Respectful Insolence

“We support Dr. Andrew Wakefield”?

Alright, I know that, after yesterday’s epic post (which was long even by Orac-ian standards), I said that I was going to try to get away from vaccine blogging for a while. I lied. Well, not really. At that time I really did mean it. But then I came across something that I just couldn’t leave alone.

Regular readers of this blog know my opinion of Andrew Wakefield, namely that he is a fraud, a quack, a charlatan, and a danger to the health of autistic children and public health in general. There is, as documented in my post and elsewhere, abundant evidence to support my opinion. But apparently there are some who don’t think the way I do. Apparently to some, the revelations of his research fraud notwithstanding, Andrew Wakefield remains a hero. In fact, there has recently appeared a website called We Support Dr. Andrew Wakefield.

Hand me a barf bag.

Let’s take a look at the “petition” they want people to sign

I had originally planned on a bit of deconstruction and translation, but Holford Watch beat me to it with a spot-on annotated version that I wish I had done. Instead, I was interested in who set up this website. A quick Whois revealed that the registrant is Edmund Arranga. I had no idea who Arranga is; so I Googled him. Guess what I found?

A page on Mothering.com labeling him as an “expert”:

Edmund C. Arranga is the co-founder of Autism One, a charity organization devoted to the care, treatment, and recovery of children with autism. Currently, a diagnosis of autism comes with the prognosis of forever and nothing could be further from the truth. Our children get better; some recover completely given the proper treatments and therapies.

AutismOne? That quackfest? Well, that explains a lot. Just look at the speaker list for this year’s AutismOne. It’s a veritable Who’s Who of autism quackery, fronted by Jenny McCarthy as keynote speaker and including Andrew Wakefield himself.

Still, there were a few parts of Arranga’s petition that struck me as worth commenting on. For example:

We declare that:

1. Dr. Wakefield is a man of honesty, integrity, courage, and proven commitment to children and the public health.

Ha.

Ha ha.

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Oh, heheheheheheheehee! Ahahahahahaha!

Oh, me! Sorry, I just couldn’t help myself. Heh. Hahaha. Must. Regain. Composure.

There. Now I’m better.

2. Dr. Wakefield’s research is rigorous, replicated, biologically valid, clinically evidenced, corroborated by published, peer-reviewed research in an abundance of scientific disciplines, and consistent with children’s medical problems.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Dammit. That one caught me by surprise, just as I had composed myself. I’m sorry; I just can’t help it. That’s too hilarious! But I do thank whoever is behind this effort. I’m still not back to normal after the death of my mother-in-law. Anything that makes me laugh so raucously is good in that it lets me forget my sadness for a while.

In any case, I have to wonder: Wakefield’s research is “rigorous” and “replicate”?What planet are these people living on? By “rigorous,” perhaps they mean how incompetently he did his PCR.

Or maybe by “replicated,” they mean the latest attempt to replicate Wakefield’s work by a group at Columbia University last year. Oh wait. That group couldn’t replicate Wakefield’s work–just like every investigator not associated with Wakefield who has tried to replicate his work has failed to find any association at all between MMR vaccination and autism or “autistic enterocolitis.”

3. We support clinicians who pursue treatments for bowel disorders based on Dr. Wakefield’s work and corroborating science, most specifically Arthur Krigsman, MD.

Translation: We support quackery based on Wakefield’s pseudoscience and don’t mind if these quacks experiment with our children.

4. We support all scientists, including Dr. Andrew Wakefield, in the freedom to conduct medical research into the biological mechanisms for vaccine-related immune and brain dysfunction, including autism, without being attacked personally and professionally by industry, government, and organized medicine. We support scientific discovery, freedom to investigate, and freedom to speak in science.

Except when it fails to show what we want it to show, namely that vaccines cause autism. When that happens, as it always does except when we or investigators we support do it, we find ways to slime the scientists who did it and impugn their integrity as tools of big pharma or bad scientists.

6. We renounce pharmaceutical lobby groups and the London Sunday Times supporting the complaint lodged with the GMC, the actions of which result in intimidating doctors thereby preventing objective medical assessment of autistic children with co-morbid bowel involvement.

Translation: We hate it when the law stops our favorite quack from exercising his quackery. Obviously, it’s all a plot by big pharma to keep our hero from performing unnecessary and invasive colonoscopies on autistic children.

7. We condemn the censorship of science. There are more than enough facts and evidence to support the case of vaccine injury, but the politicization of these issues has made it impossible to publish important and valid science. The debate is rigged in favor of the vaccine industry.

Translation: We can’t understand why scientists don’t accept our findings. They insist on things like adequate negative controls and avoidance of contamination. We don’t have time for no steenkin’ controls; we know vaccines cause autism and we know what we need to find. So we find it. Anyone who says otherwise is “making it impossible to publish” or working for the vaccine industry. It’s obvious!

Certainly it’s obvious to me, and it should be obvious to you. That’s why I invite you, my readers, to make like Holford Watch and me and do your own “annotations” or translations of the petition above. The comments are open. I’ll personally e-mail my favorites to wesupportandy@wesupportandywakefield.org.

After all, they are asking for letters of support.

Comments

  1. #1 John Wills Lloyd
    February 24, 2009

    Would that we could get the depth and intensity of commitment displayed by these supporters for those methods of treating autism that do have scientific foundations and actual evidence of effectiveness. Sigh….

  2. #2 MikeMa
    February 24, 2009

    Scott Peterson murdered his wife and unborn son and women send him love letters in jail. Sadly, I see a parallel.

  3. #3 Jud
    February 24, 2009

    corroborated by published, peer-reviewed research in an abundance of scientific disciplines

    We condemn the censorship of science.

    Self-contradiction, anyone? Science may censor or corroborate Wakefield’s research (or neither), but not both at the same time.

    Also, surefire BS Meter tripper: “corroborated…in an abundance of scientific disciplines.”

    If something is true in one scientific discipline, surely that is sufficient. This reminds me of a marketing brochure I once received for a mantelpiece clock, calling it “richly dimensional.” My immediate reaction was “What, more than three?”

  4. #4 Mick
    February 24, 2009

    Really, the fact that they feel such a petition is needed says it all. The spike in Measles cases has not gone unnoticed. Hopefully this is a sign that the tide is turning against Wakefield and his groupies.

  5. #5 dean
    February 24, 2009

    “Scott Peterson murdered his wife and unborn son and women send him love letters in jail. Sadly, I see a parallel.”

    Except the anti-vacc crowd would, if they were to succeed, kill others’ children as well.

  6. #6 Dr Aust
    February 24, 2009

    Wow. That speaker’s list for Autism One truly is a roll-call of The Elect of Believers.

    I set myself the task of trying to think of any significant Anti-vaccine/Autism quack, apologist or booster who ISN’T on the speakers’ list…. so far I have come up with Jay Gordon and David Kirby. Any others?

  7. #7 Bill H
    February 24, 2009

    Dr. Wakefield’s research is rigorous, replicated, biologically valid, clinically evidenced, corroborated by published, peer-reviewed research in an abundance of scientific disciplines, and consistent with children’s medical problems bollocks.

    There, FTFY

  8. #8 Joseph C.
    February 24, 2009

    This is just more evidence that this is a cult we’re dealing with. And not a particularly smart cult. They should be throwing Wakefield under the bus now that he has been so thoroughly discredited.

  9. #9 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Obviously, it’s all a plot by big pharma to keep our hero from performing unnecessary and invasive colonoscopies on autistic children.>>>

    Unnecessary, my ass. Take a look at what they are finding in the guts of these kids and tell me if you think that these things should be left untreated.

    http://www.thoughtfulhouse.org/0405-conf-akrigsman.htm

    Whether vaccines are the cause of autism or not (and frankly, I don’t think they are, I think it’s more likely the Tylenol that is administered in conjunction with them, and the resulting glutathione depletion that is causing autism)is quite frankly, beside the point. The point that seems to have been lost on everyone is that these kids are having severe bowel issues, and doctors like Wakefield and Krigsman are among the rare few that are taking the time and effort to investigate why. These children, including my own child, whose aggressive and self-injurious behavior was so out of control that he ended up in the state hospital on three separate occasions, are IMPROVING as a result of these “unnecessary and invasive” colonoscopies. In fact, my 14 year old son’s aggressive behaviors (which would include dragging me across the room by my hair, and beating his face to a bloody pulp) disappeared within TWO DAYS after starting the elemental diet that they recommended, and have not returned since. And before anyone tries to tell me that it’s just a “coincidence”, these behaviors went on for MONTHS, and traditional medicine’s only “solution” to the problem was a prescription for Risperdal, which didn’t do a damn thing.

    So yes, to this mom, Dr. Wakefield IS a hero, and anyone who slams this man’s reputation is my enemy.

    Flame away.

  10. #10 Antiquated Tory
    February 24, 2009

    As to the question of how anyone can still support Andrew Wakefield… Please bear with me while I describe a case that has nothing at all to do with vaccines, but which psychologically shows interesting parallels, IMO.

    I have been in correspondence with an acquaintance who is convinced that anthropogenic climate change science in general and the IPCC in particular is an enormous fraud.
    She recently sent me an email showing how these people cannot be trusted, as they had “lost” 100,000+ sq miles of Arctic Ice cap. She included a link to the relevant NOAA article.

    In that article the NOAA said that one of the sensors on a satellite had broken in early Jan, and they had just caught it on Feb 16 when the cumulative error showed up as 100,000+ sq mi of “missing” ice that they knew was there from other sources. That this was their “real time,” unevaluated data prior to inclusion in analysis and had no effect on their existing analyses. That the 2009 analysis would not include the bad data (obviously). In other words, this was the kind of equipment failure that experimental and observational scientists are only too familiar with, caught by redundancy in data collection, and excluded from results.

    I mentioned this. I also attached a pdf of “Observations:
    Changes in Snow, Ice and Frozen Ground. In: Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the
    Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change” This is an analysis of all the data on the cryosphere as of 2007. There is a lot of it. It is not dependent on one sensor, one satellite, or even one government. The Russian permafrost (277 stations, as I recall) and terrestrial glacier results in particular were quite striking.
    This was the response I got:

    1. How do I know this is not all faked, given the latest, rather unholy, revelations about the IPCC?
    2. Are you seriously expecting me to go through every nook and cranny of this paper or for that matter, did you care to/have the time to do so yourself?
    3. This is from someone who has actually taken the time to read those inglorious IPCC reports: http://www.climate-skeptic.com/
    4. A more personal question, because it seriously puzzles me: Why do you still trust politicians, institutions, researchers, or persons affiliated with/corrupted by them, who have long been exposed for their criminal, insane, misanthropic aims, rather than those trying to reveal the underlying truth? My Ohian friend recently told me, “ignorance is bliss.” I just sadly cannot agree, not with the times we are living in.

    There we have it. Replace the link to climate-skeptic with a link to the anti-vaxer of your choice (to preserve the analogy, someone in finance or law who took a bit of biology in Uni), and you have a perfect anti-vax argument: 1. The medical research in support of vaccination safety is faked.
    2. I can’t be bothered to actually go through the research. 3. Here’s one person vaguely educated in the matter who agrees with me.
    4. Politicians are liars and BigPharma are evil bastards. All researchers who work for a government agency or have ever received a pharmaceutical company grant or are in any way affiliated with the mainstream are therefore corrupt and not to be trusted. Only people who work outside the system can be trusted. You are foolish and naive to trust anyone associated with any government agency such as CDC or NIH.

    You can see the logic. To quote Lt Blackadder, there’s only one tiny problem. It’s bollocks.

  11. #11 Vindaloo
    February 24, 2009

    Jen said, “So yes, to this [desperate and scientifically illiterate] mom, Dr. Wakefield IS a hero, and anyone who slams this man’s quack’s reputation is my enemy [reason-injecting] enema.

    I had to fix that for you. Continue on with your lemming-like idiocy but please, go easy on your kid(s).

  12. #12 sophia8
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, just for the benefit of non-American readers who have never heard of it, could you please explain what Tylenol is and why US doctors consider it necessary to administer it with vaccinations?

  13. #13 dedicated lurker
    February 24, 2009

    Tylenol is acetaminophen, and it is sometimes administered before vaccines to prevent possible fever.

  14. #14 Joseph
    February 24, 2009

    The point that seems to have been lost on everyone is that these kids are having severe bowel issues, and doctors like Wakefield and Krigsman are among the rare few that are taking the time and effort to investigate why.

    @Jen: To support this claim, you cite a page at Thoughtful House, whose executive director is Wakefield. There’s really no high quality evidence that autistic children have more bowel issues than non-autistic children. Some papers find no difference. But the question is studied by actual researchers who are not simply trying to launder vaccine injury claims through the science journals. There’s no conspiracy not to study it.

  15. #15 Wulfstan
    February 24, 2009

    Unnecessary, my ass.

    To be blunt, that’s the point. It isn’t yours,it’s vulnerable children. One of the Lancet children subjected to this ended up dangerously ill with a colon perforated in multiple places (HW link).

    The HolfordWatch version of the petition has the following with links to the studies that report that there is no greater incidence of bowel disorders among children with an austism diagnosis (not included here for filter-busting reasons):

    We do not care to hear about studies that show that there is no greater incidence of bowel disorders among children with autism than other groups (pdf) as that does not reflect our personal reality or espoused position and both of them must trump all scientific research over the last decade for reasons that must be self-evident.

    As for your experience of Drs Wakefield and Krigsman, it is difficult to see how work that has been described in terms of “fraud” and “deliberate manipulation” can be helpful in the longer term, no matter how charismatic the deliverers although this can influence the placebo response.

    On that point, yes, there is a possibility that any observed improvements derive from a placebo response – surgery is one of the most dramatic interventions and can have a profound placebo response (Ben Goldacre discusses this in his book, Bad Science).

  16. #16 Pearl C, Ware
    February 24, 2009

    The attacks on Dr. Wakefield bring to mind the attacks on Dr. Ignaz Philipp Semmelweiss who noticed the extremely high mortality rate from puerperal fever in hospitals but not among women who delivered their babies at home, assisted by midwives. When Dr. Semmelweiss instituted preventive measures, such as washing of the physicians’ hands, he met with fierce opposition and was even placed in a mental institution.
    Dr. Frank Noonan, a family practitioner in Lancaster County, Pa. who has treated thousands of Amish for a quarter-centure states that he has not seen autism with the unvaccinated Amish children.
    Also, the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program has paid out millions of dollars to parents whose children were injured by vaccines, including the parents of Hannah Poling.
    Rates of Scarlet fever and tuberculosis (the number one cause of death in the U.s. in 1900) declined, not because of wide-spread vaccinations, but because of cleanliness, better diet, etc.

  17. #17 David
    February 24, 2009

    As far as I know Wakefield, despite living in the US, remains a UK citizen. So he can sue Deer for libel, under the fairly permissive UK laws. Then he can have his day in court and prove that Deer is wrong in his allegations of fraud.

    Oh, wait… Wakefield already sued Deer. And, rather than allow the suit to progress, he sought a series of stays, and then dropped the suit. He ended up paying Deer’s legal bills.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2007/jan/06/broadcasting.channel4

  18. #18 Shay
    February 24, 2009

    Dr. Wakefield is a man of honesty, integrity, courage, and proven commitment to children and the public health remove and replace with lying, greedy moneygrubber who can’t even falsify data properly.

  19. #19 Jud
    February 24, 2009

    The point that seems to have been lost on everyone is that these kids are having severe bowel issues…. These children, including my own child, whose aggressive and self-injurious behavior was so out of control that he ended up in the state hospital on three separate occasions, are IMPROVING as a result of these “unnecessary and invasive” colonoscopies. In fact, my 14 year old son’s aggressive behaviors (which would include dragging me across the room by my hair, and beating his face to a bloody pulp) disappeared within TWO DAYS after starting the elemental diet that they recommended, and have not returned since. And before anyone tries to tell me that it’s just a “coincidence”, these behaviors went on for MONTHS….

    Prologue: I’m not trying to flame, just trying to get more detail. My nephew has been diagnosed in the autism spectrum (due primarily IMO to heroic and consistent educational efforts by his mother, he is doing well in school), and had “bowel issues,” e.g., severe diarrhea, when a toddler, which appeared to be helped by a diet excluding wheat gluten.

    What you’ve written seems to conflate colonoscopy with diet, and bowel issues with aggressive behavior. That is, you start out by saying colonoscopies help with bowel issues, then provide an example where diet helped with aggressive behavior. I’m not seeing the connection. Can you help?

  20. #20 Wulfstan
    February 24, 2009

    @ Pearl C, even Lisa Jo Rudy of About doesn’t accept that urban/Olmsted myth: Do The Amish Vaccinate? Indeed They Do, AND Their Autism Rates May be Lower.

    As for the Dr. Ignaz Philipp Semmelweiss similarity, not so much. Semmelweiss made some keen observations that he backed up with meticulous research and some excellent statistical work for those days. Whereas Dr Wakefield may have started off with good intentions that were slightly muddied when he accepted undisclosed funding from people interested in litigation and then went badly awry when he started ignoring the findings of well-conducted research in his own lab and substituted data from others that was better suited to his liking but not the science.

  21. #21 Richard Eis
    February 24, 2009

    -but the politicization of these issues has made it impossible to publish important and valid science- and who started that i wonder??

    Semmelweiss was from the 18th century (a looong time ago)…and he was doing science. The doctors against him were not. Since YOU have not followed the science I suggest you stop using this single case to scream conspiracy everytime science doesn’t do what you want it to do.

