An anti-vaccine conference creates a market for fear

Colin —  April 16, 2014 — 227 Comments

Last weekend I attended the Autism Trust’s Give Autism a Chance Summit. Billed as an “informative conference,” it actually felt like a Two Minutes Hate about the evils of science and medicine. Speakers harangued the audience about the evils of vaccination–including a bizarre show trial–and pushed snake oil on desperate parents. Some of the speakers touted services based on absurd, unproven theories; others lied shamelessly to the attendees. Although there were some positive messages on display, the conference focused on sowing fear and using it to move product.

Image altered from its original form. Original image credit as linked; licensed under Creative Commons BA-SY 2.0.

Parents of autistic children are reaching out for help.
What they find are people reaching for their wallet.

To be clear, the attendees of the conference and a number of the panelists were obviously there with the best of intentions. Some of the speakers worked hard to provide excellent, sensible advice about caring for children on the autism spectrum, such as how to help them use social media responsibly, how to make sure they’re safe at school, and how to make more severely afflicted children comfortable at dental appointments. Others, and numerous parents who came up to speak at an open-mike session, told moving and uplifting stories about their own personal experiences. The heart of the movement is certainly built around giving autistic people and their families support for their difficult journeys.

But rather than give the audience the best science or using a critical eye to weed out the opportunistic hucksters, the conference organizers emphasized the worst parts of the autism and anti-vaccine community. They made their priorities quite clear when they brought in Andrew Wakefield to take charge on stage. Wakefield is the disgraced British researcher who attempted to discredit the MMR vaccine with a fraudulent study, allegedly for his own profit. But the Summit put him on stage before an audience of parents, moderating panels that hawked products and services to them. He brought with him a veritable circus of anti-vaccine advocates and vendors eager to sell their products and services to desperate parents.

I can only summarize a small part of the summit, particularly the speakers who struck me as particularly appalling. One of them was Dr. Arthur Krigsman. Like Wakefield, Krigsman has a checkered past. Like Wakefield, he is a strong believer in an autism-MMR connection. Like Wakefield, he has failed to prove it. Like Wakefield, his failure to prove it has not prevented him pushing the theory. And like Wakefield, regulators have found reason to question his actions.

Krigsman was an expert witness in what are called the Omnibus Proceedings, in which a neutral court examined the evidence and found the evidence for an autism-vaccine link insufficient. The court discussed Krigsman’s background in one of its opinions, starting on page 138. It noted that Krigsman “left [his] hospital’s employ under questionable circumstances,” and that he had admitted that “the hospital restricted his privileges to perform endoscopies (an invasive procedure with some risks) in the belief that Dr. Krigsman was performing medically unwarranted endoscopies on children for research purposes.” He later moved to Texas and began working with Wakefield; the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners fined him “in part because of his ‘falsification’ and ‘attempted concealment’ of a prior disciplinary action by the Florida medical board.” The court further noted that Krigsman listed four “publications” on his c.v., but that only one of them was actually a publication.

Based on its website, Dr. Krigsman’s clinic is apparently still taking patients for a condition he calls autistic enterocolitis. Wakefield proposed that this condition exists; the medical community overall rejects the notion. A separate court ruling observed that “‘autistic enterocolitis” is not recognized as a distinct medical condition,” that “Dr. Krigsman’s testimony about autistic enterocolitis as a diagnostic entity was speculative and unsupported by the weight of the evidence,” and “that Dr. Krigsman’s view that autistic enterocolitis was a new bowel disorder was not recognized by the gastroenterology medical community or medical textbooks.” It found “the evidence supporting the regressive autistic enterocolitis phenotype to be scanty, and Dr. Krigsman’s problems with medical authority and his own ‘resume padding’ did not enhance his credibility.” This is not to say that autistic kids don’t have gut problems, but rather that the medical community apparently doesn’t feel there’s good evidence that a distinct condition such as autistic enterocolitis exists. Dr. Krigsman does not seem to have let these criticisms interfere with his business. The Autism Trust and Andrew Wakefield put him in front of an audience of parents looking for help and told them he was a hero.

They neglected to mention things parents might want to know before putting their kids in his care, such as the fact that a hospital “restricted his privileges to perform endoscopies (an invasive procedure with some risks) in the belief that Dr. Krigsman was performing medically unwarranted endoscopies on children for research purposes.” Instead, they gave him a platform to speak about why parents should let him perform endoscopies on their autistic children.

I’m not a doctor, and I can’t say that his advice was wrong or dangerous. (He goes into some of those reasons starting around 35:30.) Another panelist acknowledged (around 58 minutes in) that many doctors do not feel such procedures are necessary. That’s hardly surprising. Dr. Krigsman’s website includes a FAQ discussing “autistic enterocolitis” but neither poses nor answers the fundamental question: does it even exist? Outside of Wakefield and Krigsman’s coterie, the answer appears to be no.

It's never really free.

It’s never really free.

 

Krigsman obviously understands that many parents of autistic children might have trouble paying for his endoscopies. He and the other speakers explained some ways parents can work an insurance company to get coverage for his services and what to do if their carrier refuses. He also asked attendees to donate money to pay for the procedure. Given his background, I’m dubious that Dr. Krigsman’s advice was based on good, solid science. But I think it’s quite likely that he found new patients at the conference, and that the experience will enrich Dr. Krigsman.

Another panelist told parents that autism needs to be “reversed,” not “managed,” and that Western medicine is flawed because it doesn’t focus on that. Conveniently he was sitting in the same panel as Dr. Kendall Stewart, who had his very own vendor stall selling autism-themed supplements. If you missed the conference, and you have more money than you’d like, you can buy his wares online as well. Their catalog sells an “Autism Starter Kit” for nearly $200 (“$11 in savings!”).

 

Stewart isn’t as notorious as Krigsman or Wakefield, but he has made and failed to prove his own extravagant, self-serving claims. Interviewed for a 2013 article on the business of purporting to treat autism, Stewart claimed to have treated thousands of kids. But he couldn’t give any plausible explanation why he hasn’t performed evidence-based studies to demonstrate that his expensive treatments work. He suggested his methods were just too controversial to publish. I can’t find any indication that he’s ever tried. And what would be in it for him? The data might not support his claims. If he never tries to publish, he never runs that risk.

If a doctor charges you a lot of money for it, it must be medicine, right?

If a doctor charges you a lot of money for it, it must be medicine, right?

 

Although Dr. Stewart told parents that other doctors aren’t sophisticated enough to understand the issues of autistic children, at 1:24, he demonstrated an alarmingly high threshold for nonsense. When asked for advice on helping autistic children and their parents get restful sleep at night, he suggested EM radiation from wireless routers could be keeping them awake (at 1:36). Of course he did not offer any scientific support for the absurdunfounded idea that humans can detect such low-power radiation, consciously or unconsciously. But the Summit gave him a stage to peddle this nonsense—and expensive pills, powders and potions—to parents of autistic children.

The Summit’s preaching reached a fever pitch, predictably, during the Vaccines panel. (The panel starts about 2 hours and 40 minutes into that video,and continues into the next video at that site.) Two panelists, a plaintiff and his attorney who had failed to convince the vaccine court that their case had merit, complained at length that one of the government’s experts gave conflicting expert reports. Their presentation was naturally very one-sided, relying heavily on a document leaked from a closed case file and presented out-of-context without critical evaluation or discussion. Wakefield nevertheless called for blood, demanding that the government lawyers be punished for inconveniencing the anti-vaccine movement. He conducted a straw poll of the audience asking whether two specific Department of Justice attorneys should “stand trial on charges of fraudulent misrepresentation and obstruction of justice.” When he called for the attendees to cry out their support of his bizarre demands, it revealed the heart of the anti-vaccine movement: it relies on fear and confusion, and abhors the calm deliberation of courts and scientists.

There was no panel or discussion analyzing the scientific consensus on vaccines, or discussing the problems with anti-vaccine research such as Wakefield’s. The panelists didn’t talk about how parents can educate themselves and sort good advice from expensive nonsense. I suspect such advice would be contrary to their business interests. Instead, my impression was that many people on stage were there to create a culture of fear—Fear technology! Fear Big Pharma! Fear doctors! Fear GMO foods! Fear vaccines! There was no rational discussion of whether such fear was warranted. Instead, there were speakers and vendors touting goods and services to help parents manage that fear. Supplements, endoscopy, homeopathy, naturopathy, and chiropractic: the market was booming.

Wakefield and his celebrity guests weren’t hawking merchandise. There are no Wakefield-brand tennis shoes or patent-pending MMR-shielding magnetic bracelets. Yet. But he and the other moderators were there to benefit off the backs of their audience nevertheless. The panelists harangued the crowd for hours, reinforcing the message of fear and driving home the point that the world is out to get parents, especially parents of autistic kids. Wakefield, the other moderators, and the celebrity guests presented themselves as brave rebels against the system, and reaped the crowd’s adulation. The washed-up celebrities got treated like A-listers, and Wakefield was once again–for a little while–a serious and respected health care professional. For an exposed fraud, particularly one whose malfeasance has been so dangerous to children, it must have been intoxicating to stand in front of a room full of parents primed to see him as their children’s savior. For that day, in that place, he was free from the shame that follows his name.

He’ll send us the bill.

 

All image credits to their original photographers or rights owners. Hand image altered from original and licensed under Creative Commons BY-SA 2.0. “Electric treatment“, Illustration, and Without Equal images licensed under Creative Commons BY 2.0.

 

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227 responses to An anti-vaccine conference creates a market for fear

  1. 

    Wow!!!

  2. 

    The two minute hate comparison is spot on. I’ve only been to a handful of conventions like this and I always leave with a bad taste in my mouth. Also I don’t have time to go to these things. I’m at home with my child with autism. I don’t think my son needs to be cured. He has amazing special education teachers and therapists at his school. wonderful therapist who come into our home to help him over come daily struggles with ABA therapy. These type of things are spoken about at conventions but not as much as blaming vaccines or weird alternative methods that can reverse autism that cost insane amounts of money. Instead of pointing fingers and putting blame on just any random thing let’s focus on those with autism and how we can make life just a little easier. They’re not lost causes, they’re people who think and feel. Maybe not in the same way the rest of us do, but they still do. My son is very verbally delayed and 8 years old so I cannot ask him what could help him and get a real response but there are many adult and teenagers on the autism spectrum who have the means to. There isn’t a quick fix or cure, there never will be but sketchy fake science isn’t helping anyone.

    • 

      This conference did cover some solid practical help for parents and kids, and I’ve been told that the Tommey family (which seems to be behind the Autism Trust) is starting a “life skills program.” That’s great, but I wonder what they’d be able to accomplish if they put their resources into proven therapies rather than supplements and Wakefield worship?

  3. 

    Excellent article and thank you so much for attending and reporting on the conference.

    Mrs. (Polly) Tommey founded The Autism Trust U.K. before she moved herself and her family to Austin Texas to start the The Autism Trust USA. Polly Tommey and Mr. Wakefield are the sole owners of The Autism Media Channel, which is headquartered in Austin, Texas, where they both reside with their families.

    The Autism Media Channel is a major company which has its own radio channel with programs they produce and scads of videos have been taped, including all the videotape, some of which was featured on Age of Autism’s multi-part series which detailed the hospitalization of a 14 year old autistic boy Alex Spourdalakis and the interference in his medical care by the biomeddling “Autism is Medical” group.

    Wakefield showed up at that Chicago hospital to provide his opinion about Alex’s purported gut problems and someone made arrangements to drive the boy from Chicago to East Rockaway New York to one of two office practices (the other one is located in Austin Texas), owned by Dr. Arthur Krigsman for bowel scoping.

    After Alex was murdered by his mother and his “godmother”, Wakefield, who had possession and the legal rights to all the videotape of Alex, provided an interview to another radio station to described the 18 minute documentary of Alex’s life (and presumably the circumstances leading up to his violent death), which Wakefield was shopping around to major network television stations.

    Poor Alex. He was victimized repeatedly by his caregivers, by the biomeddling parent group, by Wakefield, Tommey and Krigsman, during his short lifetime. He is still being victimized, even after his death, by evil, evil people.

    http://leftbrainrightbrain.co.uk/2013/08/31/whitewashing-the-brutal-murder-of-alex-spourdalakis/

  4. 
    Basken Robbins April 17, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    Not sure about Wakefield… although I’ve heard a number of less than savory details about him, I think the concept of gut issues in autism is an important avenue to explore and shouldn’t be considered quacky.

    I can see how hawking supplements could be regarded as unethical, but advising or discussions around some of the less mainstream interventions may have some benefits to particular subgroups of autistics. For example, gluten free, although it has gotten a bad rap, may actually be a useful dietary intervention for some with autism, and is in no way harmful.

    good write up, though

    • 

      Thanks, I appreciate it.

      Whether the gut issues are a real artifact of autism or not, and whether interventions like gluten-free diets, are empirical questions. I actually don’t know what the answers are, so I wouldn’t tell someone–and hope I didn’t convey in the article–that they’re per se quackery. But I think it becomes quackery when someone is pushing them hard with a profit motive, and not acknowledging the state of the science on the question. That’s what I saw at the conference.

      • 

        On that “profit motive” element, Colin, the scary thing for me is that Sharryl Attkisson is the one doing the reporting. Given what I know about her (she’s been one who’s been screeching about “liberal bias” in the media and reportedly just left CBS because they weren’t pursuing Benghazi with enough zealotry for her tastes), I keep wondering if we aren’t witnessing a p***ing contest between two skunks, or maybe even half-a-dozen in the brouha circle (or drama llamas or whatever; feel free to supply your own metaphor).

        I noted in an earlier reply to Jennifer that I was “on the fence” on this subject, and it wasn’t from not making open-minded attempts to research the issues after I got into a nasty blogfight with a journalist friend of mine (and I consulted with my sister who’s a research MD at a major university). I’m seeing the same “scapegoating tactics” and personal attacks used by both sides (it is, after all, a profitable source of ore for journalists in today’s tough times for the media), and every time I see “black-and-white” analysis, I see red.

        We need to have more research on the subject of autism (and vaccine safety as well), and the sources of funding need to be outside those with vested interests (or perceived vested interests, which is essentially the same issue).

        Probably sounding a bit too idealistic, but what the heck….. Can we have some grown-ups look at the problem?

      • 

        Colin, what in the hell is the “science” of autism. Please enlighten me….because I have a 12 year old vaccine injured son. I was a panelist at this summit. I saw with my own eyes a beautiful, walking, talking 20 month old baby boy become feverish within a half hour of his vaccines (remember, he was walking, talking, healthy…above the development curve). He started screaming uncontrollably that night and became ill…very ill i.e. failure to thrive….He didn’t say another word until we healed his gut and that took 3 1/2 years. You are doing a serious disservice to people when you blog about something that you truly have no understanding of. Dr. Krigsman is one of the kindest gentlemen I have ever met. Dr. Wakefield was right and is right and if you’ve ever actually read his 1998 paper, you’ll see that he never did anything but say that the parents all had the same story about autism and MMR and that it should be studied more……it’s really sad that there are idiots out there that claim to be scientific but have no answers, empathy or compassion for our injured children because if they acknowledged them…their entire belief system would be destroyed…you’re one of those people Colin…it’s very sad.

