What About Using An Alternative Vaccination Schedule
The Centers for Disease Control publishes a recommended vaccine schedule for all children in the US, and this schedule wasn’t created from thin air. Doctors, scientists and researchers work together to decide what is the best time to give shots. The goal: protect as many babies as soon as possible from deadly disease.
Now, one of the popular myths about autism is that somehow kids are getting “too many shots, too soon.” Despite the scientific evidence that shows vaccines do not cause autism, some parents think that if they space out their kids’ vaccines in an “alternative schedule” this is somehow safer. Adding to this notion are blogs, books and web sites that promote alternative vaccine schedules, delaying critical shots months or years after a child can safely receive them.
Here’s a nasty little truth about alternative vaccination schedules: they are all fantasy. There is absolutely no research that says delaying certain shots is safer. Doctors who promote these schedules are simply guessing when to give which shots. What we know for certain is that delaying your child’s shots is playing Russian Roulette. The simple truth is you are leaving your child unprotected. Who knows what disease will crop up next? Deadly diseases like measles are only a plane flight away.
One important point to remember: despite all the media attention to this subject, very few parents actually choose to delay or opt out of vaccinations.
Vaccines In Infancy And Autism: Too Many Too Soon
Addressing Parents Concerns: Do Multiple Vaccines Overwhelm or Weaken the Infants Immune System?Offit, Paul A., Quarles, Jessica, et al.2002
Offit, Paul A. and Moser, Charlotte A.January 2009
Tozzi AE, Bisiacchi P, Tarantino V, De Mei B, DElia L, Chariotti F, Salmaso S.January 2009
Robert Schechter, MD, MSc and Judith K. Grether, PhDJanuary 2008
New England Journal of MedicineThompson WW, Price C, Goodson B, et al.September 2007
American Journal of Medical GeneticsJudith H. Miles and T. Nicole TakahashiMay 2007
Comparison of Blood and Brain Mercury Levels in Infant Monkeys Exposed to Methylmercury or Vaccines Containing ThimerosalThomas M. Burbacher, PhDApril 2005
Thimerosal Exposure in Infants and Developmental Disorders: A Prospective Cohort Study in the United Kingdom Does Not Support a Causal AssociationJohn Heron and Nick Andrews, PhD and Jean Golding, DScSeptember 2004
Journal of the American Medical AssociationAnders Hviid, MSc
American Journal of Preventive MedicinePaul Stehr-Green, DrPh, MPH
What Do We Know About What Contributes To Autism
Largely ignored during this prolonged vaccine-autism controversy was clear evidence of a strong genetic influence on autism. For example, if one identical twin has been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder , the other twin is from 60% to 90% more likely to also be diagnosed with an ASD. Also known is that males are more likely than females to be diagnosed with autism and that the older a father is, the higher the likelihood of a diagnosis of autism in his offspring.
Nonetheless, autism has proven to be very difficult to pin down genetically in the way that single-gene disorders, such as cystic fibrosis and Huntington’s disease, have been traced. The reasons for this difficulty have recently become clearer thanks to advances in DNA sequencing technology that have made it possible to compare the genomes of individuals with autism to those of individuals without autism, as well as to those of their parents. It is now evident that there are many genetic paths to autism, and that some mutations leading to autism are not inherited but arise spontaneously in reproductive cells or during development. These mutations help to explain how autism can appear in families that previously had no history of the condition.
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What Was The Impact Of The Alleged Vaccine
What the public didn’t know in 1998 was that the now-retracted study, which involved just 12 children, would turn out to have some serious flawsand even to contain apparently falsified data. The 12 years between its publication and its retraction, however, left a lot of time for the unfounded and never-confirmed vaccine-autism link to take hold in the minds of worried parentsand thus for vaccination rates to suffer.
In 1997, the year before the paper was published, measles vaccination rates in the United Kingdom were over 91%. They started to fall in 1998 and in 2003-2004 reached a nadir of just 80%, although rates were even lower than that in specific areas. Only in recent years have MMR vaccination rates started climbing again in the U.K., reaching about 90% in 2013.
Literature Reviews: Autism And Vaccines
Vaccines for measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella in children
Annals of Internal MedicineMarch 2019
The Journal of the American Medical AssociationApril 2015
Smith, M and Woods, CJune 2010
Offit, Paul and Gerber, Jeffrey S.February 2009
Institute of MedicineMay 2004
Adverse Effects of Pertussis and Rubella Vaccines: A Report of the Committee to Review the Adverse Consequences of Pertussis and Rubella Vaccines
Vaccinations And Herd Immunity
Diseases like polio, whooping cough, measles, Haemophilus influenzae, and diphtheria are becoming very rare in the U.S. because the childhood vaccination programs have worked.
When parents stop vaccinating their child, not only is their child at greater risk of disease, other children in their communities, and other communities, are at elevated risk, too. The benefit from widespread vaccination protecting the larger community is known as herd immunity.
