ph.D.’s and do very very well in their field (Scientific American profiled one a few years back). Go read my post way way back up there on neurological development.

    Now onto your fallacy regarding causes. Epidemiological studies show no connection between vaccines and autism. Therefore, one cause is eliminated. At the same time, the diagnostic criteria for autism have changed. That means there is a confound in trying to state vaccination (or Thimerisol) as a casual factor. Please read up on inductive logic, deductive logic, and confounding variables.

  • Dawn

    Anyone who says that even a few people injured by vaccines is “acceptable” to save the herd – suffers from the same insane rationale as Hitler. In other words, they should be thrown in jail!!

  • Twyla

    Dyce said, “What is clear is that the risks of a severe vaccine reaction is very small.” This is not clear at all. Perhaps this used to be the case, but as the number of vaccines has grown, the percent and number of adversely affected babies and children has grown as well.

    Dyce said, “But to argue (incorrectly) that vaccines provoke certain illnesses and to use this to persuade people not to vaccinate their children is wrong, wrong, wrong.” Nobody is trying to persuade people not to vaccinate their children. Vaccination is a difficult and personal decision. Parents who witnessed their babies’ vaccine reactions wish they had been more aware of the risks rather than just accepting so many vaccines in such a short time period at such a young age. It is important to consider the risks as well as the benefits, think about whether every vaccine is needed at such a young age, whether it would be better for example to get the measles vaccine by itself rather than getting the MMR + varicela + flu shot with thimerosal all at the same time. We are for every parent’s right to make choices. We are for more information rather than ignorant blind compliance. Most of all, we are for the CDC and FDA doing their jobs to study vaccine adverse reactions, understand these reactions better, and take the necessary steps to make our vaccine program safer.

  • Jrans

    Interested in what helps autistic kids get better? go to http://www.dramyyasko.com/Welcome.html–
    this site will give you the purest science you can consume in your lifetime .Explains everything from genetics and environmental factors these kids experienced leading to their ASD diagnosis.This brilliant ND treats the most severely affected in the spectrum with impressive results!Check out the testimonies of parents who lives with this nightmare 24/7.

  • Twyla

    TimeLord said, “The autism/vaccine connection only exists in the minds of those who refuse to accept Autism as genetic in origin,” and “True mercury poisoning does NOT result in Autistic behaviours that result in a diagnosis – because the damage is wider and takes in areas that do not involve the DSM.”

    You are simply making up your own definition of autism. There is nothing in the official DSM definition that says, “Only these characteristics, but not accompanied by XYZ medical conditions.”

    In some of the earliest cases of autism diagnosed by Kanner, immune system and digestive issues are mentioned. Not everyone with autism has these kinds of medical issues, but many do.

    Perhaps some cases of autism are purely genetic. But we have had a huge increase in autism, and this increase cannot be caused by genetics alone. And the “better diagnosis” explanation is a bunch of malarkey.

    Sometimes it seems that what is called Asperger’s may actually be a completely different syndrome from other forms of autism. Yet, I am surprised to find that many people I know (or have heard speak) who have Asperger’s mention things like feeling much better when on high doses of vitamin B or on DMG, suffering from IBD, feeling better when not eating gluten and milk.

    I remember hearing a mom of a teenager with Asperger’s speak about her son. She said that they were not doing any biomedical treatments. But during the break she mentioned that the family had gone on a gluten-free diet because her other son has celiac disease. They found that her son with Asperger’s did much better on this diet. When he went off the diet he did worse again (mood, ability to focus, etc.) and when he went back on the diet he did better.

    TimeLord says, “I have had no contact with mercury. Yet I am formally diagnosed as Aspergers. Explain that one, people!” The explanation is: mercury is not the only cause of autism. But if mercury did not cause your autism, that does not mean that it can never cause autism. Alternative explanation: we are all exposed to a lot of mercury these days in our environment. Some people excrete it easily, but others don’t.

    And TimeLord says: “The way to achieve inclusion is to educate society into acceptance – to assimilate.” This is very important. But you have to recognize that autism is a spectrum. Some people with autism are able to read, write, drive a car, work, go grocery shopping, and speak in complete sentences. Others are not able to do most or all of these activities. For those with a more severe level of disability, a lot more is needed than an end to discrimination against people who don’t understand the unwritten mysterious social mores that I myself have difficulty understanding.

    I know of some families where there was a family history of mild, high functioning autism, but the children exposed to vaccines etc. have much more severe autism accompanied by health issues.

    Bottom line, more and more people these days believe that autism is caused by the interaction of genetic susceptibility and the environment.

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Twyla said;
    “You are simply making up your own definition of autism. There is nothing in the official DSM definition that says, “Only these characteristics, but not accompanied by XYZ medical conditions.””