        • 

          Dr. Krigsman has a very checkered past and he is still allied with the disgraced and discredited former medical doctor Andrew Wakefield; they both still advance the now thoroughly debunked, nonexistent “theory” of autistic enterocolitis.

          You’re actually bragging that put your child through painful, invasive, not-clinically-indicated bowel cleansings and colonoscopies?

          I’ve read the GMC hearing transcripts and the GMC Fitness-To-Practice decision which resulted in the revocation of Wakefield’s medical license. Have you?

        • 

          Curt, how have you factually established that the injuries you believe your son suffered were in fact caused by vaccines? it is on some basis other than a post hoc ergo procter hoc logical fallacy, I trust.

          “[Wakefield] never did anything but say that the parents all had the same story about autism and MMR and that it should be studied more”

          Of course, he only listened to some of the parents: while 11 of the families blamed the MMR for their children’s symptoms Wakefield only reported 8 families having done so, because excluding the remaining 3 because their report of the onset of their child’s symptoms–months after vaccination–created the false impresion of a rapid (14 day) temporal association.

          That, and falsely claim that nine children were diagnosed with regressive autism, when in fact only one of the nine had a diagnosis of regressive autism and three of the nine were not diagnosed as autistic at all.

          And of course falsely claim that all 12 subjects had been previously normal, when in fact 5 had documented pre-existing behavioral issues.

          And in 9 of the 12 cases misrepresent medical records reporting normal colonic histopathology results to report ‘non-specific colitis’ instead.

          And fail to disclose significant financial conflicts of interest.

          And fail to apply for and receive necessary IRB approval for his research.

          But other than all that…

          • 

            Do you also lambast Paul Offit every time he speaks as a vaccine expert without disclosing his financial conflicts of interest which were several times Wakefield’s?

          • 

            The fact that in the past Dr. Offit was paid for his 25 years of work on developing a vaccine, from which he no longer gets royalties, is not a conflict of interests. Dr. Offit has no direct financial interest in encouraging people to vaccinate.
            In contrast, Andrew Wakefield was being paid in connection to litigation against MMR manufacturers while writing a paper examining the connection between MMR and problems. Big difference.

          • 

            As long as we’re detailing Wakefield’s undisclosed conflicts of interest, in addition to being paid in connection with the litigation recall Wakefield also patented a monovalent measles vaccine for use instead of the MMR vaccine children were currently receiving.

            Needless to say, that patent’s worthless if there is no actual need for a replacement.

          • 

            In addition, the vaccine that Offit and colleagues worked on for over two decades has been saving children.

            Wakefield’s impact on children’s health with his now retracted case series has been less useful and very expensive. In just one year his “research” led to measles outbreaks that cost American taxpayers millions. Just think of how much it cost the UK taxpayers last year when there were over a thousand cases of measles in Wales.

        • 

          I’m unaware that Dr. Offit has any undisclosed conflicts of interest re; vaccines, plasmarules. What undisclosed COI’s do you belevie he has?

          • 

            Wakefield, in addition to that patent for a single antigen measles vaccine, also set up two offshore companies, to develop and to market testing kits to test for MMR Vaccine-induced “autistic enterocolitis”:

            http://briandeer.com/solved/bmj-wakefield-2-2.htm

            “….Trading was to be fronted by Carmel Healthcare Ltd—named after Wakefield’s wife. Firmly rooted in Barr’s lawsuit, which eventually paid Wakefield £435,643, plus expenses, the business was to be launched off the back of the vaccine scare, diagnosing a purported—and still unsubstantiated—“new syndrome.” This, Wakefield claimed, comprised both brain and bowel diseases, which, after Crohn’s disease was not found in any of the Lancet children, he dubbed “autistic enterocolitis.”

            “It is estimated that the initial market for the diagnostic will be litigation driven testing of patients with AE [autistic enterocolitis] from both the UK and the USA,” said a 35 page “private and confidential” prospectus, which was passed to me by a recipient. It aimed at raising an initial £700,000 from investors and forecast extraordinary revenues. “It is estimated that by year 3, income from this testing could be about £3,300,000 rising to about £28,000,000 as diagnostic testing in support of therapeutic regimes come on stream.”

            Carmel was registered in the Irish Republic, where Wakefield would also become a director of another business. This was Unigenetics Ltd, incorporated in February 1999 with a Dublin pathologist, John O’Leary. After Wakefield submitted a confidential report to the Legal Aid Board, Unigenetics was awarded—without checks—£800,000 of taxpayers’ money to perform polymerase chain reaction tests on bowel tissue and blood samples from children passing through Malcolm ward.

            The key players in Carmel were the same as in the first company, Immunospecifics, with their planned equity now set out. Wakefield would get 37%, and the father of child 10 22.2%. The venture capitalist would get 18%, Pounder 11.7%, and O’Leary 11.1%….”

  5. 

    One of my favorite things about supporters of this kind of quackery in how they engage in unconscious irony & hypocrisy. They tout their heroes as “out for the little guy,” and deride “Big Pharma” as only caring about the profits. Yet, a $12 dollar vaccine is worse than $40 for six sugar pills. Because of the fact that “Big Pharma” only “care about profits.”

    Huh?!

  6. 

    Nicely done. Thank you for listening objectively and recognizing the difference between those doing the best they can to help the ones they love and those exploiting them.

  7. 

    What Brook said. I’ve been to two Autism One conferences (and was ejected from both), and while the gatherings both seemed like a snake oil expo, there were some good people there genuinely trying to help. It’s just too bad that the movement has been hijacked by grifters.

    • 

      Thanks both for the kind words. What did they kick you out for? I was browsing Orac on my laptop during one panel and heard some muttering behind me, but that was all I encountered.

  8. 

    Colin, you are a very sad person.You talk about this “unscientific” summit yet your “scientists” offer nothing. All we hear is “we don’t know what causes autism…BUT IT ISN’T VACCINES!” Guess what Colin? It is vaccines. All of the parents there saw it happen to their own child, myself included. Deny away Colin, it’s people like you that hate true science…because it messes up your little flat world. You’re a disgrace.

    • 

      With respect curt what have you offered? A scape goat?

      Why is it vaccines? there have been several decades of in depth testing from hundreds of countries all over the world and NONE of them have found a link. They did the work.

      I’m sure you are going to tell us some reason why it is vaccines. I’m also sure that your reason/theory will change 5 times within the same conversation and you won’t even realize it as you blindly search for a reason for you to pin it on a single source.

      So with respect why isn’t the increase in Autism due to the increased age of mothers before they have a kid (known cause), increased testing and reporting (known cause), the decrease in mothers using breast milk, increased preservatives in our food, the radiative isotopes in our atmosphere, the inhalation of pesticides, or the increase in pollution. or any of the other thousand things.

      Why is it vaccines not not anything else? The reality is you don’t know. because you haven’t looked at anything else. and that is certainly not “true” science.

      • 

        Kevin, I have seen children recover from autism. The doctor that vaccinated my son saw what happened to him and doesn’t even vaccinate her own children. But she lied to us for two years saying it wasn’t the vaccines and that we should institutionalize our son. Because we listened to snake oil salesmen like Krigsman and Wakefield, our son is now a great kid in 6th grade with a lot of issues still but not in an institution. Take a look at that “research” that you’re trusting Kevin. Take a look at the conflicts of interest. The CDC came out and said no vaccine autism connection….then CDC director Gerberding leaves the CDC and becomes president of Merck Vaccines…..please Kevin. Think about it….what would happen to western medicine if the truth came out that they have been lying about these vaccines all along. Please google and read the transcripts for the Simpsonwood Meetings (secret meetings held outside of CDC HQ because they thought that would keep them from having to honor a FOIA….

        • 

          ASD is a developmental disorder. Some children overcome some of their obstacles with no intervention. That is why anecdotes are a problematic form of evidence: some children will change anyway, and with no control group, you cannot say it was the treatment. There are no real, objective studies supporting the effectiveness of chelation and other biomed treatments for children with autism. There is, however, evidence of the risks of treatments like chelation (not to mention the horrible MMS or chemical castration). And it’s clear that the tests – and the treatments – can be painful and distressing to the children.

          Imposing untested treatments – with, let me add, little to none biological basis behind them – treatments that carry risks and cause pains on little children is problematic.

        • 

          Curt, autism is a condition characterized by developmental delay, not developmental stassis.

          How exactly have you determined that if you hadn’t listened to ‘snake oil salesmen like Krigsman and Wakefield’ (your characterization, not mine, but one I wholeheartedly agree with) our son would not now also be a great kid in 6th grade with a lot of issues still but not in an institution?

        • 

          And Wakefield patents a 1 shot vaccine, then says there’s a danger to the 3 shot MMR vaccine, and stood to make tens of millions if the MMR vaccine was recalled. But no, there’s no conflict there, is there? Yes, it’s incredibly shocking that a respected specialist in infectious diseases would get a job dealing with infectious diseases. What should she have done when Obama didn’t keep her on, retire?

        • 

          Do what I notice Curt. YOu don’t answer a single one of my question. You didn’t look at any of the other factors.

          Your argument was so lazy in fact that I specifically stated that have NO RESPECT for world wide conspiracy theoriests and you go on a rant about conspiracies. This additued isn’t going to convince me of anything.

          and with respect….. I’m in the ASD spectrum myself. So Trotting out your son as an emotional appeal each time as little affect on me.

          So would you like to try this again? Maybe without magic and world wide conspiracies.

          Would you like to address the other factors or your complete failure to consider them?

        • 

          ” Simpsonwood Meetings (secret meetings held outside of CDC HQ because they thought that would keep them from having to honor a FOIA”

          This sounds a little paranoid, and a lot like a conspiracy theory. What’s your evidence for the allegation that the CDC held an offsite to try to evade FOIA requirements?

    • 

      I wouldn’t say that scientists offer nothing. They offer solutions for polio, smallpox, rotavirus, measles, HPV, diptheria, hepatitis A and B, rabies, chickenpox (and shingles), tetanus, tuberculosis, pertussis, and other diseases. And that’s just vaccines. The same scientists, using the same scientific methods, also gave us antibiotics, antivirals, anesthesia, antihistamines, angioplasty, appendectomies, and a lot of other life-saving and life-improving treatments from B-Z.

      In contrast, what have the Krigsmans and Stewarts of the world given us? Big bills? No real solutions for autism–if they could demonstrate actual results scientifically, they’d be legitimate heroes with their names over medical schools like Salk and Fleming. They only give false fear and uncertainty and doubt, which they leverage for their own profit.

      • 

        Really colin? The solutions for these diseases were answered before the vaccines and if you knew your true history instead of the propaganda spouted by the idiots in medicine you would know that. Salk gave us the SV 40 virus that is still killing children today…Krigsman is healing guts and helping children. When you actually mention the life saving surgeries (that I agree with…these are real doctors) please keep in mind that the Assoc. of American Surgeons and Physicians is anti-vaccine….Vaccines have caused far more death and destruction than they could have possibly thought of saving…..I’d be happy to debate you on this issue on my radio show or just right here…. you’re actually a subject of my show today….:)

        • 

          The Association of American Surgeons and Physicians has 3000 members. It’s a political group, not a medical one. They also believe evolution is a humanist conspiracy.

          http://www.jpands.org/hacienda/caine6.html

          • 

            They also published a piece alleging that Obama was using neurolinguistic programming in his television appearances to force people to vote for him through hypnosis. One point they raised is that the “O” in his campaign logo “resembles a crystal ball, a favorite of hypnotists.” Mr. Linderman appears to have a light filter for sources that confirm his preconceptions.

        • 

          Not really. The number of cases of each disease was very high up to each vaccine: http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=209448

          The Salk vaccine did not have much of a SV40 problem – it was an inactivated vaccine, and the formaldehyde also killed the SV40. The Sabine live virus did contain it, and it could have been an issue. Luckily, it turned out not to cause cancer, as the most recent studies – linked to here: http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php/polio-vaccines-cancer-debunking-myth/ – show. And note that there has not been a similar scandal since the 1960s.

          Thanks to vaccines, many many lives were saved and much suffering avoided. Here is a recent piece: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMms1215400

        • 

          Curt, do list the evidence you have regarding SV40. Quite a few studies have been done looking at individuals who were exposed in the late 50s-60s (hardly children today, unless you have some strange math you’re using) and found that SV40 has not caused an increase in cancer or other ill effects. Once SV40 contamination was discovered, production was halted, methods of production and testing were changed and the contamination was eliminated.

        • 

          “Salk gave us the SV 40 virus that is still killing children today…”

          Citation needed.

          “Krigsman is healing guts and helping children.”

          Citation needed.

          “Vaccines have caused far more death and destruction than they could have possibly thought of saving”

          Citation truly, madly, desparately needed.

          “I’d be happy to debate you on this issue on my radio show or just right here”

          No need to go to all that trouble, curt. Just provide citations to publications in first tier peer-reviewed journals demonstrating the claims you’e made above are in fact accurate–such journals tather than radio shows, are after all the forum in which working scientists and medical professional ‘debate’ the issue of vaccine safety and efficacy.

          • 

            Curt I might be wrong but I thought SV40 only slipped into vaccines for a period in the 50’s, it was a mistake and when recognised it was corrected. So how is it “still killing kids today”? Also it still hasn’t been proven that SV40 causes cancer.

            I’m not going to bother following up this question of SV40, as the person making the claim that is your job (Burden of Proof)

    • 

      Guess what Mr. Linderman? It is not vaccines. Autism is a developmental disability and is present at birth. Many of the chromosomal and gene mutations have already been identified.

      https://sfari.org/

    • 

      “Guess what Colin? It is vaccines.”

      And your evidence demonstrating that it is in fact the vaccines would be what exactly, curt?

      I mean, you do have some…right?

  9. 

    Is there a list of anti-vaxer claims.

    For global warming there is http://www.skepticalscience.com/
    for evolution http://talkorigins.org/indexcc/list.html

    because truthfully I understand why parents have such a hard time with this. They are worried they are scared for many it’s the first time in there life that they feel so responsible for someones well being and as much as it is possible to get information it is also hard to get it and understand it. To top it off Google searches are usually keyed to your interests so if you are already leaning toward natural pathic remedies you’ll end up on anti-vaccine sites. That do a damn good job of telling half truths and incomplete information. That it becomes really hard to debunk a claim unless you know exactly where to look.

