I know I dump on a website known as The Thinking Moms' Revolution (TMR), but I do so with good reason. Given what a wretched hive of antivaccine scum and quackery that website is, rivaling or surpassing any antivaccine website I can think of, even the blog equivalent of the great granddaddies of wretched hives of antivaccine scum and quackery, the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), and, of course, Age of Autism. As a result, increasingly I've been taking more and more notice of this (not so) Thinking Mom's Devolution. As a result, I became aware of a particularly egregious piece of nonsense that popped up the other day. It's nonsense that I've alluded to before, but nonsense that is nonetheless worth revisiting from time and time again, the better to provide ammunition to skeptics who encounter this particulary nonsense.
Indeed, it's nonsense that our very own favorite antivaccine apologist pediatrician, Dr. Jay Gordon, has used before, namely the implication that vaccine manufacturers are somehow like tobacco manufacturers in that, or so the story goes, they both covered up negative health consequences due to their products. It's an argument that is so mind-bogglingly dumb that it lead me to addres Dr. Jay, completely exasperated, and say, Dr. Jay Gordon: Will you please stop claiming you’re not an antivaccinationist? I'll show you what I mean. Take a look at a post on TMR by a "Thinker" (really, that's what the bloggers at TMR call each other) who goes by the 'nym The Professor. I kid you not. Hubris, much?
The post is called Thank You for Not Vaccinating in a typically ham-fisted allusion to liken vaccinating to smoking. The Professor declares her purpose early on:
You remember that blog calendar we have “behind the scenes” that Mountain Mama told you about in “Accepting the Village” ? Well, I chose today because the blog calendar said it was “No Smoking Day,” and I wanted to do a blog on the parallels between tobacco science and vaccine science.
Oh, goody. At least that's what I thought, because for some reason I get some perverse entertainment by brain dead antivaccine arguments, the more brain dead the more entertaining—at least to a point. So seeing The Professor preparing to bring up this particular bit of antivaccine propaganda got my sharpening my skeptical knives in anticipation. Unfortunately, I didn't have long to wait before barrel after barrel of napalm-grade burning stupid started flowing from the TMR website. Let's see the form The Professor's analogy takes, shall we? Be sure to get out your aluminum foil and construct a proper hat to block the Illuminati mind control waves, as we read together. After first noting that 150 years ago lung cancer was rare (which is true—in fact lung cancer was rare until at least the 1910s and 1920s) but that it's now the leading cause of cancer-related deaths, The Professor opines:
The rise in cases of lung cancer began right around the turn of the twentieth century. The 1930 edition of the authoritative Springer Handbook of Special Pathology suggested some possible environmental reasons for the sudden rise: increased air pollution, asphalting of roads, increased automobile traffic, the influenza pandemic of 1918, etc. Smoking, which had risen dramatically in popularity in the same time period, was briefly mentioned as a possible cause, but it was noted that there were as many studies that failed to find an association as there were ones with positive findings. In September 1950, an article was published in the British Medical Journal linking smoking to lung cancer. Over the next few decades, more and more studies piled up, establishing without a doubt a causal relationship between smoking and lung cancer, though many studies funded by tobacco companies continued to dispute the link. As late as 1994, big tobacco companies were still testifying to Congress that the evidence on a causal link was inconclusive. Someone must have gotten fed up with the lies, though, because soon afterward a box of confidential documents from Brown & Williamson appeared that proved tobacco execs knew and accepted the truth back in the ‘50s. And those documents were used in 1998 to trounce the tobacco companies in a federal lawsuit that resulted in a settlement of $365.5 billion.
The Professor is actually not quite right on her time line. As I've discussed before and as documented in Robert N. Proctor's book The Nazi War on Cancer, it was actually Nazi scientists who were the first to find definitive epidemiological links between smoking and lung cancer, and they did it at least a decade before British epidemiologist Sir Richard Doll published seminal studies in the early 1950s making the link, as in the Doctors' study. I'm being mildly pedantic here, though. The point is that linking tobacco smoking to lung cancer is one of the greatest triumphs of epidemiology, and what's a decade here or there on the time line. The Professor's argument is just as bad even if she got every fact right.
We skeptics frequently point out that correlation does not equal causation. That particular bit of skeptical wisdom is actually probably better stated as, "Correlation does not necessarily equal causation," because sometimes correlation does equal causation. For instance, when the correlation is strong enough and there is a plausible biological mechanism, correlation can be a strong indication of causation, although it's rarely definitive. In the case of lung cancer and tobacco, even though people smoked tobacco for centuries before lung cancer incidence started climbing, it was difficult to smoke enough to drastically increase the risk of lung cancer such that it could be detected by the primitive epidemiological methods of the day because people had to "roll their own," and that was work. What made smoking large amounts of tobacco every day so much easier was the advent of industrial cigarette rollers that allowed the manufacture of huge numbers of cheap cigarettes. Because nicotine is so addictive, the easy availability of cheap cigarettes predictably led large percentages of the population to take up that habit. Add a lag time of approximately 20-30 years for smoking to cause cancer, and you have a near perfect correlation between the increase in tobacco smoking and the massive increase in lung cancer incidence. Lung cancer went from a disease about which an apocryphal story was frequently told of medical students being urged to attend the autopsy of a lung cancer patient in the early 1900s because they might never see another case again to being very common in a relatively short period of time—just a few decades.
You know what's coming, of course. There's no other reason for an antivaccinationist to mention the decades long campaign of deception, obfuscation, and denialism that tobacco companies engaged in to avoid taking responsibility for the adverse health effects known to be caused by their product other than to try to claim that vaccine manufacturers are doing the same thing when it comes to the alleged link between vaccines and autism, and, yes, that's exactly what readers are treated to:
Sound familiar? It ought to. Thirty-five years ago autism was an extremely rare condition. It occurred in approximately one in 25,000 children. Most doctors never saw a single case in their entire lives. Today one in 88 12-year-olds in the United States is diagnosed with autism. Yes, the definition of “autism” has changed somewhat, but there are still a heck of a lot more than one in 25,000 children with full-blown autism that looks very similar to the original 11 cases as described by Leo Kanner for the first time in 1943. Many of my personal friends – from my “before” life — have a child or relative with severe autism. It is everywhere. So what explanations have “experts” come up with for the dramatic rise in cases of autism? Increased air pollution, living near a highway, mothers who had influenza while pregnant, older parents, etc. Vaccines, the use of which has risen dramatically in the same time period, have briefly been considered as a possible cause, but there are “as many studies that failed to find an association as there are with positive findings.” In 1998 a paper was published in the British Medical Journal that speculated that there might be a link between the MMR vaccine and autism. Since that time many more studies have shown significant positive correlation between vaccines (not just the MMR) — or the ingredients in vaccines (including thimerosal and aluminum) — and the development of neurological or physical conditions that include autism and its co-morbid conditions.
My neurons hurt after contemplating the sheer ignorance that is the above paragraph. For one thing, one can't help but note that it is not true that there are "as many studies that failed to find an association as there are with positive findings." The fact is, the quality and quantity of evidence that does not support a link between vaccines and autism so far surpasses the quality and quantity of evidence that does support a link. Indeed, the evidence "supporting" a link between vaccines and autism almost inevitably comes from pesudoscientists, quacks (like Mark and David Geier), and frauds (like Andrew Wakefield) and is so riddled with methodological flaws, conclusions that do not flow from the evidence, and a heapin' helpin' of sheer nonsense. I've written about many of those studies myself right here and at my other blog. There's also the issue of whether autism really was rare 35 years ago. Again, this is something discussed on this blog many times over the years, namely whether there even is such a thing as an "autism epidemic." There almost certainly isn't. Thanks to diagnostic substitution, more intensive screening, and the broadening of the diagnostic criteria for autism and autism spectrum disorders in the early 1990s, the apparent prevalence of autism has skyrocketed, but there's good evidence that the true prevalence hasn't changed much.
Why does the correlation have to be with vaccines? It's always vaccines with these people. As I like to point out, there are lots of other things that increased since the late 1980s to correlate with the apparent rise in autism prevalence: Internet usage, for instance. Yet for people like The "Professor," it's always the vaccines. Always.