    You’re reading it incorrectly – that’s obvious. The minute you are taking other conditions into account you are ignoring the DSM, and that affects the correct DX of the Autistic Spectrum. Involving mercury poisoning in the DSM is just plain wrong.

    Twyla said;
    “In some of the earliest cases of autism diagnosed by Kanner, immune system and digestive issues are mentioned. Not everyone with autism has these kinds of medical issues, but many do.”

    The fact that there are a lot that don’t kills your point. Digestive issues are usually associated with external issues and have nothing to do with Autism itself. For example, the child might not be eating properly, including things they shouldn’t be eating or even putting in their mouth.

    Twyla said;
    “Perhaps some cases of autism are purely genetic. But we have had a huge increase in autism, and this increase cannot be caused by genetics alone. And the “better diagnosis” explanation is a bunch of malarkey.”

    No it’s not, and here’s the proof. The DX’s of Autistic Spectrum (which includes the whole Spectrum – not just classic Autism [HF and LF]) went up and at the same time DX’s of SLD and MR went down. By EXACTLY the same rate! Explain THAT!

    ALL cases of TRUE Autistic Spectrum are genetic in origin.

    Twyla said;
    “Sometimes it seems that what is called Asperger’s may actually be a completely different syndrome from other forms of autism. Yet, I am surprised to find that many people I know (or have heard speak) who have Asperger’s mention things like feeling much better when on high doses of vitamin B or on DMG, suffering from IBD, feeling better when not eating gluten and milk.”

    Just because they feel better doesn’t mean they’re off the Spectrum. The best way to be is in a niche where an Aspie functions best. I know through personal experience how good that feels.

    TimeLord says, “I have had no contact with mercury. Yet I am formally diagnosed as Aspergers. Explain that one, people!”

    Twyla said;
    “The explanation is: mercury is not the only cause of autism. But if mercury did not cause your autism, that does not mean that it can never cause autism. Alternative explanation: we are all exposed to a lot of mercury these days in our environment. Some people excrete it easily, but others don’t.”

    Makes no difference. The cause of the regression (not the condition) is sensory overload. That’s why sometimes – if there’s an overload issue with gluten – there’s a positive response. Focus on that and you’ll get a lot more answers, and accurately.

    Twyla said;
    “This is very important. But you have to recognize that autism is a spectrum. Some people with autism are able to read, write, drive a car, work, go grocery shopping, and speak in complete sentences. Others are not able to do most or all of these activities. For those with a more severe level of disability, a lot more is needed than an end to discrimination against people who don’t understand the unwritten mysterious social mores that I myself have difficulty understanding.”

    Of course I do and I never said I didn’t. Those who are LFA need a heap of support – more than the system in the US is willing to give (hence my rant about that issue in my previous posting). If that support existing to the appropriate level, there’d be a lot more thinking and lot less panic – and we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.

    Twyla said;
    “I know of some families where there was a family history of mild, high functioning autism, but the children exposed to vaccines etc. have much more severe autism accompanied by health issues.”

    Which is caused by sensory overload.

    Twyla said;
    “Bottom line, more and more people these days believe that autism is caused by the interaction of genetic susceptibility and the environment.”

    Concentrating it on things like vaccines is a furphy. If there are reactions, something else happened. You take the Cedillo test case. That wasn’t the vaccine. That was the high tempreture (105). That’s a sensory overload just waiting to happen – plus the fact that the high temp wasn’t properly dealt with by the parents (why the heck didn’t they take the poor girl to hospital??).

    Then there’s the catch up on vaccines – as what happened to the mitocondrial girl (who’s name escapes me as I type this). That shouldn’t be happening either. That’s not the fault of the vaccines. Vaccines are fine – when used correctly. And there’s no reason why each individual vaccine can’t be given once a fortnight, and still get it all done when the CDC recommends it be done by (age 2). And even then there’s room for delays for the other time that vaccines shouldn’t be administered – when the child is ill. It’ll all get done in the child’s third year – most likely in the first half. No problem.

    And yet you lot carry on as though there is a problem with that. Sorry – wrong.

    And the environmental issues go way wider than this anyway. WAY wider. And they don’t always involve toxicity theories either. We have six senses (including instinct). Now just think about how much can go wrong or overload any of the six – and you’ll see just how far off the track you are even though your last line is basically right.

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Let’s see if this works…

    Twyla
    …whether it would be better for example to get the measles vaccine by itself rather than getting the MMR + varicela + flu shot with thimerosal all at the same time.

    Actually they don’t use thiomersal in vaccines any more. It’s because anti-vaxers convinced people that any substance with Hg in it is evil. Even though thiomersal, when in the body, degrades into ethylmercury, which doesn’t bioaccumulate.

    Oh and Twyla, you are convincing parents that they shouldn’t vaccinate their children. The whole rationale seems to be “I vaccinated my children and now I have to care for a child with autism VACCINES ARE BAD”.