The more people who are vaccinated, the fewer opportunities a disease has to spread. If vaccination rates drop nationally, diseases could become as common as they were before vaccines became available.
For example: smallpox is a true success story it has been eliminated from the globe since 1980. The last known case of smallpox in the U.S occurred in 1949, and the last case of naturally occurring smallpox was reported in 1977 in Somalia.
Studies are currently ongoing in children to determine the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines in children under 16 years of age, and initial data from Pfizer-BioNTech looks promising. In participants aged 12-15 years old, the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine demonstrated 100% efficacy and robust antibody responses and was well tolerated. These results exceeded those reported in trial of vaccinated 16-25 year old participants in an earlier analysis.
What About All Vaccinations Combined
Researchers have also looked to see if all the vaccines required before age 2 somehow together triggered autism. Children receive 25 shots in the first 15 months of life. Some people feared that getting all those shots so early in life could lead to the development of autism, but there is no evidence that this is true.
But the CDC compared groups of children who received vaccines on the recommended schedule and those whose vaccines were delayed or didnât get them at all. There was no difference in the autism rate between the two groups.
In 2004, the Immunization Safety Review Committee of the Institute of Medicine published a report on the topic. The group looked at all the studies on vaccines and autism, both published and unpublished. It released a 200-page report stating there was no evidence to support a link between vaccines and autism.
Still, studies continue to look at the issue. In 2019, the largest study to date looked at almost 660-thousand children over a course of 11 years and found no link between the vaccine and autism.
Indian Journal of Psychiatry: âThe MMR Vaccine and Autism: Sensation, Refutation, Retraction, and Fraud.â
Offit, P., and Moser, C., Vaccines and Your Child: Separating Fact from Fiction, Columbia University Press, 2011.
American Journal of Medical Genetics: âComorbidity of Intellectual Disability Confounds Ascertainment of Autism: Implications for Genetic Diagnosis.â
BMJ: âHow the Case Against the MMR Vaccine Was Fixed.â
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Do Vaccines Cause Autism
Some parents of children with ASD wonder whether a link exists between autism and vaccines. The concern first started with the MMR vaccine, an immunization against measles, mumps, and rubella. Some parents believe this vaccine causes the onset of autism. Despite these strongly held beliefs by proponents of the vaccine theory, there is no scientific proof that the MMR vaccineor any other vaccinecauses autism.
Addressing Vaccine Hesitancy In Autism Families
Beliefs about causes of autism and vaccine hesitancy among parents of children with autism spectrum disorderVaccineSeptember 2020
Parental attitudes and decisions regarding MMR vaccination during an outbreak of measles among an undervaccinated Somali community in MinnesotaVaccineOctober 2020
Vaccine Hesitancy and Attributions for Autism among Racially and Ethnically Diverse Groups of Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Study
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No Therestillis No Connection Between Vaccines And Autism
Newsarizona Lawmaker Calls Mandatory Measles Vaccine ‘communist’ Amid Fight To Control Outbreaks
Early symptoms of autism can vary but may include repetitive behaviors like hand flapping or body rocking, extreme resistance to changes in routine, and sometimes aggression or self-injury. Behavioral, educational, speech and language therapy may help reduce the severity of autism symptoms in some children.
The study wasn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove whether or how vaccines might cause autism.
Another drawback is the potential for some kids to have undiagnosed autism before getting the MMR vaccine, which could make the MMR vaccine appear linked to autism when it really isn’t connected, the study authors note. It’s also possible that the onset of autism symptoms might lead parents to skip the vaccine.
Still, the study adds to a large body of evidence showing that vaccines don’t cause autism, writes Dr. Saad Omer of Emory University in Atlanta, co-author of an accompanying editorial.
“Any myth should be clearly labeled as such,” Omer writes. “Even in the face of substantial and increasing evidence against an MMR-autism association, the discussion around the potential link has contributed to vaccine hesitancy.”
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Autism And Vaccines In The Media
A Journalists Guide to Covering Outbreaks of Vaccine-Preventable DiseaseFrom the producers of the PBS-NOVA special VaccinesCalling the Shots.
On January 21st, 2011, Dr. Paul Offit was on The Colbert Report speaking about his new book, Deadly Choices: How The Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All..
On September 9, 2014, ASF President Alison Singer was on The Leonard Lopate Show to talk about the risks of not vaccinating.
If we ask the same questions well get the same answers. Weve asked the autism vaccine question over two dozen times and each time we get the same response: no relationship. We need to move on. We need to invest in studying genetics, the brain structures of children with autism, and environmental factors that may be playing a role.
Vaccination And Autism Fact Sheet
This fact sheet explains how we know vaccination does not cause autism and where the misunderstanding came from.
We aim to provide documents in an accessible format. If you’re having problems using a document with your accessibility tools,please contact us for help.
A fact sheet about vaccination and autism.
Many large studies have found vaccines do not cause autism. References and links to further reading are included.
This fact sheet provides information about:
- how we know vaccination does not cause autism
- that why some children develop autism is still not understood
- where the misunderstanding that vaccination causes autism came from.