  22. #22 Joseph
    February 24, 2009

    The attacks on Dr. Wakefield bring to mind the attacks on Dr. Ignaz Philipp Semmelweiss who noticed the extremely high mortality rate from puerperal fever in hospitals but not among women who delivered their babies at home, assisted by midwives. When Dr. Semmelweiss instituted preventive measures, such as washing of the physicians’ hands, he met with fierce opposition and was even placed in a mental institution.

    With the only difference being that Semmelweiss was right, and did not commit scientific fraud.

    Actually, he wasn’t right in his etiology hypotheses. He was only more correct than his colleagues at the time, who had ideas that were not scientific in the least. So there’s no comparison to the present situation.

    This Galileo gambit also seems exaggerated. Pearl C makes it sound as if Semmelweiss was placed in a mental institution as part of being persecuted for his views. Here’s the account from Wikipedia:

    Beginning from 1861 Semmelweis suffered from nervous complaints. He suffered from severe depression and became excessively absent minded. Paintings from 1857 to 1864 show that he aged rapidly.[56] He turned every conversation to the topic of childbed fever.

    A number of unfavorable foreign reviews of his 1861 book prompted Semmelweis to lash out against his critics in series of open letters[57] written in 1861–1862.[58] He bitterly attacked various prominent European obstetricians. The open letters were highly polemical and superlatively offensive,[59] at times denouncing his critics as irresponsible murderers[60] or ignoramuses.[61] The attacks undermined his professional credibility.

    In mid-1865, his public behaviour became irritating and embarrassing to his associates. He also began to drink immoderately; he spent progressively more time away from his family, sometimes in the company of a prostitute; and his wife noticed changes in his sexual behavior. On 13 July 1865 the Semmelweis family visited friends, and during the visit Semmelweis’s behavior seemed particularly inappropriate.[62]

    It is impossible to appraise the nature of Semmelweis’ disorder. It may have been Alzheimer’s disease, a form of senile dementia, which is associated with rapid aging.[63] It may have been third stage of syphilis, a then-common disease of obstetricians who examined thousands of women at gratis institutions.[64] Or it may have been emotional exhaustion from overwork and stress.

  23. #23 HCN
    February 24, 2009

    Pearl C. Ware said “Rates of Scarlet fever and tuberculosis (the number one cause of death in the U.s. in 1900) declined, not because of wide-spread vaccinations, but because of cleanliness, better diet, etc.”

    Scarlet fever is a strep infection, there is no vaccine for that (yet), but there is a quick strep test and antibiotics. Strep infections have NOT gone away, but they are treatable (mostly).

    The fall of tuberculosis can be attributed to not living in crowded areas, AND for a significant screening program, PLUS treatment with some very strong antibiotics.

    Now as far as actually vaccine preventable diseases like polio. Well, the increase during the mid-twentieth century was because of better sanitation. Due to children getting infected after the immunity from the mother wore off, they got sicker. Polio was only reduced by vaccination.

    Also, measles has returned with a vengeance to Japan, the UK, Switzerland and Austria, while at the same time measles has been reduced significantly in parts of Africa. Now which is the more likely explanation for the increase of measles in the first world countries (with several deaths), choose one:
    1) decrease in sanitation
    2) decrease in vaccination coverage

    While you are open to telling us what is real or not, please tell us what real scientific evidence shows us that the MMR vaccine is more dangerous than measles, mumps and rubella. Be sure to include real evidence, like the twenty five studies in this list:
    http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p4026.pdf

  24. #24 Interrobang
    February 24, 2009

    Also, just because your autistic kid has bowel issues doesn’t mean that every autistic kid has bowel issues, or even that autism causes bowel issues, or that no non-autistic kids have bowel issues. Gastrointestinal problems also can cause behavioural issues, especially in young children who can’t communicate (well) why they’re feeling so lousy, especially since more often than not, the cause is hard to find.

    Wakefield fudged his data because he’s an incompetent hack who was on the take (has anyone mentioned his standing to profit from developing an alternative to the MMR yet? or his thriving livelihood as an expert witness?).

    Just because your kid has autism and a food allergy (I was a kid with cerebral palsy and multiple food allergies, and nobody was dumb enough to reckon that one caused the other) doesn’t mean that Wakefield was in any way right; it just means you’re acting human and seeing connections that probably actually aren’t there.

  25. #25 DLC
    February 24, 2009

    Comparing Wakefield to Semmellweis (it’s one s,by the way) is nothing more than a slightly more modern Galileo Gambit.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galileo_Gambit)
    Said Galileo Gambit misses the all-too-important point that Galileo had the advantage of actually being right.
    Semmellweis chose the right solution to the wrong problem.
    Oh, and it wasn’t home births vs clinic births, but births in one clinic established for the teaching of midwives and another established for the teaching of doctors. The doctors didn’t wash their hands after doing autopsies, and so their living patients became ill more often.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ignaz_Semmelweis
    Semmellweis formed the hypothesis that this was due to “corpse matter” (to be charitable). Well, it wasn’t 1860 that Pasteur developed the germ theory of disease and it was 1875 when Koch provided means to test the theory.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germ_theory_of_disease
    What Semmelweis did was the science equivalent of hearing a noise in the dark, shooting at it and finding out later that you drilled an enemy soldier through the head.
    Finally, let me state that Wakefield does not have the advantage of being right. Now, had Galileo just made things up because he needed to in order to make a profit, then you might be drawing a correct parallel.

    Oh and Jen : “my friends agree I’m right” does not mean a pile of beans in science. People who don’t even know you need to agree that you’re right, and for the right reasons — none of which are “it sounds good to me.”

  26. #26 trrll
    February 24, 2009

    Also, just because your autistic kid has bowel issues doesn’t mean that every autistic kid has bowel issues, or even that autism causes bowel issues, or that no non-autistic kids have bowel issues. Gastrointestinal problems also can cause behavioural issues, especially in young children who can’t communicate (well) why they’re feeling so lousy, especially since more often than not, the cause is hard to find.

    I don’t think that the relationship of bowel problems to autism is resolved. It is certainly plausible that some of it could be emotional. On the other hand, given the evidence suggesting that autism arises from a genetic defect influencing development of the nervous system, it is also plausible that the enteric nervous system of some people with autism is also abnormal.

  27. #27 Chris
    February 24, 2009

    Also, some of those bowel problems could be parents causing lots of stress on the kids by taking them to multiple “specialists”, lots of supplements, being placed in a big claustrophobic inducing bag to have high pressure oxygen pumped at you (HBOT), and other things like described at http://neurodiversity.com/weblog/article/184/ (the child’s regular physician thought that he was being given too many medications from Secretin to anti-fungals).

    There is a price for creating that much stress on a child:
    http://scienceblogs.com/notrocketscience/2009/02/child_abuse_permanently_modifies_stress_genes_in_brains_of_s.php

  28. #28 ababa
    February 24, 2009

    Wow, the Omnibus ruling sure has started to bring out the crazy. The nutcases are really pushing the conspiracy angle. Are they afraid they are going to lose their mainstream media appeal?

    Just a question for you anti-vaxers that like to make comparisons:

    What do Galileo, the case of smoking being causing cancer, Semmelweiss and vaccine safety have in common?

    They all are proven and supported by science. That’s right, when you pull out Galileo you are crediting science over personal belief. That’s right, science supported smoking being bad for you. That’s right, science supported Simmelweiss. That’s right, science supports vaccine safety. In every one of those cases anecdotes, personal beliefs and faked research were used to try and disprove science. In every one of those cases science was right. Does any of this sound familiar to your vaccine beliefs?

    But, as a matter of fact I have noticed several of people on the local forums posting about “catching up” and what vaccines are more important than others. And this is from previous no vax people. It looks promising that reasonable people are now seeing through all of this.

  29. #29 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    Re: Jen’s comment and the Thoughtful House presentation

    As an anatomic pathologist with 20 years’ experience who has interpreted thousands of GI biopsies,I would like to comment, as well. A lot of the “pathology” being presented would be considered within normal limits by an anatomic pathologist. There’s a lot of emphasis on “lymphonodular hyperplasia”, however, the photomicrographs show what would be normal lymphoid follicle activity in a child. That picture of “reactive gastropathy” looks like normal stomach to me. The definition of eosinophilic esophagitis is incomplete. And on it goes…
    I am also suspicious that ASD seems to be associated with such a wide spectrum of pathology. That doesn’t make sense to me, since a wide range of pathogenic mechanisms would be involved – unusual in a single disorder.
    Are there any pathologists reviewing these cases? Do they get to see all of the biopsies taken, or just selected slides?

  30. #30 ababa
    February 24, 2009

    Careful T. Bruce, you are going to confuse Jen with all of those big words. Remember, Wakefield is her hero – what she posted she picked up on a Yahoo group, she doesn’t actually understand it.

    She didn’t even know she was trying to use Wakefield’s own research to try and prove his own research.

  31. #31 IasonOuabache
    February 24, 2009

    Reminds me a lot of the FreeHovind site. I guess they’ll always be people willing to stand up for outright frauds.

  32. #32 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Vindaloo writes: “So yes, to this [desperate and scientifically illiterate] mom, Dr. Wakefield IS a hero, and anyone who slams this man’s quack’s reputation is my enemy [reason-injecting] enema.”

    You’re damn right I was desperate. My son came very close to being institutionalized just a few months ago because his behaviors were so out of control. None of the psychiatrists had any explanation for his sudden onset of aggression and self-injury other than “hormones”. That was the only answer they could come up with. Not one of them even considered the possibility that he was acting out because he was in PAIN.

    Prior to this, I had been very skeptical of biomedical approaches, but traditional medicine was not giving me any answers. I know my child better than anyone, and I was certain that there was much more going on with him than just hormones. The staff at Thoughtful House agreed and recognized right away that he was in pain, and treated him accordingly.

  33. #33 Mu
    February 24, 2009

    So Jen, what did they do against the pain? I’m mainly asking because pain killers are not something that you commonly see in alternative therapy approaches.

  34. #34 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    What you’ve written seems to conflate colonoscopy with diet, and bowel issues with aggressive behavior. That is, you start out by saying colonoscopies help with bowel issues, then provide an example where diet helped with aggressive behavior. I’m not seeing the connection. Can you help?>>>

    Sometimes, all that is needed is dietary restriction (removal of gluten, casein, phenols, etc.), which is what they always recommend first. They don’t scope every child-only the ones with severe issues that aren’t responding to dietary intervention. Some kids have more severe bowel issues than others, and when diet doesn’t work, you have to look at the bowel mucosa to find out what is going on. You can’t effectively treat an issue if you don’t know what it is-hence the reason for the scoping.

  35. #35 Wes
    February 24, 2009

    Five years after the initiation of a campaign to discredit the work of Dr. Andrew Wakefield, the London Sunday Times carried additional allegations on Sunday, February 8, 2009. Three pages of coverage that presented no new evidence accused Dr. Wakefield of “fixing” research data. These allegations have no basis in fact and have been fully addressed in Dr. Wakefield’s response to the General Medical Council (GMC) prosecution, now well into its second year.

    This is true, if by “no new evidence” and “no basis in fact” one means “Newly revealed evidence from hospital records and testimony from the parents of the children involved in the study.”

    We the undersigned, representing multitudes of citizens worldwide, demand an enquiry into the means by which the continuing episodes of misrepresentation concerning Dr. Wakefield came to pass.

    We would prefer that this “enquiry” involve continuing episodes of misrepresentation concerning anyone who criticizes Wakefield.

    Specifically:

    Bloviatingly:

    * We demand that the London Sunday Times review its coverage and the increasingly evident conflicts of interest of Brian Deer with regard to both the initial lodging of the GMC complaint and subsequent reporting.

    We also demand…ONE MILLION DOLLARS!!!!

    * We demand to see substantiation of allegations made in the London Sunday Times article of February 8, 2009, or to be informed should no such substantiation be available.

    And by “substantiation” we mean … oops! Where’d that goal-post go? Oh, look, it’s over there now.

    As Brian Deer has stated that his reporting was directed by editors managing his investigation for the London Sunday Times, we demand answers of the editors with regard to mismanagement of Deer’s investigation and why unsubstantiated text was permitted to be published. We request that the editor-in-chief and ownership of the London Sunday Times review, amend, and apologize for this mismanagement and editorial failure.

    And we know that his article was unsubstantiated and his integrity compromised by conflicts of interest, by argumentum ad I’m-rubber-you’re-glue-um, because his article consisted of evidence that Wakefield’s article was unsubstantiated and compromised by conflicts of interest.

    Further, we support an independent investigation into potential influences from pharmaceutical companies, government agencies, and other special interest groups that may have played a part in efforts to censor the reporting of academic research that does not present the current mainstream medical position. We also support an enquiry into Brian Deer’s activity that addresses his statements about influencing vaccine cases in the United States.

    An investigation shall be construed as “independent” only insofar as it is amenable to our desired outcome.

    We declare that:

    We demand that you keep a straight face while we declare that:

    1. Dr. Wakefield is a man of honesty, integrity, courage, and proven commitment to children and the public health.

    Unlike that meanie-pants, Brian Deer.

    2. Dr. Wakefield’s research is rigorous, replicated, biologically valid, clinically evidenced, corroborated by published, peer-reviewed research in an abundance of scientific disciplines, and consistent with children’s medical problems.

    Never mind that we were just earlier complaining that such corroborating research wasn’t published because it was being suppressed by “government interests”, and later on in this same petition we will declare it’s “impossible” to publish research against the vaccination conspiracy.

    3. We support clinicians who pursue treatments for bowel disorders based on Dr. Wakefield’s work and corroborating science, most specifically Arthur Krigsman, MD.

    In fact, we support them so much that we won’t even bother to check whether said clinicians’ treatments are effective or not.

    4. We support all scientists, including Dr. Andrew Wakefield, in the freedom to conduct medical research into the biological mechanisms for vaccine-related immune and brain dysfunction, including autism, without being attacked personally and professionally by industry, government, and organized medicine. We support scientific discovery, freedom to investigate, and freedom to speak in science.

    Unless, of course, said freedom of conduct leads to accusations against Wakefield by a journalist, in which case said journalist will be attacked personally and professionally by the anti-vax industry.

    5. We question the work of Brian Deer.

    “Question” here is Swahili for “will do whatever it takes to undermine”.

    Although journalists have a right to investigate and report,

    …on things which don’t interfere with our anti-vax cash-cow…

    time after time Brian Deer has stepped over the line in terms of journalistic ethics. This has included his misrepresenting as new information that which he knows to be untrue; consistently misrepresenting himself and his role; and failing to meet minimum standards separating facts from opinion.

    And the specific evidence we offer to support the allegation that Brian Deer has done these things is—LOOK! A MOOSE!!!

    6. We renounce pharmaceutical lobby groups and the London Sunday Times supporting the complaint lodged with the GMC, the actions of which result in intimidating doctors thereby preventing objective medical assessment of autistic children with co-morbid bowel involvement.

    We also denounce, renounce, rebuke, admonish, castigate, remonstrate, and censure those who would intimidate doctors striving gloriously and magnanimously to fight the scourge of acute leprechaunitis, unicornation syndrom, fairy deficiency, and athlete’s bigfoot.

    7. We condemn the censorship of science.

    Nevermind that we were never censored…

    There are more than enough facts and evidence to support the case of vaccine injury,

    More than enough for those of us who stand to make a few bucks off of it, anyways…

    but the politicization of these issues

    …of which this petition would certainly not partake, unlike those evil, child-hating, government-conspiracy-funded, special-interest-group-loving journalists like Brian Deer…

    has made it impossible to publish important and valid science.

    …never mind that this supposed impossibility completely contradicts our earlier claim that tons of peer-reviewed science supports Wakefield’s thesis…

    The debate is rigged in favor of the vaccine industry.

    It is high time it be rigged in favor of Dr. Wakefield!

    8. We condemn the conflicts of interest and abuse of power of the government,

    We also condemn bears who shit in the woods and Catholic Popes…

    which has become the greatest proponent for vaccines and the greatest opponent to vaccine safety research.

    Medical doctors must be the SECOND greatest….

    9. We serve the children and families who daily suffer the consequences of the largest institutional failure in modern medicine. This is a moral crisis demanding urgent action.

    THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!!

    10. We demand recognition of the global autism emergency.

    We demand it because issuing demands is so much easier than persuading people with logic, reason, and evidence.

    We call for investigation into the most likely environmental causes (including vaccines).

    (And excluding corrupt practices by anti-vax quacks. People who investigate those things hate children.)

    We cry out for the application of proven treatment practices and for the investigation of other treatment options to help suffering children and families immediately.

    We also cry out, “Wiiiilld Fiiire!”

    Members of the public, parents, doctors and scientists worldwide are now calling for a formal enquiry.

    Other than the formal inquiry which was already carried out and found us guilty of gross incompetence and fraud. That one doesn’t count.

  36. #36 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, just for the benefit of non-American readers who have never heard of it, could you please explain what Tylenol is and why US doctors consider it necessary to administer it with vaccinations?>>>

    Tylenol is acetaminophen, perhaps known elsewhere as Calpol, Panadol, or paracetamol. As for why US doctors consider it necessary to administer it with vaccinations, I have no idea. Perhaps they don’t want to be bothered with calls in the middle of the night from hysterical parents with babies running 102F fevers. Maybe one of the more enlightened readers here could elaborate further, because I am not aware of any scientific evidence of the safety or efficacy of this practice.