    • 

      I’m working on one, actually–an anti-vax FAQ. In the meantime, you might try http://antiantivax.flurf.net/.

      • 

        thanks Colin
        When it comes to controversial topics that I lack expertise in. I tend to take a claim that has been made than systematically looking at the counter claim/explanation.

        Eventually I find that one side or the other is using word games, cherry picking information, making hypocritical statements or an over abundance of emotional appeals and world wide conspiracy accusations and from there it is reduced down from a matter for experts on topics I don’t know enough about to a matter of honesty and morality. Something everyone should be able to recognize on a topic.

        and when it comes to the Anti-vaxiers they piss me off much more than they should but I honestly can’t stand them taking advantage of parents fear the way they do.

        • 

          Hey spector…then you should be anti vax. The word games are on the pro vaccine side. Like 83 families have been compensated for vaccine injuries that resulted in AUTISM – LIKE -SYMPTOMS…do you want to know what the problem with that is????? Colin, this might interest you as well…..autism is a diagnosis that only comes from looking at the SYMPTOMS! So please enlighten me fellows…..who is playing word games here? Yes….we (the government) conceded many cases of vaccine injury where the child developed autism…..but it’s really NOT autism because that woould be bad for us because we’ve been saying for 30 years now that vaccines don’t cause autism…so we just call it “autistic-like-symptoms” and the moron blogers, reporters and media that is beholden to us for 66% of their advertisnig budget will ensure that nobody gets it and we’ll keep lying and poisonning children as the numbers continue to increase, we’ll just say we’re diagnosing better….ha!!!! And they’ll fall fo r it because they’re a bunch of sheep/

          • 

            But you’re one of the “moron blogers, reporters, and media”. If you really think that Dr. Raff is doing this for money, you’re delusional. I have little doubt that you are paid for your radio show, however.

          • 

            So, please enlighten us, what are the structural/physiological/biochemical roots of autism? I work in a facility that is dedicated to finding the causes of and treatment of various brain abnormalities. We haven’t had any big celebrations of late for discovery of a cause of any brain abnormality-and believe me, we do like to celebrate when somebody makes a breakthrough. It happens so rarely….

          • 

            Now you are just making stuff up Mr. Linderman. “Autism-like symptoms” are not autism.

            The United States Court of Federal Claims (Vaccine Court) has awarded damages for encephalitis…never autism.

            Encephalitis is not autism and “autistic-like symptoms” is not autism.

          • 

            Curt, you do realize that the fact theses families have been compensated for autism-like symptoms means, by definition, they have not been compenstaed for developing an autism psectrum disorder?

          • 

            Curt, so I suppose that “influenza-like illness” is exactly the same as influenza in your world, then? Quick grammar lesson for you: the appending of “like” means that it is similar to, but not the same as, the condition which it follows. “Influenza-like” means the symptoms are similar to influenza, but the condition is not influenza. Similarly, “autism-like” means that some of the symptoms are similar to those of autism, but the condition is not autism because it does not meet the full definition.

          • 

            spector567=Me FYI

            and you are not convincing me of anything. You have made claims but failed to back them up with any source. Meanwhile you have stated a rather flimsly line of reasoning that once again requires conspiracy and collusion of epic proportions.

            Than you go on a victrolic rant insulting people.

            So with respect if you are trying to convince me that you are right you are donig a terrible job.

            It frankly sounds more like you are trying to convince yourself and boost your ego by insulting others.

            Would you like to try again?

          • 

            Sorry it’s defaulting to different user names depending on what computer I use

            • 

              Todd, you are making this too easy. There is a medical test that will tell you whether you have a “flu” or a cold. So if you have the “flu” you can have it tested. The only way to diagnose autism is by having the child show a certain number of “symptoms”. If you look at the history of these 83 cases which have been compensated, the government was very specific…we’re compensating you for these underlying conditions and we are not compensating you for your child’s “autism”. They were even adamant in the case files that these families were not allowed to talk about their child’s autism. Once again…double speak by people that have no clue about the real science.

          • 

            Curt, you are missing the point. There are many different things that can cause symptoms similar to autism. Just like there are many different viruses that can cause influenza-like illnesses. So, please tell us how you ruled out those other causes to arrive at an autism diagnosis for the kids in those cases. Also bear in mind that there are other mental disorders with symptoms similar to autism but which are not autism.

            • 

              Read the damn Hannah Polling decision you idiots. My God, can you be this completely stupid????? Either come on the program or stop the arguments…you are making no sense at all because you’re not even reading the damn cases that I am discussing here. You’re all like religious zealots.

              • 

                Hannah Poling’s “decision” is a consent decree in which the government conceded a table injury, encephalopathy. Absolving the plaintiffs from a need to show the vaccines actually caused her harm. Not conceding vaccines caused autism. No court finding on anything. As pointed out by Dr. Paul Offit: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp0802904:
                “Let me be very clear that the government has made absolutely no statement [in this case or anywhere] indicating that vaccines are a cause of autism.”

        • 

          Curt, you might try reading the Poling case yourself, except this time try to understand what it really says, not what you want it to say.

      • 

        Not everyone who has some of the symptoms of autism has the diagnosis, as people have explained to you. There is more to the diagnosis of autism than having some of the symptoms, as you should know; you need to meet a certain threshold.

        As explained by Liz Ditz, who also explains the other problems in the Holland article: “The core of the argument in Holland et al appears to boil down to the following claims.

        Autism, “autism-like” symptoms, and encephalphathy are all the same thing. “Because autistic disorder is defined only by an aggregation of symptoms, there is no meaningful distinction between the terms “autism” and “autism-like symptoms.” and on page 495, an even further distortion of the DSM-IV definition of autism, One must note that the DSM-­IV definition of “autistic disorder” is similar on its face to the VICP’s definitions of “encephalopathy, seizures and sequela.”

        This is an astonishing and counter-factual claim. A diagnosis of autism is made using the DSM-IV criteria; a person must exhibit enough of the criteria to recieve an autism diagnosis. I like Orac’s two examples:” This is akin to arguing that anyone who has a belly ache or diarrhea must have irritable bowel syndrome or that someone who experiences a headache must have migraines.””
        http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2011/05/critiques-of-h0lland-et-al-unanswered-questions.html

        I hope that is clearer.

        • 

          I’ve read the “damn Hannah Poling decision” and the awarding of damages was for a Table Injury…not autism.

          I also read the comment posted on an anti-vaccine blog, by Hannah’s mother Terry Poling, reproduced here on Emily Willingham’s Forbes blog:

          http://www.forbes.com/sites/emilywillingham/2014/03/27/does-regressive-autism-exist/?commentId=comment_blogAndPostId/blog/comment/2416-2334-6519

          • 

            Nor was it a “decision.” This is a common confusion spread largely by anti-vaxers who want to imply that a neutral tribunal found their claims convincing. HHS conceded the encephalopathy, so there was no decision from the court itself as to causation whatsoever. There would have been a ruling entering judgment and determining damages, but I’ve never seen it or even a reference to it. It would be irrelevant to both sides and presumably is still under seal. (The documents that are public from that case were leaked, if I understand the facts properly.)

  10. 

    Oh and Colin, how, as a lawyer, did you managed to write an article on snake oil and not use the Carbolic Smoke Ball ad? It even claimed to treat Diphtheria and Whooping Cough.

  11. 

    I’ll be happy to enlighten you scott. Your problem is that you are still looking at autism as a brain abnormality. There is no doubt that autism is a bio medical condition resulting from toxic injury. The gut issues are very real whether you want to acknowledge them or not. That’s the primary problem with autism research, they won’t look at the very real issues these children have because then the actual cause is staring them in the face. And while there might be some “brain abnormalities” in children with autism, these are also, almost certainly, epigenetic changes caused by toxicity.

    • 

      Can you provide the peer review research supporting that claim?

    • 

      Citations please. If there are epigenetic changes, could you please cite the nature-preferably which loci are having changes in cytosine methylation/histone acetlyation-deacetlyation-methylation patterns. Please also explain the high incidence of autism in Downs Syndrome, Fragile X, and late age pregnancies-all known genetic changes or causes of genetic changes. There are almost certainly epigenetic changes in these cases, but whether they are the result or cause of autism is a great question.

    • 

      “There is no doubt that autism is a bio medical condition resulting from toxic injury.”

      This is indicative of your credibility and ethics. It would perhaps be honest for you to say that you believe that autism is caused by “toxic injury.” But it is objectively false to say “there is no doubt” that is the case.

      In fact, I’m not aware of any legitimate autism experts who hold that it’s a condition “resulting from toxic injury.” That certainly doesn’t reflect the medical consensus or the latest research.

      You’ve been asked a number of times to support your wild claims. Why can’t you do so? And if you can’t, why do you pretend that your pet theory is true beyond a shadow of a doubt?

    • 

      Curt, the evidence demonstrating that “autism is a bio medical condition resulting from toxic injury” would be …what, exactly? Be specific.

      I mean, you do have some…don’t you?

      • 

        But didn’t you hear him? He said there is “no doubt”. I mean with such earnest belief it must be true right? Who needs evidence.

        • 

          Yeah Max, the evidence is that kids are getting better when we’re treating their guts and other biomedical issues. Have you ever actually dealt with a child with autism Max? The evidence is that my son’s gut was torn up and diet helped him, both with his physical and mental health. The evidence is that we dealt with the strep and staph issues associated with vaccine injury (as well as the yeast build up in his gut) and he was suddenly able to tan from the sun and was able to speak, show emotion, etc. You morons can think through a medical textbook that inculcates and brainwashes you all day long…I’m out here in the real world helping kids.

          • 

            “Yeah Max, the evidence is that kids are getting better when we’re treating their guts and other biomedical issues.”

            Where can I find this ev idence, curt (i.e., the published studies demonstrating “treating their guts and other biomedical issues” is an effective treatment for ASD’s)?

            • 

              Yes because in the absence of any studies that show even a correlation let alone causation across a broad range of sufferers, any observation that Lindeman makes about his son (and I am genuinely happy for him if the symptoms have abated) are anecdotal.

          • 

            It’s too bad that some parents of autistic kids use DAN! doctors and subject their children to painful, invasive, dangerous and not-clinically-indicated bowel cleansings and scopings, multiple blood draws which are sent to “specialty laboratories” which use non-CLIA-approved tests to determine the presence of strep, staph and “yeast build up in the gut”.

            The fact that these same credulous parents then brag about their quack doctors and their supposed “treatments/cures” and “recovering their children from autism” on their own blogs and on other blogs is truly an abomination.

  12. 

    JGC56, you do realize the absurdity of your conclusion and thought processes, do you not? You’re going to have to do better than that.That is the equivalent of me shooting you in the head and claiming no liability because you died from mere blood loss….paying no attention to the bullet. Just take a look at what Julie Gerberding (then CDC director and now president of Merck Vaccines) said about the Hannah Polling case. Yes she has autism but it is a very rare case because she had an underlying mytochondrial issue. The real facts behind the case are that her father is a neurosurgeon and her mother is a nurse and a lawyer. The government couldn’t afford to have them testify. So they conceded the case and tried to place them under a gag order. I have met and talked with Hannah’s parents, they know the vaccines caused her autism. The government cannot afford to have the truth come out about the vaccines. Also: we have since learned that this “rare” mitochondrial disorder isn’t so rare after all. Up to 27% of children with autism that have been vaccinated have the very same condition, to include many of the children involved with the Omnibus Autism hearings. So please, continue to try to baffle the masses with your B.S. it doesn’t work with people that have researched this issue and lived through the consequences of vaccination injury.

    • 

      “The government cannot afford to have the truth come out about the vaccines.” – classic conspiracy theory. Let me help you out of your foil hat. I read online that aluminum can cause autism, and we wouldn’t want you to end up with that now would we? ;)

      • 

        Gee Mary…you’re witty as hell…stupid as hell also, but witty nonetheless. And please tell me how you’re so certain that aluminum vaccine adjuvants are safe???? Did you happen to look at the MSDS for Aluminum Hydroxide???? Because I did, and the MSDS simply states that the carcinogenicity, mutagenetic issues and developmental toxicity are “UNKNOWN” because they haven’t been studied! And let me also be clear….the simple chemistry that you can take in high school will show you the toxicity level of aluminum and one only has to look at what OSHA demands of people working in the aluminum industry to see just how dangerous the government knows it is….so continue to try to marginalize us all that you would like with your moronic “conspiracy theorist” moniker….it just shows your complete lack of scientific knowledge. :)

        • 

          MSDS is a document addressing the risks to people working daily with large amounts of the substance. It is not a good source for the risks of the tiny amounts in vaccines. The MSDS for aluminum actually says, for carcinogenic effects, “not available”: http://www.sciencelab.com/msds.php?msdsId=9922844
          So does the MSDS for water: http://www.sciencelab.com/msds.php?msdsId=9927321
          And for caffeine: http://www.sciencelab.com/msds.php?msdsId=9927475
          And for olive oil: http://www.sciencelab.com/msds.php?msdsId=9927377

          The dose makes the poison. There is research about the tiny amounts in vaccines – and it does not support your claims. See:
          Mitkus et al “Updated aluminum pharmacokinetics following infant exposures through diet and vaccination.”
          Vaccine 29 (2011) 9538-9543
          doi.org/10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.09.124
          Baylor NW, Egan W, Richman P. Aluminum salts in vaccines — U.S. perspective. Vaccine. 2002;20:S18-S23.

          Keith LS, Jones DE, Chou C. Aluminum toxicokinetics regarding infant diet and vaccinations. Vaccine. 2002;20:S13-S17.

          See also: http://www.chop.edu/export/download/pdfs/articles/vaccine-education-center/aluminum.pdf

        • 

          I have a high tolerance for sharp remarks, but a low one for classless insults. I will delete future comments that resort to baseless namecalling.

          • 

            Thanks Colin, that is exactly the right balance and I appreciate your willingness to moderate. Insulting comments are a form of bullying and bullying dominates a space preventing a full range of views to be heard.

        • 

          Whoa! I was totally kidding when I said that I read online that aluminum causes autism but apparently no conspiracy is too outlandish for you folks. Nowhere in my 3 sentence comment did I give any indication of my scientific knowledge(or supposed lack thereof). I made a very light-hearted remark and you somehow extrapolated that am “stupid as hell” and became an expert on my educational background and intelligence. I’m impressed! You’re a very intelligent individual. :)

          • 

            Sorry Mary, I let that one go because it was something of a first offense. Mr. Linderman has since been banned for repeatedly (and crassly) insulting civil commenters such as yourself, as well as making some truly pathetic threats.

    • 

      “JGC56, you do realize the absurdity of your conclusion and thought processes, do you not?”
      No, actually. I don’t. If you’ll point out exactly where and why I’m in error I’ll be happy to revise my position.

