MMR is in the press once again. There has been a dangerous increase in the rates of Measles developing in children, which is attributed to the fact that many parents are refusing to give their children the MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) vaccine due to the concern that it causes autism.
However, there is no proof that there is a connection between MMR and Autism. In fact, research has concluded the opposite, i.e. that there is no relationship at all between MMR and the development of Autism. The New Scientist published results of research, but this has so far not stamped out the irrational fear that many people have.
The problem is mostly fuelled by the tabloid press writing sad stories about children developing Autism shortly after having the MMR vaccine. However, the fact is, that children are likely to develop Autism at around the same time that MMR is given, therefore, there will always appear to be a connection. The whole issue started out after the “Wakefield” report appeared in the tabloid press.
“Parents need have no more fears about the triple vaccine against measles, mumps and rubella. A study of more than 30,000 children in Japan should put the final nail in the coffin of the claim that the MMR vaccine is responsible for the apparent rise in autism in recent years…. parents panicked and vaccination rates plummeted after gastroenterologist Andrew Wakefield claimed in a 1998 study that MMR might trigger autism, although the study was based on just 12 children and later retracted by most of its co authors. Not one epidemiological study has revealed a link between the vaccine and autism.” Source: New Scientist report on Autism and MMR.
People should really look at diet and environment (pollution, indoor chemical as well as outdoors). Really parents should stop using all sprays, including air fresheners, spray on deodorants and perfumes, cleaning sprays etc, especially with children around. These toxins that people spray inside their homes is far more likely to cause serious harm!
The BBC’s guide to the “Wakefield” story is here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/tvradio/programmes/horizon/mmr_trans.shtml
Read this also (environmental): http://www.autismmedical.com/gateway_2/
And some more research proving that there is no link between autism and MMR: http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=10997&page=1
“The committee concludes that the body of epidemiological evidence favors rejection of a causal relationship between the MMR vaccine and autism.”
Of course, you are more than welcome to continue to believe the tabloid press (2003) if you wish, although bear in mind that your children’s health will be put at more serious risk if you do.
21 MAY 2003
However, even The Sun printed the truth about MMR in July 2007.
The Research The Sparked the Panic
Wakefield A, Murch S, Anthony A et al. (1998). “Ileal-lymphoid-nodular hyperplasia, non-specific colitis, and pervasive developmental disorder in children”. Lancet 351 (9103): 637–41. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(97)11096-0. PMID 9500320. Retrieved 2007-09-05. Retracted: http://briandeer.com/mmr/lancet-paper.htm
Lancet retracts ‘utterly false’ MMR paper – The Guardian, 2 February 2010
Lancet retracts Wakefield’s MMR paper – British Medical Journal, 2 February 2010
Wakefield’s article linking MMR vaccine and autism was fraudulent – British Medical Journal, 6 January 2011