Which brings us to the problem with trying to make analogies between vaccine manufacturers and tobacco companies. There is no analogy. In the case of tobacco and smoking, there was overwhelming and powerful high quality epidemiological evidence linking smoking tobacco products to lung cancer. The effect size and hazard ratios were so high that they couldn't be ignored. There isn't anything resembling such high powered epidemiological evidence supporting a link between vaccines and autism. In fact, all the copious high-powered, high quality epidemiological evidence on the topic failed to find even a hint of a whiff of a link between vaccines and autism. It's the exact opposite of the situation with tobacco companies. Contrary to the case with tobacco companies and the link between lung cancer and smoking, where the companies lied and used bad science and denialist arguments to deny what science showed, accine manufacturers and the CDC are actually on the right side of science when they argue that vaccines don't cause autism because the science shows that, to the best of our ability to detect it (and that ability is veyr sensitive), they do not.
But there's more there, so much more. There's the standard conspiracy mongering, in which the CDC is covering up the "link" between vaccines and autism; the Vaccine Court refuses to compensate vaccine-induced autism; and, part of the common antivaccine meme from a few years ago, Julie Gerberding supposedly admitted that vaccines cause autism without actually admitting it even though all she did as far as I can tell was to use appropriate scientific caution—actually more caution and qualification than was necessary. Thrown in, as antivaccinationists are wont to do in the days after the financial meltdown of 2008, analogies to "too big to fail" bank bailouts. The projection reaches a truly irony meter-melting extreme when The Professor says, "That’s intellectual dishonesty, otherwise known as bullshit."
That pretty much describes her entire post, which concludes with this howler of a paragraph:
Eventually, everyone will know about the dangers of vaccination just like we all know about the dangers of smoking now, and the vaccine equivalent of the “Thank you for not smoking” sign will be commonplace. The real question is will it be in time? Or will the general overall health of the country have declined so much by then that we will have destroyed our chances for good health forever?
This analogy is so wrong on so many levels, not the least of which being that "thank you for not smoking" was something people said when people didn't assault them with their second hand smoke. A better analogy would be to say, "Thank you for vaccinating." Just as not smoking is good for the smoker and everyone around him, who is spared the adverse health effects of second hand smoke, vaccinating is good for the child and everyone around him, protecting the child and contributing to herd immunity.
But then what would we expect from an antivaccine "Professor" except to get it exactly the opposite of the true situation. In the antivaccine world, cold is hot, up is down, and wrong is right. Oh, and to them pseudoscience is science.
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And her biggest error is here:
Just because a condition was rarely diagnosed doesn't mean it was in fact rare. The best evidence that there hasn't been an increase in the autism rate is the fact that a lot of autistics have only been diagnosed in their 40's and 50's. That points to previous underdiagnosis, not to increasing autism rates.
Ow, my brain. I could almost feel my IQ drop reading this.
Just this weekend I had to listen to my aunt (70) saying that my cousins (~45) celiac disease was caused by vaccinations.
The stoopid, it is EVERYWHERE!
one in 25,000 children with full-blown autism that looks very similar to the original 11 cases as described by Leo Kanner for the first time in 1943.
Eleven cases, and an incidence of one in 25000, implies that Leo Kanner had 275000 patients. I am happy to believe that doctors worked hard in the 1940s but not that hard.
Oh, dear, they don't get out much, do they?
Tobacco companies are in the business of selling tobacco. If tobacco were proved to be harmful, they could not simply drop that product and sell something else. Big Pharma is not in the business of selling vaccines. They could drop the product tomorrow without appreciably affecting their bottom line. Indeed, that's why the Vaccine Court was established: to encourage them not to stop manufacturing vaccines. The situations are not parallel.
TMR has made an _excellent_ analogy.
Similarities between the antivaxers' campaign and the tobacco companies' attempts to evade compelling scientific evidence are uncanny:
In both cases we've seen a small group of denialists and hacks pretending to be scientists, arguing their deeply flawed cause in the face of massive scientific evidence to the contrary, while benefiting a bunch of people out to make money off the misery of the group being deceived.
The Thinking Moms' Revolution has it exactly right - except their fingers are pointed in the wrong direction.
Is this the new Galileo gambit?
Today one in 88 12-year-olds in the United States is diagnosed with autism.
The self-described Professor is palming a card here. If I am remembering the timeline right, today's 12-year-olds would have been the last cohort (give or take a year) to get vaccines with thimoserol. She doesn't quote the rate for eight-year-olds, which I believe is similar.
And as Julian points out above, doctors are more likely to diagnose a condition when they know what to look for. I'm in my 40s, and while I was never diagnosed as autistic, I have occasionally suspected that I am on the mild end of the spectrum. Another adult diagnosis comes from one of the players in Michael Lewis's book The Big Short, about the financial crisis. The person in question actually read the prospectuses on some of the dodgiest deals, which is how he knew which deals to bet against. He never suspected that he was autistic until his son was diagnosed, and he recognized the symptoms that the doctor described in his son.
Orac is correct -
TMR is a steeping sinkhole of decaying intellectual vegetative detritus which produces a toxic biofilm of festering un-reason on a near daily basis.
Today another analogy ( simile) appears: thinking parents are like the first person to walk to space. There is a minuscule grain of truth there- both being out of touch with planet earth - one figuratively, one literally.
A few days ago, they re-played a year old post** by a visiting 'thinker'***, a 21 year old who has "worked" with autistic children for years- she repeats the usual diatribe about vaccines/ the evils of SBM that we all know so well and then announces that she has changed woo in mid-stream: rather than studying to be a thinking teacher for kids with ASDs, she'll become a thinking chiropractor instead, so she can adjust their vaccines injuries away.
TMR is releasing a book ( via Skyhorse****) in April ( book party at Autism One) that features their inspirational woo-mongering and a preface by Dr Sears.
If you attempt reading their tripe, they put on a screen which tries to inveigle you into ' liking' them on facebook- it may be working, their numbers have recently grown to over 8K.
More on TMR. ( continued)
** they had their first anniversary last month: oddly it seems much longer than that to me.
*** yes, how I do hate that appellation!
**** which also publishes AJW and LKH & Holland as well as presenting Null's new eponymous publishing label/ 12 book deal.
The really bad par is, even if all their crazy ideas were true, vaccines dropped early childhood mortality from 10% to under 0.1%. Per thousand birth, we'd be trading 100 dead babies against 12 cases of autism, not counting all the cases of severe mental deficits due to the diseases.
To any normal person that would count like a reasonable trade-off, but I guess dead babies don't bother them.
I've mentioned this a few times. Remember how this all started with MMR. It was the stories of "my baby got the MMR shot and suddenly turned autistic." You get enough stories like that, and it's not so crazy that you need to check them out. So they were checked out, and the answer was, no, it's not MMR. This is, in fact, all fine. Notable concerns, check them out, rule it out, and move on.
But this is where the bizarre turn comes in. Instead of looking for other suggestive causes, they said, well, if it's not MMR, it must be either another vaccine, or a toxin in the vaccine. It is mercury. It is DTAP. It's the Hep A. It's Gardisal!
Despite the fact that that none of these things have ever been associated, even casually, with autism, they are still on the list of boogeymen. No one ever says, "They got the DTAP vaccine and boom, they were autistic."
I sometimes wonder how we (they) went from stories of, "My child got the MMR shot and suddenly was autistic" to "vaccines cause autism"? It just does not follow at all.
Jeez, they guy who blamed fluorescent lights was no less justified than the "blame all vaccines" crowd.]
Personally, I am sticking with the creamy version of Desitin (the stuff in the light blue tube, not the original in the purple tube)
The various Moms go by irritatingly inane 'nyms:
Professor, Cupcake, Booty Kicker, Mama Bear, Princess, Goddess, Mountain Mama, Saint, the Rev ad nauseum.
However, their writing is exponentially more annoying: they present the unlikely blending of a 'just girlfriends' bonding fest with incredibly venomous derision of professionals, especially doctors. They promote the idea that mothers know more than any expert - explaining the 'thinking' misnomer: they don't blindly accept SBM consensus but they "research" on their own and find true woo to " recover" their children. They have promoted every woo-begotten pseudo-therapy known to humankind within the last 13 months.
LIsa Goes ( also of AoA and the Canary Party) calls herself the Rev. She also runs an "autism media company" (?), the Misuta Project.
Alison MacNeil ( Mama Mac) is a social worker and creator of some of the most virulently angry rhetoric about doctors, psychologists and others who understand research better than she does.
"Saint" is a school psychologist.