      “Just take a look at what Julie Gerberding (then CDC director and now president of Merck Vaccines) said about the Hannah Polling case. Yes she has autism but it is a very rare case because she had an underlying mytochondrial issue.”

      Please provide a direct quotation and a citation documenting that she actually stated this with respect to Hannah Polling. I’m only aware she has said “the government has made absolutely no statement about indicating that vaccines are the cause of autism, as this would be a complete mischaracterization of any of the science that we have at our disposal today.”

      “The real facts behind the case are that her father is a neurosurgeon and her mother is a nurse and a lawyer”

      Uhh…no. The real facts are that Hannah was compensated by the NVICP for a table injury, encephalopathy, not for an ASD, and that the NVICP has never once compensated anyone for developing an ASD as a consequence of vaccination.

      “Also: we have since learned that this “rare” mitochondrial disorder isn’t so rare after all.”

      “Not so rare” doesn’t equal “common”, curt. We’re talking an incidence of 1 case in every 11,000 live births-certainly not enough to drive an autism ‘epidemic’.

      “Up to 27% of children with autism that have been vaccinated have the very same condition, to include many of the children involved with the Omnibus Autism hearings.”

      One again: citation needed.

      “So please, continue to try to baffle the masses with your B.S. it doesn’t work with people that have researched this issue and lived through the consequences of vaccination injury.”

      Thank you for the perfect segue, curt. I note you never addressed the critical fundamental question I asked you.I’ll repeat it for your convenience:

      How have you established that the injuries you believe your child suffered were actually caused by vaccines? It is, I trust, on some basis other than a post hoc ergo procter hoc logical fallacy.

      • 

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dh-nkD5LSIg#t=57 Here is the YouTube video of the CNN interview with Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Gerberding.

        • 

          “Just take a look at what Julie Gerberding (then CDC director and now president of Merck Vaccines) said about the Hannah Polling case. Yes she has autism but it is a very rare case because she had an underlying mytochondrial issue.”

          I have the transcript of the YouTube video right here. This is what Dr. Gerberding stated about the Poling case.

          JULIE GERBERDING, DR., CDC DIRECTOR: Well, you know, I don’t have all the facts because I still haven’t been able to review the case files myself. But my understanding is that the child has a — what we think is a rare mitochondrial disorder. And children that have this disease, anything that stresses them creates a situation where their cells just can’t make enough energy to keep their brains functioning normally. Now, we all know that vaccines can occasionally cause fevers in kids. So if a child was immunized, got a fever, had other complications from the vaccines. And if you’re predisposed with the mitochondrial disorder, it can certainly set off some damage. Some of the symptoms can be symptoms that have characteristics of autism.

          So, no. Dr. Gerberding never stated that Hannah Poling has autism. Dr. Gerberding hadn’t “reviewed the case files” and Dr. Gerberding stated, “Some of the symptoms can be symptoms that have characteristics of autism.”

          Hannah was compensated for a Table Injury…not autism and “characteristics of autism” are not autism.

        • 

          Thank you for the youtube video, where Dr. gerberding does not state that vaccines caused Hanah Poling to develop autism. In fact, quite the opposite:

          GERBERDING: But my understanding is that the child has a — what we think is a rare mitochondrial disorder. And children that have this disease, anything that stresses them creates a situation where their cells just can’t make enough energy to keep their brains functioning normally. Now, we all know that vaccines can occasionally cause fevers in kids. So if a child was immunized, got a fever, had other complications from the vaccines. And if you’re predisposed with the mitochondrial disorder, it can certainly set off some damage. Some of the symptoms can be symptoms that have characteristics of autism.

          GUPTA: Yes, I have a two-and-a-half-year-old and a one-year-old as you know. And you know, you know, you think about this all the time. Are we ready to say right now as things stand that childhood vaccines do not cause autism?

          GERBERDING: What we can say absolutely for sure is that we don’t really understand the causes of autism. We’ve got a long way to go before we get to the bottom of this. But there have been at least 15 very good scientific studies on the Institute of Medicine who have searched this out. And they have concluded that there really is no association between vaccines and autism.

    • 

      Front and center on the pamphlet “No information in this document should be construed as medical advice. Neither article authors, associated charities, nor individual contributors take any responsibility or liability for any decision taken as a result of the information contained herein.” in other words-we don’t stand behind what we say.

  13. 

    awwwww Spector, I could care less if you are convinced or not. You mistake me for someone that gives a damn about your opinion. I write this stuff for those that are reading the comments that aren’t completely brainwashed yet. And those that want to do their own homework. You see, I was pro vaccine, that’s why I ‘m in the predicament that I am in with my son…because I listened to idiot doctors that don’t know what they are doing. If Colin is actually a medical professional that is pro vaccine I would love to have a debate on the facts. I will keep the program unedited and he can tape it from his end as well to ensure that everything is on the “up and up”. Bring it on…..

    • 

      Curt why don’t you present the facts here? in writing, with links to accredited information where everyone can double check confirm and research the information you provided. Afterall it should survive scrutiny shouldn’t it?

      Isn’t that more accurate than a recorded Gish Gallop where anyone could say anything without proof?

      And with respect autism has existed since pre-historic times. It’s not something new. How on earth can you so clearly and definitively blame doctors considering the host of other factors that have an effect both environmental and genetic.

      I don’t think my question is unreasonable.

      • 

        Spector, please show e your proof that autism has been around since pre historic times. I’d love to see that evidence. Because my understanding is that Dr. Kanner made it perfectly clear in the 30’s that he and his peers had never seen anything like this before. In fact, from my recollection, Kanner’s peers were quite interested in his new disorder that they had never seen. Please enlighten me. As far as research in writing, I have provided it, and as is the usual case with pro vaccine morons, they just look at the authors, or the journal and dismiss them outright…or they wait for some idiot like Orac to come up with a rebuttal so they can dismiss it and go back to their comfortable lives without worrying about the kids out there suffering…..

        • 

          Curt the research you have provided was quickly rebutted WITH YOUR OWN RESEARCH. All people had to do was read your primary source to see that it didn’t say what you thought it said or that you had to make up a magical conspiracy to make it true.

          As for autism in pre-historic times.
          http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110603122849.htm
          Even wakefield knew only blammed vaccines for the increase not for the invention of ASD. It says a lot when you don’t even know this.

          and I am thinking of kids that are suffering. Remeber I’m ASD myself. How soon you forget what you are arguing about.

          However, for the most part i’m concerned with the MILLIONs of people who suffered through viruses that were prevented thanks to vaccines.

  14. 

    Scott, have you read the diatribe above and countless others regarding Dr. Wakefield???? Do you think that any researcher in the world cares to look into these issues and receive the very same treatment as Wakefield? You should know that most of the research dollars come from the government or pharma and researchers need funding to research…they won’t bite the hand that feeds them. I have interviewed many doctors who will say they aren’t anti vaccine but support parents who wish to do an alternative schedule or not vaccinate at all. But when we’re off the air they tell me they don’t vaccinate their own children and never would. They all tell me the same thing: there is no way they can say this publicly because of the retribution from their peers and the establishment. You can say all you want about the issue at hand but even Dr. Wakefield’s finding have been duplicated many times…..and the media has buried the studies and still do the same thing that Colin has done in this blog…refused to take a real look at the real issue. http://mbio.asm.org/content/3/1/e00261-11.full.pdf+html

    • 

      Andrew Wakefield was a media darling for several years after his flawed, debunked little paper was published and he made inaccurate statements in press conferences. He was also feted by Dan Burton, and interviewed repeated. Then, thanks to Brian Deer, it was discovered that he hid conflicts of interests (and he had documented ones, not the hypothetical ones anti-vaccine activists like to attribute to those speaking up for vaccines), that the children in the study were recruited from parents already suing the MMR manufacturers, and that there were misrepresentations.

      Criticizing a researcher who did those kinds of things is not a witch hunt: it’s fair. He had a lengthy procedure with the opportunity to prove his case. He was found guilty of serious ethics violations.

    • 

      Conspiracy theorists often tout ideas that are mutually exclusive (and equally wrong). Here, two simultaneous claims are:

      1. No one will look into these issues because the same conspiracy that attacked Wakefield would attack them.
      2. Look at all these studies that replicated Wakefield’s results.

      This is not the result of a serious, rational analysis of the issue.

    • 

      You do know about PubMed, don’t you Mr. Linderman?

      A simple search on PubMed “MMR Vaccine + Autism” yields this huge list of research papers and studies that find no link between the MMR vaccine and the onset of autism…and no study that has been published in first-tier, peer-reviewed medical or science journal that replicates Wakefield’s fraudulent research:

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?linkname=pubmed_pubmed&from_uid=19952979

    • 

      Read the paper. Very small sample (10 controls, 23 autism spectrum) Showed the presence of Sutterella sp in the ileum and cecum of a fraction of ASD patients (some seem to be missing-non linear numbering), 63.5% by their count. This demonstrates a correlation, nothing more. No Rule outs as to diet-(recent massively parallel sequencing has shown rapid response of gut fauna to changes in diet), no demonstration of causality (you might read up on Koch’s postulates). Their conclusion is “In conclusion, we have identified Sutterella 16S rRNA gene sequences in mucoepithelial biopsy samples from AUT-GI children using nonspecific, pan-microbial pyrosequencing.”

      In the discussion of one cited paper “In the present study, evidence is provided that supports the
      view that a genetically determined abnormal IPT is present in ASD(4,14), hence defining a subgroup among patients with ASD, which could tentatively be named ‘‘barrier function deficit.’’

      It would not surprise me that if the nervous system has a developmental abnormality, that the eneteric nervous system would have similar problems. The paper you cite does not even imply causality, merely that they found an increased incidence of a specific bacteria in a small sample of ASD patients.

      • 

        Scott, Dr. Wakefield merely suggested a possible correlation and he was burned at the stake! I’m telling you that thousands of parents that I know personally have these gut issues that were found in Wakefield’s patients. My son had those gut issues and they were cleared up (for the most part) by a GF/CF diet (yet another issue that the NIH, CDC and others have denied for years yet are now coming on board with because of the incontrovertible evidence). Scott, you can deny the papers all you want but when you look at the scopes of these kids, there’s no denying the damage. You’d have to be a heartless ass to do so. These are children…..keep thinking with your idiot, analytical, inculcated little brain as children are dying Scott. The autism community is handling it….

        • 

          Wakefield wasn’t burned at any stake. Instead his suggestions were given all appropriate consideration, including attempts by multiple independent researchers to replicate or otherwise corroborate his findings.

          No one was able to do so, however, and on further scrutiny it became apparent that the claims made in the paper derived from false evidence, that Wakefield had failed to disclose serious financial conflicts of interest, that the medical histories of the subjects had been deliberately misrepresented in order to suggest a temporal association between ‘enviornmental triggers’ (i.e., MMR vaccination), and first onset of behavioral symptoms was fabricated, etc., resulting in teh los of his license to practice and the retraction of the Lancet paper.

    • 

      Um, any researcher who simply avoided having vested financial interests in the outcome of their studies, and designed studies that weren’t flawed, could easily avoid the treatment Wakefield received.

      • 

        More lies Max….. Did you also happen to see where the other two doctors that had their licenses pulled within that same trial have won their appeals and the judge stated that this was a complete travesty of justice. They won’t give Wakefield the opportunity to appeal because they have made him the scapegoat and to reverse the decision would be catastrophic to the vaccine zealots out there. But I do believe that Wakefield will be vindicated.

        • 

          I read the Walker-Smith decision. It in no way exonerates Andrew Wakefield. First, some of the things Andrew Wakefield was found guilty of were not raised against Dr. Walker-Smith. Second, for some others – like the lack of ethics approval – Walker-Smith basically said that Wakefield misled him. Third, even for the heart of the matter – the treatment of the children – Walker-Smith was acquitted because the judge found that his intent could have been medical. That was not true for Wakefield. The decision made this finding: “Dr. Wakefield’s purpose was undoubtedly research; Professor Walker-Smith’s may have lain anywhere on the spectrum.” http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2012/503.html.

          Dorit.

        • 

          Curt, please provide a direct quote from Justice Mittings ruling re: John Walker Smith where he uses the descriptive phrase “complete travesty of justice”.

          Wakefield was given the same opportunity to appeal that Walker Smith was given, but he chose not to–just as he chose not to defend himself before the GMC tribunal.

        • 

          I’d like to see a citation to where in the decision the judge called it a travesty of justice.

        • 

          Mr. Linderman: “But I do believe that Wakefield will be vindicated.”

          Well, if you provide the verifiable evidence dated before 1990 that the MMR vaccine caused an increase in autism during the 1970s and 1980 after its 1971 introduction, then you will help that vindication.

          Because the only evidence we have on how Wakefield got the idea that any MMR vaccine caused autism was the legal aide funds given to him by Richard Barr to support a lawsuit.

          Plus the research done by Dr. Brent Taylor at the Royal Free Hospital after Wakefield left. The hospital did offer Wakefield the funding to continue his research, but he left. It seems that the papers produced by Dr. Taylor reveal why:

          Lancet. 1999 Jun 12;353(9169):2026-9.
          Autism and measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine: no epidemiological evidence for a causal association

          BMJ. 2002 Feb 16;324(7334):393-6.
          Measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination and bowel problems or developmental regression in children with autism: population study.

          Mol Psychiatry. 2002;7 Suppl 2:S7-8.
          Autism and MMR vaccination in North London; no causal relationship.

          You don’t even need to read the abstracts. It looks like Wakefield left the Royal Free because it would show he made it all up. Confirmed later during Dr. Taylor’s testimony from Dan Burton’s congressional circus hearing:

          Dr. Taylor. Hello. I am Brent Taylor. I am the professor of
          community and child health at the Royal Free and University
          College School of Medicine and the head of the Department of
          Pediatrics and Child Health on the Royal Free campus of
          University College London.
          I am honored to have the opportunity to testify today. I am
          here as a clinical scientist, but I am also a practicing
          pediatrician. My clinical work involves children with
          disabilities including autism.
          I know how desperate families can be to understand the
          cause of their child’s often devastating condition. I also know
          that if we are to avoid families being led astray by false
          hopes, advances in understanding and treatment must be based on
          high-quality and rigorous science.
          Mr. Wakefield and Professor O’Leary’s testimony
          notwithstanding, the belief that MMR is the cause of autism is
          a false hope.
          I have four main points. We do not fully understand the
          reasons why autism has recently increased. We do know that
          there is no evidence that immunizations are involved.
          Second, there is no evidence that MMR vaccine causes
          autism. Third, there is no conspiracy to suppress information
          about the side effects of vaccines–completely the reverse.
          Fourth, because of poor science, uptake of MMR vaccine has
          fallen to dangerously low levels in the United Kingdom, putting
          children’s lives at risk from a resurgence of the damaging and
          occasionally killing of preventable diseases, measles, mumps,
          and rubella. The same thing could happen in the United States
          of America.

