Today I met someone that told me that they were not going to vaccinate their child because it causes autism. Sometimes I get really tired of this type of person and I know some of you do too.

I was wondering if anyone else has been in this situation and how did you handle it. Me, I just walked away from that particular person.

Tags: advice, autism, examples, vaccines

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I should point out to you arguing the vaccine/autism thing that Dr. Wakefield, the much maligned UK doctor NEVER asserted a definite link of MMR vaccines to autism was never published. He never made that claim. Some of his team colleagues put forth their own interpretation that MMRs were linked to autism but that was not part of Wakefield's Lancet paper. Dr. Wakefield was looking into the possible link of those commonly experienced gut disorders in children under five years old as a precursor to their autism related behavior. The link to MMRs was actually made by the parents of those 12 participating children. The children were all fit and well until they received MMR vaccinations, and the parents reported this to Dr. Wakefield's team. Dr. Wakefield included the parents' reports in the case study just as he should in studies of this sort.

It was British Medical Journalist Brian Deer and BMJ patsie Godlee who  provided misleading information regarding 12 children's histories with the malicious purpose of injuring Dr. Wakefield by falsely making it appear that [he] altered, manipulated or misrepresented data for the 12 cases. In fact, all of the facts and findings in the Lancet paper are supported by the documents for these 12 patients, who are still firmly behind Dr Wakefield.

There are a number of independent studies that support the MMR Autism link, and here I do stress INDEPENDENT, because so few studies are independent of pharmceutical company influence these days. Professor Walker-Smith and Dr. Amar Dhillon together documented their own independent research that also points to a link between MMR vaccine and autism. Wake Forest University study determined that 70 of 82 autistic children they studied had measles viruses in their guts. Interestingly, the measles virus strain they discovered was not a wild virus -- it was the same strain used in MMR vaccines. Then there is Russian born U.K. paediatrician, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. She established the connection of gastrointestinal tract disorders among the very young to autistic and other behavioral problems She further proved her work by being able to cure many of them with proper diet and supplementation.  She learned how the hard way, by curing her own autistic son, her published work is some of the best, most rigorous work I ever had to help review.

Vaccines should be given on a risk v benefit basis only, but these days the vast sums of money involved have blurred the medical basis of decisions. There is definately vaccine overload now. The sloppy way many vaccines are made horrifies me, the adjuncts that go into them would make your toes curl but worst of all is what happens to those parents who are unfortunate enough to have a child damaged by vaccines as the full weight of the big pharma machine lands on their backs - and the tactics they use are nothing short of Orwellian !

The medical journals are big business, and they are businesses that rely on advertising revenue from the various medical and drug companies that advertise in them and so I do not think we can consider them independent any longer, sadly. As to the drug companies……………. Would you like a list of the times they have been caught out falsifying studies, slewing test and study results, covering up the effects of dangerous drugs, harassing victims, slandering those who dare question them ? If you think the likes of the European Medicines Agency or FDA are there to protect you I suggest you look closely at the histories of those at the top of those organisations as they have all worked for the companies they are now expected to regulate or have financial links to them.  

The problem with the "New Age bullcrap" is that there is actually a basis for it, unfortunately these people are often their own worst enemies but please do not think for one second that there is not a basis to what they say.

What do I say to them ? I say that as it is their child they must research both sides of the debate and come to their own decision and if they decide to vaccinate then go and take insurance on their child against having to take legal; action due to suspected vaccine damage. You can still do this in Europe but interestingly the number of companies will to do this are shrinking quickly - draw your own conclusions here - insurance companies always know a bad bet when they see it !

Regards,

Judith vd R.

How responsible is it for a parent to bet that it's better to prevent a miniscule (and possibly almost imaginary) risk of autism than to immunize them against hepatitis A and B, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, measles, mumps, and rubella, as well as polio, chicken pox, meningococcal meningitis, pneumonia, rotavirus, and flu?

I expect religious yahoos to claim that they know better than the scientists. I don't expect well-educated people to ignore expert advice and simple logic.

Agreed.  How strong is the stigma of autism that people fear it more than possibly deadly diseases? 

The biggest problem with children not being vaccinated, they are riding on the backs of kids who have been vaccinated - whooping cough is on the rise in certain parts of Australia, simply because kids are not being vaccinated. It can be passed on by teenagers who have no or very little sign of whooping cough but can pass it on to very young babies who don't stand a fighting chance - if parents want their boys to be sterile, let them get mumps.

The rise of many diseases around the world is directly linked to kids not being immunized. When smallpox was all but eliminated, parents didn't get their kids immunized against smallpox, up came the stats on smallpox.