  37. #37 Denice Walter
    February 24, 2009

    Last year I found a 1960 compilation of “Prevention” magazine articles(The Prevention Method for Better Health, by J.I. Rodale,Rodale Press),reviewing the anti-vax ideas from that time,I found that there’s a great degree of similarity to what we’re hearing now:diseases come from unhygenic conditions,vaccines harm children/vaccines are toxic,healthy people are already immune,eventually everyone will be so healthy that there will be no need for this “present day evil”(I quoted him @denialism blog,post about B.Healey).Who would’ve thunk it:nostalgia in medecine.

  38. #38 Enkidu
    February 24, 2009

    I clicked on the AutismOne meeting link because I was curious and came across the description for their “Vaccine Education Seminar.” To quote:

    “Have you ever wondered how to talk to your mainstream pediatrician and your in-laws, start a grassroots advocacy movement, coordinate a rally, educate other parents, gain a vaccine exemption using titers, or fight for the right of Informed Consent? What is the vaccine “political” landscape and the underlying structure of the Federal Vaccine Advisory Committees? How do industry, government, and organized medicine operate together? What vaccines are coming down the pike, what are the new adjuvants in development — what does the future hold? How can you participate in the process? Barbara Loe Fisher, President of the NVIC, Vicky Debold, PhD, RN, and Louise Kuo Habakus, HHP, AADP of the NJ Coalition for Vaccination Choice help empower you in this half-day seminar.

    The best line is “How do industry, government, and organized medicine operate together?” Woo-hoo for giant conspiracies!!!!

  39. #39 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    There’s really no high quality evidence that autistic children have more bowel issues than non-autistic children.>>>

    Sorry, but I disagree with you. Even if the bowel issues aren’t readily apparent, most autistic kids that I have seen have either chronic diarrhea, constipation, food allergies and/or food intolerances. This has been my experience with every single autistic child I have come across. Even if a parent says their child has no GI issues, a lot of the time, the child’s red ears are often a dead giveaway that they don’t process phenols very well.

  40. #40 notmercury
    February 24, 2009

    You’re damn right I was desperate. My son came very close to being institutionalized just a few months ago because his behaviors were so out of control. None of the psychiatrists had any explanation for his sudden onset of aggression and self-injury other than “hormones”. That was the only answer they could come up with. Not one of them even considered the possibility that he was acting out because he was in PAIN.

    I’ve been through similar episodes, Jen, and I know I would reject the notion that hormones are to blame. So tell me, what are Wakefield and the folks at TH doing to document and verify that “PAIN” is the source of these behaviors and that it is more common for autistic people?

    From what I can tell, Wakefield has done nothing but insist that autism can be caused by MMR as evidenced by the Measles virus in gut tissue. Do you think that helps his credibility and demonstrates that some autistic kids do have genuine GI issues and may be in pain?

    Not in my opinion. If anything, it makes it less likely that we will be able to understand the source of behaviors like those you’ve described.

  41. #41 notmercury
    February 24, 2009

    Sorry, I guess the blockquote tags aren’t working. First paragraph above should in quotes.

  42. #42 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    Even if the bowel issues aren’t readily apparent, most autistic kids that I have seen have either chronic diarrhea, constipation, food allergies and/or food intolerances. This has been my experience with every single autistic child I have come across. Even if a parent says their child has no GI issues, a lot of the time, the child’s red ears are often a dead giveaway that they don’t process phenols very well.

    Couple of points, Jen:

    Chronic diarrhea, constipation and food intolerances are often a result of behavioral isssues in children. You would agree that ASD is a significant cause of behavioral issues, wouldn’t you?

    Red ears and phenol processing – WTF?

  43. #43 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    As an anatomic pathologist with 20 years’ experience who has interpreted thousands of GI biopsies,I would like to comment, as well. A lot of the “pathology” being presented would be considered within normal limits by an anatomic pathologist. There’s a lot of emphasis on “lymphonodular hyperplasia”, however, the photomicrographs show what would be normal lymphoid follicle activity in a child. That picture of “reactive gastropathy” looks like normal stomach to me. The definition of eosinophilic esophagitis is incomplete. And on it goes…>>>

    Did you even read the entire presentation? Do you REALLY think that a child that beats himself so severely that he requires narcotic induced respite is NORMAL? Peptic ulcers are NORMAL? Do you consider a child that has never had a formed stool to be NORMAL?

    I’d sure like to know what you would consider ABNORMAL!

  44. #44 speedwell
    February 24, 2009

    ABNORMAL is a mother who stresses her child out so much (panicky, desperate, who knows, maybe even trying desperate dietary measures on her own) that his digestion is affected. ABNORMAL is someone who forgets that children typically have good circulation and thin skin. ABNORMAL is someone so gullible that they’ll believe hurting their child is really helping him, in the face of conclusive evidence to the contrary.

  45. #45 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    So Jen, what did they do against the pain? I’m mainly asking because pain killers are not something that you commonly see in alternative therapy approaches.>>>

    There was no need for pain killers. He was placed on an elemental liquid formula, and the pain ceased almost immediately.

  46. #46 Bill H
    February 24, 2009

    There is evidence of widespread use by parents of complementary and alternative therapies (CAM) including exclusion diets for their children with autism. Despite this, there is a lack of evidence to support the use of gluten and/or casein free diet as an effective intervention for persons with autism and also a lack of research on potential harms and disbenefits of such diets.Despite the problems of maintaining the integrity of such diets in the community it is possible to carry out randomised control trials to address these questions and more and adequately powered trials are needed in this area.

    The quoted text is from the plain language summary of the 2008 Chochrane Review on gluten/casein free diets for autism.

    With the current state of research, there’s no evidence to support restriction diets as effective treatments for autism. Jen, neither I nor any of the other evidence based medicine supporters put much stock in your anecdotal evidence when compared with the science. I don’t want to speak for anyone else, but I’ll agree with the science every time.

  47. #47 RedGreenInBlue
    February 24, 2009

    Er, Jen.

    Whether vaccines are the cause of autism or not (and frankly, I don’t think they are, I think it’s more likely the Tylenol that is administered in conjunction with them, and the resulting glutathione depletion that is causing autism)is quite frankly, beside the point.

    This is one I haven’t come across before. A single dose of paracetamol can cause autism? Seriously?

    Firstly, a single age-appropriate dose of paracetamol would not cause significant glutathione depletion in an otherwise healthy child. Secondly, paracetamol toxicity causes acute liver toxicity, not chronic changes in neurological or cognitive development. Thirdly, children with congenital glutathione synthetase deficiency, who are at increased risk of paracetamol toxicity, show other signs depending on individual severity, such as haemolytic anaemia, metabolic acidosis, seizures, generalised motor retardation and ataxia.

    I’m sorry if I sound disparaging, but there seems to be no remotely plausible mechanism, and no evidence, for such a link.

    … I’ve just done a search on Google. Please, please tell me that you haven’t come to this conclusion because of “reduced glutathione”.

  48. #48 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    Did you even read the entire presentation?
    Yep. Did you read my entire comment?

    Do you REALLY think that a child that beats himself so severely that he requires narcotic induced respite is NORMAL?
    No. I was talking about the pathology in this presentation.
    Behavioral abnormality is not my field of expertise, so I didn’t comment on it. I know my limitations.

    Peptic ulcers are NORMAL?
    No. I saw one probable case presented. This happens in non-ASD spectrum kids,as well. One case is not data. The other “non-peptic ulcers” presented appear to be vascular congestion. I’ve seen these lesions biopsied frequently, and all that appears is a group of engorged capillaries – a normal finding.

    Do you consider a child that has never had a formed stool to be NORMAL?
    No. But maybe you could tell me what this has to do with the pathologic findings.

    I’d sure like to know what you would consider ABNORMAL!
    Oh, maybe something under the microscope that an anatomic pathologist would regard as abnormal.

  49. #49 Tsu Dho Nimh
    February 24, 2009

    Pearl C. Ware said “Rates of Scarlet fever and tuberculosis (the number one cause of death in the U.s. in 1900) declined, not because of wide-spread vaccinations, but because of cleanliness, better diet, etc.”

    Requiring pasteurization of milk was key to the decline of both scarlet fever and tuberculosis. A cow with mastitis from strep bacteria spreads strep bacteria through the milk, and a cow infected with Mycobacterium bovis spreads that bacteria to humans who drink the milk.

  50. #50 Vindaloo
    February 24, 2009

    Jen said, “Even if the bowel issues aren’t readily apparent, most autistic kids that I have seen have either chronic diarrhea, constipation, food allergies and/or food intolerances. This has been my experience with every single autistic child I have come across. Even if a parent says their child has no GI issues, a lot of the time, the child’s red ears are often a dead giveaway that they don’t process phenols very well.

    Every clown I’ve ever seen has been in the circus therefore every person who goes to the circus is a clown. AgeofAutism is the Clown Blog therefore it’s in a circus. There are animals in the circus and Clown Blog staff and readers are lemmings therefore the AoA-Clown Blog readers are in the internet.

  51. #51 BA
    February 24, 2009

    One of the potential consequences of GFCF diets, decreased bone density, is suggested by this research:

    1: J Autism Dev Disord. 2008 May;38(5):848-56. Links
    Reduced bone cortical thickness in boys with autism or autism spectrum disorder.Hediger ML, England LJ, Molloy CA, Yu KF, Manning-Courtney P, Mills JL.
    Division-of Epidemiology, Statistics and Prevention Research, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, Bethesda, MD 20892-7510, USA. hedigerm@exchange.nih.gov

    Bone development, casein-free diet use, supplements, and medications were assessed for 75 boys with autism or autism spectrum disorder, ages 4-8 years. Second metacarpal bone cortical thickness (BCT), measured on hand-wrist radiographs, and % deviations in BCT from reference medians were derived. BCT increased with age, but % deviations evidenced a progressive fall-off (p = .02): +3.1 +/- 4.7%, -6.5 +/- 4.0%, -16.6 +/- 3.4%, -19.4 +/- 3.7%,-24.1 +/- 4.4%, at ages 4-8, respectively, adjusting for height. The 12% of the boys on casein-free diets had an overall % deviation of -18.9 +/- 3.7%, nearly twice that of boys on minimally restricted or unrestricted diets (-10.5 +/- 1.3%, p < .04), although even for boys on minimally restricted or unrestricted diets the % deviation was highly significant (p < .001). Our data suggest that the bone development of autistic boys should be monitored as part of routine care, especially if they are on casein-free diets.

    PMID: 17879151 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    Another potential consequence is that dietary restriction can also lead to a higher probability of selective eating.

  52. #52 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    With the current state of research, there’s no evidence to support restriction diets as effective treatments for autism. Jen, neither I nor any of the other evidence based medicine supporters put much stock in your anecdotal evidence when compared with the science. I don’t want to speak for anyone else, but I’ll agree with the science every time.>>>

    Suit yourself. All I know is that when my younger autistic child ingests gluten, I can expect explosive diarrhea from him the following morning. When the gluten goes away, the diarrhea goes away, too.

    Trust me, I’m not happy about this, as we are big pasta and bread eaters, and the gluten free alternatives are not so good. And it’s a pain in the ass to travel an hour away to find the gluten free stuff at whole foods.

    Do you really think that thousands of parents would go to such expense and trouble if there weren’t some benefit to it? For many, it’s at least worth a try.

    Frankly, I would prefer not to have do the whole diet thing, but it’s either that or clean poo off the walls every morning.

    Yeah, the diet’s worth it to save my kid the humiliation of crapping his pants in front of his classmates at school. So I keep at it, inconvenient and “unscientific” as it may be. Call me a bad parent, or “scientifically illiterate” if you like, I don’t really care.

    And as for my older child, yeah, diet made a world of difference for him. He is happy, sleeping through the night, gaining weight, and looks healthy for the first time in years. It quite literally saved his life, because before we started it, he was essentially starving himself to death because eating was causing him pain.

    So yes, I’ll continue to cough up hundreds of dollars a month for the elemental formula that insurance won’t cover because it’s not “scientifically” proven.

  53. #53 Prometheus
    February 24, 2009

    7. We condemn the censorship of science. There are more than enough facts and evidence to support the case of vaccine injury, but the politicization of these issues has made it impossible to publish important and valid science. The debate is rigged in favor of the vaccine industry.

    Well, I have to partially agree with them on this one.

    [1] Science does tend to censor “ideas” that the data fail to support. This is done in order to prevent incorrect hypotheses from cluttering up the scientific world, but it could look like censorship to someone not accustomed to the scientific method.

    In the same sense, keeping your house picked up and not letting trash accumulate on the floor could be seen as “censoring” garbage.

    [2] “There are more than enough facts and evidence to support the case of vaccine injury…” True enough, but it appears that those “facts” and “evidence” are either spurious or fabricated.

    And you could see how the “politicization” of these issues prevents scientific journals (and the courts) from according these spurious (or fabricated) “facts” and “evidence” the recognition that true believers feel they deserve. After all, if none of this mattered to anyone, we wouldn’t be so strict in our insistence that the “facts” and “evidence” be real. We’d let them have their fantasy world if it didn’t impinge on our own.

    [3] “The debate is rigged in favor of the vaccine industry.” By insisting that we disregard spurious and fabricated “evidence”, our society has indeed “stacked the deck against” the faux experts and their pseudo-science.

    This is a choice that we have made – collectively – as a society. We have decided that reality should trump fantasy no matter how much some people might wish that the fantasy were true.

    Reality. It’s not just a good idea.

    Prometheus

  54. #54 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    This is one I haven’t come across before. A single dose of paracetamol can cause autism? Seriously?>>>

    Is that what I said? Selective reading, perhaps?

    Tylenol is often administered to babies BEFORE vaccinations, and pediatricians will sometimes tell parents to dose every 4 hours as needed for a day or two afterwards. Do we know for CERTAIN that this is safe? Is there any scientific evidence?

    Now, suppose that mom is breastfeeding and is taking Tylenol for a headache, and follows this advice. Oops…possible overdose. In addition, it is very easy to mess up the dosage when using the infant drops, since they are three times more concentrated that regular children’s liquid tylenol. Oops, possible overdose again.

    Then, perhaps baby gets an ear infection…more Tylenol…cuts a tooth…more Tylenol…Then it’s time for the 4 month shots and 6 month shots…more and more tylenol…then possibly more ear infections, colds, croup…well, heck, tylenol is safe, let’s just keep giving it…except… Tylenol isn’t safe!…turns out that hundreds die and thousands more end up in the emergency room every year due to acute liver failure, caused by depletion of glutathione via Tylenol.

    Oh, and then there’s all the studies that are linking Tylenol to allergies and asthma! (PubMed search: acetaminophen and asthma)

    So, to clarify, NO I don’t believe that a SINGLE dose of Tylenol will cause autism, I think it’s very likely that MULTIPLE doses in utero and during early childhood just might.

  55. #55 Joseph C.
    February 24, 2009

    @Jen,

    Thanks for the laugh.

  56. #56 trrll
    February 24, 2009

    Did you even read the entire presentation? Do you REALLY think that a child that beats himself so severely that he requires narcotic induced respite is NORMAL?

    Jen, when a pathologist judges a tissue sample, they are not trying to decide whether the patient’s behavior or overall health is normal. They are trying to determine whether there is something wrong with that particular tissue. This is essential for accurate diagnosis. Even a very sick child will likely have some tissues that are normal by every medical test.

  57. #57 Mu
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, it’s great that you found a diet that helps with your children’s bowel symptoms. What I fail to see is how the bowel symptoms and the autism are connected. There are plenty of ASD spectrum kids without bowel symptoms, and plenty of normally developing kids with bowel symptoms, why is there a connection between the two other than coincidence?

  58. #58 Rogue Epidemiologist
    February 24, 2009

    Jen said, “Unnecessary, my ass…drivel, drivel

    No, Jen. It’s was your son’s ass. And if I knew my mother would send me to some quack to have things shoved into my ass if I was acting up, I would back off, too.

    Wakefield is ass. Unnecessary ass.

  59. #59 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, you’re reaching.
    Tylenol certainly can cause liver damage, but it requires overdosage and promoted by other liver disease (notably alcohol abuse). I don’t think mothers are giving their children toxic ODs with immunizations on their doctor’s direction. Tylenol is excreted over a relatively short time period, so that therapeutic doses don’t cause buildup to toxic levels. I don’t see toxicity in infants due to breast-feeding or dosage confusion. I do see toxicity in adults who take large ODs, often alcoholics, sometimes accidental, sometimes suicidal. Quite different from what you propose.
    The apparent increased risk of asthma may result from asthma-prone kids receiving more tylenol as a result of their asthmatic symptoms – a reversed cause and effect. This is acknowledged in the study I found on this.
    Anyway, this is all beside the point. What evidence is there that Tylenol is related in any way to ASD?

  60. #60 Chris
    February 24, 2009

    Also, having had a colonoscopy last year as part of something one does when one reaches a (cough cough) certain age, I can imagine that a child may change their behavior to avoid future colonoscopies!

    (Though I am trying to figure out how one pins down a violent 14 year old to even get that done! Though I suspect that starving him for a day and then slipping some of the Fleet phospho soda into the kid’s drink might help.)

  61. #61 RJ
    February 24, 2009
  62. #62 Wulfstan
    February 24, 2009

    Even if the bowel issues aren’t readily apparent, most autistic kids that I have seen have either chronic diarrhea, constipation, food allergies and/or food intolerances. This has been my experience with every single autistic child I have come across. Even if a parent says their child has no GI issues, a lot of the time, the child’s red ears are often a dead giveaway that they don’t process phenols very well.

    It is appropriate for none of us to prefer our anecdotal experience over well-conducted surveys and studies. Is it at all possible that, being human, you are subject to confirmation bias?

    As for the red ears, I grant you that none of the studies that have looked for associations between bowel conditions and autism have cited that as an inclusion or exclusion criterion.

