My young niece suffers from severe mental challenges resulting from Infantile Spasm Syndrome, which creates an outcome somewhat similar to autism. The situation, coincidentally or not, began right after a certain series of childhood vaccines. For years there have been purported links between autism and vaccines, and several studies discounting those links. And of course there’s the argument that the benefits to the majority of the population outweigh the potentially devastating consequences to a few. Not really much comfort for those few. I can’t go into it in detail, however the government has agreed that there could have been a link between vaccines and my niece’s condition.
My sister in-law recently sent me a link to a website with some startling information.
The growth in the number of vaccines given to our children in the last 20 years is rarely discussed in the media, despite a stunning chart like this one that shows a 260% increase in vaccines administered (were millions of children dying from deadly diseases 25 years ago? No, they weren’t.)
Take a look at that chart. Where did all those vaccines come from?
Parents should know that vaccines are never tested for their "combination risk", despite the fact that children may get as many as 6 vaccines in a single visit to the doctor. And, when it comes to vaccines, how can it be possible that one size fits all? What may present as no risks for one child may present enormous risks for another.
And that’s what’s scary to me. We know about drug interactions as an adult, and most adult drugs have been tested with many others. We also know that as we age drug management becomes increasingly difficult due to those potential interactions.
John Hunter says
I wouldn’t be so confident about any drugs having good interaction testing. Studying vaccine, and other, medical results seems like a good idea to me. The evidence of the safety of vaccines though seems to me to be very strong http://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/
I am much more skeptical of the heavy reliance on drug interventions. Powerful drugs work wonders. They also can play havoc with our bodies (they are powerful after all). And thinking that we can expect powerful drugs only to treat illness without causing harm is not wise, in my opinion.
I tend to figure there are real negative side effects for any powerful drugs so we should be wary using them without very obvious reason they must be used. The benefits of drugs are tremendous but their are real negative consequences and it seems to me we err far too often are ignoring those consequences.
Matt McKnight says
I think it is important to remember what vaccines are- they are not drugs. I agree wholeheartedly with Mr. Hunter’s comment on the overuse of a medications. It is true that vaccines are not risk free, as there is a possibility of allergic reaction. These are certainly not reasons to stop the treatment, but perhaps a reason to develop more sophisticated tests for allergies in infancy- although those would come with their own risks.
As with many decisions we make, it is difficult to take action when there is a small risk of negative consequence. Pyschologically, we have found that people are reluctant to kill one person to save twenty. Inaction makes it easier for us to detach ourselves from the consequences. Although it seems a little cheap to relate this to corporate life, I see the same pattern all of the time.
Autism is not caused by vaccines- the condition existed years before vaccines were invented. Any diseases or syndromes that are detected in infancy or early childhood could be temporally coincidental with anything else that happens during that timeframe. The changes in autism diagnoses over time are also correlated with a broadening of the increases in use of car seats, increase in infant day care, increase in the amount of television on in homes, increases in the average age of parents, etc. Let’s not let the pseudoscience that has propagated this myth have any effect on our decision making. Knowing how people irrationally respond to risk awareness with inaction makes me all the more concerned with containing these sort of ideas.