The Prof ( see Orac's discussion) is an " actor geek" with a degree in physics.
Their so-called feminism runs to the grizzly bear/ self-sacrificing suburban mother variety:
"I can't buy myself fab shoes because my bebe needs his biomed supplements/ treatments/ GFCF diet products and I'll claw anyone who tries to stop me!" and myriad permutations on that theme.
Currently, there is a war for hearts, minds and pocketbooks at AoA whilst the love-fest persists at TMR.
I don't know which is worse .
(Not so) O/T...Today is the day that Dr. Jay launches his new book, "Preventing Autism":
BTW, Jay has changed his website; still the same old bullsh!t about vaccines and he still has RFK Jrs. rant up about the Simpsonwood Conference.
He's still sucking up to D-List celebs and still he's sucking up to Kennedy.
Also kind of O/T:
In a vaccination debate on Reddit (the parenting subreddit tends to be very pro-vaccine), an anti-vaxxer linked to a site called "Great Mothers Questioning Vaccines". It's mostly a site with links to a bunch of discredited anti-vax tropes. But I did see one thing I've never seen before: A statistical chart showing that "if present trends continue, 1 in 1 boys will have autism by 2032 (and the "incidence will go below 1 in 1 thereafter"), and 1 in 1 girls will have autism by 2040". I've seen some ridiculous stuff on those sites, but I don't think I've ever seen such a fundamental misunderstanding of statistics.
Slightly off-topic, but I'm raising the Anti-woo Batsignal:
Has anyone watched "Escape Fire," a documentary about the US healthcare system, featuring a lot of alt-med stuff. I'm looking for a critical review of it. Sadly, the one review from the Washington Post was gushing over acupuncture. Anything anyone can send my way will be much appreciated.
@Andrew - that is based on a terrible graph that extrapolated the rise in autism to show the 1:1 ratios - even though, based on the original graph, 100% of the total population was going to be autistic before 100% of all boys were supposed to be autistic.....truly horrible science and math fail.
@Andrew, that terrible graph came from this event
@ Ren: I "googled" "Escape Fire Movie Review" and found a number of reviews dating back to 2012 when the film was released.
Dammit, we just missed the broadcast of the film on CNN:
Lawrence/Liz: I should've known such idiocy wasn't unique.
Now to try to understand how anybody could possibly believe that to be true. That may take a little more time.
Facebook page for the "Escape Fire" movie...
I notice that they're using 'Tugg' to schedule screenings: sponsors make 25% and the film is only screened if a sufficient number pre-register. Also used on "The United States of Autism" - soon to be seen.
What always gets me is the belief by anti-vaxxers is that autism was unheard of or at really low rates in the past and that it just suddenly went up.
I've said this story before, but it bears repeating. When I was working in a state facility for MR/DD individuals, they often showed new hires the history the place,. They said that in the 1800s, the facility had individuals who were classified as mentally retarded but which would today be considered to have s/s of autism. But at that time, the health care field did not have any distinguishing features between autism and mild mental retardation, so they were all grouped into one.
You and your scaly friends want everybody vaccinated to prevent us from discerning your real agenda!
Which is, of course, to STEAL BABIES.
Sweet Saint Sebastian -- those people are serious.
Is this MetaTech site a joke, or is it real?
Thirty-five years ago autism was an extremely rare condition. It occurred in approximately one in 25,000 children. Most doctors never saw a single case in their entire lives.
Forfeckssake, Uta Frith completed her PhD in this "extremely rare condition" forty-five years ago. Thirty-five years ago, Simon Baron-Cohen and Tony Attwood were completing their own PhDs.
Temple Grandin had no trouble receiving a diagnosis of autism fifty-five years ago. Meanwhile Bruno Bettelheim was making a good living from this "extremely rare condition", treating hundreds of cases and blaming it on the mothers' psychological problems, saturating the media with his theories (write-ups in LIFE; the 1959 article in Scientific American).
Thinking Mother-Professor evidently belongs to the "I reject your reality and substitute my own" school of historians.
Thanks @Lilady and @Denise Walter
@Ren - I'd review it for you if I could, but the first eleven minutes triggered so much cell death in my brain that I can't banana the skateboard por favor.
de nada; -btw- I like the get up.
I'm so glad this computer balks at playing video: I need to have my wits about me so I can discuss finance over curry.
@Mark Thorson - Thanks for the links. I think. Sometimes it's good to see what real crazy looks like. It's like TimeCube, but coherent.
elburto: I almost choked on my tea. I might check out that movie- I need to kill a few brain cells.
Renate: Come on man, everyone knows that if it involves reptilians/lizard people/green men it's srs bizness.
Curry is infinitely more important than the various woovies out there.
Having recently subscribed to Netflix I've been exposed to some filmic stupidity so strong that even a chicken phaal could not burn the bad taste from my mouth. From the biomeddling DAN!fest 'Loving Lampposts' to 'Under Our Skin', an epic tale of the "chronic Lyme epidemic", and everything in between, my poor synapses are frazzled. I had to stop reading 'Far From the Tree', and read 'Spot Goes to the Zoo' instead, because my brain had been pureed by alt-med propaganda.
I only started to feel better once I'd tucked into a medicinal chicken podina with restorative coconut rice, and a pile of prescription-strength onion bhajis. All hail the power of the curry!
OK, just read that reptilian miscarriage thing. Great. Now I can't blanket metaphorical Pizza Hut gesundheit.
PGP - I've started to take my drinks via a tube, after one too many internet-related choking incidents. Be careful watching 'Escape Fire', even my foil body armour didn't help.
Elburto, Try Numb3rs on netflix :) I'm hooked and listen to it every night.
our overlord will not be pleased Mr Thorson
any relation to Linda?
I think I'm going to add the phrase "Can't banana the skateboard" to my regular lexicon. Thanks, elburto!
(I read the reptlian abduction piece. Um, yeeeeah...)
From the reptilian miscarriage piece:
"My 'cloacals' were out of balance. The cloacal system is an energy system known by hardly anyone except a few people who have learned this correction from Applied Kinesiology."
Uh ... are cloacals related to the cloaca? Because I don't have one of those. If she does, I think she has a closer connection to the reptilians than she cares to acknowledge.
"At the end of my ten minute dissertation on aliens etc., most people were frozen in their seats."
Yeah, I'll bet.
Oooooh, people are starting to get faces and Ren is a NINJA!
The TMR makes me want to scream. I am REALLY GLAD Orac and the commenters here take their foolishness apart. It's people like me who benefit, because once upon a time I heard the antivax crap and nearly fell for it.
Does anyone else get the urge to HYPERVACCINATE as if to make up for the drop in herd immunity? Or is my secret desire for Supersoldier Serum showing again?
I find "May I mambo dogface to the banana patch" to be of occasional utility.
Yes I'm highly considering getting all my vaccines up-to-date with the nurse offering her phone number at my local pharmacy. More autism == better :D
Narad - i was going to teach my child that, but I married into a family with teenage children and lost that opportunity.
I'm not a ninja. The cold was too damn high!
Or the temperature was too damn low!
Ren-- All epidemiologists are ninjas, as far as I'm concerned!
Yes, and yes to the super-soldier serum. I apparently am reliving my childhood right now..and I always harbored a secret desire to be Poison Ivy.
Altho' TMR and Metatech are hilariously entertaining, I'm anxiously awaiting for Jake to present his magnum opus that will certainly include:
-his questioning of Orac
- his investigation concerning the money issue ( 39 million USD)
- documentation of bank records, receipts, money drops, internal memoranda, phone calls and e-mail messages detailing Orac's relationship with pharma over the years
- in depth coverage of the incestuous relationships amongst and between the sceptics, government and pharma ( with records, receipts, phone / e-mail, photos etc)
- compleat diagramming of the relationships amongst and between Orac, the minions, the sceptics and other denizens of darkness. With circles and arrows, be assured.
I'm sure it's all there: when you charge people with serious malfeasance, obviously - if you have any journalistic or personal integrity - you need to provide adequate proof through evidence .And have independent fact checkers.
I'm sure he does.