    Just look at what Jenny McCarthy said in the blog post. It’s got nothing to do with her kid having autism, it’s that she has to care for a kid with autism.

    Anti-vaxers continue to blow things out of proportion and use bad science to convince other parents that vaccination will cause all kinds of trouble to their child.

    You are putting forward a point of view. You are biased towards a conclusion that you agree with. You aren’t impartial, so don’t try and make it look like you are.

  • Twyla

    Wildy -
    The CDC lists vaccine ingredients at http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/B/excipient-table-2.pdf. Flulaval and Fluzone flu shots still contain thimerosal.

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Ok, so ‘flu shots contain thiomersal.

    So why aren’t you just complaining about ‘flu shots then?

    You could just say “don’t get ‘flu shots” but you come across as saying “vaccination is evil”.

  • Dyce

    ASD has a genetic etiology, and is in action from before children are born. Supporting this concept is the “Epigenetic theory”, in which an abnormal gene is “turned on” early in fetal development and affects the expression of other genes that are not mutated themselves.

    Environmental factors such as toxins, teratogens, perinatal insults, and prenatal infections account for a handful of cases. These factors may constitute a “second-hit”, modulating existing genetic factors predisposing to ASD, and their effects appear to depend on the timing and duration of exposure, concentration of the toxin, mechanism of action, and distribution in the central nervous system. All available scientific evidence suggests that this mechanism accounts for only a small minority of autism cases.

    The apparent rise in autism is, as has been pointed out several times, due to diagnostic criteria modification. As Timelord said, as ASD diagnoses rose, diagnoses of mental retardation and severe learning difficulty went DOWN by the same amount.

    If one just looked at the diagnoses of SLD and MR, one could formulate the hypothesis that vaccination reduces the risk of these problems. The logic used by antivaxers can be used to argue this, just in reverse.

    So let’s all vaccinate our kids – it reduces the incidence of mental retardation! In fact let’s give them MORE vaccines, to lower the incidence even further!

  • Dyce

    The Genetics of Autism.
    Pediatrics. 2004 May;113(5):e472-86.

    Autism is a complex, behaviorally defined, static disorder of the immature brain that is of great concern to the practicing pediatrician because of an astonishing 556% reported increase in pediatric prevalence between 1991 and 1997, to a prevalence higher than that of spina bifida, cancer, or Down syndrome.

    This jump is probably attributable to heightened awareness and changing diagnostic criteria rather than to new environmental influences. Autism is not a disease but a syndrome with multiple nongenetic and genetic causes. By autism (the autistic spectrum disorders [ASDs]), we mean the wide spectrum of developmental disorders characterized by impairments in 3 behavioral domains: 1) social interaction; 2) language, communication, and imaginative play; and 3) range of interests and activities. Autism corresponds in this article to pervasive developmental disorder (PDD) of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition and International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision. Except for Rett syndrome–attributable in most affected individuals to mutations of the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2) gene–the other PDD subtypes (autistic disorder, Asperger disorder, disintegrative disorder, and PDD Not Otherwise Specified [PDD-NOS]) are not linked to any particular genetic or nongenetic cause.

    Review of 2 major textbooks on autism and of papers published between 1961 and 2003 yields convincing evidence for multiple interacting genetic factors as the main causative determinants of autism. Epidemiologic studies indicate that environmental factors such as toxic exposures, teratogens, perinatal insults, and prenatal infections such as rubella and cytomegalovirus account for few cases.

    These studies fail to confirm that immunizations with the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine are responsible for the surge in autism.

    Epilepsy, the medical condition most highly associated with autism, has equally complex genetic/nongenetic (but mostly unknown) causes. Autism is frequent in tuberous sclerosis complex and fragile X syndrome, but these 2 disorders account for but a small minority of cases.

    Currently, diagnosable medical conditions, cytogenetic abnormalities, and single-gene defects (eg, tuberous sclerosis complex, fragile X syndrome, and other rare diseases) together account for 1 affected family member; 2) cytogenetic studies that may guide molecular studies by pointing to relevant inherited or de novo chromosomal abnormalities in affected individuals and their families; and 3) evaluation of candidate genes known to affect brain development in these significantly linked regions or, alternatively, linkage of candidate genes selected a priori because of their presumptive contribution to the pathogenesis of autism. Data from whole-genome screens in multiplex families suggest interactions of at least 10 genes in the causation of autism. Thus far, a putative speech and language region at 7q31-q33 seems most strongly linked to autism, with linkages to multiple other loci under investigation. Cytogenetic abnormalities at the 15q11-q13 locus are fairly frequent in people with autism, and a “chromosome 15 phenotype” was described in individuals with chromosome 15 duplications. Among other candidate genes are the FOXP2, RAY1/ST7, IMMP2L, and RELN genes at 7q22-q33 and the GABA(A) receptor subunit and UBE3A genes on chromosome 15q11-q13.