    Plus, the more elaborate and theatrical the intervention (like a colonscopy), the trickier the diet and the more commitment that it needs, the better placebo response. Children are particularly good placebo responders. [Placebo references.]

    Dr James Laidler gives a detailed account of his experience with a GFCF diet with his family and why he moved away from biomedical interventions to his present position.

  63. #63 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    < <>>

    Odd…when my child has asthmatic symptoms, I tend to give albuterol, not tylenol.

    Explain this…
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18814450?ordinalpos=8&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    and this…

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18400839?ordinalpos=14&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    “…Anyway, this is all beside the point. >>>

    Not really.

    “What evidence is there that Tylenol is related in any way to ASD?>>>

    How about this? (Remember, Tylenol depletes glutathione)

    http://www.sciam.com/blog/60-second-science/post.cfm?id=new-test-for-mitochondrial-disease-2009-02-11

    “…A new study reveals that people with these diseases may be deficient in glutathione, a toxin-fighting molecule made by the body that helps repair damage wrought by wayward mitochondria.”

    “…Among the most famous cases of mitochondrial disease: nine-year-old Hannah Poling, whose mitochondrial disorder caused autism-like symptoms that were exacerbated by routine childhood vaccinations.”

    See a connection yet?

  64. #64 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Tylenol is excreted over a relatively short time period, so that therapeutic doses don’t cause buildup to toxic levels>>>

    Perhaps so, but how do we know that glutathione levels in the body return to normal after it’s excreted? Has this been studied? Another concern might also be if the child is ill at the time it’s given, or if it is metabolized differently when taken on an empty stomach, dehydrated, etc. Lots of variables here.

  65. #65 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Anyway, this is all beside the point. What evidence is there that Tylenol is related in any way to ASD?>>>

    How about this? (Keep in mind the glutathione depleting properties of Tylenol)

    http://www.sciam.com/blog/60-second-science/post.cfm?id=new-test-for-mitochondrial-disease-2009-02-11

    “…A new study reveals that people with these diseases may be deficient in glutathione, a toxin-fighting molecule made by the body that helps repair damage wrought by wayward mitochondria.”

    “…Among the most famous cases of mitochondrial disease: nine-year-old Hannah Poling, whose mitochondrial disorder caused autism-like symptoms that were exacerbated by routine childhood vaccinations.”

    Hmmm…

  66. #66 Mojo
    February 24, 2009

    As far as I know Wakefield, despite living in the US, remains a UK citizen. So he can sue Deer for libel, under the fairly permissive UK laws. Then he can have his day in court and prove that Deer is wrong in his allegations of fraud.

    Oh, wait… Wakefield already sued Deer. And, rather than allow the suit to progress, he sought a series of stays, and then dropped the suit. He ended up paying Deer’s legal bills.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2007/jan/06/broadcasting.channel4

    The bit about condemning censorship in the petition is nicely ironic in view of some of the observations of the judge at one stage of the Wakefield v Channel 4/Brian Deer case. See paragraphs 30 to 37:

    http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/QB/2005/2410.html

    30. These factors loom even larger in the present case in the light of certain conduct on the Claimant’s part which Miss Page has prayed in aid. It is her case that the Claimant is seeking to take full advantage of the fact that he has issued libel proceedings while avoiding any detailed public scrutiny of the underlying merits. In other words, she argues, he is seeking to adopt a strategy comparable to that generally characterised by the phrase “a gagging writ”. It is necessary to consider these allegations in a little further detail.

    After discussing letters sent to the Cambridge Evening News, Dr. Evan Harris (a member of Parliament), and the Department of Health, the judge concluded (paragraph 37):

    I am quite satisfied, therefore, that the Claimant wished to extract whatever advantage he could from the existence of the proceedings while not wishing to progress them or to give the Defendants an opportunity of meeting the claims.

  67. #67 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    One of the potential consequences of GFCF diets, decreased bone density>>>

    Which is why dietary changes should be done under the guidance of a professional, knowledgeable in dietary supplementation.

  68. #68 Donna B.
    February 24, 2009

    I’ve been reading a lot lately about how science can be communicated more clearly to the average lay person, in hopes of elevating the appreciation of science.

    I suggest that calling Jen desperate and scientifically illiterate and easily confused by big scientific words doesn’t help Jen or earn appreciation of science and scientists.

    Jen is likely correct in pointing out that Tylenol might be overused because it is considered so safe. For adults, there’s the added danger that acetaminophen is an ingredient in so many OCT cold medicines and sleep aids.

    She is also correct that parents know their children better than anyone else. From personal experience, I can vouch that if your child has a complicated or severe problem, that every specialist you are referred to will have a differing diagnosis and that if you see four specialists, you’ll likely end up with six different recommendations.

    My experiences with my son were after a serious closed head injury and had nothing to do with vaccinations or autism. I’m all for vaccinations.

  69. #69 Danio
    February 24, 2009

    While Jen bravely battles it out amongst the rationalistas over here, the comments on Newsweek’s collection of vaccine-autism articles are veritably smoldering with the stupid.

    http://www.newsweek.com/id/185986, e.g., if anyone wants to don the asbestos helmet and provide a little balance (there are a number of related articles, and the AOA folks are bringing the crazy to every single one of them).

  70. #70 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Chronic diarrhea, constipation and food intolerances are often a result of behavioral isssues in children.>>>

    Nah, I think it’s the other way around. I think what a child eats has a direct effect on the way the child behaves. Have you heard of the Southampton Study?

  71. #71 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    Sorry Jen, I can’t respond to your comments in any detail right now. Just a couple of points:
    Hannah Poling’s autistic symptoms were apparently triggered by a febrile reaction to immunization. This could just as easily happened with a fever from an ear infection or strep pharyngitis. Did Hannah take Tylenol? Would Tylenol have prevented a febrile reaction if she had taken it (and prevented the development of ASD)? Just sayin’…
    Mitochondrial disorders are estimated to affect 1 in 8500 people. The incidence of ASD is about 50 times greater (1 in ~170). If Tylenol is involved in ASD, the effect must be pretty small.
    Is the incidence of autism and ASD any greater in people with mitochondrial disorders? That might be helpful to know.

  72. #72 JustaTech
    February 24, 2009

    Jen,
    I am glad to hear that your children are doing better. I’ve never had ongoing GI problems, so I can only imagine how horrific that might be for anyone. That said, I’m surprised you are defending Dr. Wakefield.

    He lied to you, plain and simple.

    And now the whole idea of a connection between ASD and GI problems has been tarnished by his lies. No reputable scientist wants to take this on because it has been fouled by something far fouler than anything a gastroenterologist will ever encounter: falsification and, dare I say it, quackery.

    So rather than helping you and your family, Dr. Wakefield has pushed the field back years. In your position I would be very upset.

    Respectfully, JustaTech

  73. #73 Wulfstan
    February 24, 2009

    I think it’s the other way around. I think what a child eats has a direct effect on the way the child behaves. Have you heard of the Southampton Study?

    Jen, do you understand why your opinion does not trump well-conducted studies or surveys anywhere outside the confines of your own coterie?

    And yes to the Southampton Study. Did you have a point?

  74. #74 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    So rather than helping you and your family, Dr. Wakefield has pushed the field back years. In your position I would be very upset.>>>

    Trust me, I am very upset. As I previously mentioned, I was very skeptical of biomedical approaches prior to this incident with my child. I remember feeling very sorry for the parents who spent tens of thousands of dollars on every fly by night treatment, and feeling glad that I could accept my child for who he was instead of trying to “fix” him. I was left with no other choice, though. It was either try biomedical, or place my son in an institution, and the latter choice was just plain unacceptable. My son’s quality of life (as well as that of my entire family)was in the crapper, and doing nothing was not an option.

    I should mention that I do not believe that the MMR vaccine or any other vaccine for that matter “causes” autism, although there was a time that I was convinced enough of a link that I refused vaccines for my younger son. However, when that child developed autism, too, I knew I had no choice but to accept that vaccines don’t cause autism. That was hard to admit. However, I do still think that vaccination is linked to autism via acetaminophen, and I do hope that someone will study this, and quickly.

    FWIW, I do not believe that Dr. Wakefield LIED. I think he truly believes there is a link between MMR and autism. I happen to disagree with him. (sort of) I am upset, not necessarily with Dr. Wakefield, but at the others who, like you said, now refuse to study a link between GI issues and ASD, because of the negative PR surrounding the original Lancet study. For any researcher to even suggest that vaccination might possibly be linked to autism, directly or indirectly, is now the equivalent of career suicide. Instead of funding to find the true cause of autism, precious time and resources have been wasted trying to reassure frightened parents that vaccines have nothing to do with autism. It’s a shame.

    What can I say, though? They listened to me when everyone else thought I was crazy. And my kids are now thriving because of their interventions. Can’t argue with results.

  75. #75 daedalus2u
    February 24, 2009

    Pretty clear it is Stockholm Syndrome

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockholm_syndrome

  76. #76 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Mitochondrial disorders are estimated to affect 1 in 8500 people.>>>

    I think those numbers may be much higher.

    Mitochondrial disorders are tricky to detect, and most kids aren’t routinely tested for them, because it involves painful, invasive and expensive testing. (muscle biopsies, etc.)

    < >>

    Time will tell, I suppose.

  77. #77 John C. Welch
    February 24, 2009

    Did you even read the entire presentation? Do you REALLY think that a child that beats himself so severely that he requires narcotic induced respite is NORMAL? Peptic ulcers are NORMAL? Do you consider a child that has never had a formed stool to be NORMAL?

    I’d sure like to know what you would consider ABNORMAL!

    How capable was your son of communicating, in a clear fashion, that he was in extreme pain? I’m guessing, “not very” because usually, when someone says “I am in extreme pain” in a clear manner, that tends to get treated.

    However, if one cannot communicate that clearly? I’d certainly believe self-inflicted beatings as a reaction. My kid had, at the age of 18 months, a tolerance for pain from ear infections that was not only astoundingly high, but his reaction when it exceeded even his tolerance was: Scream loudly, for about 5 seconds, then not make a peep for another 30 minutes. In fact, not do anything but stare at you with some creepy intensity, like he was trying to project his thoughts into your head. Rinse lather repeat. I eventually had to bring him into the doctor in that state to show his pedi what was happening, and she said that she would have thought me stoned otherwise, because in 20 years, she’d NEVER seen that. But, we figured it out, and learned how to deal with it.

    I have a friend whose (to date) non-autistic baby daughter, (something under 2 years, she’s not mine, so that’s all I know) has a *fascinating* way to get attention: She runs into a wall. Full speed. She’s had more bloody noses than you can shake a stick at. But, she’s unable to *communicate clearly*, so she picked something that got attention and fast. A baby with a bloody nose certainly does that.

    SOmeone in pain wants attention and relief for that pain. Someone unable to communicate verbally in a clear way is going to come up with some pretty damned inventive ways to communicate. Your kid picked one that definitely got your attention.

    Suit yourself. All I know is that when my younger autistic child ingests gluten, I can expect explosive diarrhea from him the following morning. When the gluten goes away, the diarrhea goes away, too.

    And if my wife eats too much milk products, she’s in the bathroom for hours.

    If I eat broccoli/brussels sprouts/asparagus/cauliflower, I’m projectile vomiting for days.

    Congratulations? Your child has a food allergy. Either that or my wife and I are autistic and in 42 years, no one ever caught on. Damn, I’m sneaky. Seriously, millions of people have food allergies that have violent, albeit not-deadly reactions. They don’t mean you have autism. I’m willing to bet lots of people with autism do not have food allergies.

    Trust me, I’m not happy about this, as we are big pasta and bread eaters, and the gluten free alternatives are not so good. And it’s a pain in the ass to travel an hour away to find the gluten free stuff at whole foods.

    Do you really think that thousands of parents would go to such expense and trouble if there weren’t some benefit to it? For many, it’s at least worth a try.

    Frankly, I would prefer not to have do the whole diet thing, but it’s either that or clean poo off the walls every morning.

    No more of a pain in the ass than any other parent who has a kid with a food allergy. My parents discovering mine at 2 am on Xmas day, (I was eight), as I coated my room in last night’s pizza, then proceeded to not keep anything other than flat ginger ale down for most of three days wasn’t a picnic. And just TRY being a kid who’s allergic to those vegetables, trying to explain it to grownups. “SURRRRE you’re allergic…” My mom had to get custom notepads made up to send with me when I went to someone’s house to eat for the first time.

    I’m sure autism adds an “interesting” dimension to the issue, but again, there are millions of kids and millions of parents dealing with this, including the ones who have to teach small children that they need to fear peanuts at the same level they fear serial killers, because the end result of an encounter with either would be the same. I’m pretty sure they’d happily trade “explosive crapfest parties” for “constant danger of quick death because someone accidently let them eat a peanut”.

    And as for my older child, yeah, diet made a world of difference for him. He is happy, sleeping through the night, gaining weight, and looks healthy for the first time in years. It quite literally saved his life, because before we started it, he was essentially starving himself to death because eating was causing him pain.

    So you did what EVERYONE with a kid with an allergy did…you changed their diet in an appropriate fashion. Autism != food allergies && food allergies != Autism. Coincidence != Cause. I was born blonde and irish, and have a messed up allergy. None of those have anything to do with the other. You just hit a bonus triple word score, and that really, really sucks.

    So, to clarify, NO I don’t believe that a SINGLE dose of Tylenol will cause autism, I think it’s very likely that MULTIPLE doses in utero and during early childhood just might.

    What verifiable data is that belief based on?

    Nah, I think it’s the other way around. I think what a child eats has a direct effect on the way the child behaves. Have you heard of the Southampton Study?

    Both are true, this is not a binary, one-way issue. Behavior issues can indeed cause all sorts of lurvely digestive issues, (especially where the consumption of non-food items comes into play), and a kid eating bad food, (including things they’re allergic to), can cause behavioral issues. I know the last parent who tried to “make” me eat broccoli probably still thinks I’m a rude, foul-mouthed brat, but there was no way in HELL I was going to be curled in a ball, in extreme pain, vomiting until I got the dry heaves just to satisfy THEIR need to make me eat my veggies.

    I was highly impolite about refusing said broccoli after the 4th go-round of “Try to make john eat the evil green plants”.

  78. #78 Orac
    February 24, 2009

    FWIW, I do not believe that Dr. Wakefield LIED.

    I do, because there’s abundant evidence that he did lie, on multiple occasions.

    For any researcher to even suggest that vaccination might possibly be linked to autism, directly or indirectly, is now the equivalent of career suicide.

    Advocating bad science and a refuted hypothesis that the vast preponderance of evidence does not support does tend to have a deleterious effect on a scientist’s career. Science is funny that way about Galileos. It’s not enough simply to buck the existing paradigm. You also have to be right. Michael Shermer once said, “Heresy does not equal correctness. He was right.

    Here’s what I said about this very issue a few years back:

    For every Galileo, Ignaz Semmelweis, Nicolaus Copernicus, Charles Darwin, Louis Pasteur, etc., whose scientific ideas were either ignored, rejected, or vigorously attacked by the scientific community of his time and then later accepted, there are untold numbers of others whose ideas were either ignored or rejected initially and then were never accepted–and never will be accepted. Why? Because they were wrong! The reason the ideas of Galileo, Semmelweis, Copernicus, Darwin, Pasteur, et al, were ultimately accepted as correct by the scientific community is because they turned out to be correct! Their observations and ideas stood up to repeated observation and scientific experimentation by many scientists in many places over many years. The weight of data supporting their ideas was so overwhelming that eventually even the biggest skeptics could no longer stand. That’s the way science works. It may be messy, and it may take longer, occasionally even decades or even longer, than we in the business might like to admit, but eventually in science the truth wins out. In fact, the best way for a scientist to become famous and successful in his or her field is to come up with evidence that strongly challenges established theories and concepts and then weave that evidence into a new theory. Albert Einstein didn’t end up in the history books by simply reconfirming and recapitulating Newton’s Laws. Semmelweis and Pasteur didn’t wind up in the history books by confirming the concept that disease was caused by an “imbalance of humours” (although Semmelweis probably did hurt himself by refusing to publish his results for many years; his data was so compelling it remains puzzling why he did not do so). I daresay that none of the Nobel Prize winners won that prestigious award by demonstrating something that the scientific establishment already believed. No! They won it by discovering something new and important!

    To which I would now add: But that glory doesn’t come to a scientist unless he turns out to be right. Wakefield wasn’t. Even worse, he falsified data, refused to publish data that he had been told about because it conflicted with his beliefs (Chadwick told him that he couldn’t find measles virus in those original 12 specimens; so Wakefield held back the data from the original Lancet paper and lied to the press that he had the virological data to support his hypothesis), had a conflict of interest that would make a big pharma exec blush, and didn’t reveal his COIs. The result has been a horrific decline in the MMR vaccination rates in the U.K., Europe, and elsewhere, leading to the return of vaccine-preventable diseases and even deaths.

    Which is why I get really nauseated when Wakefield and his supporters try to paint him as some sort of Galileo. When I see an incompetent, dishonest, money-grubbing, lying piece of scum like Wakefield lionized by people just because he supports their pseudoscientific beliefs, I tend to get a bit annoyed.

  79. #79 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Advocating bad science and a refuted hypothesis that the vast preponderance of evidence does not support does tend to have a deleterious effect on a scientist’s career.>>>

    How much of that “vast preponderance of evidence” factors in the use of antipyretics?

  80. #80 antipodean
    February 24, 2009

    “How much of that “vast preponderance of evidence” factors in the use of antipyretics?”

    And where is the data supporting a link between autism and paracetemol/tylenol/acetaminophen that you keep bringing up?