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What Exactly Is Autism Or Asd
Autism, also known as autism spectrum disorder , is a brain development disorder in children that leads to problems with communication, behavior, and social interaction. A child may not show signs until age 2 or 3, and symptoms may continue throughout the childs lifetime.
What exactly causes autism is not known, but most experts agree it is genetically linked. Researchers are also studying whether environmental factors such as viral infections, pregnancy complications, or air pollutants could increase the risk of autism.
ASD is 4 times more common in boys than girls about 1 out of every 54 children are diagnosed with this disorder, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease and Control .
There is no known cure for autism, but children can learn new skills.
Expert Q+a: Is There A Link Between Vaccines And Autism
Vaccines. Autism. Controversy. As a new parent , it’s hard not to hear the great debate in parenting circles these days–do vaccines cause autism? If not, what causes autism? Why is it on the rise? This special excerpt from Baby 411 answers these questions and more, with advice from Dr. Ari Brown, pediatrician, parent and a spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
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Myth #: Vaccines Aren’t Worth The Risk
Despite parent concerns, children have been successfully vaccinated for decades. In fact, there has never been a single credible study linking vaccines to long term health conditions.
As for immediate danger from vaccines, in the form of allergic reactions or severe side effects, the incidence of death are so rare they can’t even truly be calculated. For example, only one death was reported to the CDC between 1990 and 1992 that was attributable to a vaccine. The overall incidence rate of severe allergic reaction to vaccines is usually placed around one case for every one or two million injections.
Studies That Disprove Links Between Mmr And Autism
One study of more than 500 000 Danish children found no increased risk of autism among those who had received the MMR vaccine compared with those who had not.
Another study of more than 27 000 Canadian children noted that rates of pervasive developmental disorder increased over time. But this happened when the rate of MMR vaccination was going down, which means the MMR vaccine was not causing the cases of autism.
Other researchers found that rates of autism continued to rise in a region of Japan even after the MMR vaccine was stopped. Again, this suggested that the MMR vaccine was not the cause of autism.
In an attempt to replicate part of Dr Wakefields findings, researchers compared bowel tissue of 25 autistic children who had bowel disorders with 13 children with only bowel disorders. The researchers found no differences in the presence of the measles virus between the two groups.
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Efficient Distribution Of Vaccinations
A method for efficient vaccination approach, via vaccinating a small fraction population called acquaintance immunization has been developed by Cohen et al. An alternative method based on identifying and vaccinating mainly spreaders has been developed by Liu et al. These are both based on the idea that people with a strong social network are at risk for accidentally infecting the many people they come into contact with and will have other highly connected people among their contacts.
Q Does The Mmr Vaccine Cause Autism
In 1998, a British doctor named Andrew Wakefield published a research paper in a British medical journal, The Lancet, claiming autism in children was linked to the MMR vaccine. However, the research sample was very small . But in March 2004, after questions were raised about the study, 10 of the 13 researchers involved withdrew their claim of having found a possible connection between MMR and autism.
By early 2010, The Lancet retracted Dr. Wakefield’s research and by January 2011, the British Medical Journal publicly denounced Dr. Wakefield’s research as “fraudulent,” saying he “falsified data” and tampered with his research results to give the MMR vaccine bad publicity. At the time of his study, Dr. Wakefield had been involved in a lawsuit against the manufacturers of the MMR vaccine and would have gained money if he’d won, making his research an obvious conflict of interest.
But perhaps the most compelling argument that the MMR vaccine does NOT cause autism is Japan — in 1993, that country stopped using the combination MMR vaccine. Instead, Japanese children were given three separate shots for these diseases. Despite this change, autism rates in Japan continue to rise.
1995: 1936 cases of mumps
2003: 4265 cases
2004: 15,503 cases
Here’s the bottom line: As a doctor who sees a large volume of kids, I have never seen a perfectly normally developing kid walk into my office, get his MMR vaccine … and come back next week with autism. It doesn’t happen.
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Is Thimerosal Still Found In Vaccines
Thimerosal has been removed or reduced to trace amounts in most vaccines, with the exception of the multi-dose vial of the seasonal flu shot. Thimerosal is added to multi-dose vials to help prevent overgrowth of bacteria.
For parents who prefer, preservative-free versions of the flu shot are available all you have to do is request it from your doctor or pharmacist. You may need to check with your insurance first to be sure they’ll pay for the preservative-free form.
Thimerosal used to be found in the hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type B and diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis vaccines, among others. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has worked with vaccine manufacturers to eliminate thimerosal from vaccines recommended for children 6 years and younger. In many common childhood vaccines, thimerosol was never present.
Thimerosal is not present in any COVID vaccine issued for emergency use authorization in the U.S. To see a full list of ingredients for COVID-19 vaccines in the U.S., follow this link.
At this time, the only COVID-19 vaccine authorized for use in children is the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and it is only used in children 16 years or older. Studies in younger populations are ongoing.