  15. 

    Scott, still too easy. Tell me what liability the pharmaceutical industry takes upon themselves regarding vaccines…..I mean, c’mon man. grow a set and think for yourself.

    • 

      To remind you, it was Congress who decided to create the NVICP. Pharmaceutical companies made their choice – they were leaving the market. But in return to protecting them from liability, Congress created a plaintiff-friendly, no-fault system to compensate those few injured by vaccines – one that even covers your lawyer costs if you lose.

      In contrast, there is no no-fault system in place to compensate victims of non-vaccination, those that catch preventable diseases because someone chose not to vaccinate. Seems unfair.

    • 

      In addition to reissd’s point, vaccine manufacturers are still liable for products liability claims in state and federal courts. The Act only precludes one type of such claim; defective manufacturing and failure to warn cases have never been precluded.

      (Although I’m not a products liability lawyer, I don’t see any reason why someone couldn’t bring a failure to warn case on an autism theory, if they had a snowball’s chance of proving the essential elements of the claim.)

      • 

        The act does revive the doctrine of learned intermediary, but it makes provision for warning claims in certain circumstances: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/42/300aa-22
        “(2) For purposes of paragraph (1), a vaccine shall be presumed to be accompanied by proper directions and warnings if the vaccine manufacturer shows that it complied in all material respects with all requirements under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act [21 U.S.C. 301 et seq.] and section 262 of this title (including regulations issued under such provisions) applicable to the vaccine and related to vaccine-related injury or death for which the civil action was brought unless the plaintiff shows—
        (A) that the manufacturer engaged in the conduct set forth in subparagraph (A) or (B) of section 300aa–23 (d)(2) of this title, or
        (B) by clear and convincing evidence that the manufacturer failed to exercise due care notwithstanding its compliance”

        Section 300aa-23 (d) (2) addresses:
        (2) If in such an action the manufacturer shows that it complied, in all material respects, with all requirements under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act [21 U.S.C. 301 et seq.] and this chapter applicable to the vaccine and related to the vaccine injury or death with respect to which the action was brought, the manufacturer shall not be held liable for punitive damages unless the manufacturer engaged in—
        (A) fraud or intentional and wrongful withholding of information from the Secretary during any phase of a proceeding for approval of the vaccine under section 262 of this title,
        (B) intentional and wrongful withholding of information relating to the safety or efficacy of the vaccine after its approval, or
        (C) other criminal or illegal activity relating to the safety and effectiveness of vaccines,
        which activity related to the vaccine-related injury or death for which the civil action was brought.

        In other words, it won’t be an easy warning claim if the manufacturer followed probably labeling regulations (but in that case, the warning should be there) butit’s possible – if you could show the conspiracy anti-vaccine activists claim.

        The problem is that there is no evidence of such a conspiracy.

        • 

          Sorry for writing a scroll.

        • 

          Please don’t apologize! I’m an attorney, statutes are mother’s milk to me. I appreciate the detailed response.

          I think–and it’s a tentative conclusion, based on a quick read of the statute–that you’d only need to prove a conspiracy to get punitive damages. Compensatories alone would be quite high, given the lost earning potential and cost-of-care for an autistic person (depending, obviously, on the severity of their condition).

          Under 300aa-22(2), wouldn’t it be enough to prove a causative link between vaccines and autism? If you could establish that, I think you’d be in a good position to show that the manufacturer didn’t “exercise due care notwithstanding its compliance,” in that (to my knowledge) no vaccines warn intermediaries of a risk of autism.

          I’d love to hear one of the plaintiffs’ attorneys in the omnibus proceedings weigh in on this.

          • 

            I don’t know if showing a causative link would be enough. I read “exercise due care” as implying negligence, so I think you’d have to at least show the manufacturer should have known they cause it. Given the science, that might be tricky.

            I do agree about the conspiracy.

            Dorit.

          • 

            I’d just realized your name-thank you for your input, I’ve enjoyed reading your analyses.

            I read the due care language as a negligence standard as well, but assuming arguendo that a plaintiff could establish causation on existing facts, they could plausibly show that the manufacturer had access to the same data. Wouldn’t that establish a duty to warn the intermediaries? In other words, you knew this evidence was out there, you had a duty to consider it and construct appropriate warnings, and you failed to do so. I wouldn’t want to bring that case, and would give it very slight odds, but it seems theoretically possible if the evidence existed. Again, though, this is not a field in which I’ve ever practiced (or studied in school).

            Given anti-vaxers’ boundless optimism and stated need for document discovery, I’m curious what their perspective would be. It seems like even a long shot case would get them one step closer to discovery.

      • 

        I can see such a case brought. Like you, I think it would be extremely weak. You’re completely right that there would be a claim of a duty to warn the intermediary – if you could show the company should have known. Then again, if you can show with plausible evidence there is a link, the manufacturer may be hard pressed to say not knowing was not negligent. So I agree with both parts of your assessment – theoretically possible, I would really not want to be bringing it and would give it very, very slight chances.

        Now I’m curious for some anti-vaccine input too.

  16. 

    would you not take directions from somebody that lived in the area that you were in simply because Rand hadn’t put their stamp of approval on the written directions? Read the science in the study….think outside the box. Understand that the pharmaceutical companies and the government has to ensure that any study that comes out says the same thing….vaccine do not cause autism and adverse reactions are one in a million…even though that is not the case and we would have no need for the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program if that were the case. It’s pretty cut and dried for a thinking individual.

    • 

      To remind you, the studies about vaccines were done in multiple countries, by multiple independent teams. In Japan, Poland, Scandinavia, Europe, and the U.S.. With different sources of funding. And yes, they found the same.

      If someone living in an area gave me directions to a place that according to the satellite map was the middle of a swamp, yes, I would refuse the directions. Parents claims were heard. They were taken seriously enough to spend millions of research dollars examining them. No support was found.
      With millions of children vaccinated around the age that parents notice symptoms of autism, it’s almost inevitably that some parents will notice the symptoms after the vaccine. Especially with the story being so publicized. Or if the child had a moderate or mild vaccine reaction, such as a fever. That’s what the studies are for. They found no link.

    • 

      Your outline of the facts is inconsistent with the existence and application of the NVICP’s Vaccine Injury Table. Scientists–including those working with the vaccine mfgs–acknowledge side effects where evidence exists to establish they are caused by vaccines. The NVICP exists to compensate such harm.

  17. 

    And the NVICP has conceded cases where autism exists…..as a direct result of the vaccines. So anyone saying that vaccines cannot “cause” autism are being disingenuous to say the least. The debate / discussion invite is still on the table Colin. It will be amicable if you would like to try me out. :)

    • 

      No. Conceding a case when a child also has autism is not the same as conceding a vaccine caused a child’s autism. In fact, using a case conceded on a theory that is not autism as evidence that vaccines cause autism is highly problematic. You cannot make a case more than it is.

    • 

      Where are those cases which you claim (that) “the NVICP has conceded cases where autism exists”?

      Where are those 83 cases which you claim received compensation from the Vaccine Court for “autistic-like symptoms”.?

    • 

      Three lawyers, one of whom is an anti-vaxer and two of them who disclosed a conflict of interest due to their representation of vaccine plaintiffs, and a vaccine plaintiff? Their unreviewed work in a law journal doesn’t stack up seriously against the opinions of medical and scientific experts.

      Nor does the quality of their work speak for itself. Here are two analyses of the flaws in that article:
      http://archive.wired.com/geekmom/2011/05/is-the-vaccine-injury-compensation-program-covering-up-an-autism-vaccine-link/
      http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2011/05/critiques-of-h0lland-et-al-unanswered-questions.html

      The authors of the article appear to have searched through decades of court records for plaintiffs with symptoms that sound like autism, assume those children are autistic, and report the results in an effort to imply a causative link.

      To be fair, they were honest enough to admit that their article “is not, and does not purport to be, science.” On the other hand, they were probably savvy enough to understand that the Lindermans of the world would treat it as such in the absence of real science supporting the anti-vaccine ideology.

      • 

        Thanks for that reply Mr. Linderman. It gives me the opportunity to link to this science blogger who analyzed that EBCALA “study”:

        http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/05/11/another-swing-for-the-fences-and-a-miss/

        That “study” was ill-conceived and poorly executed. The Chief Medical Investigator, is a probation officer and has no credentials whatsoever to qualify him as a medical researcher. He, like the other “researchers” have autistic children and undeclared conflicts of interest.

      • 

        Colin, the cases were simply reviewed and the parents were interviewed by these people. How does that change the fact that these cases involved autism and vaccines? Once again, your religiosity is rearing its ugly head. The facts are the facts. As usual, this is your ilk’s tactics; never mind the veracity of the case….just look for the things that don’t conflict with your opinions. As I said, I have witnessed the injury myself with my son. The doctor that gave him the vaccines witnessed it as well. You can think what you would like. I would probably be on here calling someone like me a conspiracy lunatic myself if I weren’t living with my decisions to have my son vaccinated. It is easy to look at the science available and say that I’m wrong but lets not forget that the FDA covered up Merck on the Vioxx case for how long? The CDC, NIH (which is a patent holder for the Gardacil vaccine btw) and the FDA are criminal organizations. The NVICP is a joke and vaccine injury is real.

        • 

          One lawyer interviewing someone is not a competent medical diagnosis; three lawyers doesn’t make it three times as good. Their diagnosis is no more indicative of the actual fact than your own. As laypeople, we’re qualified only to observe surface symptoms, not to diagnose underlying and sometimes subtle conditions. Have you ever heard of the Dunning-Kruger effect?

    • 

      Curt have you hread the article?

      Autism is not the same as encephalopathy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encephalopathy), or residual seizure disorder (aka epilepsy). If you actually looked these items up you’d see that.

      These disorders could maybe cause some Autism like symtoms, due to brain damage but they are not the same as causing autism nore do they fit any anti-vaxier theory as to the cause.

      It doesn’t fit Wakefields theory of food particles in the stomach nore does it fit any mercury or alumium theory.

      This is what I mean about checking a source for honesty. This article is honestly hoping that no one will take the time to look up what these things are and to not relize they are talking about epilepsy or a family of disorders that include multiple concussions, cerious of the liver and food poisening.

      • 

        Spector, please look up how they diagnose autism….if you have “autistic-like” symptoms…then you are autistic. That simple. My son is diagnosed autistic…he had encephalitic episodes from the vaccines (a common immune reaction to the adjuvants). So please, don’t bore me with the whole autistic-like -symptoms B.S. I’ve already explained it. Once again, you’re showing the zealous disregard for the facts.

        • 

          Encephalitis is far from common from vaccines. To give one example, from MMR post-marketing surveillance indicated very low frequency: http://www.fda.gov/BiologicsBloodVaccines/Vaccines/QuestionsaboutVaccines/ucm070425.htm

          “Previously, this adverse reaction was listed under adverse events seen after MMR or varicella vaccination. Encephalitis has been reported approximately once for every 3 million doses of MMR vaccine. Post-marketing surveillance of more than 400 million doses distributed worldwide (1978 to 2003) indicates that encephalitis is rarely reported after MMR vaccination. In no case has it been shown conclusively that encephalitis was caused by a vaccine virus infection of the central nervous system.”

          Nor is encephalitis autism: http://www.neuro.jhmi.edu/neuroimmunopath/autism_faqs.htm

          “Is the neuroinflammation observed in autism similar to encephalitis or meningitis ?

          NO. In meningitis and encephalitis, the most prominent immune reaction is one of adaptive immunity, the main feature being infiltration of the CNS by inflammatory cells such as T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes along with the production of antibodies. There is also activation of astroglia and microglia in meningitis and encephalitis, but the dominant immune reaction is due to adaptive immunity. In contrast, in autism, there is NO evidence of lymphocyte infiltration or antibody mediated reactions; the most prominent immune response is characterized by activation of microglia and astrocytes, features that characterize innate immune responses within the CNS. These observations suggest that the adaptive immune system does not play a significant pathogenic role in this disorder, at least not during its chronic phase, and that the main immune mechanism involves predominantly innate immune reactions. Since our study focused on autopsy tissues, we cannot exclude the possibility that specific immune reactions, mediated by T-cell and/or antibody responses, occurred at the onset of disease, during prenatal or postnatal stages of development.”

          As explained to you several times, you can have some symptoms of autism without qualifying for the diagnosis.

        • 

          Curt….. I’m sure the doctors who diagnosed them knew how to diagnose autism yet for some reason they diagnosed them with encephalopathy and epilepsy. Or are you going to put forth another conspiracy.

          or maybe if you actually looked up what these things were you’d see that simple mental impairment or brain damage does not instantly mean autism. Because if it did than we wouldn’t need to call them anything else.

          having some symptoms does not mean that you have them all nor that they fit in to the Autism spectrum. It’s honestly rather insulting that you keep lumping any and all mental damage in with autism.

          There is a reason we classify things. They have different treatments and causes.

          and with respect you presented some facts than when they didn’t fit your narrative you proceeded to make up several dozen more and propose a conspiracy to fill in the blanks.

          I’m actually looking at the facts you presented and they don’t add up to your conclusion.

          • 

            They most certainly do add up Spector. The parents all said that the autism happened at the same time as the vaccine injury. The doctors and courts simply wouldn’t use the word “autism” because of their stance that they must continue to perpetuate, that vaccines don’t cause autism. The reality is that they do and they have been compensated. Hannah Polling was compensated for her autism…..they conceded because her parents would have destroyed the government lawyers and the lid would have been blown off of the “conspiracy”. It’s that simple.And the idea that encephalitic reactions happen in these kids and then they are subsequently diagnosed with autism is very telling indeed. As I have said, my son’s injury started with a high fever that I believe was caused by the vaccines. The doctor that gave him those vaccines believes it as well. His injury was immediate but was denied for years…it was years ago before we even knew about the controversy. We were unable to even report the injury to VAERS because of the statute of limitations on vaccine injury.

          • 

            So Poling had autism, which proves that vaccines cause autism. But the conspiracy covered that up. How do we know? Because she has autism but the court documents don’t say so. And so we reach that inevitable point where the conspiracy theory becomes evidence of itself.

        • 

          Linderman 1: “if you have “autistic-like” symptoms…then you are autistic. That simple.”
          Linderman 2: “VACCINES DON’T CAUSE AUTISM! OUR CHILDREN HAVE V.I.R.A.L.S. VACCINE INDUCED REGRESSIVE AUTISTIC-LIKE-SYMPTOMS”

          The second statement comes from your website. Which Linderman is right? The one that says that symptoms of autism are the same thing as autism, or the one who says the exact opposite?

          As I’ve said before, conspiracy theories diverge from rational analyses in at least one way: conspiracy theorists are comfortable believing contradictory things as long as both theories support their preferred conclusion.