    There’s plenty of studies showing an association between asthma and aspirin or paracetemol/tylenol/acetaminophen, for instance. But that has nothing to do with rambling about tylenol (about as well studied a drug as you get) and autism.

    The claims being made are shifting around at an alarming speed. But then again that is an effective tactic with some people. TV is a more effective place to use it though.

  81. #81 Bill H
    February 24, 2009

    I just browsed the abstracts that Jen linked to. What an association between acetaminophen and asthma has to do with autism, I’m not sure. However, I did find this at the conclusion of one of them.

    If this association is causal, we may need to revisit the clinical practice on use of paracetamol during pregnancy.

    It says if it’s causal. Repeat after me Jen: Correlation does not equal causation. Correlation does not equal causation. Correlation does not equal causation.

    If you want to argue the case that acetaminophen causes autism, you have to provide more than two studies that show a possible correlation .

    Also, if it’s so easy for infants to receive accidental overdoses of acetaminophen, why don’t we see more children with liver damage?

  82. #82 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    And where is the data supporting a link between autism and paracetemol/tylenol/acetaminophen that you keep bringing up?>>>
    That’s what I’d like to know! I keep asking, and no one is producing!

    “…But that has nothing to do with rambling about tylenol (about as well studied a drug as you get) and autism.>>>

    I disagree. I don’t believe that the safety of Tylenol in conjunction with vaccination is very well studied at all, and I have reasons to believe that glutathione depletion via Tylenol and the resulting oxidative stress is linked to autism, as well as asthma and allergies.

    Doesn’t it seem odd, that a drug used so commonly in conjunction with vaccinations, hasn’t been studied as a possible autism trigger, especially considering the thousands who report that their children regressed after vaccination? Is it just a coincidence that autism rates started spiking right around the time that aspirin was linked to Reye’s Syndrome and everyone was told to use only Tylenol for fever/pain in children? Doesn’t it at least warrant further research? Hmmm?

  83. #83 antipodean
    February 24, 2009

    That clears it up.

    We’re all in agreement. There is no evidence.

  84. #84 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Also, if it’s so easy for infants to receive accidental overdoses of acetaminophen, why don’t we see more children with liver damage?>>>

    Maybe they’re calling it something else…like SIDS?

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17654772?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    The simultaneous sudden deaths of twins rarely occur and therefore it has received limited attention in the medical literature. When the deaths of the twins meet the defined criteria for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) independently and take place within the same 24 h range it can be called as simultaneous SIDS (SSIDS). The case(s): Twin girls (3.5-month-old) were found dead by their mother in their crib, both in supine position. The infants were identical twins and delivered at a hospital by cesarean section. Both infants were healthy and did not have any serious medical history. Two days prior to the incident, the twins had received the second dose of oral polio, DPT and the first dose of hepatitis B vaccines and they had fever on the first day of the vaccination and been given teaspoonful of acetaminophen. Death scene investigation, judicial investigation, parental assessment, macroscopic and microscopic autopsy findings and the toxicological analysis did not yield any specific cause of death. The case(s) were referred to a supreme board composed of multidisciplinary medical professionals at the Institute of Forensic Medicine, Ministry of Justice, in Istanbul. The Board decided that the available data was consistent with SIDS. These SIDS case(s) are presented because twin SIDS are rare and this is the first time that a simultaneous twin SIDS have been reported in Turkey. Simultaneous SIDS cases have many implications regarding definition, diagnosis and medico-legal approach.

    These 3.5 month old babies were given a TEASPOON of acetaminophen? Wouldn’t that be considered an overdose, especially if the infant drops were used?

    And actually, there are many reports of acetaminophen induced liver damage in children, they just don’t always make headlines.

  85. #85 antipodean
    February 24, 2009

    Jen

    That is a case-study. It is not evidence. It is a well organised and reported anecdote.

    It does not come close to supporting your repeated claim that acetaminophen causes autism.

    So once again for the reading impaired…We’re all in agreement. There is no evidence.

  86. #86 Tsu Dho Nimh
    February 24, 2009

    Jen said:

    How about this? (Keep in mind the glutathione depleting properties of Tylenol)
    http://www.sciam.com/blog/60-second-science/post.cfm?id=new-test-for-mitochondrial-disease-2009-02-11
    “…A new study reveals that people with these diseases may be deficient in glutathione, a toxin-fighting molecule made by the body that helps repair damage wrought by wayward mitochondria.”
    “…Among the most famous cases of mitochondrial disease: nine-year-old Hannah Poling, whose mitochondrial disorder caused autism-like symptoms that were exacerbated by routine childhood vaccinations.”

    You are confusing cause and effect … mitochondrial problems can apparently CAUSE glutathione deficiencies (that’s the effect). But there is no suggestion in that article that lowering the glutathione level can run the other direction and cause mitochondrial problems.

    Jen also said:

    I do not believe that Dr. Wakefield LIED. I think he truly believes there is a link between MMR and autism.

    His true belief, no matter how sincere, does not excuse the falsification of data that he did. He lied about the medical histories of the children to make his belief appear to be true, he lied about the lab results, he lied about the timing between the MMR and the appearance of autism symptoms, he lied about the randomness of his patient sample, he lied by omission byr not revealing his patent on a measles vaccine and his income from lawyers wanting to link autism to the MMR.

  87. #87 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    Also, if it’s so easy for infants to receive accidental overdoses of acetaminophen, why don’t we see more children with liver damage?>>>

    Maybe they’re calling it something else…like SIDS?

    Tylenol toxicity produces a characteristic pattern of necrosis in the liver. SIDS produces no change at all in the liver. What is your point?

  88. #88 antipodean
    February 24, 2009

    Hang on! A teaspoon is not a standard dose of anything in medicine. It is in baking though.

    Can’t believe they got that published…

  89. #89 Bill H
    February 24, 2009

    I had a headache last week, so I took some Tylenol. Later that evening, I became nauseous and achy, and fell asleep 2 hours before I usually do. In the middle of the night, I woke up and vomited a couple of times. I spent most of the night feeling pretty crappy and didn’t get much sleep, so I stayed home from work the next day.

    Did the tylenol cause my symptoms? Based on what we know about tylenol, no absolutely not. The headache was just the first symptom of the viral syndrome brought on by a touch of the stomach flu, and I happened to take the tylenol before the rest of the symptoms appeared.

    According to Jen’s logic, however, I’d be justified in claiming that tylenol causes nausea, vomiting, body aches, has sedative properties, causes lost work time and reduced productivity, and can be blamed for the current economic recession. And that’s in an adult following the dosage instructions on the package. Imagine what tylenol can do when we give it to our babies …

  90. #90 Robster, FCD
    February 24, 2009

    In reply to “And where is the data supporting a link between autism and paracetemol/tylenol/acetaminophen that you keep bringing up?”

    Jen replied, “That’s what I’d like to know! I keep asking, and no one is producing!”

    Wait, so all of this is based on a hunch? Thats it?

  91. #91 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Wait, so all of this is based on a hunch? Thats it? >>>

    Yup, a very strong hunch, based on my children’s anecdotal experiences, laboratory data, and a basic understanding of the importance of glutathione in the human body.

  92. #92 mandrake
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, let me explain something to you. As much as you may not like it, people who are trained in medicine know more about it than you do. Just because you can use google and big words doesn’t mean you have the least idea of what you’re talking about, because it’s clear from every example you bring up that you don’t.
    Or, of course, thousands of doctors are “in on it” and your one proven fraud, Wakefield, knows more than anyone else.
    By the way, you *do* know that a year before his “study” he patented an “alternative” vaccination?

  93. #93 Chris
    February 24, 2009

    The plural of anecdote is not data. You have not really presented much real evidence to support your hunch. A case report from Istambul, with infants being given a TEAspoon of Tylenol! (actually, it may have been a problem with translation, but it does remind me of a local news report I remember before my 18 year old was born that a toddler choked to death because his/her caregiver attempted to have him/her swallow a full size adult Tylenol pill)

    You have also (despite being asked at Bad Astronomy) never presented any real evidence that Tylenol was or is routinely given to babies before vaccination. I’ve never seen it done, I was always given a tiny bottle of infant Tylenol with a dropper – NOT a teaspoon, that I usually had to toss unopened after it expired when I cleaned out the diaper bag (my youngest is also 14).

    Your hunch pales against the evidence that Wakefield is a fraud who has endangered public health. Not only the testimony by Chadwick and Bustin during the Autism Omnibus proceeding that he used bad data (ftp://autism.uscfc.uscourts.gov/autism/cedillo/transcripts/day10.pdf … it starts off in the first few pages with Chadwick), but also the more recent failure of researchers at Columbia to replicate his findings (and this was done by a researcher who had done the much criticized autistic mice paper sponsored by Safe Minds!).

  94. #94 Broken Link
    February 24, 2009

    Jen,

    Are you sure you’re not influenced in your belief in Dr. Wakefield because of his charisma, his stunning good looks? Dr. Dreamy, I think he’s called by some of the moms of kids with autism. Not to mention the fact that he took the time to REALLY LISTEN to you. That must have been really flattering and gratifying.

    I often thank heavens for the relative non-charisma of Geier, father and son, and Boyd Haley. Imagine where we’d be if they were even 10% as handsome (swoon) as Wakefield.

  95. #95 Broken Link
    February 24, 2009

    Does anyone see how to find out how many people actually have signed the petition in question? I only see 4 comments.

  96. #96 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    As much as you may not like it, people who are trained in medicine know more about it than you do.>>>

    Yes, of course. My thirteen years of experience as an LVN are completely irrelevant, and my first hand experience in raising two autistic boys and their improvements with biomedical treatments, as well as the thousands of other parents reporting the exact same results mean absolutely nothing. Gotcha.

  97. #97 snerd
    February 24, 2009
  98. #98 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    You have also (despite being asked at Bad Astronomy) never presented any real evidence that Tylenol was or is routinely given to babies before vaccination. I’ve never seen it done,>>>

    Actually, I did, you must have missed it. But I’ll post it again, just for you Chris. :)

    “…Ask the doctor if it is OK to give the child a dose of acetaminophen (Tylenol) before or after a shot.”
    http://www.umm.edu/patiented/articles/what_immunization_000090_1.htm

    “…Note 10: Consider giving acetaminophen before DTaP and every 4 hours thereafter for 24 hours to children who
    have a personal or a family history of convulsions.”

    http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/downloads/b_contraindications_guide.pdf

    In addition, you can google “tylenol before vaccination” and see the hundreds of Q&A regarding this as well.

    This practice is VERY common. And scientifically unproven.

  99. #99 snerd
    February 24, 2009

    Whoops – that was meant for the Jock Doubleday thread, and isn’t very respectful here. Orac, feel free to scrub if needed.

  100. #100 Chris
    February 24, 2009

    The plural of anecdote is still not data.

    I have no idea what an “LVN” is, but it is obvious that does not include any kind of science or research.

    Also Wakefield is certainly not being helped by his twenty some of years as a medical researcher. He is not qualified to attend to patients:
    http://www.spiked-online.com/index.php?/site/article/6283/

    Having two boys on the spectrum kind of points to genetics.

  101. #101 Chris
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, neither of those references show that it is done all the time and is standard practice which is your claim!. By the way, one of my kids did have a history of convulsions and I never gave him the stuff either.

    Fail.

  102. #102 Indy
    February 24, 2009

    Raising two autistic sons you say, Jen? Ever occur to you it might not have to do with vaccines or bowels or Tylenol or anything environmental? Maybe it has something to do with the one big thing they have in common – their genetics? Noooo, couldn’t possibly be that … that would involve you not blaming someone else.

  103. #103 Dan
    February 24, 2009

    Thoughts Regarding Autism Spectrum Neurodevelopmental Disorders

    Of these rare neurological dysfunctions, Autism is the most common of these passive developmental disorders. Autism is a disability that is suspected to be caused possibly by a brain development disorder of unknown cause, yet some suspect the cause is some sort of neurological dysfunction- possibly with a genetic predisposition. Autism is about 3 times more common in males than females as well.
    Usually, symptoms of the disease present themselves before the toddler reaches the age of three. Before Autism was more understood, others inaccurately labeled autistic people as childhood schizophrenia or as having a psychosis or mental retardation.
    Symptoms of the autistic patient included limited or dysfunctional social and personal or intimate relationships with others, their intelligence is affected, and the autistic person typically is adverse to change. Also, the autistic person tends to be compulsive and prefers to be alone. They lack eye contact as much as physical contact with other people.
    Out of over two dozen diagnostic criteria utilized for these disorders, eight must be present to be considered autistic, according to the DSM. As with all passive developmental disorders, the person expresses language, social, and behavioral difficulties.
    Treatment includes what are called psychotropic medications that delay the progression of the disorder, as well as relieve some of the symptoms of one who is autistic. Behavioral therapy is common as a treatment regimen as well. Boys get Autism much more than girls.
    Then there is the controversy between many who claim that thimerosal- a preservative containing mercury, which is a neurotoxin that was used in vaccines until 2001, was the catalyst for autism in children.
    Over 5000 lawsuits have been filed because of this belief, and some have been successful for the plaintiff. Yet most agree the correlation between thimersal and autism is void of scientific merit. Furthermore, the cases of autism have not decreased since the preservative was discontinued in 2001.
    Aside from Autism, the other four passive developmental disorders are known as autism spectrum disorders.
    Asperger’s Syndrome is more common than autism, and the symptoms are milder, as there is minimal delay in language abilities, if at all. What is expressed with Asperger’s syndrome is mild autistic symptoms. In time, the patient may express atypical personality disorders, though.
    While intelligence is within normal limits with the Asperger’s patient, social interactions and abilities preset difficulty for such a patient. As with Autism, medications and behavioral therapy are treatment regimens with one with this syndrome
    Rett’s Syndrome or disorder presents with not only atypical behavior, but also suffers from restricted physical growth and movement. There is cognitive and social impairment as well. The disorder affects mostly girls, and the cause is due to a gene mutation.
    Childhood Disintegrative disorder is rare, and is 10 times less common than autism. The disorder has a late onset with mild autistic symptoms. The disorder affects mostly boys, and regression is sudden and possible with this disorder. Skills lost with this disorder may be language, social, self-care, as well as play or motor skills. Decreased function or impairment with this disorder may include social skills and behavioral flaws. Central Nervous System pathology is a suspected cause of this disorder.
    Finally, there are passive development disorders that are not otherwise specified. This may include atypical autism, for example. Yet as with the rest of types of these disorders, the symptoms vary in their frequency and intensity, as well as the range of abilities of these developmental disorders vary widely as well.
    Medicinal treatment is believed to be not necessary for the management of the autistic person. However, cognitive and behavioral therapy prove to be most beneficial for all the different types of Passive Development Disorders that unfortunately exist for unknown reasons, yet further research should be done to discover both the etiologies as well as more effective treatment for the Autism Spectrum.
    http://www.autism-society.org
    http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/139183.php
    Dan Abshear

  104. #104 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 24, 2009

    You have also (despite being asked at Bad Astronomy) never presented any real evidence that Tylenol was or is routinely given to babies before vaccination. I’ve never seen it done,>>>

    Actually, I did, you must have missed it. But I’ll post it again, just for you Chris. :)

    “…Ask the doctor if it is OK to give the child a dose of acetaminophen (Tylenol) before or after a shot.”

    “…Note 10: Consider giving acetaminophen before DTaP and every 4 hours thereafter for 24 hours to children who
    have a personal or a family history of convulsions.”

    This is not “routinely giving Tylenol” before vaccination. It is done to prevent febrile reactions in children prone to febrile convulsions. These convulsions are set off by a rapid rise in temperature, and are very frightening to witness (although they are usually harmless). Only a minor proportion of children are prone to this, and they are the target of this advice. Tylenol prevents this temperature rise and is a proven method of preventing this complication.

    As I suggested before, a dose of Tylenol before Hannah Poling was immunized theoretically could have prevented her onset of autism by preventing a febrile reaction. Mind you, the next febrile illness would probably set it off anyway…

  105. #105 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Jen, neither of those references show that it is done all the time and is standard practice which is your claim!. >>>

    Chris, I give up. You asked for evidence that this is common practice, and I have provided that evidence, (from the CDC, no less.) I have stated that I have SEEN this practice, quite frequently in my many years of nursing, (that is what LVN stands for…Licensed Vocational NURSE) as well as given you suggestions on how to find this information yourself. Just because YOU haven’t personally seen this practice, doesn’t mean it is not happening.

  106. #106 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Autism is the most common of these passive developmental disorders.>>>

    Passive developmental disorders? ::scratches head::

  107. #107 Jen
    February 24, 2009

    Tylenol prevents this temperature rise and is a proven method of preventing this complication.>>>

    Show me the evidence.

  108. #108 Vindaloo
    February 24, 2009

    Indy said, “Maybe it has something to do with the one big thing they have in common – their genetics? Noooo, couldn’t possibly be that … that would involve you not blaming someone else.

    The longest, most obtuse route between two points involves a trip through AgeofAutism, Generation Rexu, Yahoo! ABMD and other pits of lemming behavior and scientific illiteracy.

    What we’re being subjected to in this thread is a lesson in inductive reasoning. She’s made up her mind and is now searching to gather evidence to support it. It’s sad, really, watching this desperate straw grasping.