    Variant alleles of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTT) on 17q11-q12 are more frequent in individuals with autism than in nonautistic populations. In addition, animal models and linkage data from genome screens implicate the oxytocin receptor at 3p25-p26. Most pediatricians will have 1 or more children with this disorder in their practices. They must diagnose ASD expeditiously because early intervention increases its effectiveness. Children with dysmorphic features, congenital anomalies, mental retardation, or family members with developmental disorders are those most likely to benefit from extensive medical testing and genetic consultation. The yield of testing is much less in high-functioning children with a normal appearance and IQ and moderate social and language impairments.

    Genetic counseling justifies testing, but until autism genes are identified and their functions are understood, prenatal diagnosis will exist only for the rare cases ascribable to single-gene defects or overt chromosomal abnormalities.

    Parents who wish to have more children must be told of their increased statistical risk. It is crucial for pediatricians to try to involve families with multiple affected members in formal research projects, as family studies are key to unraveling the causes and pathogenesis of autism. Parents need to understand that they and their affected children are the only available sources for identifying and studying the elusive genes responsible for autism. Future clinically useful insights and potential medications depend on identifying these genes and elucidating the influences of their products on brain development and physiology.

  • Dyce
  • Dyce

    In case that didn’t turn out – here is a link to the full text article
    http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/113/5/e472

  • Twyla

    I’m afraid that some of you may be suffering from “Iatromoric Spectrum Disorder”, a.k.a. ISD. See
    http://spectrumpublications.com/index.php?option=com_myblog&show=Iatromoric-Spectrum-Disorder-Bettelheim-Syndrome-.html&Itemid=273&author=jgilmore

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Yes, because “Spectrum Publications” is a really good source to go to.

    Especially with the video on their front page. (It’s called “Vaccine Safety Requests”)

    Very unbiased source…

  • Twyla

    Here is yet another parent’s account of post-vaccine regression into autism followed by recovery with biomedical treatments. This kind of story should receive so much more attention from those who are (or should be) investigating causes of and treatments for autism. http://www.ageofautism.com/2008/10/flu-shot-nightm.html

    What percentage of autism is like this case? I don’t know, and unfortunately neither do the “experts” who should be studying these cases. But I do know that there has been a tremendous increase in autism during the past 25 years, which cannot be explained by genes alone.

    We do not currently have 1 in 150 adults with significant mental disabilities — whether called autism or misdiagnosed as something else. This “hidden hord” theory is without basis in fact. I have already recommended the thorough discussion of this issue in Dr. Bryan Jepson’s book “Changing the Course of Autism”.

    Below is a quote from http://www.generationrescue.org/misinformation.html
    “The Department of Developmental Services in California is considered to have the best data on the number of autism cases. Their 2002 report slammed the door on the theory that the rise in autism cases is the result of better diagnosis. Excerpt:

    ‘There is no evidence that a loosening in the diagnostic criteria has contributed to increased number of autism clients…we conclude that some, if not all, of the observed increase represents a true increase in cases of autism in California…a purely genetic basis for autism does not fully explain the increasing autism prevalence. Other theories that attempt to better explain the observed increase in autism cases include environmental exposures to substances such as mercury; viral exposures; autoimmune disorders; and childhood vaccinations.’”

    In response to some comments made above: I do not believe that vaccines are “evil” and I have never ever recommended to anyone that they forgo vaccines.

    Every time concerns are raised about vaccine safety, vaccine defenders try to twist the issue into a question of whether we should do away with all vaccines. That is NOT the question. The questions are, how can the vaccine schedule and ingredients be made safer, why are adverse reactions occurring, how can the number of adverse reactions be reduced, do the benefits outweigh the risks for every one of the dozens of vaccines currently on the schedule, and how can adverse reactions be treated.

    Many appear to believe that we should not even discuss the problems because then peole will be afraid of vaccines. But parents are not content to sit quietly and wait for these problems to be addressed (as in the song “Do nothing ’til you hear from me — and that will be never”). We must discuss these problems and advocate for more research and better solutions.

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Twyla
    Every time concerns are raised about vaccine safety, vaccine defenders try to twist the issue into a question of whether we should do away with all vaccines.

    No, actually anti-vaxers seem to do a good job at that themselves.

  • olivia

    You know what’s so sad…something is causing these children to get sick. Could it possibly be that the chemicals in these vaccines are reactive to some kids? SOME children react to different medicines, that’s why they have side effects listed on most meds. There are small sub-sets of the population that can’t handle all 36 recommended shots. People, stop this nonsense and grow up! Let’s focus on the recovery, if Jenny has a potential recover, then listen to her. She’s not talking about anything too radical. You have a choice by the way, vaccinate if you want to.

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Why should we listen to her?

    So she claims to have a “cure”. So do homoeopaths, and snake oil salesmen.