          • 

            I am talking about the definition that the doctors give you. My beliefs are that autism IS vaccine injury. If you can’t grasp that concept, then you are seriously challenged Colin. How could you have possibly made it through law school?????

          • 

            Linderman 2: “VACCINES DON’T CAUSE AUTISM!”
            Linderman 4: “My beliefs are that autism IS vaccine injury.”

            The Lindermans are multiplying, but none of them make much sense.

        • 

          Curt, you can find the full text of DSM-5’s diagnostic criteria for autism spectrum disorder at http://www.autismspeaks.org/what-autism/diagnosis/dsm-5-diagnostic-criteria.

          Note that it’s anything but simple, and that simply exhibiting some autistic-like behaviors isn’t sufficient to qualify for a diagnosis of ASD.

  18. 

    I still can’t understand the idiocy of your readers Colin. The 83 studied were simply interviewed by the paper’s authors. They are all backed up with evidence to have autism. They had autism as a direct result of the vaccines. Is it anecdotal evidence? Sure. So is my story. It doesn’t make it any less devastating nor less true. The evidence that vaccines have eradicated disease (which you talk about on your blog) is not evidence either. You cannot prove a negative….. you cam however, see through the MMWR that Measles mortality was down more that 85% before the vaccine came out…. Yellow Fever went down at the same time even though there was no vaccine developed for it at the time. That tells me that other, more important factors were involved in disease eradication. You’re a lawyer, think about it. The evidence is easy to look into.

    • 

      Actually, even ignoring the problems in the study documented above, the study did not show – as you say – that the people interviewed had “autism as a direct result of the vaccines.” It showed, at most, if you ignore the issues, that these people were compensated for vaccine injuries and some of them also had autism (others had some symptoms, but apparently not a diagnosis – “autism-like”). Not evidence of causal connection.

      Given the rates of autism in the population, it would be surprising if none of those compensated had autism.

      So even if you make all the other problems go away, the study still does not show what you claim.

      As for vaccines and diseases – we do have studies comparing rates of infection between vaccinated and unvaccinated and showing much higher rates among the unvaccinated, so we have more than a correlation. As to measles: mortality went down – cases did not. As to Yellow Fever: that vaccine was developed in 1936, but you’re right that besides vaccination, other things contributed to decline: since it’s a mosquito borne disease, controlling mosquitos helped. Measles is airborne. No such easy solution. http://www.historyofvaccines.org/content/timelines/yellow-fever

    • 

      You didn’t open the link that I provided, Mr. Linderman. Orac totally eviscerated that bogus EBCALA “study” and the commenters, who are well-educated and actually employed in medical science fields, had a field day with the parents’ anecdotes.

      Why should we believe anything that an individual who brags about his “P.H.D. in Google” (sic), claims?

    • 

      Mr, Linderman, and those 83 represent how many vaccines given over NVICP’s twenty six years of existence?

      By the way, the best way to defend Wakefield is to come up with the documentation that he based his hypothesis on: the history of the MMR and autism from a larger country that had been using it for twenty years prior to his “research.” In 1971 the MMR vaccine was introduced in the USA, and was the preferred vaccine for the 1978 “Measles Elimination Program.” So obviously if MMR could cause autism it would have been noticed in a much larger country using it for a longer time than the UK.

      Mr. Linderman, will you please supply us the verifiable documentation that is dated before 1990 showing there was a sharp increase in autism in the USA coinciding with MMR vaccine use?

      Oh, and you really should do some better research. You said: “Yellow Fever went down at the same time even though there was no vaccine developed for it at the time.”

      Um, yeah. That is because it is a mosquito born disease. Get rid of the mosquitoes, and then you reduce the spread of the disease. Just look up the work of Dr. William Gorgas in both Cuba and the Panama Canal Zone. And even though there was nary a mosquito in sight, I still had to get a yellow fever vaccine prior to moving to Panama in the eighth grade as an Army brat.

      That is not the case with measles. The only vectors are humans. Also, mortality only measures how medical care has improved, not how well air borne diseases are eliminated. Do you seriously think it is better to treat a child with measles pneumonia than prevent it with a vaccine?

      • 

        Chrs, what happened when they got indoor plumbing, began looking at sewer issues and waste management? They got rid of mosquitoes..they also got rid of other diseases that took advantage of a compromised immune system from appalling living conditions. Is that really so hard to understand? And I believe that it is more than the MMR that caused the autism epidemic….so that point is moot. As far as the studies done….there is more than enough evidence that gut issues coincide with most cases of autism. I work in the autism community and I personally know thousands of children with autism, 99% of them have gut issues and those that treat those gut issues get better (as with my son).

        • 

          What would indoor plumbing and sewer cleaning do for an airborne disease like measles? It’s not transmitted by mosquitos. It’s airborne.

          Beliefs are nice, but evidence is better. The evidence is that vaccines do not cause autism.

          • 

            It is very weird, but this is the second or third time that someone has tried to use yellow fever as an example of the disease going down before the vaccine was ready. I think it must have been used as an example, because it is true it did go down before the vaccine.

            Except the reason is not properly given. I find it hard to believe that folks can’t look up a simple historical facts to double check the stuff they read:
            http://ocp.hul.harvard.edu/contagion/gorgas.html

            Of course, I may have an advantage because I spent a third of my youth living south of North America.

      • 

        Also Chris, please provide me with the proof that a measles vaccine can prevent the measles…I would love to see that!

      • 

        Have you read the Wakefield paper Chris. The documentation was the evidence provided by the parents and the scoped children showing the damage to the gut.

        • 

          But it is not dated prior to 1990. What data did Wakefield have to tell parents at the video press conference to only use single vaccines?

          Where is the documentation dated before 1990 that shows that the MMR caused autism in the USA during the 1970s and 1980s? Because if it caused it in the UK during the decade between 1988 and 1998, than surely it would have been seen in the USA… a much larger country that used if for twice as long.

          “Chrs, what happened when they got indoor plumbing, began looking at sewer issues and waste management?”

          You obviously know very little about early 20th century infrastructure. The mosquitoes do not breed in sewers, they breed in fresh water. Plus, measles is not affected by sanitation, since it is airborne.

          Curt: “Also Chris, please provide me with the proof that a measles vaccine can prevent the measles…I would love to see that!”

          Oh, dear. Well, first you must answer a question for me since I have answered yours. The following is USA census data of measles incidence during the 20th century. Please tell me what caused a 90% drop in measles incidence between 1960 and 1970. Do not mention deaths (mortality), do not mention any other decade and do not mention any other country (England and Wales are not American states). Also provide verifiable documentation for you answer, especially how much sewage and sanitation improved during that decade.

          From http://www.census.gov/prod/99pubs/99statab/sec31.pdf
          Year…. Rate per 100000 of measles
          1912 . . . 310.0
          1920 . . . 480.5
          1925 . . . 194.3
          1930 . . . 340.8
          1935 . . . 584.6
          1940 . . . 220.7
          1945 . . . 110.2
          1950 . . . 210.1
          1955 . . . 337.9
          1960 . . . 245.4
          1965 . . . 135.1
          1970 . . . . 23.2
          1975 . . . . 11.3
          1980 . . . . . 5.9
          1985 . . . . . 1.2
          1990 . . . . .11.2
          1991 . . . . . .3.8
          1992 . . . . . .0.9
          1993 . . . . . .0.1
          1994 . . . . . .0.4
          1995 . . . . . .0.1
          1996 . . . . . .0.2
          1997 . . . . . . 0.1

          • 

            as you can see on your own chart, measles deaths or incidences didn’t decline in just one decade….but the mortality and incidences declined prior to the vaccine coming out. As far as measles being an airborne disease, that wasn’t what I was getting at, think Chris. Better sanitation, better diet = better immune systems. That’s not that hard to understand Chris…even for you.

        • 

          “as you can see on your own chart, measles deaths or incidences didn’t decline in just one decade”

          But not by 90%. Nor have they even come near those numbers again.

          So what is it with your reading comprehension. What part of ” Do not mention deaths (mortality), do not mention any other decade” did you not understand.

          Now answer the question, with documentation about what fantastic sanitation technology rid the air of measles virus between 1960 and 1970.

          • 

            You’re asking me to get elementary here Chris. This is just pure logic so I’ll try to go slow for you: First off, it’s kind of silly to ask for one specific decade in an era of disease. These trends started before the 1960s so I won’t follow your ridiculous request. Second….the thought process that you seem to hold is that measles is an airborne disease so nutrition can’t play a role (please correct me if I’m wrong). Nutrition plays a huge role in all aspects of disease and health. For example: Vitamin A and C is incredibly important to the health of a child, particularly when that child has been exposed to diseases like measles. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9087069
            “The efficiency of the cellular immune system is tied to the intake of dietary nutrients, including Vitamin A, Vitamin C, zinc, selenium and protien rich in Vitamin B. Poor nutrition leads to impaired cellular immune responses, which results in worse outcomes after measles exposure.”
            What this doctor was looking at was the diet of kids in America where the children weren’t thought to be malnourished but were nonetheless.
            The main problem here (with people like yourself and doctors) is that you have given up on real medicine and health because you all think that you have this holy grail of disease mitigation. True health and natural immunity comes from coming in contact with the wild viruses. That’s how we train our immune systems to function better at a later age.
            In fact, most vaccine proponents never even care to look into real, true immunity. hey don’t care or know much about, cellular immunity, because is doesn’t fit into their little success story of vaccines. This is indicated by the idea that antibody presence shows immunity when that is not the case. This is yet another reason why we have had such failure in the measles vaccine. This is why, when the vaccine first came out, the doctors all said that one shot would give life long immunity and that measles would be eradicated by 1967. Suddenly it became 2 shots, then three, then four and now we need adult boosters every couple of years.
            If we had used nutrition, vitamin A and C and allowed all of our children to come in contact with the wild virus, they would have lifelong immunity and would pass that immunity on to their offspring through breast feeding, etc.Now we’re are seeing an upswing in measles cases and most idiots are blaming those refusing vaccines when it is in fact, the vaccine causing this increase in cases. Your entire premise of vaccines is flawed from the very beginning and therefore any house you build on that foundation is going to fall.

          • 

            You seem to be trying to rebut facts with hand-waving and paranoid conspiracy theories. Do the facts support them? If alt-medicine types can really reverse autism, and doctors have “given up on real medicine,” then why can’t homeopaths and supplement peddlers document their results? Why do doctors track and publish study results, and not chiropractors or crystal healers?

            I’m sure you have a rhetorical answer lined up. Or, given your demeanor, probably an insult. But I think the real answer has something to do with the MLM scam you’re peddling on your website. Essential oils for autism? Why aren’t there any studies done to show what I’m sure are touted as miraculous results from your snake oil?

            How is the pyramid business, Mr. Linderman?

          • 

            “First off, it’s kind of silly to ask for one specific decade in an era of disease. These trends started before the 1960s so I won’t follow your ridiculous request.”

            Okay, then provide evidence that there was a 90% drop in vaccine incidence in any other decade before 1960.

            By the way, that link does not prove that vitamins prevent measles.

            “This is why, when the vaccine first came out, the doctors all said that one shot would give life long immunity and that measles would be eradicated by 1967.”

            Citation needed. There were goals to eliminate measles, but they were hampered by not having a program to provide vaccines to those with limited access to health care: Evolution of Measles Elimination Strategies in the United States. Also, the early programs were created to control the epidemics that came every few years: Mass measles immunization in Los Angeles County.

            So in retrospect it s remarkable that with some flawed measles vaccines, and limited coverage that there was a 90% drop in one decade. Though, you will come up with a decade between 1900 and 1960 that had a similar drop, won’t you?

            “Your entire premise of vaccines is flawed from the very beginning and therefore any house you build on that foundation is going to fall.”

            This is from a person who thought measles transmission was equivalent to yellow fever transmission. Or that measles is transmitted by water, and that mosquitoes breed in sewage. Though, so far all you managed to do was show that the measles vaccines, even the few early ones that were not terribly effective, did work.

          • 

            One of the oft-chanted refrains from vaccine apologists is how many millions of children will be lining the sides of the road dead were we to stop vaccinating in America. To use this line of fearmongering and then tell someone when asking them a question that they can’t discuss death rates, well it’s pretty pathetic.

          • 

            “One of the oft-chanted refrains from vaccine apologists is how many millions of children will be lining the sides of the road dead were we to stop vaccinating in America.”

            Please provide a link to someone making that statement with those numbers.

          • 

            Plasma, we certainly can discuss death rates in an appropriate context, but to use mortality rates rather than morbidity rates (i.e. incidence) to argue that vaccines are ineffective is not such a context. Yes, deaths due to measles declined prior to the advent of vaccines due to improved medical care, but people still got measles and still suffered as a result.

            Would you accept an argument that polio vaccines weren’t needed because the invention of the iron lung had already caused ‘deaths due to polio’ to decline prior to their development?

  19. 

    Here is why you saw the decrease in incidence rates from 1963 on Chris: As of 1968, the U.S. Immunization survey showed that only 50 -60% of children were immunized (so there goes your whole herd immunity B.S.) So what caused the decline in measles? The criteria for the disease to be diagnosed always changes after they start using the vaccine (we also saw this with polio. The vaccinated who developed measles were not diagnosed with measles (even f they has the rash and fever (that would mean that 50 -60 % of the population wouldn’t even be considered to have a possible measles diagnosis) http://www.cdc.gov/measles/lab-tools/serology.html
    Serologic verification and contact with another case was not needed before they came out with the vaccine, suddenly after the vaccine, they stopped diagnosing many cases. Also, gamma globulin was used as a prophylaxis with the vaccine between 1963 and 1968. You know what Gamma Globulin does with Measles, right Chris?
    As far as the rise in measles now: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2856946

    • 

      Still the drop in one decade is 90%. Why is that? No excuses like “changes of diagnoses”, which were only implemented as there were fewer cases.

      • 

        That’s not true Chris. You’re being completely disingenuous here. If you change how you diagnose a disease, you can radically change the incidence…c’mon….you’re just lying to yourself now. This is the religiosity that I am talking about. As I have said in the past posts, I saw this with my own eyes. I have talked to thousands of parents with the same story as mine. Just ignoring the obvious is doing a major disservice to these children. I’m done her. I can tell that you’re all just a bunch of inculcated zealots who could care less about the reality

        • 

          “As I have said in the past posts, I saw this with my own eyes. I have talked to thousands of parents with the same story as mine.”

          Which brings us right back to the question you’ve refused (or been unable) to answer:

          You believe you saw your child injured by vaccines. Presumably these thousand parents also believe they saw their children injured by vaccines. But it isn’t clear how you or these parents determined the injuries actually were caused by vaccines–surely it’s on some basis other than post hoc ergo procter hoc logical fallacies, right?