All that and more.
i am supposed to be one of the vaccination caused my autism children, turns out i wasn't vaccinated with MMR and i don't have autism(merely ODD ,dysgraphia,and depression(which i suspect might be manic-depressive))
yet my parents still fall for this obvious bullshit and quackery
and think im "in the spectrum"
the sad part is i used to live in australia where quackery is rare,
and to escape my family that believes(whole heartedly) in anything and everything i had to move to america ,a hotbed for irrationality.
this belief in the autism/vaccine link is not harmless it puts children in danger of disease AND if the belief is strong enough it can psychologically harm the child
(does this post read like a post from an autistic person,I think not)
(does this post read like a post from an autistic person,I think not)
What is the writing style of an autistic person?
#46 Eesh, that's a shame.
By the way, do be sure to get vaccinated, especially if you are a female of childbearing age, because rubella can do terrible, terrible, tragic things.
Thirty-five years ago autism was an extremely rare condition. It occurred in approximately one in 25,000 children.
Reading TMProfessor's emanations was not a complete waste of time. They inspired me to dig out Wing's 1993 survey of the first quarter-century of autism epidemiology , going back to Lotter's 1966 and 1967 studies of prevalence.
I cannot convince myself that the Professor's account could depart so far from the facts just out of ignorance.
it's a little thing, but it's Sir Richard Doll, not Robert. I'm looking at the building in Oxford University named after him.
Just to play devil's advocate, I have to say that I don't believe in judging someone based on their choice of 'nym. There's too many reasons why someone might find a particular handle appropriate for them; too much room for in-jokes and personal whimsy. (And frankly, this is an issue where "seeing the mote in your brother's eye and missing the beam in your own" tends to apply; there are a lot of contributors here who are NOT afflicted with delusions of grandeur, whose chosen 'nyms might suggest that to outsiders who have no experience of the person behind the 'nym.)
The exception, for me, is when the 'nym appears to be claiming a particular role in the discussion which is entirely self-assumed on their part. The clearest example is the anti-vax editor on Wikipedia who chose the 'nym "Ombudsman," which could have led unwary people to believe that he had been selected by Wikipedia to fulfill an ombudsman role. A similar example from RI's own past was the contributor who chose the 'nym "doctrinal fairness," as if to suggest she had a better right to be associated with that virtue than other contributors.
For anything short of that, though, I think it does us more harm than good to snipe at 'nyms. We have plenty of reason to oppose the CONTENT of the screeds of The Professor, Mountain Mama and their ilk; wasting ammunition on perceived poor choice of 'nym makes it look, incorrectly, like we can't find enough things blatantly wrong in their content to talk about.
@Antaeus Feldspar - would that be an example of an ad pseudonym fallacy?
I am obviously in no position to mock others about their choice of pseudonym
Gonna have to disagree here. Unless "The Professor" was meant ironically (which I highly doubt), our antivaccine nut has just reinforced the picture of her as being full of the arrogance of ignorance, just through the choice of a pseudonym. In other words, if you're going to lay down such enormous swaths of napalm-grade burning stupid about vaccines, having chosen the 'nym "The Professor" is fair game for mockery as far as I'm concerned—alongside the refutation of the aforementioned enormous swaths of napalm-grade burning stupid about vaccines, of course.
Now, lest one criticize me for picking a pseudonym based on a near omniscient computer from an old British SF series, remember that practically none of my readers know where the 'nym Orac came from and that I picked the 'nym more based on the cantankerous personality of the computer on the show than anything else. That, and I like being obscure. Besides, these days most readers know who I am.
Saw this wonderful graph about correlation and causation:
If you want a description before clicking, the author graphed the diagnosis of autism vs. sales of organic foods over time)
Well, even if it's not autism, vaccines have to do something awful, they just have to:
re arrogance of ignorance @ TMR:
Ms Sugah today points out an addition to TMR's facebook page-
a " document designed and written for traditional medical professionals. It speaks their language and addresses the long list of potential underlying conditions potentially existent in children with a diagnosis of autism. You'll notice that it doesn't directly address the concept of causality which is smart because we all know how tradional medical folks stop listening when you talk environmental factors".
That's pretty f@cking arrogant. Other TMs preach, educate and lecture the various 'ignorant' professionals they encounter in their path of martyrdom.
They want to transform/ educate others into becoming "thinkers". As if they had the ability to judge medical decision making/ evidence or the ability to teach anything other than woo and self-aggrandisement.
-btw- re 'nyms
I'm a little sorry I didn't use a 'nym- they seem to really irritate our critics.
DW is a semi-pseudo: I leave off two of my four names.
@49, Herr Docktor Bimler, "Wing " is this one, am I correct?
I cannot convince myself that the Professor’s account could depart so far from the facts just out of ignorance.
Out of curiosity, I searched AoA for "Lorna Wing". Six hits, 5 in comments, one in passing from an article by Lisa Blakemore Brown, UK psychologist. Since AoA, AutismOne, etc. tends to be an echo chamber, it is entirely possible that "The Professor" (a self-described actor/geek with a degree in physics) has never heard of Lorna Wing or her research.
There’s too many reasons why someone might find a particular handle appropriate for them; too much room for in-jokes and personal whimsy
True that. Some people choose a nym as a way of warning the reader to expect pedantry and pomposity ahead.
Personally, I was trying to receive a nom de guerre but due to a spelling mistake I ended up with a nom du beurre instead and am contractually obliged to spend half my time advertising dairy products.
Eur Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1993 Jan;2(1):61-74. doi: 10.1007/BF02098832.
The definition and prevalence of autism: A review.
That's the one. On one hand there is Wing, scouring the literature and finding a series of studies over quarter of a century that applied similarly strict criteria (no Aspergers, no Spectrum). On the other hand, a pseudonymous contributor to TMR, claiming a figure of "one in 25,000 children" for the middle of that window.
Where did she pull that figure from? Did she make it up herself, or merely repeat someone else's lie?
@ herr doktor bimler:
Actually, I've usually heard '1 in 10 000' so that figure should be easy to trace.
She cited it. It's from Mark Geier.
She cited it. It’s from Mark Geier.
I know, I should read the original rather than relying upon secondary sources, but I prefer to taste my breakfast only once, going down.
OT, but Cracked has an article about 5 ways statistics can be used to deceive people. The top item is the "Correlation Causation" Fallacy. It actually mentions the vaccine autism error and it has the graph comparing autism rates to organic food sales that Nick Theodorakis @55 mentioned.
He's pulled out this number in congressional testimony, but it doesn't appear in the JPANDS 8, 6 (2003) item, which does trot out the "Department of Education" line.
I heard about the 1:10,000/1:8000 rates autism way back in the 1960s...only then it was the classic "Kanner's" autism; most parents reported development as *normal* and then slow regression between ages one and two years of age.
Eric Fombomme wrote an interesting article published in the U.K. in 1999, about his analysis of dozens studies published and the varying rates of autism trending upward, with newer studies:
When I met a dozens of parents who had children in their teens and twenties, who had "classic autism" back in the 1970s and early 1980s...the rate must have been much higher than the ridiculous rates that Fombomme wrote about.
Then there is this article about classifying early onset schizophrenia in the DSM II and the addition of the PDD diagnostic criteria in the DSM III:
J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2009 January; 48(1): 10–18.
Autism-Spectrum Disorders and Childhood Onset Schizophrenia: Clinical and Biological Contributions to a Relationship Revisited
Judith Rapoport, M.D., Alex Chavez, B.S., Deanna Greenstein, Ph.D., Anjene Addington, Ph.D., and Nitin Gogtay, M.D.
"...When advances in psychiatry permitted the field to conceptualize psychotic disorders and developmental disorders as distinct, the phenomena of PDD and COS as comorbid disorders could be explored. In the DSM-II, autism was referred to as schizophrenia, childhood type, and was characterized by “atypical and withdrawn behavior,” “failure to develop identity separate from the mother's,” and “general unevenness, gross immaturity and inadequacy in development.” However, important post DSM-II work conducted by Kolvin and others focused on the contrast between very early onset schizophrenia (with typical onset after age 7) 15 and earlier onset autism. This research was influential in making the distinction between childhood onset schizophrenia and autism in the DSM III..."
Back in the early days when the formation of Committees on the Handicapped (COHs) were mandated for school districts, after the passage of PL 94-142 , I served on my district's COH:
Before the passage of this Law, disabled children were not educated in local schools...in fact if a parent "pushed" a local district to provide education, they were told "your child is exempt". Any child who was obviously developmentally disabled and not just a "slow learner" went to private schools...some of them good...and some just glorified day care.