    Would you listen to someone who is peddling unsubstantiated bullshit?

  • Dyce

    Olivia, why does whatever is “causing children to be sick” have to be anything to do with vaccines? I have posted evidence concerning the genetic basis for autism, and there is the possibility that in a minority of cases there is a furhter external trigger for precipitating the clinical features. But the list of potential triggers is large, so why do vaccines have to feature at the top of everyone’s most wanted list?

    It takes only a modicum of common sense to realise that the number of individual antigenic vaccine components have significantly reduced in number over the last 40 years, although the number of individual injections may have risen. This makes a cause-effect relationship from vaccine components or antigens causing immune overload very unlikely.

    The vaccines today are much “purer” in immunological terms than in the past. Other vaccine constituents are present in such tiny quantities that any real effect from these compared to other environmental exposures to the same chemicals must be quite negligible.

    So why must it always be the vaccines which are to blame? One reason I can see is that many parents describe a regression following a vaccine reaction, but this we are told can be delayed and not immediate, so it is subject to considerable recall and confirmation bias. Someone once calculated in the UK that given the predicted background incidence of ASD within a given year of life (1-2yrs) over 80% of people would report that their child had shown first signs of ASD within 3 months of a vaccination. So the link is likely to be purely coincidental and not causative in the vast majority of cases. I am not saying vaccine reactions may not be a trigger (eg Hannah Poling), but it is likely to be rare. We also know that infections, fever etc could be triggers, so it is theoretically possible that vaccination might actually prevent some kids getting more unwell through from the natural infection and developing ASD. Infections pose a more serious and wide-ranging challenge to the immune system than does a vaccine (even when there is a reaction).

    Instead of vilifying vaccines, which have tremendous and undeniable health benefits, why not start a crusade against tuna, or baby milk (or even breast milk for that matter, seeing how it’s full of mercury?) Is it because vaccines are such an easy “target”, because people like Jenny can always whip up a bit of “evil money-grabbing pharma” conspiracy to accompany her ignorant utterances on vaccines, and because blaming vaccines is one way through which people can get a degree of emotional closure and release from any lingering feelings of guilt, along with the possibility of financial settlement through compensation?

  • Renee

    Wow… I read this and went “Yay Jenny McCarthy” but then started reading people’s comments and my heart just broke.
    I have a child cursed with Autism and guess what people, vaccinations played their part. Many children get the MMR, it builds antibodies and then the body sheds the vaccination… nope, not some… my child was tested and 5 YEARS later, still had the MMR VACCINATION stored in his CSF!! Guess what people, the vaccinations done one by one at a later age is great for many kids but for some, it changes their life in a way that you could never imagine!!
    I do understand where you’re coming from… I mean shoot! It irritates me that they want my child in a car seat at 4, 5, 6, 8 years old BUT I get it! Somebody somewhere lost their child in an accident and now they’ve fought for this. I don’t agree with it and personally hate it but I GET IT! I don’t plan in getting in an accident just as much as you don’t plan on your child’s vaccinations hurting him :(

  • Amanda

    please educate yourselves before STABBING your child..adding unknown stuff into the bloodstream never made sense.. Go Jenny!!!!

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Renee, the instant you call Autism a curse you are outside reality. Autism is what you make of it. It’s only a curse if you want it to be.

    And if the MMR is still in your child’s system it means there was something wrong with your child’s specific vaccination – not all of them. It has nothing whatsoever to do with your child’s Autism.

    Jenny McCarthy is no hero. She’s a villain participating in the world’s biggest hoax in the mental health system – the idea that Autism is not genetic and is caused by vaccines. This has already been proven to be wrong. Read the posts just above by Dyce about “The Genetics of Autism”.

  • Rochelle

    Dyce/ The reason vaccines are at the top of most peoples list is because sooooooo many parents watched their child get vaccinated, spike a fever either right there or soon after, seize, and never speak again. For a lot of these parents it’s not days later it’s the day of. These parents are told it’s a coincidence, but there have been so many parents with the same story. Do they all have the same story, of course not. However so many do. That is why vaccines are at the top of the list.
    As all drugs are not one size fits all neither are vaccines.
    I do not vaccinate my children and probably never will. However I would NEVER tell another parent not to vaccinate their kids and I have heard Jenny say the same thing. My decision was made long before Jenny ever said anything. Any parent that doesn’t vax just because Jenny said so is ignorant just as any parent that vaxes because Peet says so is also ignorant. We should do our own research, pray if you believe, and then make the decision you think is right.

  • Dyce

    Amanda – perhaps you should educate yourself before claiming vaccination is like “adding unknown stuff to the bloodstream”.

    The constituents of vaccines are quite well known. They are not “toxic”, despite Jenny’s lame attempt to say they are. They are not delivered “into the bloodstream”, but into muscle tissue from where they are slowly taken up into the circulation over several hours to days.

