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Debate grows on vaccine-autism link



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 9th 04, 01:57 AM
Roger Schlafly
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Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/ar...e_autism_link/

Debate grows on vaccine-autism link
Stakes are high as panel reviews risk from mercury
By Scott Allen, Boston Globe Staff, 2/8/2004

The new vaccines kept coming, each containing a tiny amount of mercury as a
preservative. For nearly a decade, until regulators realized the problem in
1999, children who received all the recommended vaccinations could have
absorbed an elevated amount of the toxin by the time they were 6 months old.

"I feel badly that I didn't pick it up," acknowledged an adviser to the
National Immunization Program, Dr. Neal Halsey of Johns Hopkins University,
at a hearing in Cambridge three years ago.

The preservative, called thimerosal, is used only in trace amounts or not at
all in today's US vaccines, but the debate over the human cost of that
public health miscalculation is growing.
....
US Representative Dave Weldon of Florida, one of the few doctors serving in
Congress, is pressing the CDC to give outside researchers access to the
study data and calling for an independent review. ...


  #2  
Old February 9th 04, 02:44 AM
PF Riley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

On Mon, 09 Feb 2004 01:57:26 GMT, "Roger Schlafly"
wrote:

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/ar...e_autism_link/

Debate grows on vaccine-autism link
Stakes are high as panel reviews risk from mercury
By Scott Allen, Boston Globe Staff, 2/8/2004


This article is all about thimerosal. I thought "they" say that MMR
causes autism. MMR has never had thimerosal. Can't the armchair
theorists make up their minds?

PF
  #3  
Old February 9th 04, 04:54 AM
JG
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

"Roger Schlafly" wrote in message
. net...

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/ar...e_autism_link/

Debate grows on vaccine-autism link
Stakes are high as panel reviews risk from mercury
By Scott Allen, Boston Globe Staff, 2/8/2004


The new vaccines kept coming, each containing a tiny amount of mercury

as a
preservative. For nearly a decade, until regulators realized the

problem in
1999, children who received all the recommended vaccinations could

have
absorbed an elevated amount of the toxin by the time they were 6

months old.

"I feel badly that I didn't pick it up," acknowledged an adviser to

the
National Immunization Program, Dr. Neal Halsey of Johns Hopkins

University,
at a hearing in Cambridge three years ago.


The preservative, called thimerosal, is used only in trace amounts or

not at
all in today's US vaccines, but the debate over the human cost of that
public health miscalculation is growing.
...
US Representative Dave Weldon of Florida, one of the few doctors

serving in
Congress, is pressing the CDC to give outside researchers access to

the
study data and calling for an independent review. ...


Good. Release of the raw data would surprise me, though.

Here's an article about kids and mercury (yes, I know there are
different forms of mercury) from www.reutershealth.com (Health eLine,
2/6/04):

Mercury study shows permanent damage to children
Last Updated: 2004-02-06 13:22:07 -0400 (Reuters Health)

By Maggie Fox

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Children whose mothers eat seafood high in
mercury while pregnant can suffer irreparable brain damage, researchers
reported on Friday.

The report comes the same week as the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency doubled its estimate of how many newborns had unsafe levels of
mercury in their blood.

The study, done by an international group led by researchers at the
Harvard School of Public Health, also showed that children exposed to
mercury in the womb may suffer permanent damage to their heart function.

"We found that both prenatal and postnatal mercury exposure affects
brain functions and that they seem to affect different targets in the
brain," Philippe Grandjean, who led the study, said in a statement.

Grandjean and colleagues studied more than 1,000 mothers and children
living in Denmark's Faroe Islands. Residents there eat large amounts of
fish, much of which is contaminated with mercury.

They measured mercury in the cord blood taken from the children at birth
and then in hair samples taken at ages 7 and 14.

Most of the mothers were suffering from mercury contamination, with
their own hair levels at childbirth on average above 1 microgram per
gram, the limit recommended by the EPA and the independent,
non-government National Research Council.

Writing in the Journal of Pediatrics, Grandjean and colleagues in
Denmark and Japan said they put electrodes on the heads of the children
to measure electrical signals in the brain. They found delays in brain
signaling, and the higher the mother and child's mercury load at birth,
the more distinct the irregularities.

They also found these neurological changes led to poorer system control
of heart function. The children with the most mercury in their blood
were less capable of maintaining the normal variability of the heart
rate necessary to secure proper oxygen supply to the body, Grandjean's
team found.

Just this week an EPA researcher published a report doubling the
estimates of how may U.S. infants have unsafe levels of mercury in their
blood.