  109. #109 Joshua Zelinsky
    February 24, 2009

    Jud,

    corroboration by multiple scientific disciplines is actually important. Most major scientific theories (the atomic theory, evolution, the Keplerian model of the solar system) are corroborated by many different lines of evidence from different disciplines. This makes us very confident in these theories, much more so than we would be if all the evidence came only from a single area. Moreover, when evidence comes from multiple areas it makes claims of conspiracy or politics taking over much harder to entertain as an explanation for scientific consensus. Claiming that their ideas are backed up by multiple disciplines is one of the sanest things the anti-vaxers can do (aside from the fact that if anything there are multiple disciplines showing they are wrong but that’s a side issue…)

  110. #110 Lynnea Waters
    February 24, 2009

    As a college student, it was a sad, sad day when I walked into my Health class on the first day of classes, and my teacher proudly proclaimed that she had never given her children any vaccinations because she didn’t want them to get autism.

    How a woman can get a Masters Degree in health science and still believe that…I don’t understand how rational and educated people can believe this so wholeheartedly that they would risk the lives of their children.

    She then proceeded to tell us that we should never take more than two Tylenol or we would die. It was a long semester.

  111. #111 Muhammad Saeed al-Sahhaf
    February 25, 2009

    Dr. Wakefield’s research is rigorous, replicated, biologically valid, clinically evidenced, corroborated by published, peer-reviewed research in an abundance of scientific disciplines, and consistent with children’s medical problems.

    There are no American troops in Baghdad!

  112. #112 John C. Welch
    February 25, 2009

    Chris, I give up. You asked for evidence that this is common practice, and I have provided that evidence, (from the CDC, no less.) I have stated that I have SEEN this practice, quite frequently in my many years of nursing, (that is what LVN stands for…Licensed Vocational NURSE) as well as given you suggestions on how to find this information yourself. Just because YOU haven’t personally seen this practice, doesn’t mean it is not happening.

    So, having asked my ex-spouse, who is an RN, (you know, more education and training than an LPN/LVN), and she pretty much categorically disagrees with everything you said, especially the vague attempts at dragging Tylenol into this. A pretty nearly exact quote was:

    “They give babies pretty band-aids with shots, why not blame autism on pretty band-aids? Wait, they often give babies water to drink in the same time-frame as vaccinations, why not blame water? No, wait, I KNOW, it’s breast-feeding. Breast-feeding has been on the rise for some time now…so are infant autism diagnosis. OBVIOUSLY, BREAST-FEEDING Causes da autism. Wait, it’s pacifiers. Babies with autism have pacifiers when the symptoms show up, obviously it’s RUBBER LEACHING INTO THEIR PRECIOUS IMMUNE SYSTEMS…and magic. Don’t forget the magic. Did this woman actually study chemistry or anything with the scientific method for her LVN/LPN, or did she get it in a box of tide?

    And stop sending me this crap, you know the stupid puts me in a bad mood.”

  113. #113 antipodean
    February 25, 2009

    “”Tylenol prevents this temperature rise and is a proven method of preventing this complication.>>>

    Show me the evidence.””

    Jen. We’re not making the claims here. You are. You have to provide the evidence.

    You have failed to establish that it is routine practice to give tylenol in association with vaccination. What you have provided is a link telling us to “…Note 10: Consider giving acetaminophen before DTaP and every 4 hours thereafter for 24 hours to children who
    have a personal or a family history of convulsions.”

    This is not standard practice. It is an optional practice in a very small number of children. Even if this was standard practice it would still have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with your contention that tylenol causes autism.

    You have still failed to give the slightest evidence. This is clearly scare mongering for no good reason.

    Retorting with the Jenny McCarthy gambit (I’m a mother, I just know these things) is not a legitimate rhetorical device either.

  114. #114 trrll
    February 25, 2009

    Doesn’t it seem odd, that a drug used so commonly in conjunction with vaccinations, hasn’t been studied as a possible autism trigger, especially considering the thousands who report that their children regressed after vaccination?

    How about the people who reported that their unvaccinated children “regressed” around the time they would have received their vaccines? When two things are known to happen around the same time whether or not they occur together, correlation in time is meaningless.

    Maybe they’re calling it something else…like SIDS?

    Jen, liver damage is dead easy to detect. Not only are there characteristic symptoms, but damage to the liver spills liver enzymes into the blood. Checking for liver enzymes is a routine blood test. If SIDS were something as simple and obvious as liver damage, it would have been figured out a long time ago.

    Is it just a coincidence that autism rates started spiking right around the time that aspirin was linked to Reye’s Syndrome and everyone was told to use only Tylenol for fever/pain in children? Doesn’t it at least warrant further research? Hmmm?

    Why stop there? If correlation is your sole criterion for what deserves further research, then it’s a long, long list. Is it just a coincidence that autism rates started spiking right around the time that leaded gasoline was banned? Is it just a coincidence that autism rates started spiking around the time serious efforts began to be made to reduce exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke? And on, and on.

  115. #115 Matthew Cline
    February 25, 2009

    Mojo wrote:

    The bit about condemning censorship in the petition is nicely ironic in view of some of the observations of the judge at one stage of the Wakefield v Channel 4/Brian Deer case. See paragraphs 30 to 37:

    I imagine that many of them would respond:

    1) You have to fight fire with fire.

    2) While free speech is important, the health and safety of children is even more important.

  116. #116 Chris
    February 25, 2009

    Jen said “Chris, I give up. You asked for evidence that this is common practice, and I have provided that evidence, (from the CDC, no less.) I have stated that I have SEEN this practice, quite frequently in my many years of nursing, (that is what LVN stands for…Licensed Vocational NURSE) as well as given you suggestions on how to find this information yourself. Just because YOU haven’t personally seen this practice, doesn’t mean it is not happening.”

    Again I say: the plural of anecdote is not data. (do you need a definition of that very old and common saying?)

    So you cannot produce any real evidence that it is common practice. Yes, I have NOT seen it in my personal experience with children the same age as yours — which is anecdotal. That means it requires YOU to produce the evidence that it was standard practice.

    What incentive do I have to go out and find evidence to prove you are correct? Why would I do that? If you have a claim that is so correct, YOU are the person who has a reason to provide that evidence. Yet you fail to do that one simple thing.

    LVN stand for Licensed Vocational Nurse? Oh, so you are the type that is not a Registered nurse, not a full college degree nurse, but the one that comes from a community college vocational program. Kind of like the big difference between an engineer and a technical aide (side note: as an engineer I encountered a barely competent tech aide who told me she/he could have been an engineer, I asked “why be just a tech”, the answer was because he/she did not want to take the hard courses!). Oh, wow… that changes everything. For a while I thought the “V” was for veterinary!

    Still, it if you were trained at a good veterinary university like UC Davis or Texas AandM you might understand the importance of real scientific evidence. Which is perhaps why I was so baffled at your obvious incompetence.

  117. #117 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 25, 2009

    Tylenol prevents this temperature rise and is a proven method of preventing this complication.>>>

    Show me the evidence.

    Geeeeze…

    All right, here we go.
    Febrile convulsions are caused by rising fevers.
    Kids who have febrile convulsions could have such a convulsion if they have a febrile reaction to a vaccine.
    Tylenol is a proven anti-pyretic.
    Giving Tylenol to a kid at the time of vaccination will prevent a febrile reaction.
    By preventing a febrile reaction, a febrile convulsion is avoided.

    All of the above statements are medical facts.
    Put ‘em together and you have your evidence.

    Clear???

  118. #118 Matthew Cline
    February 25, 2009

    All right, here we go.
    Febrile convulsions are caused by rising fevers.
    Kids who have febrile convulsions could have such a convulsion if they have a febrile reaction to a vaccine.
    Tylenol is a proven anti-pyretic.
    Giving Tylenol to a kid at the time of vaccination will prevent a febrile reaction.
    By preventing a febrile reaction, a febrile convulsion is avoided.

    All of the above statements are medical facts.
    Put ‘em together and you have your evidence.

    To play devil’s advocate: how do we know that children who suffer from febrile convulsions have the same reaction to Tylenol as other kids? How do we know that the fevers sometimes caused by vaccines aren’t caused by a different mechanism than by other fevers, thus making Tylenol useless in preventing those fevers? Where’s the double-blind control-grouped studies that shows that Tylenol is effective in reducing the incidence of convulsions among children who suffer from febrile convulsions?

  119. #119 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 25, 2009

    Matthew Cline:
    In answer to your questions: I don’t know for sure.
    Maybe a pediatrician would like to weigh in.
    I’ll just say that Tylenol is effective against febrile reactions of many different types.
    There is no evidence I know of that kids with febrile convulsions react any differently to Tylenol. If there aren’t any double blind control group studies, well, I don’t think they’re necessary for the reasons I gave above. Sometimes you can be pretty sure something’s effective without such testing. However, if you want to do the research, knock yourself out…

  120. #120 Katherine
    February 25, 2009

    Jen,

    I have heard of parents routinely giving Tylenol with vaccinations in the US but it is not the routine to give any additional medications at all with vaccines here in the UK, yet our autism rates are equivalent to the best of my knowledge.

    As for the earlier cited “teaspoon” of paracetamol given, has anyone commenting on this amount looked into the concentration used? Here there is not an “infant” version available and the appropriate dose for a child between 3 and 12 months is 2.5 to 5 ml, or up to 1 teaspoon.

    I would also add that vaccine schedules vary from country to country so that would be expected to have an impact on autism rates if vaccines truly caused autism.

  121. #121 dt
    February 25, 2009

    Jen, I will now demonstrate science in action, and the principle that some of us are open-minded enough to accept the evidence whether it accords with our preconceptions or not. This is the difference between most vaccine proponents and the antivax brigade (who only seek evidence that confirms what they want to hear, since they have already made up their minds).

    Here is a paper about antipyretics in febrile convulsions. It supports your claim that they do not have a significant role in preventing these.
    http://adc.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/88/7/641

    There is no evidence that antipyretics reduce the risk of subsequent febrile convulsions in at risk children. Prescription of paracetamol [acetaminophen]following febrile seizures may provide comfort and symptomatic relief, but should not be recommended to prevent further febrile convulsions.

    I did not actually realise that it was so ineffective, and I would agree with you that it might well be used inappropriately for this reason.

    That does not mean it causes autism however.

  122. #122 John Fryer
    February 25, 2009

    Dr Wakefield and nearly a dozen others did this research. So are we saying that most of the doctors in this teaching hospital are equally guilty?

    Suppose his research is flawed or even wrong. How many other pieces of research are also wrong? Quite a lot.

    Verstraeten and again almost a dozen others produced later research to show vaccines improved our IQ. Was this paper right or wrong? If it is right why did they change the data four times before the publication?

    How do we know they doctored the figures when they never put down that this was their fifth attempt to prove vaccines are good for us? It was found years later by Wakefield and his supporters demanding the truth.

    I believe in this argument that many things are being covered up, obfuscated and yes even lies are part of everyones armoury.

  123. #123 Matthew Cline
    February 25, 2009

    Would that we could get the depth and intensity of commitment displayed by these supporters for those methods of treating autism that do have scientific foundations and actual evidence of effectiveness.

    I’m just guessing, but I think that a lot of it that they want a cure, not treatment, and think “why should money and effort be wasted on researching on treatment when it could be spent on finding a cure”? We’d be much closer to finding a cure if we knew the cause, so anything that says we’ve found the cause will be jumped on.

  124. #124 Donna B.
    February 25, 2009

    dt – thanks! You and many others on this thread have done exactly what I would wish – communicate, educate, and acknowledge ambiguities and apparent contradictions.

    Jen, I hope you will do the same.

    However much the anecdotal may be denigrated, it has the value of asking the question first sometimes. Of course, I am partial to anecdotal evidence because I wonder why closed head injury cases are often treated the same way that drug addiction is. Though treatment options are better than they were ten years ago, drug addiction treatment is lucrative… and other, not so lucrative mental illnesses are treated along side the addicted, not as primary patients.

    Of course there are co-morbidities, and drug addiction may be a sign of an underlying mental illness, yet treating the addiction still does not treat the underlying illness.

    Jen, the bottom line is that nobody knows what causes autism. It’s a wide spectrum as defined today and there may be multiple causes. It does no one good to hang it all on one hook. That merely closes avenues of research. Unfortunately that’s what Wakefield did. By lying, he possibly set science back years, if not decades.

    Are you perhaps expecting too much? Science has not yet found a cure for cancer, and I must ask what makes you think autism is any less complex?

    Jen, you have been fortunate to stumble upon something that helps your children. Give thanks for that, but do not discount the help that other children have found through other means and do not discourage parents from seeking help through other means.

  125. #125 Vindaloo
    February 25, 2009

    John Fryer – chemical moron: All but Wakers and one other author IIRC have recanted the work. Publicly. I’m sure you know this and for some diagnosable reason, you think that plugging your ears and screaming “la la la I can’t hear you” convinces the rest of the world. It just solidifies my opinion of you as an idiot with an internet connection.

    I’m off to teach general chemistry to real students. Perhaps I can get you up to speed by sending you my lesson notes, Mr. Fryer.

  126. #126 trrll
    February 25, 2009

    Verstraeten and again almost a dozen others produced later research to show vaccines improved our IQ. Was this paper right or wrong? If it is right why did they change the data four times before the publication?

    How do we know they doctored the figures when they never put down that this was their fifth attempt to prove vaccines are good for us? It was found years later by Wakefield and his supporters demanding the truth.

    Denialists are so predictable. So now it’s tu quoque, is it? A true sign of desperation. I have no idea whether there is any truth to your implication. Frankly, I don’t care, and I doubt if anybody else does. I suppose that it might be relevant if parents were being urged to vaccinate to improve their kids’ intelligence. But they aren’t.

  127. #127 Joseph
    February 25, 2009

    Verstraeten and again almost a dozen others produced later research to show vaccines improved our IQ. Was this paper right or wrong? If it is right why did they change the data four times before the publication?

    You don’t know what you’re talking about, John Fryer.

    The data was not altered. They simply looked at bigger populations, and controlled for confounds, and this obviously had an impact on the results and ranges of statistical confidence.

    I’ve actually looked at the matter in some detail. I read the two earliest drafts. I wrote about one of the drafts here. I later also looked at what SafeMinds calls the “Generation Zero” pre-draft tables. The confidence intervals are huge here (as n=2 for autism).

    In the end, Verstraeten et al. (2003) did not say that vaccines were not associated with other neurodevelopmental outcomes. It said the results were “neutral,” which means that, at the time, more research was warranted. It could be debated if “neutral” was the right word there. But much more careful research was in fact done. That’s called Thompson et al. (2007). Once this was done, there’s no need to continue to dwell on Verstraeten et al.

    There’s no conspiracy. Get it? Just responsible science.

    For additional info on the “conspiracy” around Verstraeten et al. see Skeptico.

  128. #128 dt
    February 25, 2009

    Dr Wakefield and nearly a dozen others did this research. So are we saying that most of the doctors in this teaching hospital are equally guilty?

    Mr Fryer, as you know, most of the co-authors retracted their support for the work in this paper. Now this was mainly because they had concerns about Wakefield’s use of the data and his extrapolation of findings into a general rant about MMR, and that they had no idea he was compromised by such major financial conflicts of interest when he wrote the paper. I believe it was not because they explicitly had issues with the clinical data within the paper.

    Wakefield is the first author, so is the primary driving force behind the writing of the paper. Co-authors are usually added on to a paper because they contributed to the work in some way – either helped look at cases, or analysed data etc. They would not necessarily scrutinise all the data contributed by others participating in the work carried out. It is quite feasible to imagine Wakefield producing a paper which his coauthors agreed with and were happy to sign up to, without them being aware that (say) it contained innacurate clinical information on the duration of autistic symptoms in some of the cases. Similarly, data on the histology findings would not be scrutinised in depth by everyone on the paper, just those who were histologists, or they could have just relied on histology reports or what Wakefield said was on the reports.

    I suspect the coauthors were happy to “rubber stamp” the draft paper, giving the primary author the benefit of their trust in his integrity and probity, assuming he would write an accurate report reflecting all the true facts. This does not mean the coauthors were also corrupt, just perhaps they were naive and not as vigilant as they should have been.

    Suppose his research is flawed or even wrong. How many other pieces of research are also wrong? Quite a lot.

    Completely irrelevant. We are discussing Wakefield’s fraud here, remember. Let’s say the courts (wrongly) convicted you of murder. Someone points out that the evidence and the judgement is wrong. Would you be happy with the response “So what if we were wrong? How many other convictions are also unsound? Quite a lot” I am sure that attitude would reassure you greatly as you sweat things out on death row.

  129. #129 Wulfstan
    February 25, 2009

    Regarding the authors on the notorious 1998 Lancet paper, Dr Nick Chadwick asked for his name to be withdrawn from the paper prior to publication because of his concerns about the soundness and integrity of the reported data from the biopsies. Chadwick discussed this in his testimony to the Autism Omnibus: it is difficult to express the magnitude of that vote of no confidence.

  130. #130 Joseph C.
    February 25, 2009

    @John C. Welch,

    It sounds like you let a very good woman slip away.

  131. #131 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    I did not actually realise that it was so ineffective, and I would agree with you that it might well be used inappropriately for this reason.

    That does not mean it causes autism however.>>>

    Until someone studies it, we have no way of knowing for certain. Tylenol is known to deplete glutathione, depleted glutathione is linked to oxidative stress as evidenced in the link I provided yesterday, and studies are linking oxidative stress to autism. Just a sampling:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19195803?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19056591?ordinalpos=3&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18433515?ordinalpos=15&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18442411?ordinalpos=16&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

  132. #132 cae
    February 25, 2009

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-f-kennedy-jr-and-david-kirby/vaccine-court-autism-deba_b_169673.html

    I hope this will be commented on. They are trying to make this child out to be the next Hannah Poling.

