Autism and vaccines - new findings

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I think much of it has to do w/ our environment. We did not have this prob years ago...:dunno: jmo But, it is scary, that's for sure...
I've done a lot of reading on the subject and I personally don't think that there is a connection between vaccines and autism. But, I also think that until they can pinpoint the specific things that "cause" autism there will always be speculation that vaccines cause autism especially since many of the vaccines are given at the same time that autistic symptoms typically appear.
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I'd need a more reliable source.
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by this. The study was conducted by epidemiologists at Columbia University and the results were published in a peer-reviewed journal. That's pretty reliable in my opinion.
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I'd need a more reliable source.
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by this. The study was conducted by epidemiologists at Columbia University and the results were published in a peer-reviewed journal. That's pretty reliable in my opinion.
Originally Posted by gemini12
I mean as far as the article, and not necessary the study. I would need to read the actual study, and know the background of the actual people who did it.

A few years back, newspapers everywhere were posting this "study" linking autism to too much tv. But anyone who actually bothered to investigate this study, which most journalist didn't, would have realized right off the bat that it was bogus. The man had no qualifications whatsoever, he was a business statistician. He never even contacted 1 family affected with autism. He only noted that there was a similar rise in cable subscriptions and autism rates in 1 county in California. But many newspapers didn't bother to fact check, and just ran with it. Just when we thought we were getting away from blaming the parents for autism. But few of those papers ever printed a retraction,and if they did, it went unnoticed as most retractions go.

And it wouldn't matter to me what university it came from, I would have to know about their backgrounds. I don't automatically trust a person because they're from such-and-such. Last year there was a bill the autism community was fighting for. It's purpose was for research and treatment. Believe it or not, there has yet to be even 1 large scale study done on which treatments are affective and which aren't, and why some treatments help some and not others. The biggest opponents of that bill were the CDC and APA.

So no, I don't necessarily trust every source of information.
I'd need a more reliable source.
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by this. The study was conducted by epidemiologists at Columbia University and the results were published in a peer-reviewed journal. That's pretty reliable in my opinion.
Originally Posted by gemini12
I mean as far as the article, and not necessary the study. I would need to read the actual study, and know the background of the actual people who did it.

A few years back, newspapers everywhere were posting this "study" linking autism to too much tv. But anyone who actually bothered to investigate this study, which most journalist didn't, would have realized right off the bat that it was bogus. The man had no qualifications whatsoever, he was a business statistician. He never even contacted 1 family affected with autism. He only noted that there was a similar rise in cable subscriptions and autism rates in 1 county in California. But many newspapers didn't bother to fact check, and just ran with it. Just when we thought we were getting away from blaming the parents for autism. But few of those papers ever printed a retraction,and if they did, it went unnoticed as most retractions go.

And it wouldn't matter to me what university it came from, I would have to know about their backgrounds. I don't automatically trust a person because they're from such-and-such. Last year there was a bill the autism community was fighting for. It's purpose was for research and treatment. Believe it or not, there has yet to be even 1 large scale study done on which treatments are affective and which aren't, and why some treatments help some and not others. The biggest opponents of that bill were the CDC and APA.

So no, I don't necessarily trust every source of information.
Originally Posted by cympreni


Here's the complete published study findings:

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0003140
Thanks for the link!
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I've done a lot of reading on the subject and I personally don't think that there is a connection between vaccines and autism. But, I also think that until they can pinpoint the specific things that "cause" autism there will always be speculation that vaccines cause autism especially since many of the vaccines are given at the same time that autistic symptoms typically appear.
Originally Posted by gemini12
ITA with this. PA had had some measles issues lately from the non-immunizing crowd. I'd hate to see widespread return of some of these diseases.
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ITA with this. PA had had some measles issues lately from the non-immunizing crowd. I'd hate to see widespread return of some of these diseases.
Originally Posted by redcelticcurls
We are currently dealing with a fairly significant mumps outbreak in our area that is probably going to get even bigger now that school has started. It started in a non-vaxing Christian community.

The odd kid here and there that isn't vaxed doesn't concern me, but in an area like mine where entire communities are not vaccinated, it does scare me. My daughter is severely allergic to eggs and can't be vaccinated against certain things - I am relying on herd immunity to keep her safe.