For example, Iowa is one state that requires immunization against 10 diseases before a child can enter kindergarten, but state law allows parents with a religious belief against immunization to claim a non-medical exemption by filling out a card and having it notarized. Multiple diseases are on the rise in Iowa, as parents proceed not to get their kids fully vaccinated.

Risks of any approved vaccination are nearly insignificant compared to the risks associated with the diseases they prevent.

Anytime a decision is based on fear, then common sense and facts get set aside.

Parents are scared of immunization causing Autism - I find it dangerous for anyone to simply blame vaccines for the rise in autism diagnoses when it could just as easily be because of the greater awareness and methods of testing and diagnosis, and parents being generally more aware if they find something - whatever it might be - wrong with their child.

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/113/5/e472.short

Autism is not a disease but a syndrome with multiple nongenetic and genetic causes.These studies fail to confirm that immunizations with the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine are responsible for the surge in autism.

I have three children, and I would rather the chance of 'something going wrong' or Austism against the chance of them getting whooping couph, smallpox or polio - or my children spreading any disease.

"Risks of any approved vaccination are nearly insignificant compared to the risks associated with the diseases they prevent."

This. So very much this. People are notoriously bad at assessing relative risk. While it is true that catching the measles, for example, is unlikely to happen in the US these days, that's due to the prevelance of vaccinations and herd immunity. That herd immunity becomes endangered when people do not vaccinate. Prior to the measles vaccine, 3-4 million people each year were infected with the measles. Six to 20 percent of the people who get the disease will get an ear infection, diarrhea, or even pneumonia. One out of 1000 people with measles will develop inflammation of the brain, and about one out of 1000 will die. (Source: CDC Measles FAQ )

So, if you get the measles, there is a .1 percent chance you will die, a .1 percent chance you will suffer from inflammation of the brain, and up to a 1 in 5 chance that you will be ill in one way or another. Whereas with the vaccine,  there is a 5% chance of a mild fever or rash and a less than one in a million chance of a serious reaction such as encephalitis or encephalopathy.

Between a one in a thousand chance and a one in a million chance, I know which I would choose.

These people are like the people who are afraid to fly: an emotional reaction of fear to a miniscule risk, which has them taking a far bigger in order to allay their fear. Just as you're far more likely to die in a crash on the way to the airport than in an airplane crash, people are willing, due to irrational fear, to bet their children won't die due to the diseases vaccination prevents in order to prevent a condition, autism, which after all is NOT fatal.

Bet your kid's life and help perpetuate fatal diseases. Does this sound rational to you?

Here is an interesting article by a psychologist about this and other irrational fears.

"These people are like the people who are afraid to fly: an emotional reaction of fear to a miniscule risk,.."


I agree. Modern day hypochondriacs. 

@Judith Van Der Roos  Thank you for your input, but, there is information out there that is counter to your argument against the much maligned Dr. Wakefield. 

1.) http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2011/01/7246/

Also, Dr. Wakefield was struck off of the Medical Register and has not appealed the decision.  Is that the action of innocent happenstance?  I don't think so. His suing the editors and journalists is more grandstanding as he attempts to salvage what is left of his reputation.  http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/jan/05/andrew-wakefield-sues...   - That guilty verdict was way back in 2010.  As always, history in this case is making things more clear. 

During the first half of 2008 saw the largest US outbreak of measles—one of the first infectious diseases to reappear after vaccination rates drop—since 2000, when the native disease was declared eliminated.  In some ways, we can attribute this to Dr. Wakefield.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2682483/

It is sad, really. Sad that so many children have died because of the controversy surrounding this.

Just say - "you are an ignorant fool" and leave it at that

I think what's annoying to me is that in today's day and age. There is so much easy access to information. Scientific data, etc... Yet many people still rely on the ol word of mouth.

Or the word of others who profess to know what's going on and really don't.. or even conspiracy sites. 

Demitri,

The issue of vaccinating your offspring is not to be taken lightly. I can certainly understand the parent's motivation to protect their children with the tools of modern science. It remains even today a hotly debated issue as to the pros and cons. And there is a very negative flip side to this coin. I worked with an individual that was struck with a horrendous result of having infant vaccination on his little girl. I believe the child was less than a year old when the series of prescribed vaccines were recommended and started by their family physician. Something went terribly wrong and the little girl had a violent reaction to the vaccine(s) and she suffered irreparable damage to her brain. Basically it "cooked" her brain cells. She was left permanently disabled mentally and physically. The medication necessary thereafter to keep her involuntary epileptic convulsions under control ended up poisoning her liver and other organs and she tragically died at the age of 20. After years of legal proceedings the state determined negligence and found in favor of my friend and they were awarded a large settlement.

Parents should exercise care and concern when having their children vaccinated. I believe extreme caution should be maintained when dealing with infants and very small children. As they grow older and larger I believe the risk of an adverse reaction possibly lessens.   

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