  133. #133 dmcw
    February 25, 2009

    I don’t have the energy to read the whole of this, so forgive me if I am too late with this post or it is now irrelevant.

    I am amazed that Jen thinks that colonoscopy is therapeutic. I think it is mainly just the filming/imaging of the inside of the colon. Biopsies can be taken and polyps can be excised during colonoscopy, but nothing more than that. Is someone suggesting that these surgical-type procedures will help child mental health?

    I can’t help speculating that the sedatives or anaesthetics given for the procedure may influence child behaviour more than anything else involved. That might also explain the instant effect reported by parents.

  134. #134 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    Is someone suggesting that these surgical-type procedures will help child mental health?>>>

    Well…yes. If there are abnormalities or inflammation in the bowel mucosa found during endoscopy, treating the abnormalities will ease pain and increase nutrient absorption, hence producing improvements in behavior and cognitive function.

  135. #135 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    If there aren’t any double blind control group studies, well, I don’t think they’re necessary for the reasons I gave above. >>>

    I disagree. So do the authors of this study:

    CONCLUSIONS: Administration of acetaminophen along with DTP vaccine or 2 hours after vaccination does not affect the occurrence of febrile responses following booster vaccination. Unnecessary use of analgesics should be prevented.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18661769?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    and this one:

    CONCLUSIONS: We did not find evidence that prophylaxis with acetaminophen or ibuprofen offers a clinically significant benefit in prevention of local reactions to the fifth DTaP vaccination.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16510639?ordinalpos=7&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    Sometimes you can be pretty sure something’s effective without such testing.>>>

    Hmm…that sounds a bit like pseudoscience, or dare I say it…quackery?

  136. #136 Joseph
    February 25, 2009

    @Jen: Yes, sometimes quackery slips through the cracks and can become mainstream.

  137. #137 Joseph C.
    February 25, 2009

    Ban one anti-vaccine cultist and another pops up to replace her. Like whack-a-mole. Jen is the new anti-vax Dawn: Crazy, clueless, and totally oblivious.

  138. #138 Joseph
    February 25, 2009

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-f-kennedy-jr-and-david-kirby/vaccine-court-autism-deba_b_169673.html

    I hope this will be commented on. They are trying to make this child out to be the next Hannah Poling.

    Kathleen would be to go-to person to comment on this. I’d keep an eye on the neurodiversity.com blog. I imagine Orac will want to comment too.

    Apparently, Kirby, GR, RFK Jr. et al. are resorting to outright dishonesty now that the Omnibus was lost.

    First of all, that case was not “recently unsealed.” They make it sound like it was kept secret until now. The verdict was handed down on July, 2007, as you can see in the filed ruling. Kathleen wrote about this case back in March 11, 2008.

    Clearly, they knew about this case, but decided to publicize it now as something new and surprising – a “plan B” if you will.

    They also talk about a “mysterious court” as if this were a separate court to the VICP court, which they’ve previously pinned their hopes on. That’s a change of discourse (or frame) on how they refer to the VICP court.

    In a nutshell, the claimant in the case argues that the MMR vaccine can cause ADEM, which in turn is associated with PDD. Even though there’s no evidence at all that ADEM is associated with PDD or autism (I just searched PubMed), the Special Master finds it compelling that ADEM can be associated with mental handicap in general, and argues that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

    It’s not a slam-dunk association by any means, if you read the decision.

    The VICP has awarded thousands of cases. Whether these can be explained as coincidental events or actual vaccine injury events, is it surprising that some of the claimants happen to be autistic?

  139. #139 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    Joseph C writes: “Ban one anti-vaccine cultist and another pops up to replace her. Like whack-a-mole. Jen is the new anti-vax Dawn: Crazy, clueless, and totally oblivious.”>>>

    Translation: “I have nothing relevant or useful to add to the discussion, so I’ll resort to childish name calling and personal attacks.”

  140. #140 Grant
    February 25, 2009

    Well…yes. If there are abnormalities or inflammation in the bowel mucosa found during endoscopy, treating the abnormalities will ease pain and increase nutrient absorption, hence producing improvements in behavior and cognitive function.

    Well, then what you’re describing doesn’t sound like autism. Rather, you have a behavioral issue of kids in pain who act out, or some sort of nutritional defecit that is affecting behavior.

    Granted, an autisitc child in pain or malnurished may exhibit very neagtive behavior, but isn’t that as likely due to a cognitive inability to express him/herself in another way? And, if these symptoms are aleviated, and behavior imporves, have you really treated the autism? or just the symptoms?

  141. #141 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    And, if these symptoms are aleviated, and behavior imporves, have you really treated the autism? or just the symptoms?>>>

    From the TH link I provided yesterday…

    “While some experience a corresponding improvement in autistic behavior, the question of whether treatment of the bowel disease is correlated with improvement in cognitive function is the subject of current research at Thoughtful House Center for Children. At the very least, it is simply intuitive that a child who feels good will have greater benefit from the myriad of available behavioral interventions than the child who is experiencing flatulence, diarrhea, urgency, and abdominal pain.”

  142. #142 Grant
    February 25, 2009

    Also, regarding the tylenol studies you cited:

    Both studies indicate that there isn’t a good reason to use acetomenaphine as a prophylactic in the administation of a single type of vaccine. They don’t say that the acetomenaphine is detrimental, just that it doesn’t do any good. The first abstract does say “Unnecessary use of analgesics should be prevented.” but the results they report in the abstract don’t support that conclusion. Without reading the whole paper, or understanding whatever concerns Turkish pediactrics has regarding analgesics, it’s hard to understand why this would have been included.

  143. #143 Joseph C.
    February 25, 2009

    @Jen,

    The above is the only sensible response to the nonsense you keep spewing. You’re remarkably similar to Dawn. No matter how badly your crank theories get torn apart, you’ll carry on with them. For example, I’m sure you’ll continue to post your thoroughly ridiculous and discredited hypothesis about Tylenol being linked to SIDS.

  144. #144 Lucas McCarty
    February 25, 2009

    Jen is under the impression that most or even all Autistic children have bowel or gut issues. I didn’t and I don’t. Oh but perhaps I belong to the magic group of Autistics where if you are able to object to harmful rubbish about your condition, then clearly you’re an exception in every way; even if Autistic adults who can talk make up the large majority of diagnosed Autistics(a fact which torpedoes the ‘epidemic’ lie which the vaccine conspiracy rests entirely on).

    Jen, you do not give a flying fuck about the truth, admit it. The condition you and anti-vaxxers describe resembles Childhood Degenerative Disorder or even Landau-Kleffner Syndrome far more than it does Autism. So why pick Autism? Because it’s where the money is, it’s something you can wave a big stick at important people from a shaky moral high-horse. Autism is only picked because it is a gold-mine for quackery: not long ago the statistics were misleading and suggested it was rare. Now awareness and diagnostic methods have improved, something closer to the real numbers are revealed and it’s cultured a sticky, sweet nectar for charlatans to sink their mandibles into. If hysterical, careless parents play along they might get a taste of it too, even if it has devastating consequences for Autistics.

    Yes fuck the others, who cares about stupid adults needing evidence-based protections, services and ethical public policies? It’s only YOUR own Autistic kin that deserve anything and stealing it from the rest is so much faster and easier if you bury science and ethics under PR, innuendo and politics where scientists fear to tread.

  145. #145 Grant
    February 25, 2009

    That TH quote bothers me. It starts off making scientifically and clincally responsible statements, that “some may experience… improvement” and that correlation “is the subject of current research”. But then it jumps on the woo wagon with the phrase “simply intuitive”.

    I submit that it’s “simply intuitive” that a well studied drug used in the treatment of fever and inflamation would be useful in alleviating symptoms asscociated with vaccines.

    I further submit that it is “simply intuitive” that a larger, heavier object would fall at a faster rate, due to its weight.

    We see how far intuition gets us.

  146. #146 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    For example, I’m sure you’ll continue to post your thoroughly ridiculous and discredited hypothesis about Tylenol being linked to SIDS.>>>

    Oh for crying out loud. I don’t really think that Tylenol is linked to SIDS…just pointing out an unusual case where two babies mysteriously died 2 days after vaccination that were possibly given too high a dose of acetaminophen. I don’t have access to the autopsy reports, so I don’t know what really happened, and neither do you. I’m sure if it was due to an acetaminophen overdose, like another poster noted, the liver damage would have been apparent, and the deaths would have been listed as acute liver failure, not SIDS. But again, without having access to the autopsy reports, we have no way of knowing for certain what happened.

  147. #147 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    I submit that it’s “simply intuitive” that a well studied drug used in the treatment of fever and inflamation would be useful in alleviating symptoms asscociated with vaccines.>>>

    Tylenol is not “well studied” in conjunction with vaccination, and it does not have anti-inflammatory properties.

  148. #148 Prometheus
    February 25, 2009

    Jen states:

    Until someone studies it [the safety of giving vaccines and acetaminophen simultaneously] , we have no way of knowing for certain.

    Is there any indication that acetaminophen is causing problems in combination with vaccines? For that matter, why would acetaminophen be “safe” to give for “wild-type” viral and bacterial infections and “not-safe” for attenuated, toned-down or dead viruses and bacteria?

    Maybe we need to research autism in a population that doesn’t use Tylenol. Maybe the Amish?

    For that matter, we have no way of knowing if giving vaccines and lollipops simultaneously (as my paediatrician did back in the Late Cretaceous) is “safe”. What about the combination of Jello and vaccines? Or Kool-Aid? I’m sure that those colors aren’t “natural” – they have to be bad for you, don’t they?

    If there were any indication that the combination of acetaminophen and vaccines were “bad”, I’d be right there agitating for a study, but there isn’t any indication. Simply saying that one thing (autism) happens after another – especially something as ubiquitous as vaccines and acetaminophen – isn’t even an association. You could just as easily argue that autism is caused by the combination of vaccines and disposable nappies.


    Tylenol is known to deplete glutathione, depleted glutathione is linked to oxidative stress as evidenced in the link I provided yesterday, and studies are linking oxidative stress to autism. Just a sampling:

    If Jen’s Google PhD had included some coursework in physiology, she would have noticed that acetaminophen depletes glutathione in the liver, the organ that metabolises it. Glucuronidation of acetaminophen, the secondary metabolic pathway for acetaminophen (sulfation being primary), creates a toxic intermediate (N-acetyl-p-benzoquinoneimine – NAPQI) which requires glutathione to “neutralise” it.

    Since the brain – the organ generally thought to be affected in autism – doesn’t do this, acetaminophen cannot deplete brain glutathione. And, before Jen makes another error, glutathione is made in the cells where it is used – circulating (blood) glutathione has “leaked” out of cells.

    You’ll also notice that even people who have taken hepatotoxic overdoses of acetaminophen show no brain-related symptoms (until their liver failure causes a build-up of “toxins”). They are often blissfully unaware of their plight for days to weeks. So, acetaminophen-related glutathione depletion can’t be “blamed” for autism.

    Of course, you have to know a bit about biology to realise that.

    That brings me to an oft-repeated theme of mine:

    Being able to read the words in a scientific paper (or, as Jen has done, the abstract of a scientific paper) is not enough to be able to understand what it says. For that, you need to put in the time and effort to actually learn the material.

    A Google PhD isn’t enough.

    Prometheus

  149. #149 notmercury
    February 25, 2009

    Jen Says: “Tylenol is not “well studied” in conjunction with vaccination, and it does not have anti-inflammatory properties.”

    I was able to find a few examples of the anti-inflammatory properties of paracetamol, can you? Did you try?

  150. #150 dt
    February 25, 2009

    Jen, the point was that an antipyretic (such as acetaminophen or an NSAID) could “intuitively” be assumed to help prevent febrile seizures because it lowers body temperature. Yet as we now know, it does not do this. So “intuitive” thinking can be wrong. So it is just as wrong to accept Wakefield’s assertions of something being “intuitively right”. He could also be wrong, and in fact the evidence seen regarding most of his work suggests that he is wrong.

    Prometheus, thanks +++ for your explanation about acetaminophen and glutathione depletion in the liver and brain. I knew this, but in the confusion of the posts above it had slipped my mind until you so elegantly reminded me of it. Slam dunk, I think.

  151. #151 Grant
    February 25, 2009

    Tylenol is not “well studied” in conjunction with vaccination, and it does not have anti-inflammatory properties.

    Way to miss the point, Jen.

  152. #152 Grant
    February 25, 2009

    Not that it will make a difference, but I should concede the point that acetamenaphine is not an anti-inflamatory. That was me misremembering. It is, however, a fever reducer. So, I still submit that its use in conjuntion with the typical fever seen post vaccination is an intuituve leap that seems reasonable, but is ultimately not supported by the science.

  153. #153 Phoenix Woman
    February 25, 2009

    This is just more evidence that this is a cult we’re dealing with. And not a particularly smart cult. They should be throwing Wakefield under the bus now that he has been so thoroughly discredited.

    That would require admitting that they were wrong.

    It also would require admitting that autism can’t be ‘cured’ — not by enemas or chelation therapy or anything else. It can, however, be managed, and often managed quite well (see, for instance, Dr. Temple Grandin). But pumping your kid full of harsh chemicals intended to treat cancers in the name of cleansing his/her system of autism is not only useless, it’s actively harmful to the child — in fact, one child has died from it. (Oh, and too-frequent enemas keep your body from extracting the full nutritional benefit from your food, and can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance, which in turn can trigger things like heart attacks — that’s what killed Terri Schiavo, by the way. She had a heart attack brought on electrolyte imbalance that was in turn caused by her binge/purge eating/vomiting habits.)

  154. #154 Phoenix Woman
    February 25, 2009

    Oh, and Jen/notmercury:

    Wonder why the average lifespan of an American circa 1900 was only 49 years? It wasn’t so much that most adults never made it to 50 — it’s that so many children died before they could reach adulthood. (The main reason your great-great-grandparents’ families had ten to twenty kids each was because they knew they’d probably lose at least two of those kids to various diseases — diseases that we are now safe from because we, and our parents and grandparents, were vaccinated as children.)

  155. #155 antipodean
    February 25, 2009

    Oh good. We’re all still in agreement then.

    There is still absolutely no evidence that tylenol causes autism.

    Jen said “Until someone studies it, we have no way of knowing for certain. Tylenol is known to deplete glutathione, depleted glutathione is linked to oxidative stress as evidenced in the link I provided yesterday, and studies are linking oxidative stress to autism.”

    This is not an arguement since everything in biology is linked to something else. Oxidative stress, for goodness sake!

    The logical equivalent is this: My washing line is linked to and pulls on the wall of my house. Walls hold the ceiling up and therefore washing lines cause houses to collapse.

    Jen. No evidence you have provided has, in even the most tangential way, supported the idea that tylenol causes autism. None of it.

  156. #156 AnthonyK
    February 25, 2009

    A mother’s kiss is present from birth, and is particularly strongly associated with vaccination. Anecdotal evidence suggests that 100% of autistic children have been thus infected by their mother’s saliva.
    It contains a mix of organic compounds {some of which have been shown to be bio-toxic) viruses, and complex enzymes capable of breaking down human flesh. It has infectant and anti-bacterial properties, and is an ideal vector for spreading infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, herpes, and measles, among many others. So potent and so dangerous is this “natural” substance that individuals have been convicted of attempted murder for expectorating even a modest amount of this known bio-hazard – yet still “conventional medicine” refuses to acknowledge, or even investigate, any connection between this known pathogen and a wide range of childhood disorders including autism.
    I demand that doctors investigate, at great expense, the obvious child-disabling properties of mother’s kisses. Or are you all in the pay of Big Toothpaste?

  157. #157 John C. Welch
    February 25, 2009

    Oh for crying out loud. I don’t really think that Tylenol is linked to SIDS…just pointing out an unusual case where two babies mysteriously died 2 days after vaccination that were possibly given too high a dose of acetaminophen. I don’t have access to the autopsy reports, so I don’t know what really happened, and neither do you. I’m sure if it was due to an acetaminophen overdose, like another poster noted, the liver damage would have been apparent, and the deaths would have been listed as acute liver failure, not SIDS. But again, without having access to the autopsy reports, we have no way of knowing for certain what happened.

    Oh for fuck’s sake. They were also most likely wearing diapers. Diapers may have been a contributing factor. ALong with cribs, gravity, normal atmospheric pressure, the gravitational constant…..

    Obviously, since all Autisic kids live with a constant gravity, it is gravity that causes autism. My science: All kids on the planet earth have to live with gravity. All autistic kids are included in “all kids”. Therefore, all autistic kids have to live with gravity. Therefore, gravity clearly causes Autism.

    DAMN YOU GRAVITY! DAMN YOU STRAIGHT TO THE DEPTHS OF BEELZEBUB’S BURNING BOWELS!

  158. #158 dt
    February 25, 2009

    We demand the right of children to choose father’s kiss rather than mother’s kiss, despite the logical disconnect in differentiating between them as etiological agents of kissopathology.

    We support all scientists, including Dr. Andrew Kissychops, in the freedom to conduct medical research into the biological mechanisms for kiss-related immune and brain dysfunction, including autism, without being attacked personally and professionally by the smooching industry, government, and organized medicine, even if this includes doing unpleasant, unnecessary things to our children like snipping out bits of their brains and then sending them to some bloke in a garden shed for analysis with a magnifying glass and a cracked petri dish.

    We support scientific discovery, freedom to investigate, and freedom to speak about kiss pathology.

    We renounce the global industrial complex kissing lobby groups and the London Sunday Times trying to intimidate doctors like Dr Kissychops, thereby preventing objective medical assessment of kissed children everywhere.