That said, I don't think that vaccines are not without risk. I worry about loading kids with antigens and with heavy metals. I feel more comfortable and chose to spread out my kids vaccinations.



Here's the complete published study findings:

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0003140
Originally Posted by RedCatWaves
Thank you. Do you have any aspirin, tylenol, etc to go with that?

It is way too early to read such jargon, but anyways, here are my initial thoughts.

First of all they were funded by the CDC and NIH, who were big opponents of the Autism research funding bill.

2) Their research group consisted of 25 kids with autism and 13 as a control group. That's hardly conclusive IMO knowing the broad spectrum of autism.

3) they excluded anyone with known genetic factors in their study. And a big chunk of the vax/autism hypothesis is that some people are born with a genetic predisposition to autism, and the exposure to certain things including vaccinations and environmental stuff is what brings it out.


Now I haven't done any other fact checking, and probably won't least for a while. Even as I type this, I am procrastinating filling out the paperwork for yet another evaluation for Kade. I think I'd rather cut off my leg with a plastic spork then go through this again.
ITA with this. PA had had some measles issues lately from the non-immunizing crowd. I'd hate to see widespread return of some of these diseases.
Originally Posted by redcelticcurls
We are currently dealing with a fairly significant mumps outbreak in our area that is probably going to get even bigger now that school has started. It started in a non-vaxing Christian community.

The odd kid here and there that isn't vaxed doesn't concern me, but in an area like mine where entire communities are not vaccinated, it does scare me. My daughter is severely allergic to eggs and can't be vaccinated against certain things - I am relying on herd immunity to keep her safe.

That said, I don't think that vaccines are not without risk. I worry about loading kids with antigens and with heavy metals. I feel more comfortable and chose to spread out my kids vaccinations.
Originally Posted by mad scientist

I completely agree with everything you said. It really scares me how many people are not vaccinating their kids because of a completely speculative link between vaccines. Those vaccines protect kids (and society) against some really horrible diseases, but you're right that they're not without risk...but, then again, so is just about everything in life.

And, I think by altering your kids vaccination schedule you're taking a smart approach to try to minimize the risks while still getting the benefits of the vaccine.

As for the study that started this thread....I read the study and to me it shows that they've disproved the theory that the MMR vaccine "causes" (I hesitate to use that word...) autism through the gastrointestinal tract mechanism.
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I mean as far as the article, and not necessary the study. I would need to read the actual study, and know the background of the actual people who did it.
Originally Posted by cympreni
I want to hug you for saying this. Media outles very, very often pick up stories about scientific studies where they do not understand the actual conclusions the authors of the study made.

And just because something was done at a good school, and in a peer-reviewed journal does NOT mean it is actlually reliable. Plenty of total crap gets published in peer-reveiwed journals, even the well-renowned ones.

I just took a really quick look at the study. It looks like it had a sample size of 38 children. There is no possible way any general conclusions can be made off of a sample size of 38 children. It's more of an information-gathering exercise than a study with generalizable results, for sure.
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For what it's worth, I have degrees in both microbiology and infectious disease epidemiology, and worked for several years at a state public health department. I fully plan to vaccinate my baby once he arrives. Vaccines aren't perfect (the risks were already alluded to in this thread), but they are without a doubt effective in the prevention of deadly diseases. And as an epidemiologist, let me just point out that it took decades of scientific research to conclude that smoking causes cancer. I appreciate the research being conducted to investigate the link between vaccines & autism, but until causality is established, I choose to rely on the evidence - vaccines prevent disease.
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3) they excluded anyone with known genetic factors in their study. And a big chunk of the vax/autism hypothesis is that some people are born with a genetic predisposition to autism, and the exposure to certain things including vaccinations and environmental stuff is what brings it out.
That's not how I interpreted it. The genetic factors that they excluded are known and identified genetic syndromes such as Trisomy 21 and Fragile X. It's already known that people with these syndromes have developmental issues and that's completely different from the hypothesis that some as yet unidentified genetic factors predispose some people to develop autism.

But this also wasn't the purpose of the study and including anyone with known genetic factors would have added an unnecessary variable. This study had a very specific purpose which was to prove/disprove a theory that arose from a study in 1998 suggesing a link between the MMR vaccine, gastrointestinal tract problems, and autism.
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I want to hug you for saying this. Media outles very, very often pick up stories about scientific studies where they do not understand the actual conclusions the authors of the study made.