Back during my tenure on the COH (~ 1978-1985), kids who were classified as mentally retarded (mild, moderate, severe or profound) was classified as "Mantally Retarded" only...even if they had pronounced autistic-like behaviors. No menus, no picks from column A and column B. There were a few kids such as my son who qualified as handicapped under several categories "Mentally Retarded", "Physically Handicapped" and "Other Health Impaired" who were classified as "Multiply Handicapped". So, anyone who went to public school during the time prior to the passage of PL 94-142, would not have seen any classmates with developmental disabilities.
Exactly the point I tried to argue with my mum. However, we are both terribly stubborn, so I didn't get too far.
Too bad Khani, it is a fascinating subject to *some of us*.
@46. - I do hope you'll de-lurk and answer Alain's question, because I'd hate to have to assume the most likely option (basic ableism) if there's an actual explanation.
@Julian Frost - I'm now in a Cracked Trap. Cracked/Wikipedia/YouTube are my nemeses. "One more article!" or "One more video about misbehaving Labradors!" I tell myself. Hours later, weak from hunger and lack of medication, my battery finally dies, breaking the cycle and freeing me!
WRT 'nyms - Mine's a pet name given by my lovely lady. It's a play on my name, and (something we only just realised last year!) an anagram of 'trouble. Very appropriate!
Handy in settings where a female-sounding handle is disadvantageous.
which does trot out the “Department of Education” line
So according to Geier, the ultimate authority on the prevalence of a medical condition is the Department of Education? WTF?
Before the passage of this Law, disabled children were not educated in local schools…
That makes more sense. Geier's "1 in 25000" figure might be the proportion of autistic children being taught in the usual education system, at a time when every effort was made to exclude autistic children from the usual education system.
And now for your thinking and viewing pleasure:
today's TMR features a video of Saint and Prof on a woo-drenched television show ( 57 minutes) which my balky computer played ( it must be a sign).
We learn that " Modern medicine is not your friend". It seems that a group of college friends formed the core of the group but message boards, yahoo groups and facebook must take most of the blame for its inception- although a few shared a practitioner. They met up at Autism One.
The Moms discuss their children's problems and which medical interventions they blame most. (Oh, guess). Saint ( a psychologist, I believe) mentions the isolation parents of kids with special needs feel and how the group enabled them to get support and learn about woo ( not that she calls it that). As well as allowing mutual enablement..
Writing a book and blogging are their avenues for educating others; they advise new parents to google and use facebook to assist them in their path to thinking." Educate yourself". We also learn how the economic cost of woo can affect your liefstyle. And how it brainwashes vulnerable pre-teens.
In short: if you thought these women display a boundless lack of scientific knowledge in print, you really need to hear them.
TMR are the "Evil Mr. Spock" to the Thinking Person's Guide to Autism. A pale shadow of an Evil Mr. Spock, actually.
Just because a condition was rarely diagnosed doesn’t mean it was in fact rare. The best evidence that there hasn’t been an increase in the autism rate is the fact that a lot of autistics have only been diagnosed in their 40′s and 50′s. That points to previous underdiagnosis, not to increasing autism rates
These people will never be counted in the autism numbers,and they need to be,especially if they have a real diagnosis.Imagine if we stopped counting the numbers of any other disease in people over eighteen.I have an autism diagnosis severe enough to have been diagnosed in the 1970s,but it was done in a school setting.all records of it were destroyed when I finished high school.No one knew I was autistic,I have a lot of lifelong medical problems,and now have a diagnosis of cerebral folate deficiency syndrome.I am now working towards a diagnosis of mitochondrial disease,with one of the major research hospitals in metabolic based autism.But in order to get there,I first had to document an autism diagnosis.This meant I had to get rediagnosed with autism in my forties.
I have a sister at the milder end of the spectrum,who was also diagnosed,for the first time,in her forties.People like us,will never be counted.
This study was also released last week,and got no attention at all.
Comparison of ICD-10R, DSM-IV-TR and DSM-5 in an Adult Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnostic Clinic
Here's the abstract.
Hat tip to the great Questioning Answers blog
March 18, 2013
To any normal person that would count like a reasonable trade-off, but I guess dead babies don’t bother them.
If Orac picked his name from an old UK tv show, maybe The Professor picked her name from Gilligan's Island? Her approach to science seems very similar to the Professor's, although when I was 10 I thought the Professor character really knew his stuff and wanted to be just like him. I wasn't able to make a radio out of coconuts, but I was able to do a pretty good imitation of a trotting horse after being inspired by a silly UK movie most people here have never heard of.... ;-)
My son's story:
My 4th child. Perfectly normal, bright, happy toddler. Speaking, poiniting, clapping, imitating, interacting, sleeping, normal digestion, no allergies, etc.
Right after MMR: fever, rash, inconsolable crying, headbanging...everything listed above changed to: autism dx, regression of all skills, sleeping 2-3 hrs per night, multiple allergies/sensitivities, can no longer speak, point, clap, imitate (he could even write and ride a bike before his last round of vaccines) basically descended into a miserable, hellish existence.
How about instead of calling people quacks, you instead go on PubMed and research VAMP (vaccine associated measles pan encephalitis) and (measles induced neural autism syndrome)
Thank you. Enjoy your day.
So, have you filled out a claim with the vaccine court?
Also, . since you brought up the claim.
Let's see, "vaccine associated measles pan encephalitis" on PubMed brings up exactly one paper:
J Virol. 2010 Apr;84(8):3798-807. doi: 10.1128/JVI.01566-09. Epub 2010 Feb 3.
A chimeric alphavirus replicon particle vaccine expressing the hemagglutinin and fusion proteins protects juvenile and infant rhesus macaques from measles.
That is one paper on non-human primates on ways to improve measles vaccination. I don't think it is what momofsix was thinking about. And putting the phrase in quotes brings up exactly nothing.
Then I tried using her suggestion to use "measles induced neural autism syndrome" (without the quotes), and the result was "No items found."
So, to repeat novalox: citation needed.
And here are some to help you:
Vaccine. 2012 Jun 13;30(28):4292-8. Epub 2012 Apr 20.
The combined measles, mumps, and rubella vaccines and the total number of vaccines are not associated with development of autism spectrum disorder: The first case-control study in Asia.
Vaccine. 2012 Jan 5;30(2):247-53.
Lack of association between childhood immunizations and encephalitis in California, 1998-2008.
Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2010 May;29(5):397-400.
Lack of association between measles-mumps-rubella vaccination and autism in children: a case-control study.
Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2006 Sep;25(9):768-73.
Encephalopathy after whole-cell pertussis or measles vaccination: lack of evidence for a causal association in a retrospective case-control study.
I am a little baffled by the timing of momofsix's story. The MMR vaccine is given at around fifteen months.
First she claims he was speaking before the MMR. The typical speech of a child at that age is one or two word phrases.
But this is what really gets me confused: "he could even write and ride a bike before his last round of vaccines "
Now that is some fifteen to eighteen month toddler! Even my very precocious daughter could not write or ride a bike until she was six years old! Even if it was the second MMR vaccine that is give at age four to six, that is still incredible the child could fully write before finishing first grade.
To be sure, momofsix could be referring to a tricycle, if of course she is referring to the second round of MMR vaccinations needed, and children by the age of 3-4 should be riding a tricycle by that time. But judging by her lies in her post, I must assume that she is either parroting the typical anti-vax tropes or is actively lying.
But of course, Chris, the scientific evidence posted by you refutes her claims. The only thing that I have seen regarding VAMP are on rabid anti-vax sites, with no actual research, and as for measles induced neural autism syndrome, it happens with actual measles, and those pushing an association with vaccines are the usual anti-vax suspects.
A bit off-topic, wouldn't momofsix be a perfect example of what Denise Walter considers negative group therapy of anti-vax sites? Instead of talking about ways to help their child, thei whine and complain about how much their own lives are a "miserable, hellish existence" and hoiw their children are "less than human"?
Honestly, momofsix's attitude sickens me. I know raising children with learning and mental disorders are hard and can be difficult, but being so demeaning to your own children, no matter what they have, in order for some "woe is me" factor still continues to boggle the mind.
I just looked at my state's immunization requirements, and the second MMR is needed for a child to enter kindergarten. So I have sincere doubts about the MMR vaccine affecting a child's writing ability before they even start kindergarten!
Thanks about the observation on "VAMP" and "measles induced neural autism syndrome" being only mentioned on anti-vaccine sites. It is obvious that she did not try looking them up on PubMed herself.