    On the other hand, every time your child scrapes his knee, or brushes his teeth, he will have a substantial load of antigenic foreign proteins and other unknown material as well as several thousand antigenic components of various skin, environmental and mouth bacteria directly administered into his blood stream.

    Phew! I hope his immune system can cope with the strain.

  • Dyce

    Rochelle, I understand many parents associate events with the administration of a vaccine. All I can do is point out that this is a rare event, and when studies look at everyone who is vaccinated, instances like this register as only a tiny blip. They cannot possibly explain all the cases of autism, which we are now being informed is as common as 1 in every 100 kids.

    Perhaps the Finland experience with MMR might be enlightening. Prior to MMR introduction, the health authorities did a blinded cross-over study with 1200 twins (one got MMR the other didn’t), and this showed no adverse reactions of any significance. The study was criticised by those who said it was too small to pick up rare reactions.

    The authorities responded by introducing a country-wide intensive surveillance programme covering the introduction of all MMR vaccine in Finland. Health visitors, GPs, parents etc were involved and carried out monitoring of every single child who was immunised.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11144371
    “RESULTS: Immunization of 1.8 million individuals and consumption of almost 3 million vaccine doses by the end of 1996 gave rise to 173 potentially serious reactions claimed to have been caused by MMR vaccination. In all, 77 neurologic, 73 allergic and 22 miscellaneous reactions and 1 death were reported, febrile seizure being the most common event. However, 45% of these events proved to be probably caused or contributed by some other factor, giving an incidence of serious adverse events with possible or indeterminate causal relation with MMR vaccination of 5.3 per 100,000 vaccinees or 3.2 per 100,000 vaccine doses.”

    Even allowing for non reporting of minor events, and a degree of under-reporting of significant events (which the authors did not feel was a problem) this gives an indication of how rare any serious events were. Fully two-thirds of the “neurological events” described were classified as “febrile seizures”.

    Of course this study was also criticised, with some saying it did not continue for long enough to pick up instances of “delayed” neurological damage (So much for the “instantaneous”, same day regression then that “sooooooo many parents” report…..)

    In Finland (which is quite a bit smaller than the US) there might be potentially hundreds people saying the vaccine triggered something in their child, perhaps rightly, perhaps wrongly. My point is that because “sooooo many parents” have described a reaction or an event, this does not necessarily make that event frequent or common when viewed in totality.

  • Renee

    DO YOUR RESEARCH!
    healthfreedomusa.org
    infowars.com (vaccinations)
    Henry kissinger openly talks about population control. You got to look at who is behind the pushing of mandatory vaccinations. The pharmaceutical companies who have a vested interest in this. The more vaccinations they can sell, the more people they can make sick and the more medicine they will need to sell you. The more money they will make. What a perfect plan!

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Health Freedom USA – the ultimate paranoid conspiracy generator!

    Do us all a favour, Renee. Do some proper research along the lines of what Dyce was linking to.

    And where’s the medicine for Autism? Nowhere! Defeats the point of your quote doesn’t it?

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    And infowars is widely respected for it’s knowledge about things…

  • http://BrainyBlonde.com e

    Renee, I am so sorry for your child who has autism because of the vaccinations s/he was given.

    I honestly wonder why some of these people are still posting here weeks later. They seem so passionate about supporting drugs that have known links to diseases like autism. Maybe they’re just all drug company reps? Who knows, but it’s very disturbing.

    I think, weeks later, its’ time they go back to their pro drug company ass kissing boards and away from ecorazzi.

    e

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    No, we won’t, because Renee child is not Autistic because of vaccines. No one is. Autism is NOT a disease and never will be. It is a neurological difference.

    If it’s time for anything, it’s time for people like you, E, to wake up and smell the roses. You’re being conned by conspiracy theorists who want quick answers to something beyond their comprehension (and there isn’t one) and feed off panic stricken parents being let down by a third world mental health system like that of the United States.

    Good can come for Renee, if she is prepared to work very hard 24/7 and do the right thing by her child. Treated her child as diseased is the wrong thing.

  • Anna in Virginia

    I totally support Jenny McCarthy as she is standing for making vaccines more green not to totally take away vaccines.. If there is a link which is found in autism from taking vaccines then it is up to us as parents and the community as a whole to be able to have a choice in our children’s life and not lead a life that is dictated to us… Gee whiz people stand up and let your voice be heard and SPEAK… It is easy to write here but you try having the GUTS to stand up and be heard.. It takes passion and experience and knowledge to be able to publicly address autism that has been pushed on many a backburner until now.. We need more support within the schools systems, doctors and politicians before we have more undiagnosed children out there that continue to struggle in the real world.

    Written by a mother who has a teenage son that has Aspergers.

  • http://philsworld.wiki-site.com Timelord

    Anna, if you want support for people like your teenage son – get onto your government about fixing up the mental health system. Vaccines have nothing to do with that battle. It’s a useless distraction.