And just because something was done at a good school, and in a peer-reviewed journal does NOT mean it is actlually reliable. Plenty of total crap gets published in peer-reveiwed journals, even the well-renowned ones.

I just took a really quick look at the study. It looks like it had a sample size of 38 children. There is no possible way any general conclusions can be made off of a sample size of 38 children. It's more of an information-gathering exercise than a study with generalizable results, for sure.
Originally Posted by Who Me?


So, what does make a study reliable? I put a lot more faith in a study by educated professionals at a respected university that's published in peer-reviewed journal than anectodal "evidence".

And, for the record, the original study that suggested the GI + MMR + autism link was based on evidence from only 12 children, yet many people had no problem believing that study.
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I want to hug you for saying this. Media outles very, very often pick up stories about scientific studies where they do not understand the actual conclusions the authors of the study made.

And just because something was done at a good school, and in a peer-reviewed journal does NOT mean it is actlually reliable. Plenty of total crap gets published in peer-reveiwed journals, even the well-renowned ones.

I just took a really quick look at the study. It looks like it had a sample size of 38 children. There is no possible way any general conclusions can be made off of a sample size of 38 children. It's more of an information-gathering exercise than a study with generalizable results, for sure.
Originally Posted by Who Me?


So, what does make a study reliable? I put a lot more faith in a study by educated professionals at a respected university that's published in peer-reviewed journal than anectodal "evidence".

And, for the record, the original study that suggested the GI + MMR + autism link was based on evidence from only 12 children, yet many people had no problem believing that study.
Originally Posted by gemini12
Most wouldn't deny that smoking during pregnancy can cause low-birthweight babies, but I can guarentee that it wouldn't be too hard to find 25 woman who smoked all through pregnancy and gave birth to 9+ lb babies.

This effects MILLIONS. If one out of 150 kids were kidnapped, and first 25 just happened to be similar we wouldn't automatically assume the same for the rest without further investigation. I've participated in autism studies. I was only 1 out of hundreds of people who did so. Autism isn't rare, it wouldn't have been too hard to find more participants.


And it's called a spectrum disorder for a reason. The symptoms of autism can be on either extreme. Some have gi problems some don't; some tested positive for heavy metal poisoning and some don't; some have intellectual disabilities some have genius level iqs and some are average; some are sensory avoiders while others are sensory seekers; some avoid social situations and some thrive in it. In my mind no small study with so many limits and so few participants could ever answer the question.
This effects MILLIONS. If one out of 150 kids were kidnapped, and first 25 just happened to be similar we wouldn't automatically assume the same for the rest without further investigation. I've participated in autism studies. I was only 1 out of hundreds of people who did so. Autism isn't rare, it wouldn't have been too hard to find more participants.
I don't disagree that autism disorders affect many, many children and adults, but this study was very focused--it required children who were in a certain age range, had their MMR vaccine within a specific time frame, and most importantly, had GI problems. That significantly narrows the pool of prospective participants. I admit that more participants would be better, but I don't think you can automatically dismiss the results just because hundreds of children weren't evaluated, especially since this study backed up other studies that showed no evidence of a MMR-GI-autism link.

I guess the way I look at it is that this study, combined with the others done previously, indicates that the theory of the MMR-GI-autism link isn't valid and that resources can now be spent to investigate other theories or possible causes of autism disorders.
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Cympreni, you wrote in this thread you are doubtful about the study, because "they were funded by the CDC and NIH, who were big opponents of the Autism research funding bill." I recall reading about your distrust of the CDC, specifically when it comes to the autism-vaccine issue, in other posts of yours.

Do you dislike the CDC because they deny a link between autism and vaccines, or for another reason?
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For what it's worth, I have degrees in both microbiology and infectious disease epidemiology, and worked for several years at a state public health department. I fully plan to vaccinate my baby once he arrives. Vaccines aren't perfect (the risks were already alluded to in this thread), but they are without a doubt effective in the prevention of deadly diseases. And as an epidemiologist, let me just point out that it took decades of scientific research to conclude that smoking causes cancer. I appreciate the research being conducted to investigate the link between vaccines & autism, but until causality is established, I choose to rely on the evidence - vaccines prevent disease.
Originally Posted by preciousjewel76

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