And, you are right. It is horrible that she described her child descending into a " a miserable, hellish existence." Okay, we have had days like that: like when our oldest was hospitalized while suffering from real diseases (and one genetic heart disorder).
Well, thanks for the mention.
group therapy is supposed to provide clients with feedback from others as- hopefully- a reality check about the way they behave and what they believe. The leader would provide a check on their checks.
Let's suppose though, that most of the beliefs held in high esteem by the group and its leaders are far from realistic, thus the newbies might learn to be worse than before..
AoA and TMR both function as fora for anti-vax beliefs and martyr-chic posturing as well as modelling alt med therapy plans for kids with ASDs.The blood-curdlingly shrill tone and cavalier derision of medical professionals/ SBM is an advanced skill ( see Ann Dachel, Alison Mac Neil et al) that novices may eventually approximate if they work hard.
In other words, they're support groups that reinforce unreality.
In other words, they’re support groups that reinforce unreality.
Umm, isn't that the Internet?
@ herr doktor:
According to the TMs themselves ( see my comment about yesterday's woo tv show video @ TMR) they got together primarily via message boards, yahoo groups and facebook. Facebook was the coup de grace.
Whoops, sorry about messing up your name. I have to remember Denice with a c, not Denise with a s.
I wonder what kind of schedule momofsix followed for child four’s vaccines, and what the timeline for all of the events - progressions and regressions, as well as immunizations - really was.
According to the CDC schedule (and consistent with what I remember), first dose of the MMR is given at 12-15 mos and the second dose at 4 -6 years old. Both of my kids got it at their 1-year and 4-year-old checkups. At 1 year old, only one of them was speaking intelligibly, and while both were walking neither rode anything other than a push vehicle. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/su6201a2.htm
I’m also linking to the VIS for the MMR, because of this note about when reactions occur:
I bring this up because Momofsix’s story states
Due to our own peculiar circumstances with both kids, I remember discussing this with my own pediatrician: reactions to the MMR tend to be delayed by about a week after the shot – not immediate, or “right after.”
Hi again...to clarify: riding a four wheel, foot powered toy, not bicycle. Regarding the vamp and MiNAS, the first time I ever came across those terms was reading the minutes of a Brighton Collaboration Group on encephalitic reaction post-MMR from a doctor named Max Wiznitzer. I'm sure many of you have heard of him, as he testifies in vaccine claims court. HE was the individual questioning whether this phenomenon could fit the criteria in the vaccine injury time table.
I personally was on a conference call with Christine Casey of the CDC (2005 I think?) and she told me my son would not be eligible for any compensation, due to the fact that we could not "prove" exactly when vaccine injury occurred. It was a slow regression starting a few days post vaccination, and each day a loss of skills acquired, with neurological deterioration continuing steadily.
I'm most suspicious of this as no one from the CDC would deign to comment on a potential NVICP case. Besides, you don't have to "prove" when the "vaccine injury" occurred, just that it was more likely than not.
What was the physiological explanation for this slow regression a few days post-vaccination?
Christine Casey worked for CISA at the time. We communicated regularly through e-mail, she was very interested in all the details of what happened to my son. There was a study being done at the time, which is what she found my son ineligible for due to the "time frame criteria".
I sense a lot of judgment within this group. I really cannot defend myself, other than what his pediatrician, and countless doctors afterward, have witnessed. and for those interested, yes, I have the lab results for mercury toxicity (perhaps this compromised his immune system and he was not able to tolerate a triple, live viral vaccine?? the package insert says MMR should not be administered to anyone with a compromised immune system! and referring again to PubMed, mercury is administered to laboratory mice when they want to study compromised immune systems!)
the grief is overwhelming, but I don't have time for anger...it would take too much energy from me! I have an almost 13 year old child who cannot tie his shoes. and five other children to care for. whoever suggested I am demeaning my child, please know that he is loved beyond measure! he is very affectionate and has a strong bond with all of us.
He goes to a special school 38 miles away, and I drive him. both ways! it costs taxpayers 75,000 a year, and I feel very badly about that!! sorry all.
we were part of the 5,000 in the Omnibus proceedings, which has been dismissed. I do worry about my son's future and hope my children will always care for him.
To all scientists/researchers out there: consider this thought: if MMR, or wild measles, can produce SSPE and ADEM, can't one entertain the thought that other (unnamed or VAMP or MINAS) as possible sequelae can occur??
on a final note: the link to the Brighton COllaboration Working Group has been taken down. but Max Wiznitzer was in the minutes on the encephalitis group discussing the timetable criteria for vaccine injury, and what should be eligible.
thank you all for your time.
it was July 6th, 2004.
Yet you said he could write. How does that work when the second MMR is usually given before kindergarten, which is typically before children learn to read, much less write? There seems to be lots wrong with your timeline.
And again, you told us to search PubMed. I did that and found nothing like you described. So please provide those citations about what you expected us to find.
Actually, it is only wild measles that causes SSPE. You see, there are actual citations for that I will provide:
J Infect Dis. 2005 Nov 15;192(10):1686-93.
Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis: more cases of this fatal disease are prevented by measles immunization than was previously recognized.
Int J Epidemiol. 2007 Dec;36(6):1334-48.
Review of the effect of measles vaccination on the epidemiology of SSPE.
Ah see, the details emerge and aren't consistent with what you would like your narrative to look like. Commenting on eligibility for a study is not commenting on the validity of an NVICP claim.
There is of course scepticism regarding your claims. I know you aren't used to that where you hang your hat on the interwebz; your friends and associates who also believe vaccines are responsible for their children's autism do not question others. But look at what has emerged so far, you said he rode a bike and could write before his MMR. Neither is true. You claimed a CDC employee told you you weren't eligible for an NVICP claim and that isn't true either. You also admit you were in fact an OAP petitioner.
There are no valid lab results for mercury toxicity either. Doctor's Data or Great Plains Labs do not perform standardised tox tests. They are done with a chelating agent so the tests will almost always result in a "mercury toxicity". And you also self-diagnosed your child's "compromised immune" system to fit with your idea that MMR must have caused his ASD.
So yes, we are judgemental and sceptical because there are many many morphing stories such as your own that do not bear out. You are a layperson who reads some sciency stuff, who has fallen in with a dodgy crowd and probably a dodgy physician or two who massage and validate your belief.
No need to apologise for getting him an appropriate school at taxpayer expense. That's the way it should be and I'm happy that you are able to acquire some services for him, although at a cost to you too. I don't blame you for being worried about his future care; that should be a very cohesive factor to ban autism parents together to ensure their children get services now and care when they are adults. But the divisiveness of the vaccine nonsense precludes that from happening by diverting time, labour, money and attention to an issue that just isn't true.
The thought has not only been entertained but investigated. Your "VAMP" and "MINAS" are just fabricated diagnoses. SSPE has never been found to be caused by the vaccine strain, not to mention a completely different presentation than regressive autism and ADEM can rarely be caused by the vaccine strains although again, diagnose-able and not representative of the OAP cases in any way.
Dr. Wiznitzer is an excellent paediatric neurologist and doesn't support the vaccine-autism claim at all. Just because he may support a particular vaccine table injury for encephalopathy, doesn't mean he supports the claim that MMR causes autism.
You do know that live virus vaccines such as the MMR do not contain thimerosal, right? The mercury would kill the virus as well as any bacterial contaminants. It’s about half way down this table.
Whoever charged you or your insurance to explore mercury exposure after the MMR was only after your money.
Thank you for the clarifications – you would have spared yourself some grief here had not you not used the term “bike” for ride-on push toy. I wish you and your family all the best.
Not to be disrespectful to momodsix, but recall is notoriously unreliable for signs and symptoms by family members ( and MOST people) -usually people don't take notes; parents may not notice symtpoms until they become very obvious; very early signs of autism can be ephermeral- more about an absence rather than a presence. Also children develop at variable rate-s is this child's progress just slower than average ( he'll catch up later- like many others do) or is it a symptom? This is difficult to ascertain. sometimes parents are motivated to ignore things that worry them- perhaps it'll go away ( which is often true). Others may worry unnecessarily about things that are of no further consequence.
Because two events transpire in close proximity doesn't mean that they're connected causally or otherwise: true story- I got a flu shot and a few days later ( or a week, I'm not sure), I fell and hurt myself as I was reading a menu in a restaurant window. If I believed in vaccine injury I might associate them, as I DON'T, I see them as two un-related events that occured within a week or so. And as being a good anecdote.