  • My son’s mama

    1980′s autism 1 in 10,000

    Today autism 1 in 150.

    Why isn’t every single Pediatrician working to tell us why families are RUINED by this?

    Oh yeah, it’s because of the sacred cows: vaccines, antibiotics and processed food.

    Lord knows those couldn’t be causes so let’s not study them. Ergo, it must be better diagnosis, yeah that’s it. We missed those thousands of autistic kids all around us in the 80′s.

    Give ‘em hell, Jenny!!

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  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    My son’s mama

    1980’s autism 1 in 10,000

    Do you mean “Autism” as in the specific brain development disorder, or “autism” as a catch-all for “autism spectrum disorders”?

    Lord knows those couldn’t be causes so let’s not study them. Ergo, it must be better diagnosis, yeah that’s it. We missed those thousands of autistic kids all around us in the 80’s.

    Yawn. What a stupid argument. The funny thing is that scientists have been studying autism. You could just use Google Scholar and find peer-reviewed papers instead of relying solely on anti-vaccination sources.

    Hell, there were a bunch of studies done when the claim “thiomerosal causes autism” came out, and they all found that, in fact, it doesn’t.

    Also, have you even considered that the reason for the higher number of autism cases in the US is just that more children have autism? And that is because autism is genetic not environmental?

    Maybe more parents are seeing if their children are autistic because of the lawsuits against vaccine companies, and that would increase the number of diagnoses of autism?

    It’s extremely simplistic to just put it down to “better diagnosis”. When in fact it might be a combination of factors.

  • Dyce

    Please people read the book “Unstrange Minds” by Roy Grinker, the anthropologist.
    http://www.amazon.com/Unstrange-Minds-Remapping-World-Autism/dp/0465027644/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1224493867&sr=1-1

    In it he eloquently describes the compelling story of how he came to terms with his own daughter’s autism, and he
    extends his clear and incisive vision to aspects of autism in different cultural settings and discusses the history of autism and its epidemiology. It is well researched and it convincingly demonstrates that much of what people call the autism epidemic derives from reclassification and changes in diagnostic coding.

  • http://www.myspace.com/4_conner_ryan Conner’s Mom

    As the mom of an autistic child, I am totally on Jenny’s side. I know that my son was normal till he had his 18mos “necessary” immunizations!!! If trying to prevent this from happening to other children makes me a “parasite”, then, hey, I am proud to be one!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    Yawn.

    Conner’s Mom, correlation does not imply causation. It never has and never will.

    And funnily enough, you aren’t a parasite. Basically because you got your son immunised.

    The parents that don’t are parasites, because when their kids get sick from the diseases that were supposed to be immunised against, they use up resources that could have been used elsewhere.

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  • hilary

    All i will say as a mother of a child that has suffered the ignorance of so many…. is Thank You Jenny…….Hilary

  • http://WWW.TOGETHERINAUTISM.ORG TOGETHER IN AUTISM

    OK, JENNY MCCARTHY IS NOT, I REPEAT NOT AGAINST VACCINES. SHE IS JUST WANTING TO SEE THEM CLEANED UP. UNITL THEN, SPACE OUT THE SHOTS. THERE ARE MANY KNOWN TOXINS, NOT JUST ONE INGREDIENT THAT CAN NOT EXIT THE BODY AND DO DAMAGE TO THE BRAIN AND NEUROLOGICAL SYSTEM. JENNY IS NOT IN ANY WAY SAYING THAT EVERY CHILD WILL GET AUTISM FROM VACCINES… SHE IS SIMPLY STATING THAT FOR THOSE VERY YOUNG CHILDREN WHO MAY HAVE UNRECOGNISED WEAKENED IMMUNE SYSTEMS OR THEIR GENETIC MAKEUP CANNOT WITHSTAND THE VAST OF VACCINES, THEY NEED TO BE GENTLER, CLEANER, GREENING OF VACCINES. ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL!!! WHEN WE HAVE TO TAKE A MEDICATION FOR AN ILLNESS, DO WE ALL TAKE THE SAME MEDICINE? THE SAME DOSE? THE ANSWER IS NO. AMANDA, I KNOW YOU MEAN WELL, BUT YOU WILL NEVER KNOW UNTIL IT EFFECTS YOUR CHILD. THERE ARE THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF US, THAT OUR CHILDREN COULD NOT STAND UP TO THE TOXICITY. WE DO NOT DISCOURAGE, WE WANT THOSE CHILDREN TO BE PROTECTED, NOT HARMED. WE HAVE NO WAY OF TELLING IF OUR CHILD IS IN ONE OF THE THOUSANDS THAT IS VULNERABLE UNTIL IT IS TOO LATE. THERE IS NO TEST TO DETECT. YOU CANNOT TAKE JENNY’S WORDS OUT OF CONTEXT. SHE NEVER SAYS “CURE” SHE SAYS RECOVER. SHE NEVER SAYS SHE IS “ANTI-VACCINE”, SHE IS FOR GREENING OUR VACCINES. WE HAVE A LOT OF PEOPLE THAT ARE ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN WHO HAVE NOT BEEN PERSONALLY TOUCHED BY AUTISM (THEIR OWN CHILD), THEY ARE OUR PROOF. IT IS SOOOOOOOOO EASY FOR SOMEONE WHO HAS NOT SEEN THEIR OWN CHILD DETERIORATE AFTER RECEIVING A VACCINE TO LISTEN TO HEAR-SAY AND PLACE JUDGEMENT OR COMMENTS ON A TOPIC THEY KNOW NOTHING ABOUT.