The researcher, Kathryn Mahaffey, estimated that 630,000 infants were
born in the 1999-2000 year with blood mercury levels higher than 5.8
parts per billion, the EPA's level of concern. This is more than double
the previous estimate of 300,000 infants.

The EPA removed the paper from its Web site on Thursday and was not
immediately available for comment.

Jane Houlihan of the Environmental Working Group said the study showed
the government needs to limit emissions by coal-burning power plants,
which are the top source of mercury contamination in the United States.

Her group called for the FDA to issue a list of fish that are lower in
mercury and thus safer for pregnant women to eat, such as wild salmon
and haddock. Other groups note that non-fish sources of healthy omega-3
fatty acids include walnuts and flaxseed oil, and some fortified foods.

SOURCE: Journal of Pediatrics, February 2004.


  #4  
Old February 9th 04, 04:55 AM
JG
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

"PF Riley" wrote in message
...

On Mon, 09 Feb 2004 01:57:26 GMT, "Roger Schlafly"
wrote:


http://www.boston.com/news/nation/ar...ate_grows_on_v

accine_autism_link/

Debate grows on vaccine-autism link
Stakes are high as panel reviews risk from mercury
By Scott Allen, Boston Globe Staff, 2/8/2004


This article is all about thimerosal. I thought "they" say that MMR
causes autism. MMR has never had thimerosal. Can't the armchair
theorists make up their minds?


There are separate theories. One attributes the increase in autism to
the MMR vaccine (I believe the focus has been on the measles component);
the other blames thimerosal. Somewhere, somehow, by someone(s) the two
theories got tangled.


  #5  
Old February 9th 04, 06:30 AM
Roger Schlafly
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

"JG" wrote
This article is all about thimerosal. I thought "they" say that MMR
causes autism. MMR has never had thimerosal. Can't the armchair
theorists make up their minds?


I have noticed that the pro-vaccine camp gets these issues mixed up.
I was listening to Dr. Dean Edell, the host of a popular medical
radio talk show program (syndicated nationwide), a couple of weeks
ago. He started talking about thimerosal, and then he went into a big
rant about how it saves people from dying of measles.


  #6  
Old February 9th 04, 01:32 PM
Jeff
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link


"JG" wrote in message
news
(...)

There are separate theories. One attributes the increase in autism to
the MMR vaccine (I believe the focus has been on the measles component);
the other blames thimerosal. Somewhere, somehow, by someone(s) the two
theories got tangled.


Actually, the words "hypotheses" or "guesses" are more accurate than
theories. However, the fact that some people tangled the two hypotheses
tells you that the people who tangled them and the people who then propagate
the tangled hypotheses don't understand them.

Of course, it does not mean that either hypothesis is incorrect. Only that
there are a lot of clueless proponents of the hypotheses out there (someone
named John comes to mind).

However, the evidence to back up either theory is rather slim. And, IMHO,
very unconvincing. In fact, we aren't sure that there is an increase in the
rate of autism. There rate of diagnosed autism may be a result of better
diagnosis and reporting and increased availability of health-care services
to some people. And, the diagnoses from years ago were not good enough to
make good comparisons.

So we can't define the problem, yet.

Jeff


  #7  
Old February 9th 04, 11:51 PM
Julie
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Vaccinating a toddler who's sick with a cold

My 1-yr old is suffering mightily from a cold (cough and runny nose; he no
longer has a fever) and because one of his molars is coming in. He is
absolutely miserable and inconsolable. He cries nearly all the time, can
hardly sleep, won't eat, and will hardly drink anything. This being his
first illness, I took him to his pediatrician this morning who said the baby
may have an ear infection coming on because the inside of his ears look
pink, but that he wants to wait until the baby is screaming in pain and
holding his ears before giving him antibiotics. Short of that, the doctor
said the cold will just have to run its course (he estimated it would take
about another week), as will the teething.

Anyway, my son was scheduled to have his one-year old checkup and MMR shot
on Friday but because of this visit I suggested we cancel that one. I was
surprised when the doctor said, "Oh, no - his cold won't interfere with his
being able to handle the MMR vaccine."

I hadn't planned for him to receive the MMR shot on Friday anyway (I'm
hoping to find some place in Canada or the Eastern U.S. where he can get the
measles, mumps and rubella vaccines administered individually when he is at
least 18 mos. old, maybe older) but isn't it common practice to avoid giving
a child vaccinations when he's sick and his immune system is already
compromised?

Thanks, Julie

"Roger Schlafly" wrote in message
. net...