People are motivated to seek causation.
Research about eyewitness testimony ( e.g. Loftus) illustrates how easily it can be affected - memory of film clips can be influenced by how questions about the actions depicted are asked- it's easy to affect how viewers respond.
A common mis-conception about memory is that is it like a tape you can re-play- it's more like a framwork for a story that you re-tell: the inherent variations that result are not entirely deliberate.
What you hear about others' experiences with vaccines may affect what you recall.
Why I have little faith in the vaccines-autism hypothesis:
research about neurological development shows very early signs of autism ( patterns of gaze), brain wave differences, hereditarial patterns in families, genetic differences, physiological differences (brain) and physiognomic differences ( facial proportion/ head size) that are recognisable well before the age which the vaccines usually implicated are given.
From what I've seen and read recently, we can expect a great deal more studies similar to these in the near future.
Best wishes to you and your family.
@momofsix, a point that others have sort of touched on: you said,
That sounds like an overnight change that would have been immediately reported to your pediatrician and investigated, and probably would have made your son the perfect test case for the Omnibus trials.
Oh. It wasn't overnight. In fact it was slow, with a little bit lost over time -- so how can you be sure that it had not been proceeding slowly for days or weeks or even months before you realized it? How can you be sure that he wasn't talking a bit less, paying a bit less attention, over time? In fact, you can't. That's why a slow deterioration, first noticed around the time of the vaccination, when you were especially watching for it, really doesn't prove that the vaccine caused it.
of course I know the MMR does not contain mercury! but it was present in most of the other 22 doses my son received.
listen, perhaps we are just a sensitive family, and couldnt handle many of the ingredients that were injected in. my son also had a lab report of toxic amounts of aluminum (used as an adjuvant)
think about it: WHY was I asked to sign a waiver, releasing my pediatrician from harm, if I consented to them administering vaccines which could possibly result in side effects (including death) if no adverse reactions are possible? I mean really, be careful about blanket statements that "vaccines are safe" because if it happens to your child, the risk is 100%.
Now consider this: what if 1 in 50 American schoolchildren were going BLIND? surely you would not be dumping millions into research trying to find that elusive "blind gene", or perhaps maybe people notice blindness more nowadays? No. you would be saying, what happened to these children?
I can tell you that in my own family, my first two were born in the 80's. they received 8 vaccines -total- in the first 18 months, and it started at 2-3 months old, not at birth. the word "autism" was not even in my Dr. Spock baby book.
Fast forward to 1995, my third child, and a tripling of the vaccine schedule. maybe just a coincidence, but he suffered from seizures, stuttering, allergies, digestive disorders, etc. etc. ADHD. Fourth child in 2000- autism.
my fifth and sixth children are not vaccinated. they are 10 and 5. while they are surrounded by friends that suffer from multiple, life-threatening allergies and chronic health conditions, they remain robustly healthy and have seen a doctor only ONCE each in the last 15 (combined) years.
one must wonder if we are perhaps overstimulating the immune system (isn't that what the vaccine is designed to do?) and we now have a generation of peanut-free tables...
I have been a parent for 25 years and have seen many changes. we have the "alphabet kids" - labels for many! too many! something is very, very wrong.
the same pediatrician who made me sign the consent form to vaccinate my 25 yr old is still my children's doctor...and she has commented on these changes as well.
luckily we still live in a wonderful country where you can inject whatever the heck you want into your children, but please consider that some of us out there don't do so well with it and have chosen otherwise.
if any can respect this decision, I thank you.
Why does your 25 year old still have a pediatrician?
My twenty four year old son received all of the required vaccines. Didn't help him when he got a virus that sent him to the hospital for seizures: because it was several years before that vaccine was available.
So, momofsix, if you are complaining now about the additional vaccines since 1990, why did you specifically blame the MMR vaccine in your first post? It has been used in the USA since 1971. The addition of the second MMR, and its timing is the only thing that changed.
You are now adding aluminum... after complaining about thimerosal. It looks like you are moving goalposts, and changing timelines.
But, still, parental memories are sometimes difficult to pin down. Years after my son's last seizures and he was getting special ed. services plus intensive speech therapy I heard about this supposed "MMR causes autism" gambit. So I looked at his schedule, and there it was just a week before his last seizure. But then I remembered, he had this horrible gastrointestinal virus that caused diarrhea for over a week, resulting in dehydration that caused the seizures.
It turned out, it was not getting the MMR vaccine, but the lack of a rotavirus vaccine that caused those seizures!
Momofsix, slow down and put away anti-vax playbook! Panic over waivers, birth doses, and aluminum does not improve your credibility.
It was not clear that you were aware that there was no mercury in the MMR because your made a big deal out of the tox reports - after explicitly blaming the MMR. This isn’t the first time your language has been unclear. It made me wonder if you’ve been seriously misled.
I see you are firmly convinced that vaccines are responsible for all of your middle children’s health issues and have withheld them from your youngest two. (By the way, both of my children were vaccinated according to the CDC schedule, and both are extremely healthy and free of allergies and “chronic conditions”– in spite of having close relatives with allergies – I guess that’s either luck of the draw or my lousy housekeeping.) Frankly, while I respect your right to make that decision I find it foolish, and consider it based in fear rather than reason.
I hope that you consider thoughtfully what some of the other posters here have said in response to you. I also hope that you think and learn more about the actual causes of some of things you are trying to blame on vaccines. Science has come up hypotheses that are much better supported through more rigorous research than what we have for vaccine causation.
And, finally, I hope that your family (especially your youngest two) remains healthy.
@momofsix: you stated that...
"...think about it: WHY was I asked to sign a waiver, releasing my pediatrician from harm, if I consented to them administering vaccines which could possibly result in side effects (including death) if no adverse reactions are possible? I mean really, be careful about blanket statements that “vaccines are safe” because if it happens to your child, the risk is 100%.
momofsix: What "informed consent" did your pediatrician force you to sign?
Do you mean the VIS (s) which should have been provided by your pediatrician and is not an "informed consent document" (that ) does NOT "release (your) pediatrician from harm if (you) consented to them administering vaccines which could possibly result in side effects (including death) if no adverse reactions are possible?..."
The onus is on the health care worker who administers a vaccine, to make a notation on the patient's/child's chart that
a VIS for each vaccine administered was provided to the patient/child's parent or legal guardian, along with the type of vaccine, the expiration date on the vial of the vaccine administered and the lot number of said vaccine.
As a recently retired public health nurse who administered thousands of vaccines to thousands of children...and as a public health nurse who audited tens of thousands of children' charts in hundreds of pediatrician, family practitioner and hospital based pediatric clinics...I'm calling bulsh!t on your statements about "informed consent" for vaccinations.
Furthermore, tell us which "specialized testing" for aluminum toxicity was performed on your child and which "specialized laboratory performed these aluminum toxicity tests.
I should also remind momofsix, that there has never been any aluminum in the MMR vaccine. It is in just a couple of vaccines, specifically the DTaP. And as the most common metal element on this planet's crust, it is impossible to not ingest or breathe in aluminum... nor keep it out of skinned knees.
Enough from the script, already. You signed a consent. It is not possible to waive a malpractice claim in advance, which is the only basis upon which you would have to pursue the pediatrician in civil court.
Shay re #99 With all due respect, all she’s saying is she’s still with the same pediatrician she used with her first child who's now 25. The pedis practice longer than children stay children. My children have been seen by their father’s pediatrician covering for their own because they’re both at the same practice. And my children's father is definitely older than 25.
Regarding the bit of 1 in 50 going blind, I'm not sure that's the correct comparison because there is plenty of other labels having a similar prevalence and being autistic is not comparable to being blind. matter of fact, we can expect a standard deviation of the bell curve to be different from neurotypical.
How about instead of calling people quacks, you instead go on PubMed and research VAMP (vaccine associated measles pan encephalitis) and (measles induced neural autism syndrome)
Now that we have done that and found nothing, I assume that it's fine to call people cranks.
Actually, there is an apt comparison: the lack of perfect sight.
There are different categories of blindness. This is why there is such thing as being "legally blind." I knew someone in college who had this type, and he could read a book if it was large type and he held it close to his face. The only reason he was "legally blind" was because his sight could not be corrected.