    SINCERELY,
    SHAUNA-FOUNDER
    TOGETHER IN AUTISM
    http://WWW.TOGETHERINAUTISM.ORG

    • Edmund Charles

      Take the ‘CAP’ lock off, your post looks like an old fashioned western union telegram.

  • http://wildyms.blogspot.com Wildy

    I just like having the last word.

  • Barbara

    Perhaps you all don’t remember the tobacco industry giants testifying that nicotine wasn’t addictive? Corporate motives can change everything. New diagnostic criteria? Seriously, that makes no sense. Autism doesn’t hide–if there is no increase in autism, where are all the autistic adults?
    Whether you like Jenny or believe her, I just don’t understand how those of you who have autistic children aren’t interested in her recovery program. It WORKED for us. Read the facts at http://www.generationrescue.org

  • Dyce

    No, Wildy, I must insist that I have the last word….

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  • s

    has it ever been scientifically proven that vaccines cause autism? no! has it been proven that they dont? no! boycotting stuff just because of one comment is a little extreme, especially when the comment cannot be proven right or wrong (yet). if there is a history of autism in your family and you think it may have to go with a certain vaccine, then don’t give your child that shot. it’s that simple. autism is a very sad condition and i think people should focus more on treatment and less on blame.

  • Julie

    Thank you, Jenny, for helping to recover my son from the disease autism. I’m so grateful that the truth IS coming out – vaccines cause autism in SOME individuals, like my son – we have our proof. Don’t worry about what ignorant people who don’t live it say – they have no clue! But we do – and our children are eternally grateful for it. Keep it up, Jenny – so glad you are! I know you’ll NEVER stop – and neither will I!

  • http://blog.babyganics.com Evan

    Autism is a dread for any parent. That’s why it’s a must to make sure that we remain as natural and as eco-friendly as possible.

  • http://happyandwell.com Mark

    “until she walks in our shoes, she really has no idea.” – Absolutely!

  • Marjan Viki

    I am her to share my experience with the world on how i got my love back and saved my marriage… I was married for 6 years with 3 good lovely kids and we lived happily until things started getting ugly and we had a fights and arguments almost every time… it got worse at a point that he filed for divorce… I tried my best to make him change his mind & stay with me cause i loved him with all my heart and didn’t want to loose him but everything just didn’t work out… he moved out of the house and still went ahead to file for divorce… I pleaded and tried everything but still nothing worked. The breakthrough came when someone introduced me to this wonderful, great spell casterdr.trust who eventually helped me out… I have never been a fan of things like this but just decided to try reluctantly cause I was desperate and left with no choice… He did special prayers and cast a love spell on him. Within 7 days he called me and was sorry for all the emotional trauma he had cost me, moved back to the house and we continue to live happily, the kids are happy too and we are expecting our fourth child… I have introduced him to a lot of couples with problems across the world and they have had good news… Just thought I should share my experience cause I strongly believe someone out there needs it… You can email him at: Ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or you can call him +2348156885231

  • Marjan Viki

    I am her to share my experience with the world on how i got my love back and saved my marriage… I was married for 6 years with 3 good lovely kids and we lived happily until things started getting ugly and we had a fights and arguments almost every time… it got worse at a point that he filed for divorce… I tried my best to make him change his mind & stay with me cause i loved him with all my heart and didn’t want to loose him but everything just didn’t work out… he moved out of the house and still went ahead to file for divorce… I pleaded and tried everything but still nothing worked. The breakthrough came when someone introduced me to this wonderful, great spell casterdr.trust who eventually helped me out… I have never been a fan of things like this but just decided to try reluctantly cause I was desperate and left with no choice… He did special prayers and cast a love spell on him. Within 7 days he called me and was sorry for all the emotional trauma he had cost me, moved back to the house and we continue to live happily, the kids are happy too and we are expecting our fourth child… I have introduced him to a lot of couples with problems across the world and they have had good news… Just thought I should share my experience cause I strongly believe someone out there needs it… You can email him at: Ultimatespellcast@gmail.com or you can call him +2348156885231.