          Please explain how you’ve demonstrated causality.

          • 

            How many children need to show significant changes immediately after vaccination for people to say, hey we need to find out what IS going on? What is that magic number? Because clearly you don’t think enough children have been afftected. Or, you think something else, anything else, has caused these children to regress within hours? What proof or causality are you looking for?

            What would cause these children to regress out of the blue so quickly? Please, in all honesty, tell us? Genetic mutations that just flip a switch out of nowhere? OTHER environmental toxins? What?

            Everyone is SO quick to say it’s been proven that vaccines don’t cause autism but those people don’t seem to care what does. Oh it starts in the womb, you say? What about if a pregnant mother is exposed to toxins? Flu shot (still contains Mercury btw) anyone? Which has never been tested to be safe on pregnant women. That would be unethical right? Oh wait, those pregnant women ARE the test subjects. For DTap and MMR too. Check the inserts, not tested on pregnant women or pregnant animals.

          • 

            Many of the parents who claim they saw dramatic overnight changes (autism), in their children have filed claims in the Vaccine Court, on behalf of their children and those cases have been dismissed, for lack of evidence. The Vaccine Court has awarded damages for encephalitis…not autism.

          • 

            “How many children need to show significant changes immediately after vaccination for people to say, hey we need to find out what IS going on?”

            And where is the evidence that this actually happens? The Cedillos made that claim, but video evidence in the Autism Omnibus proceedings showed that there was evidence before her vaccination.

            “Flu shot (still contains Mercury btw) anyone?”

            Except that four out of eight that do not.

            “Check the inserts, not tested on pregnant women or pregnant animals.”

            Inserts are lawyer written screeds, not scientific documentation.

          • 

            MMR vaccine is never given to pregnant women.

            The Tdap vaccine is recommended for pregnant women and others who actually have contact with a young infant…or expect to have contact with an infant, under one year of age, to protect infants from contracting pertussis.

            Studies have been conducted on maternal and fetal outcomes, following administration of Tdap vaccine and they confirm that Tdap vaccines administered during pregnancy are safe:

            Czeizel AE, Rockenbauer M. Tetanus toxoid and congenital abnormalitiesExternal Web Site Icon. Int J Gynecol Obstet. 1999;64:253–8.

            Liang, J. Overview of Tdap use during pregnancy: unpublished and recent data. Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), Atlanta, GA; February 23, 2011.
            Rasmussen, S. Safety of maternal Tdap vaccination for mother and fetus presented to the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), Atlanta, GA; June 22, 2011.

            Schofield FD, Tucker VM, Westbrook GR. Neonatal tetanus in New Guinea. Effect of active immunization in pregnancyExternal Web Site Icon. Br Med J. 1961;2:785–9.

            Silveria CM, Caceres VM, Dutra MG, Lopes-Camelo J, Castilla EE. Safety of tetanus toxoid in pregnant women: a hospital-based case-control study of congenital anomaliesExternal Web Site Icon. Bull World Health Organ. 1995;73:605–8.

            Shakib JH, Korgenski K, Sheng X, Varner MW, Pavia AT, Byington CL. Tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis vaccine during pregnancy: pregnancy and infant health outcomes. J Pediat. 2013; in press.

            Zheteyeva YA, Moro PL, Tepper NK, Rasmussen SA, Barash FE, Revzina NV, Kissin D, Lewis PW, Yue X, Haber P, Tokars JI, Vellozzi C, Broder KR. Adverse event reports after tetanus toxoid, reduced diphtheria toxoid, and acellular pertussis vaccines in pregnant womenExternal Web Site Icon . Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2012;207(1):59.e1–7.

          • 

            You seem to have posted on the wrong thread, dear brave Anonymous.

            But all you have to do is answer one question: Which vaccine on the American pediatric schedule is only available with thimerosal? Do not mention influenza because of the eight approved for children, four do not contain thimerosal.

            (and note that several states do not allow children and pregnant woman to get vaccines with thimerosal, which caused an issue when there was a shortage while kids and pregnant women were dying)

          • 

            “How many children need to show significant changes immediately after vaccination for people to say, hey we need to find out what IS going on? What is that magic number? ”

            There is no such magic number: the plural of ‘anecdote’ isn’t “evidence’ regardless of volume. What’s needed is something more than a perceived temporal association, regardless of how widely held that perception is.

            That said, for decades we have been actively trying to find out what is going on. This includes very large scale epidemiological studies by multiple independent researchers in multiple nations looking for evidence of a causal association between vaccination and autism spectrum disorders. No such evidence has been found, and at this point it’s fair to say that whenever we finally identify the causes of ASD’s, vaccines won’t be on the list.

            • 

              You people will never get it. Vaccines will never be found as the cause of vaccines until we change the people looking for the true cause. That being said…your science isn’t science and I am done wasting my time. stupid is as stupid does….have a good life, God Bless and don’t forget to get your shots….and get your kids all of their shots too! You will change your minds if you’re as unlucky as I was with my child.

          • 

            Mr. Linderman: “Vaccines will never be found as the cause of vaccines until we change the people looking for the true cause.”

            Please tell us who those people should be.

            “That being said…your science isn’t science and I am done wasting my time.”

            And your qualifications to make that statement are…what? From what I can see, you administer a website for a lake resort, spout stuff on the radio, and have absolutely no science education.

            You can’t even answer some simple questions! Seriously, where is the data dated before 1990 from the American MMR use that autism was connected to the MMR? And if vaccines did not work, why did the incidence of measles drop 90% in the USA between 1960 and 1970? And why did you totally dismiss Dr. William Gorgas work in both Cuba and Panama? It is like you have never even bothered to research yellow fever.

            “God Bless and don’t forget to get your shots”

            By the hammer of Thor, which one? I much prefer the one that allows the use of our brains to prevent harm.

            “….and get your kids all of their shots too!”

            Oh, I do. I believe in protecting my family from illness.

            “You will change your minds if you’re as unlucky as I was with my child.+

            Except my son had seizures from a now vaccine preventable disease, and is permanently disabled. Until you provide real scientific documentation that vaccines cause more seizures than the diseases, I will believe the vaccines are much safer.

          • 

            “You people will never get it. Vaccines will never be found as the cause of vaccines until we change the people looking for the true cause.”

            Why not?

            For that matter, what exactly is preventing whatever ‘other people’ you feel would be more likely to identify that presumtive ‘true cause’ from looking for it right now?

            Before you go, would you at least attempt to answer the question I’ve been asking you for several days but you’ve been studiously ignoring? I’ll repeat it for convenience:

            How have you factually determined that the injuries you believe your chidl suffered as a resu of routine immunization actually were caused by the vaccines they received on some basis other than a post hoc ergo procter hoc logical fallacy?

        • 

          Still, a 90% in one decade is pretty remarkable. It does show that vaccination substantially reduced measles, even with spotty coverage.

          If you read some of the older papers, you will see that it was noted as very effective and programs were created to get vaccines to those with limited access to health care. Like: Measles epidemiology and vaccine use in Los Angeles County, 1963 and 1966:

          The first vaccine for protection against measles was licensed in March 1963. In Los Angeles County, this and subsequent vaccines were used only in private practice until July 1,1965, when the county health department obtained funds to immunize infants in the well-baby clinics. Not until April 1966, when a measles epidemic threatened the county, was measles vaccine used communitywide in Los Angeles County. The effect of this mass measles immunization will be analyzedin a separate paper.

          “I have talked to thousands of parents with the same story as mine.”

          You should write up a paper, perhaps get help from epidemiologist to make sure it is valid data.

          “I can tell that you’re all just a bunch of inculcated zealots who could care less about the reality”

          Only because my kid was taken by ambulance to the hospital after seizures from a now vaccine preventable disease. He is permanently disabled. The actual reality is that the diseases cause more seizures than the vaccines, and there is no real evidence to pointing to the vaccines causing autism.

          Though I am quite willing to change my mind if you provide me the evidence that I asked for, especially about the levels of autism rising in the USA during the 1970s and 1980s due to the MMR vaccine.

          • 

            Well 4 out of 4 still do. How is that a rebuttal?
            Those children showing signs before receiving vaccines most likely bacame worse after the vaccines. Children with mild reactions often tend to have worse reaction after each vaccine. Perhaps genetics hold the gun and vaccines pull the trigger. Oh but I don’t have conclusive proof of that so nevermind.
            So, you think it’s ok that pregnany women are given class B and C drugs during pregnancy that have not been shown as safe?

          • 

            “Well 4 out of 4 still do.”

            Out of what?

            “How is that a rebuttal?”

            What are you going on about?

          • 

            Which class B and C drugs that have not been shown to be safe do you believe women are receiving during pregnancy, anonymous? Be specific.

          • 

            “Which class B and C drugs”

            Actually, he should not change the subject. Or we can bring it back around and ask him what treatment should be given to a pregnant woman with a bacterial infection.

    • 

      “Serologic verification and contact with another case was not needed before they came out with the vaccine, suddenly after the vaccine, they stopped diagnosing many cases. Also, gamma globulin was used as a prophylaxis with the vaccine between 1963 and 1968. You know what Gamma Globulin does with Measles, right Chris?
      As far as the rise in measles now: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2856946

      Lancet. 1985 Jan 5;1(8419):1-5.
      Measles virus infection without rash in childhood is related to disease in adult life.
      Rønne T.
      Abstract

      The presence of measles specific antibodies is usually taken as evidence of typical measles in the past; in the present study it was regarded as evidence of infection with measles virus, but not necessarily of the common disease accompanied by a typical rash. The association between a negative history of measles in childhood and certain diseases later in life was investigated by a historical prospective method, based on school health records combined with self-reporting in adulthood, and tests for specific IgG measles antibody. There was evidence of association between a negative history of measles, exposure in early life (possibly injection of immune serum globulin after exposure), and development of immunoreactive diseases, sebaceous skin diseases, degenerative diseases of bone and cartilage, and certain tumours. It is suggested that the presence of measles virus specific antibodies at the time of acute infection interferes with development of specific cytolytic reactions, and enables intracellular measles virus to survive the acute infection. If this hypothesis is verified, use of immune serum globulin after measles exposure has to be of immune serum globulin after measles exposure has to be reconsidered.

      You do realize that the link you provided is an abstract from 1985…which was 29 years ago…right?

      Tell us Mr. Linderman, P.H.D.-Google, have public health officials discontinued the use of IGIM for post exposure prophylaxis?

      http://www.immunize.org/askexperts/experts_mmr.asp

      What are the current ACIP recommendations for use of immune globulin (IG) for measles, mumps, and rubella post-exposure prophylaxis?

      In the 2013 revision of its MMR vaccine recommendations ACIP expanded the use of post-exposure IG prophylaxis for measles. Intramuscular IG (IGIM) should be administered to all infants younger than 12 months who have been exposed to measles. The dose of IGIM is 0.5 mL/kg of body weight; the maximum dose is 15 mL. Alternatively, MMR vaccine can be given instead of IGIM to infants age 6 through 11 months, if it can be given within 72 hours of exposure.

      Pregnant women without evidence of measles immunity who are exposed to measles should receive an intravenous IG (IGIV) dose of 400 mg/kg of body weight. Severely immunocompromised people, irrespective of evidence of measles immunity or vaccination, who have been exposed to measles should receive an IGIV dose of 400 mg/kg of body weight.

      For persons already receiving IGIV therapy, administration of at least 400 mg/kg body weight within 3 weeks before measles exposure should be sufficient to prevent measles infection. For patients receiving subcutaneous immune globulin (IGSC) therapy, administration of at least 200 mg/kg body weight for 2 consecutive weeks before measles exposure should be sufficient.

      Other people who do not have evidence of measles immunity can receive an IGIM dose of 0.5 mL/kg of body weight. Give priority to people who were exposed to measles in settings where they have intense, prolonged close contact (such as household, child care, classroom, etc.). The maximum dose of IGIM is 15 mL.
      IG is not indicated for persons who have received 1 dose of measles-containing vaccine at age 12 months or older unless they are severely immunocompromised. IG should not be used to control measles outbreaks.

      IG has not been shown to prevent mumps or rubella infection after exposure and is not recommended for that purpose.

      • 

        Vitamin A and C however, are used and have been used for mumps and rubella so what’s your point? We are still way over the threshold for the “herd immunity” yet we are seeing all of these diseases come back. It is because of the vaccines.

        • 

          No, we’re seeing these diseases come back in isolated outbreaks, because while they are no longer endemic to most of North America, they are endemic to other parts of the world, and we have these things called planes and vacations.

        • 

          In localized communities we are not however “way over the threshold” for herd immunity, and guess what? it’s in these localized communities where we’re seeing the outbreaks of disease.

        • 

          “Vitamin A and C however, are used and have been used for mumps and rubella so what’s your point? We are still way over the threshold for the “herd immunity” yet we are seeing all of these diseases come back. It is because of the vaccines.”

          Stopping changing the subject Mr. Linderman.

          You provided a link to a 29-year-old abstract which questioned the use of IGIM to provide post-exposure prophylaxis, against measles. I provided you with the link to the CDC guidelines for post-exposure prophylaxis against measles.

          Stay on topic Mr. Linderman and provide us with any links to citations that refute the CDC guidelines for post-exposure prophylaxis against measles.

  20. 
    Basken Robbins April 22, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    Curt L.

    I would have to disagree with you on the efficacy of vaccines, specifically the measles vaccine. There really is plenty of recent evidence coming from outbreaks that shows that the attack rate on non-vaccinated individuals is 20-30X higher than vaccinated individuals.

    If the vaccine did not work, then I would expect to see similar attack rates, wouldn’t you?

    However, I will agree with you that changes in hygiene, sanitation and nutrition also have the capability of having major impact on disease incidence. While it is easy to pinpoint all causation of a disease on a pathogenic organism, the reality is that there are many factors involved, namely genes, living conditions, nutrition, gut microbiome, toxic exposures, etc.

    My advice would be to back away from the position that vaccines don’t work, it really is just untenable and will tend to discredit other ideas or things that you say.

    I have actually seen quite an uptick in autism research that is related to both the gut, microbiome, and immunology. The reason being is that the results from these studies are promising, so, I think that you have to remember science moves rather slowly and it takes a while for studies to be replicated or new hypotheses to evolve and come into their own.

    I would tend to agree with you that the distinction between autism and autistic-like is somewhat meaningless when it comes to the child. If it is a symptom based diagnosis, then what does it matter if it is true autism, or autistic-like? in both cases, there are likely functional deficiencies which would need to be addressed.

    What actually happened to your child? was it a rapid regression post vaccination? any history of immune issues in the family (i.e. underlying genetics)? what gut treatments were undertaken?

    I’m curious about the details, feel free to share.

    BR

  21. 