Without my glasses I could be legally blind, but I can use a prism in front of my eyes to move the focal point from in front of my retina to where it works. I also have astigmatism, which means the prism needs to be oriented in a specific direction. This meant that I can only wear heavy soft weighted contact lenses (trust me, they are no fun). My myopia is so bad everything further from five inches is blurry (but the advantage is that what I can see is larger, my eyes actually magnify small things).
My husband also has myopia, but it is not as bad as me and without the astigmatism. We have three kids, the oldest has hyperopia (farsighted, needs glasses to read), my middle child has myopia, and my youngest has perfect sight (just like my dad).
Just like there is a spectrum of autism, there is a spectrum of sight ability. Also at least one quarter of adult Americans have myopia. That does not include those who have cataracts, hyperopia, glaucoma, and others, up to more than 2% of the population. And remember that congenital rubella syndrome, measles, Hib and other infectious diseases can cause blindness.
I wonder if momofsix knows how many people she meets who wear corrective lenses. Perhaps the same or more than the people you run into every day who are on the autism spectrum.
(I just watched the latest "Grimm" episode where "river blindness" was the plot point, there is a link to it in the wiki page I linked to)
This usually means uncorrectable to better than 20/200. As I don't care to wear my glasses* and am at around -4.0 diopters (myopic), I'm not too far off from that uncorrected. I'm also told that the premises are rather dusty, etc. It's possible to adapt to this, but familiarity with one's surroundings helps enormously. Being stuck with thick lenses just to get to this point, on the other hand, I would imagine to be extremely frustrating.
* Be careful what you wish for if you insist on Zeiss glass lenses and get sold high-index.
@ Chris and Narad,
I stand corrected, matter of fact, I am wearing glasses and so do many peoples around me.
Please vaccinate your children. Otherwise, they can play Typhoid Marys when they do become ill, and infect other people. I am certain you are a good, caring person, and do not wish to harm others--much less the vulnerable children you now have.
Here, from the AAP, Data about parents who refuse any or all vaccines, strategies to encourage parents to immunize their children with the recommended childhood vaccines...and the requisite form for parents to sign, if they refuse any/all immunizations:
If the pediatrician that momofsix takes her children to, does not have her sign this type of form (s)he's a damn fool. momofsix would be the prime litigious candidate to sue the doctor for not immunizing her child, if the child is harmed by a vaccine-preventable-disease.
"I have the lab results for mercury toxicity (perhaps this compromised his immune system and he was not able to tolerate a triple, live viral vaccine?? the package insert says MMR should not be administered to anyone with a compromised immune system! and referring again to PubMed, mercury is administered to laboratory mice when they want to study compromised immune systems!)"
You might be on to something, if the MMR had ever contained thimerosal. Since it was a live vaccine (and the thimerosal would kill the virus), it has NEVER contained thimerosal.
So the MMR could not possibly have contributed anything to your son's 'mercury toxicity'.
Keep reading the anti-vax pages, I'm sure you can find another scapegoat shortly.
May I please have a cookie? Thank you.
Even assuming it was a waiver and not a consent form, whoever said no adverse reactions are possible? There are a number of well-documented adverse reactions. They even have a program set up to compensate people who experience adverse reactions to vaccines. In fact, you admit to being aware of this program!
But just because *some* adverse reactions are possible doesn't mean that *every* adverse reaction imaginable is possible.
Chemmommo -- you are correct. Momofsix does not write clearly, but then most days I don't either.
If momofsix is still lurking -
Not one person here believes, or has said, that vaccines have no side-effects. OK?
Now that's out of the way:
I know it stings to get caught exaggerating and trumpeting "facts" that you never bothered to research. Moving the goalposts though, and trying to act as though we can't see what you wrote earlier? That's just silly.
Your "What if one in fifty American children was blind?" attempt at diversion misses a huge point. Prior to routine vaccination for polio, pertussis, measles, mumps and rubella children were left blind, deaf, mentally impaired, crippled and maimed by those diseases. They died in agony as their helpless parents stood by.
Thanks to your cohort of science-deniers, children all over the world are dying of vaccine preventable diseases. In my country measles, mumps and pertussis are rampant and there have been fatalities, mostly newborns.
Thanks to vaccine denial I've suffered mumps and pertussis as an adult. Coughing up blood until I puked and had cyanosis? Not fun. Swollen ovaries and inability to eat or drink, oh and raised intracranial pressure that could have killed me if not for my shunt? Terrifying.
Did I mention that I'm really immune-compromised, like with actual diagnoses? I am. Oh yeah, I'm also not neurotypical, and I'm visually impaired too.
I have psoriasis so bad that my rheumatologist wanted to treat me with chemo. I have IBD, asthma, and many other conditions that science-deniers like to attribute to immunisation against VPDs.
Guess what? I can't have most vaccines, I've had a severe allergy to egg protein (a popular culture medium) since birth. Fortunately it was discovered by accident before any vaccinations. So thanks to that, and my impaired immunity (thanks to autoimmune diseases and some of my medications), reservoirs of disease in unvaccinated kids could easily kill me.
But y'know, the antivax maxim of "better dead than damaged" means there are some people that would see that as a good thing. They'd love my younger brother though. Not too bright but as healthy as a horse. I'd be surprised if over 32 years of life his total sick time clocked in at more than two months. I've had that much in the last eight weeks. It's probably thanks to all of the vaccines he had as a kid, the flu jabs he gets every year, and all the germ-killing booze heknocks back, eh?
@Denice - vaccines totally caused your fall. I'm working on the theory that apple juice lost me the use of my legs. Nothing but caffeinated drinks for ages, then one night last march I had a carton of pressed apple juice. Next day? Admitted to hospital, haven't walked since. Curse you Big Farma!
wow...the igorance of this author is almost unbearable. I'm going to guess you were all fully vaccinated due to your obvious lack of intelligence and unnecessary attacks on mothers who watched their children change literally before their eyes after a vaccine. I have witnessed them firsthand in many pts as a nurse. Just bc you morons refuse to acknowledge the damage vaccines can and do cause does not make it just disappear.
For some reason I always smile when I see functionally illiterate comments accusing other people of ignorance.
@RNMom: "unnecessary attacks on mothers who watched their children change literally before their eyes after a vaccine. I have witnessed them firsthand in many pts as a nurse."
Why weren't any such cases produced in the autism omnibus hearings? If such events are so common that one single nurse has witnessed them many times, it should have been no trouble at all to come up with three -- or thirty -- or three hundred -- to present to the court.
#118 You seem to lack understanding of science, as well as compassion for others and politeness.
That said, none of that matters, fortunately. With science, only the evidence matters. All is forgiven if you can only link us to a well-designed double-blinded study in a first-tier journal that indicates there is a true link between vaccines and autism.
I do not think you can produce one. You are simply unaware that the symptoms of autism are visible long before babies are vaccinated, to experts, and that they coincidentally become obvious to non-experts at approximately the same time the vaccine schedule kicks in.
And someone on a different thread pointed out that stimming, avoiding eye contact and freezing are all behaviours that autistics engage in when under stress, like for instance being jabbed with a needle by an unfamiliar person wearing strange clothes in an unfamiliar building.
Blockquote fail... this is my question:
How do you treat parents who have seen with their own eyes their toddler have a grand mal seizure when sick with a now vaccine preventable disease? And I actually have the medical records from the hospital and neurologist, so it is not a mistaken memory.
Now, please post the title, journal and dates of the PubMed indexed studies showing vaccines cause more seizures than the diseases.
wow…the igorance (sp), you display is almost unbearable. I’m going to guess you were NOT fully vaccinated due to your obvious lack of intelligence and unnecessary attacks on doctors and nurses mothers who provide immunizations for children. I have witnessed the damages that anti-vaxxers do firsthand (sp) in many of the patients I cared for, who barely survived or who succumbed to vaccine-preventable- diseases. Just bc you anti-vaccine anti-science morons refuse to acknowledge the damage vaccine preventable diseases can and do cause does not make it just disappear.
Just, y'know, FYI for RNMom, I would remove my kid from any medical practice that allowed its staff to go unvaccinated, and I would sue the sh!t out of any medical practice that actually passed on a VPD to my kid due to said policy. For your patients' sake, I hope you're up to date on your own jabs.
If you really are an RN, (which I highly doubt due to your amazing amount of ignorance that you display), you are a shame and a black mark to your profession.