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/ar...e_autism_link/

Debate grows on vaccine-autism link
Stakes are high as panel reviews risk from mercury
By Scott Allen, Boston Globe Staff, 2/8/2004

The new vaccines kept coming, each containing a tiny amount of mercury as

a
preservative. For nearly a decade, until regulators realized the problem

in
1999, children who received all the recommended vaccinations could have
absorbed an elevated amount of the toxin by the time they were 6 months ol

d.

"I feel badly that I didn't pick it up," acknowledged an adviser to the
National Immunization Program, Dr. Neal Halsey of Johns Hopkins

University,
at a hearing in Cambridge three years ago.

The preservative, called thimerosal, is used only in trace amounts or not

at
all in today's US vaccines, but the debate over the human cost of that
public health miscalculation is growing.
...
US Representative Dave Weldon of Florida, one of the few doctors serving

in
Congress, is pressing the CDC to give outside researchers access to the
study data and calling for an independent review. ...




  #8  
Old February 10th 04, 03:33 AM
Jeff
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Vaccinating a toddler who's sick with a cold


"Julie" wrote in message
news (...)

Anyway, my son was scheduled to have his one-year old checkup and MMR shot
on Friday but because of this visit I suggested we cancel that one. I was
surprised when the doctor said, "Oh, no - his cold won't interfere with

his
being able to handle the MMR vaccine."

I hadn't planned for him to receive the MMR shot on Friday anyway (I'm
hoping to find some place in Canada or the Eastern U.S. where he can get

the
measles, mumps and rubella vaccines administered individually when he is

at
least 18 mos. old, maybe older) but isn't it common practice to avoid

giving
a child vaccinations when he's sick and his immune system is already
compromised?


There is no reason to avoid giving him the shots. While he may not be in the
best of moods, the vaccine will be as effective as when your son doesn't
have a cold and will pose no special risk to him.

In addition, there is no reason to avoid the MMR or give it as seperate
shots. The only reason I have read to give it as seperate shots was the
conjecture of a quack who was kicked out of England. The quack suggested,
without any valid evidence, that giving three shots is less likely to cause
autism than one shot. But there evidence that autism is caused by vaccines
is next to none and there is good evidence that vaccines do not cause
autism. So there is no reason to give the MMR as seperate shots. And, if you
were a little boy, would you rather get poked once or three times?

Jeff

Thanks, Julie

"Roger Schlafly" wrote in message
. net...


http://www.boston.com/news/nation/ar...e_autism_link/

Debate grows on vaccine-autism link
Stakes are high as panel reviews risk from mercury
By Scott Allen, Boston Globe Staff, 2/8/2004

The new vaccines kept coming, each containing a tiny amount of mercury

as
a
preservative. For nearly a decade, until regulators realized the problem

in
1999, children who received all the recommended vaccinations could have
absorbed an elevated amount of the toxin by the time they were 6 months

ol
d.

"I feel badly that I didn't pick it up," acknowledged an adviser to the
National Immunization Program, Dr. Neal Halsey of Johns Hopkins

University,
at a hearing in Cambridge three years ago.

The preservative, called thimerosal, is used only in trace amounts or

not
at
all in today's US vaccines, but the debate over the human cost of that
public health miscalculation is growing.
...
US Representative Dave Weldon of Florida, one of the few doctors serving

in
Congress, is pressing the CDC to give outside researchers access to the
study data and calling for an independent review. ...






  #9  
Old February 10th 04, 06:20 AM
PF Riley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

On Sun, 8 Feb 2004 21:55:06 -0700, "JG" wrote:

"PF Riley" wrote in message
...

This article is all about thimerosal. I thought "they" say that MMR
causes autism. MMR has never had thimerosal. Can't the armchair
theorists make up their minds?


There are separate theories. One attributes the increase in autism to
the MMR vaccine (I believe the focus has been on the measles component);
the other blames thimerosal. Somewhere, somehow, by someone(s) the two
theories got tangled.


JG, I think, for the first time in recent misc.kids.health history,
you failed to detect sarcasm.

PF

P.S. What is a "someones"?
  #10  
Old February 10th 04, 06:31 AM
PF Riley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Debate grows on vaccine-autism link

On Sun, 8 Feb 2004 21:54:06 -0700, "JG" wrote:

Here's an article about kids and mercury (yes, I know there are
different forms of mercury) from www.reutershealth.com (Health eLine,
2/6/04):

Mercury study shows permanent damage to children
Last Updated: 2004-02-06 13:22:07 -0400 (Reuters Health)


I think one of the most important things to remember is that proving
the biological plausibility that mercury can cause brain damage will
be necessary but not sufficient to prove that thimerosal caused an
increase in autism. And when all the real epidemiologic evidence
points the other way, you end up with "true, true, and unrelated."(*)

PF

(*) Mercury causes brain damage; autism is on the rise.
 




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