    “….if you have “autistic-like” symptoms…then you are autistic. ”

    In January a dog was apprehended running loose in one of the local parks. It was displaying rabies-like symptoms. If I follow the above line of thinking, about ten people in the county would have had to start rabies post-exposure prophylaxis.

    Turns out the dog ingested rat poison. Buy our animal control officer a beer sometime; she’ll tell you the whole story and it’s a lulu.

    (Moral — never try to reach the state epidemiologist after 4pm on a Friday afternoon before a blizzard).

  22. 

    Hi Colin, I was curious to know how many VICP trials you have attended?

  23. 

    Lilady – Regarding the studies you listed, I still would not trust taking DTap while pregnant due to the fact that they are not proven against time for safety. The long term effects have not been researched or documented yet. I assume you are referring to certain brands of this vaccine because there are clearly ones that state the safety hasn’t been studied during pregnancy.

    Chris – It’s bothersome to me that 4 out of 8 flu vaccines still do have thimerisol. I can clearly see why you have the stance you have but it is incredibly frustrating to see no one interested in what does cause Autism. I haven’t seen any pro vaxer provide information on what causes it. I suppose this is indeed the wrong thread for me. It is very sad that people would rather jump on a post questioning vaccines like a pack of hyenas than be part of a discussion that would move towards finding the answers to the questions that have not yet been answered. Autism is most certainly included in the scope of this piece so why aren’t people taking about a cure as well. If we are passionate about debunking a link why isn’t anyone passionate about finding the link. Autism is an epidemic people. I don’t think it’s fair to NOT care about one childhood epidemic and care about a potential one only.

    • 

      I’m astonished that you think “no one [is] interested in what does cause autism.” What gives you that impression?

      • 

        You’re astonished? No one is discussing this! On here anyway. The entire post is about discrediting anti vaxers. I don’t think I’m jumping to conclusions. You took the time to go to an Autism conference. Why don’t you have a discussion on finding a cure?

        • 

          I went to the conference because I have an interest in pseudoscience and rhetoric; I was interested in the anti-vax presentations I expected to find there.

          We aren’t discussing a cure for autism for the same reasons we aren’t discussing cures for diabetes–it’s just not germane to the conversation. We’re talking about the anti-vax movement, and vaccines have nothing to do with autism other than anti-vaxers’ cooption of it as a cause.

          I hope that a cure for autism is discovered, but it will probably not happen before we understand what causes it. There’s a lot of work going into it–see the recent research about prenatal brain development–but it’s being done by scientists, not in comment threads.

          • 

            “I hope that a cure for autism is discovered, but it will probably not happen before we understand what causes it.”

            It will be like “a cure for cancer”, impossible because it is label that describes a whole range of diagnoses. There is not one “type” of autism. We already know the causes for several (Rett Syndrome, congenital rubella syndrome), and there are hundreds more out there.

            Some may be “curable” by providing something needed, like some metabolic disorders requiring special diets or something like insulin for diabetics. Many may not respond, and perhaps the best thing for them would be early intervention for speech, behavior, etc.

            There is no easy answer. And the diversions by Wakefield followers and others has taken away time, energy and funds for finding all of those answers.

    • 

      “Chris – It’s bothersome to me that 4 out of 8 flu vaccines still do have thimerisol.”

      And why should we care if it bothers you? Just request one of the four without thimerosal. There is no real evidence it causes problems, and the single dose vaccines are more expensive. Though there is real evidence that influenza, pertussis, Hib, etc are dangerous.

      “I can clearly see why you have the stance you have but it is incredibly frustrating to see no one interested in what does cause Autism. I haven’t seen any pro vaxer provide information on what causes it.”

      Except the thousands of researchers who have been studying it for years, and have published over ten thousand papers. I can provide one reason for autism: when a pregnant woman gets rubella. Autism is just one thing connected to congenital rubella syndrome, and the MMR vaccine can actually prevent autism.

      “Autism is an epidemic people.”

      Not really.

      “I don’t think it’s fair to NOT care about one childhood epidemic and care about a potential one only.”

      Unfortunately real epidemics have affected who populations of children. One of them being the rubella epidemic in the 1960s. Then there is the very real diphtheria epidemic, Diphtheria in the former Soviet Union: reemergence of a pandemic disease., that killed thousands.

      Flailing around trying to claim vaccines cause autism can bring back real epidemics. It also detracts from getting real help for disabled adults like my son. I was assured in 1992 that he did not have autism, but he does fit the diagnoses for DSM IV. Of course, you all don’t care about kids like him, who had a grand mal seizure while suffering from a real disease before the vaccine was available. Just like you don’t care about all of the kids who need hospitalization for measles or the babies hooked up to respirators due to pertussis.

      • 

        Well, if a parent is not educated on vaccines and goes to get their child the flu shot and the doctor does not disclose that they have a choice in the brand, that is when it may be too late for their child. Doctors often do not discuss anything at all prior to vaccination. Yeah yeah it’s up to the parent. But it’s the responsibility of the doctor as well.

        If you want to rely solely on scientific papers that may or may not have been manipulated or angled in a way to show favorable results for the companies sponsoring them go ahead. As Paul Offit once said, the only ones who can really fund such large studies are the pharmaceutical companies themselves. So I look at these studies with a grain of salt. You don’t think large corporations have ever contacted researchers to request more favorable results? If you don’t think so, you’re niave.

        Assuming I don’t care is where you are wrong. Very wrong. You are making assumptions. You’re probably assuming I will never vaccinate. You probably assume I haven’t lost countless nights sleep over whether or not I will vaccinate my child. You probably assume this hasn’t been the most difficult decision of my life. You assume I don’t look at both sides to this argument (hence the reason I visit pro vax sites too). You probably assume our vaccination schedule is a one size fits all approach. You assume we all think black and white like you appear to.

        If autism isn’t an epidemic to you then I suppose it’s not worth talking about to you. I can see here that I truly am on the wrong post. There is no room for discussion here except to insinuate those that question vaccination safety are complete and utter morons. Have a nice day!

        • 

          All I know about you is that you would prefer a child skip a flu vaccine because of faulty data. Unfortunately that can be deadly.

          With the present American pediatric schedule the only vaccines that actually have thimerosal is one out of the three DTaP vaccines, and half of the influenza vaccines. Since many kids do not get vaccinated for influenza, and they are most likely to get one of the two DTaP vaccines without thimerosal: the mercury argument is baseless, and very much out of date.

          “You probably assume our vaccination schedule is a one size fits all approach.”

          Straw man. That is also wrong. Especially since due to my son’s history of neo-natal seizures he was denied protection from the DTP, and only received the DT. This was at a time that our county was going through a pertussis epidemic. I know there are people who cannot medically get vaccinated. This is precisely why community immunity needs to kept high, and your arguments from assertions do not help.

          If you have any evidence that protecting children from influenza is more dangerous than influenza, then please provide the PubMed indexed studies by reputable qualified researchers. Because as a parent of a child injured by a real disease (and suffered greatly with another now vaccine preventable disease), I don’t care about your opinions.

          Instead of innuendos and accusations, I want real data and evidence. And if you are claiming that the studies that show vaccines are safe are done by the pharmaceuticals, then you need to go through Vaccine Safety: Examine the Evidence, and then tell us which pharmaceutical company paid for each study with direct quotes from the papers.

        • 

          “Well, if a parent is not educated on vaccines and goes to get their child the flu shot and the doctor does not disclose that they have a choice in the brand, that is when it may be too late for their child.”

          I forgot to ask: what would constitute a proper education that they would need? List the sources you think they should go to.

          Though it is immaterial in my state, since they legislated without any evidence that children and pregnant women should only get thimerosal-free vaccines. Plus the county even provides the thimerosal free influenza vaccine to clinics, despite it costing more of our tax money (which could be better used on public transit).

          Fortunately, they also legislated that philosophical vaccine exemptions require a signature from a medical care provider before being admitted to a public school.

        • 

          “Well, if a parent is not educated on vaccines and goes to get their child the flu shot and the doctor does not disclose that they have a choice in the brand, that is when it may be too late for their child.”

          Only if exposure to thimerosal at levels acheivable by vaccination were harmful. Do you have any evidence suggesting this is the case?

          “If you want to rely solely on scientific papers that may or may not have been manipulated or angled in a way to show favorable results for the companies sponsoring them go ahead.”

          What do you suggest we rely on instead–anecdotal testimony and post hogc ergo procter hoc logical fallacies? Be specific.

          “If you want to rely solely on scientific papers that may or may not have been manipulated or angled in a way to show favorable results for the companies sponsoring them go ahead.”

          Have you any actual evidence demonstrating that the clinical trials/independent studies demonstrating vaccine safety and efficacy have been manipulated or angles in such a manner?

          “You probably assume our vaccination schedule is a one size fits all approach.”

          That doesn’t require assumption, as there are studies that speak directly to the safety of the current vaccine schedules. I’ll note that there are no studies addressing the safety and efficacy of the various alternative schedules created out of whole cloth by various anti-vax or ‘alternative’ physicians.

          ‘If autism isn’t an epidemic to you then I suppose it’s not worth talking about to you.”

          Of course it’s still worth talking about (which is why we all–including the people behind NVIC, AoA, TMR, etc. should move past blaming vaccines for the increase in diagnoses and invest time and resources in other areas).

          ” There is no room for discussion here except to insinuate those that question vaccination safety are complete and utter morons.”

          Not all of them–many if not most are simply mistaken. But yes, there are quite a few who are in facteither intellectually unable to understand the science underlying our understanding of vaccine safety, autism etiology, etc., or who while capable of understanding elect to willfully ignore it.

    • 

      Typo:

      “Unfortunately real epidemics have affected whole populations of children”

      I should also add that in the special ed. program my son was between age three until nineteen I got to meet several diagnosed with autism. Even though my son never received a formal diagnosis, he had classes and therapy session with them. Plus we parents often compared notes.

      One saying we had was “If you meet one autistic child, you have met one autistic child.”

      There were vast differences in the strengths, habits and weaknesses among those students. Some could recite entire movies, others had the same mussing hair that my son still has but with better language, and a couple could actually read at young ages (hyperlexic). Let’s just say that my son’s birthday parties were very interesting. The most memorable was one of the hyperlexics, who tended to climb trees, walked around the house reciting Beatrice Potter.

      Autism is a diagnosis of behavior. There is no one type, and there is obviously not one reason. My son also has a genetic heart disorder that causes abnormal muscle growth that can block the aortic valve. As of a couple of years ago there were eighteen known genetic sequences they know that cause it. My son has none of them, but you could not dispute the evidence from the echocardiogram. Thinking there is one “true cause” for autism is just as fallacious thinking there is “one cure” for cancer (which is a generic name for lots of diseases).

    • 

      If you had open just one of the studies I provided about Tdap safety and read the study, you would have realized that Tdap booster vaccines administered to a pregnant woman actually saves infants lives…and prevents maternal and fetal loss.

      I’ve stood at bedside in a hospital pediatric isolation room, trying to comfort parents as their baby’s life slipped away from petussis. So no. I really don’t care what your uneducated opinion is about Tdap boosters.

      • 

        Like I said, have long term studies or observations been done here? I don’t think so. There are risks to both sides of this. Children “slip away” from vaccines too. But I guess to you they are just collateral damage. All children are important regardless of how they are harmed. I don’t discount a child harmed by a VPD any more than a child harmed by a vaccine. Apparently you do.

        If you don’t care what non vaxing “uneducated” peoples’ opinions are then why are you on here? Why bother commenting?

        • 

          If you had really been following this thread, you would have seen the links to the citations that I and other posters have provided to Mr. Linderman, about “long term studies”. Here again, the same link I provided to Mr. Linderman, to an organization which has funded studies and has identified many of the chromosomal and genetic causes of autism:

          https://sfari.org/

          The topic of this blog is Colin’s attendance and observations at a conference. Do try to stay on topic, Anonymous.

        • 

          “Children “slip away” from vaccines too. ”

          Citation needed.

    • 

      ” I assume you are referring to certain brands of this vaccine because there are clearly ones that state the safety hasn’t been studied during pregnancy.”

      Safety assessments in pregnant females was not examined in prelicensure evalutaions, perhaps, but it has been studied extensively since with the establishement by both manufacuteres of DTaP of pregnancy registeries to collect information and pregnancy outcomes from pregnant women vaccinated with DTaP.

      My question to you, anonymous, would be do you have any evidence suggesting that there’s significant risks associated with pregnant females receiving the vaccine, or are you just embracing a version of the nirvana fallacy, where in a perfect world we’d have safety studies for every vaccine covering decades?

      “It’s bothersome to me that 4 out of 8 flu vaccines still do have thimerisol.”

      Why, given that there’s no evidence that thimerosal at levels of exposure acheivable by vaccination is toxic or otherwise causes any adverse consequence?

      ” I can clearly see why you have the stance you have but it is incredibly frustrating to see no one interested in what does cause Autism. I haven’t seen any pro vaxer provide information on what causes it.”

      We are all very interested in identifying the causes of ASD’s. Routine childhood vaccination, however, has been examined and the evidence does not support a causal association with autism.

      “Autism is an epidemic people.”

      There may be an epidemic of diagnoses, as the result of multiple factors (broadened diagnostic criteria, diagnostic substitution, improved surveillance, etc.) but there’s no strong evidence demonstrating the actual incidence of individuals with ASD’s in the population has increased dramatically.

  24. 

    Three more comments from Mr. Linderman deleted for containing gratuitous insults with no substantive comment, including one threat of violence.

    Mr. Linderman, I got a good laugh out of your threats to me on your ego-stroking “radio” show–I think you don’t realize how absurd you sound, first admitting you’re sitting in a basement shouting at a computer then talking tough about real-world violence.

    But threats against other commenters here are unacceptable. If you can’t have a civil conversation, you can’t have a conversation. And this isn’t the place to shout until the spittle hits the screen–that’s your basement, buddy.

  25. 

    Honest question from a non-medical professional here: What effect do vitamins have on the mumps?

  26. 

    Calling an MD/Ph.D. with sharp intelligence and extensive knowledge a moron does not make him one. Nor is he a pharma insider. He is an academic and practicing physician.

  27. 

    Personal attacks are a really poor substitute to being able to answer the speaker’s claim, and tend to say more about the one making them than about the target. I am aware, however, as Orac recently showed, that its’ a common tactic of the anti-vaccine movement: http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2014/04/18/ad-hominem-and-harassment-how-antivaccine-activists-work/ “This is how antivaccinationists roll. They don’t have the evidence. They don’t have the science. They don’t have the clinical epidemiology. So they attack the messenger. “

  28. 

    Reissd’s comment is hanging because I deleted the Linderman comment to which she was replying, as I will continue to do in the case of gratuitous insults without substantive content.

    Mr. Linderman, your inability to carry out an informed, intelligent and intelligible conversation says more than I ever could about the seriousness of your claims.

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