    We condemn the censorship of the science of kissopathology. There are more than enough facts and evidence to support the case of kiss injury (or so Kissychops says), but the politicization of these issues has made it impossible to publish important and valid science. The debate is rigged in favor of BigSmooch and the illuminati-funded lizard men.

    We also demand that billions more taxpayers dollars are spent investigating the links between kissopathology and nocturnal farting, and insist that a major new “no kissing, not ever” trial be conducted just in case it might show something that the previous 79 trials failed to show.

    We insist that the Government, the WHO, the UN, Mugabe’s ZANU(PF) party and the Women’s Institute immediately remove all lethal, poisonous and radioactive dihydrogen monoxide from saliva, particularly since the molecules in it might at some point have been in contact with monkey viruses and aborted fetuses.

    We demand you sign our petition now before it is too late, and remember… Always think of the children!

  159. #159 AnthonyK
    February 25, 2009

    Father’s kisses have been known to cause gayness in almost 100% of gay adults.
    Mothers have no known link with any phycho-sexual disorder.
    Reject the false prophets of “Dadskissism”!.
    They are agents for the sinister Oral B Empire and his white-toothed operatives.

  160. #160 Prometheus
    February 25, 2009

    Jen just keeps on coming up with them:


    Tylenol is not “well studied” in conjunction with vaccination, and it does not have anti-inflammatory properties.

    As I mentioned above, there are lots of things that are “not well studied” in conjunction with vaccines – acetaminophen is just one of them. BTW, has anyone looked at the possible risks of giving vaccines in conjunction with organic apple juice? Until it’s been studied, we’ll never know if it’s safe!!!

    As for acetaminophen’s anti-inflammatory action, recent research has confirmed that it is a relatively selective COX-2 inhibitor in humans (Hinz et al 2008) with an IC50 of 26 micromol/L for COX-2 and 114 micromol/L for COX-1. That said, it does not have clinically significant peripheral anti-inflammatory effect, for a variety of reasons (see: Anderson, 2008).

    The antipyretic (fever-fighting) and analgesic (pain-relieving) effects of acetaminophen, however, are clinically significant, which is why it is so widely used. In fact, its lack of significant peripheral anti-inflammatory effects account for its good safety record (apart from massive overdosage).

    Again, Jen is just reading the abstracts and trying to find something that seems like it supports her pre-ordained conclusion.

    I’m not trying to say that people with no education or training in the sciences can’t learn about the aspects of biology that interest them, just that those people have to be very cautious about thinking that they’ve found something that “the scientists” have overlooked or are “ignoring”.

    All too often, there is more to the story than the casual reader of the scientific literature is aware of.

    Prometheus

  161. #161 AnthonyK
    February 25, 2009

    Is it just me, particularly snarky bastard that I am, or does ridicule do more than anything else to shut those anti-vax fuckwits up?
    Well no, it’s the dedication of people like Orac – real medicine for real people – which does it, but still…;)

  162. #162 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    Is it just me, particularly snarky bastard that I am, or does ridicule do more than anything else to shut those anti-vax fuckwits up?>>>

    Indeed, some of us prefer to leave the childish name calling and insults on the kindergarten playground where they belong.

    Sure doesn’t do much to help your credibility, though.

    I’m sure you’ll go far in convincing parents to vaccinate their kids if you just throw the word FUCKWIT at them! ::eye roll::

    So, on that note, I’ll leave you to your regularly scheduled programming.

  163. #163 Lucas McCarty
    February 25, 2009

    Jen, you’re still missing the point: you can’t reason someone out of a position they didn’t reason themselves into. If parents choose deliberately not to vaccinate, in all likelihood they’ve already abandoned the level of reason it would otherwise take to convince them to do so.

    It’s descended to insults because anti-science idiots are wilfully ignorant and oblivious to the harm they do and the enemies they make. They substitute their real enemies for ridiculous grand conspiracies and faceless organisations when they already have plentiful opposition from the people they do wrong, who are actually genuine and tangible.

  164. #164 AnthonyK
    February 25, 2009

    No Jen – it’s not the parents, it’s people like you – indeed specifically you – who are fuckwits.
    Pro-disease moron.

  165. #165 Bill H
    February 25, 2009

    Oh Jen, you’re still around? I’ve been waiting for you to respond to Prometheus’ comment. You know, the one about how the biology of acetaminophen metabolism renders your hypothesis implausible? Or are you just going to complain that we’re calling you names and storm off in a huff?

  166. #166 Uncle Dave
    February 25, 2009

    Prometheus said;

    “I’m not trying to say that people with no education or training in the sciences can’t learn about the aspects of biology that interest them, just that those people have to be very cautious about thinking that they’ve found something that “the scientists” have overlooked or are “ignoring”.”

    Good point.

  167. #167 Phoenix Woman
    February 25, 2009

    “Is it just me, particularly snarky bastard that I am, or does ridicule do more than anything else to shut those anti-vax fuckwits up?”

    Alas, no. Instead, Jen uses the ridicule she seems to invite as an excuse to blow off responding to things like Prometheus’ takedown of her acetaminophen postulate.

  168. #168 John C. Welch
    February 25, 2009

    The reason Jen runs from the truly snarky is that she knows they will call her on her bullshit, *call* it bullshit, and not let her move the goalposts and pretend like it’s not bullshit anymore.

    People like her do not do well against the truly snarky, because she cannot bullshit them into taking her bullshit as anything but bullshit.

  169. #169 Jen
    February 25, 2009

    You’ll also notice that even people who have taken hepatotoxic overdoses of acetaminophen show no brain-related symptoms (until their liver failure causes a build-up of “toxins”). They are often blissfully unaware of their plight for days to weeks. So, acetaminophen-related glutathione depletion can’t be “blamed” for autism. >>>

    All you’re doing is explaining how acetaminophen overdoses induce liver failure. I already knew that. You are not addressing how frequent, smaller, and therapeutic doses in utero and in early childhood affect glutathione levels. Is it really such a stretch to imagine that Tylenol could be depleting glutathione to a lesser degree…one that does not end in liver failure, but just enough to cause a bit of stress to other areas of the body, such as the small bowel and the lungs, where glutathione is also highly concentrated?

    I’ve already linked to several studies that suggest a possible link to prenatal acetaminophen use and asthma. If not glutathione depletion, what other possible mechanism could be linking the two?

  170. #170 antipodean
    February 25, 2009

    Jen said “I’ve already linked to several studies that suggest a possible link to prenatal acetaminophen use and asthma. If not glutathione depletion, what other possible mechanism could be linking the two? ”

    Jen. You have had this explained to you nmany times on this page alone. But just in case somebody out there is reading this and is wondering.

    Firstly, there is no link between tylenol and autism. Secondly, there is no link between tylenol and autism.
    Thirdy, asthma is not autism.

    What links tylenol and asthma is not in the slightest bit relevant to your continued and utterly unjustified and evidence-free assertion that tylenol causes autism. You wil not be permitted to shift the goal here.

  171. #171 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    Jen, why don’t you just admit that you lack both the education and the intelligence to understand science? Ever heard of the difference between correlation and causality? Do you realise how much time and money it would cost to investigate every ‘hunch’ proposed by some lay person? People like you are helping to spread harmful viruses that sane parents want to keep away from their children.

  172. #172 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    Jen, why don’t you just admit that you lack both the education and the intelligence to understand science?>>>

    Why don’t YOU just address the questions I posed, instead of resorting to personal attacks on my intelligence?

    People like you are helping to spread harmful viruses that sane parents want to keep away from their children.>>>

    How does discouraging the use of Tylenol help to spread harmful viruses? Please, enlighten me.

  173. #173 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    Why don’t YOU just address the questions I posed, instead of resorting to personal attacks on my intelligence?

    Because one fool can ask more questions than can be answered by a thousand wise men. Besides, if you could read you would have seen that your questions have been answered already in overgenerous detail by several other posters.

    How does discouraging the use of Tylenol help to spread harmful viruses? Please, enlighten me.

    In an earlier post you wrote:

    Whether vaccines are the cause of autism or not (and frankly, I don’t think they are, I think it’s more likely the Tylenol that is administered in conjunction with them, and the resulting glutathione depletion that is causing autism)is quite frankly, beside the point.

    Are you not suggesting here that the vaccination procedures are suspect? Are you not fear mongering? Yes, I see, you think this, you think that. Please stop dabbling in biochemistry, it is way above your head.

  174. #174 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    Besides, if you could read you would have seen that your questions have been answered already in overgenerous detail by several other posters.>>>

    If someone addressed glutathione levels wrt therapeutic doses of acetaminophen, I must have missed it wading through all the personal attacks.

    Are you not suggesting here that the vaccination procedures are suspect?>>>

    Well, yes, I suppose I am. I think if you remove Tylenol from the equation, though, autism’s “link” to vaccination would probably disappear. But unless someone compares rates of autism between those children who receive tylenol in conjunction with vaccines and those who don’t, we won’t know for certain. Oh, wait…someone did that already…(yes, I am aware of the limitations of this small study)

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18445737?ordinalpos=3&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

    The present study was performed to determine whether acetaminophen (paracetamol) use after the measles-mumps-rubella vaccination could be associated with autistic disorder. This case-control study used the results of an online parental survey conducted from 16 July 2005 to 30 January 2006, consisting of 83 children with autistic disorder and 80 control children. Acetaminophen use after measles-mumps-rubella vaccination was significantly associated with autistic disorder when considering children 5 years of age or less (OR 6.11, 95% CI 1.42-26.3), after limiting cases to children with regression in development (OR 3.97, 95% CI 1.11-14.3), and when considering only children who had post-vaccination sequelae (OR 8.23, 95% CI 1.56-43.3), adjusting for age, gender, mother’s ethnicity, and the presence of illness concurrent with measles-mumps-rubella vaccination. Ibuprofen use after measles-mumps-rubella vaccination was not associated with autistic disorder. This preliminary study found that acetaminophen use after measles-mumps-rubella vaccination was associated with autistic disorder.

    Apparently, I’m not the only one who suspects that Tylenol may be causing problems in conjunction with vaccines, but then Dr. Schultz is probably “scientifically illiterate” for posing the hypothesis, too, right? Because, you know, anyone who DARES question the sacred cow known as the US vaccination schedule is nothing more than a blithering moron.

  175. #175 Antaeus Feldspar
    February 26, 2009

    “Because, you know, anyone who DARES question the sacred cow known as the US vaccination schedule is nothing more than a blithering moron.”

    That depends on what you mean by “question”, doesn’t it? There are people who ask questions because they want to know what the right answer is. Then there’s people who ask questions, and if they don’t get the answer they want, accuse the people who answered of being corrupt or stupid and keep asking the same question over and over.

    Someone from the first group who asked “Does the current US vaccination schedule really provide the best protection for the nation’s children?” would almost certainly have their question answered respectfully. However, you yourself will probably never know, because you are clearly in the second group; you do not ask questions to find out those things you don’t know, but rather to try and browbeat people into thinking you are the one who knows the answers.

    Unfortunately, the more that people such as you reveal what they believe to be “the answers”, and reveal just how much they put the cart of “making everyone else say I’m correct” before the horse of “actually being correct”, the more they really do look like blithering morons.

  176. #176 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    There are people who ask questions because they want to know what the right answer is.>>>

    Right. And so far, unless I missed it, no one has answered the question of how therapeutic doses of acetaminophen affect glutathione levels. I got an explanation of how OVERDOSES of acetaminophen overwhelm glutathione stores and induce liver failure, but I already knew that.

    I would LOVE to be proven wrong, so I can quit beating myself up for giving Tylenol to my kids and taking it for frequent headaches and back pain during my pregnancies. And I wouldn’t be pushing this so hard if I didn’t witness severe behavioral regressions in my older son after ingesting acetaminophen, an association that I am only recently realizing.

  177. #177 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    Are you not suggesting here that the vaccination procedures are suspect?>>>
    Well, yes, I suppose I am.

    Jen, now that you are enlightened, you could perhaps also use Google to see that the study you cite was conducted in the worst possible manner. Unfortunately, the term ‘statistically significant’ has a strictly technical meaning, which does not address the circumstance that the data used in the study may be garbage. But it is perhaps asking too much of you to understand both biochemistry and statistics. I admit that even medical researchers may have problems with these topics, as that study shows.

  178. #178 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    But it is perhaps asking too much of you to understand both biochemistry and statistics. I admit that even medical researchers may have problems with these topics, as that study shows.>>>

    I already mentioned that I am aware of this study’s limitations. This is a PRELIMINARY study, if you will note the conclusions. This does not in any way PROVE an association. I KNOW that. The authors of the study KNOW that. Obviously, much more research will have to be done in order to conclusively PROVE a causal association.

  179. #179 notmercury
    February 26, 2009

    Jen Said: “Well, yes, I suppose I am. I think if you remove Tylenol from the equation, though, autism’s “link” to vaccination would probably disappear.”

    Um, no. I doubt it. Hey, as long as we are sharing personal anecdotes, I have two kids who apparently regressed around the recommended vaccination age. One was fully vaccinated, the other not at all. Neither had Tylenol.

    “I would LOVE to be proven wrong, so I can quit beating myself up for giving Tylenol to my kids and taking it for frequent headaches and back pain during my pregnancies.”

    Your hypothesis, your responsibility to try to prove yourself wrong. I don’t think you are trying hard enough.

  180. #180 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    I have good news for you, Jen, you can stop blaming yourself. There is no proof whatsoever that Thylenol or acetaminophen or paracetamol, or whatever you call, it causes autism. Unfortunately, your faulty education shows itself once more, since you ask for a proof of a negative. It is impossible to proof that something is NOT the cause of autism. I can not proof that eating tuna sandwiches does not cause autism. Such questions are meaningless, please try to grasp that. And, once again, stop blaming yourself and stop wasting your time on a silly crusade, you are not doing anyone any good in this way, least of all our children.

  181. #181 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    That should have been ‘call it,’, sorry.

  182. #182 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    I already mentioned that I am aware of this study’s limitations. This is a PRELIMINARY study, if you will note the conclusions. This does not in any way PROVE an association. I KNOW that. The authors of the study KNOW that. Obviously, much more research will have to be done in order to conclusively PROVE a causal association.

    Just my point: this study is garbage and should never have been published.

    By the way, the third ‘proof’ in my previous post should of course have been ‘prove’. See, I must be getting really tired of this discussion.

    I just do it for the children out there…

  183. #183 Joseph
    February 26, 2009

    The present study was performed to determine whether acetaminophen (paracetamol) use after the measles-mumps-rubella vaccination could be associated with autistic disorder.

    I’ve read a critique of that study, actually. You’ll note the confidence intervals are humongous. That points to problems in the group sizes, and suggests the difference could be explained by confounds.

    But there’s a much much more important problem with this survey. The author, Dr. Schultz, recruited the case group from one of the well known biomed or anti-vax mailling lists. Not only that, he made it sound like he was on some kind of crusade to prove his hypothesis, and urged people to join him. Further, the control group was made up of friends of the cases. I can get you more information if you need it.

  184. #184 AnthonyK
    February 26, 2009

    I would LOVE to be proven wrong

    If reality won’t do, you are going to be permanently unhappy.

    so I can quit beating myself up for giving Tylenol to my kids and taking it for frequent headaches and back pain during my pregnancies

    For fuck’s sake, you stupid woman, it’s not your fault if there’s anything “wrong” with your children. So the whole of the medical world has to suffer, and unvaccinated children are to die because of your misplaced guilt?
    If you’d been an alcoholic, and your children had been born with foetal alcohol syndrome – that would be your fault. Or if you’d allowed your children to witness horrible domestic violence, or been uncaring or neglectful – then you would have to live with the guilt, justifiably, your whole life. But you haven’t (I assume)
    What you do do is to constantly invent new things which you consider might have damaged your kids and then to transfer your blame to everyone else.

    The pity is that in that all this you spend so much time pointlessly posting your paranoid views on sites like this, and inviting people like me to insult you and your ridiculous views, to no end whatsoever.
    Why don’t you get away from the computer, kiss and cuddle your kids, take them out into nature….love them.
    I guarantee you that, if asked, this is exactly what your want – and right now.
    It really is not your fault.
    Please stop coming here with your ridiculous posts.
    I’m sure in many ways you are a lovely person and a wonderful mother.
    But get off the computer and go and kiss your kids. Now. That works in every way, in every universe, and with any god, or even none!

  185. #185 Stu
    February 26, 2009

    And so far, unless I missed it, no one has answered the question of how therapeutic doses of acetaminophen affect glutathione levels.

    Liar, liar, liar. You should be ashamed of yourself. You are aware people can scroll up, right?

  186. #186 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    But there’s a much much more important problem with this survey. The author, Dr. Schultz, recruited the case group from one of the well known biomed or anti-vax mailling lists. Not only that, he made it sound like he was on some kind of crusade to prove his hypothesis, and urged people to join him. Further, the control group was made up of friends of the cases. I can get you more information if you need it.>>>

    Nope, that won’t be necessary. I’ve already read the critiques, and agree that there are problems with the study for the reasons you mentioned. I acknowledged this when I posted it. (See above)

    I, like you, will need to see more research carried out in order to answer the question one way or the other. And since there is such a paucity of data wrt to acetaminophen and autism, the question is very much open for debate. In the meantime, since Tylenol is a useless drug that cures nothing, I will continue to avoid it like the plague.

    YMMV, of course.

  187. #187 HolfordWatch
    February 26, 2009

    Joseph, that sounds interesting. May I put my hand up for more information – please?

    It sounds very like what Yazbak did with one of his ‘vaccination causes the ills of the world’ surveys that he recruited from particular mailing lists of vaccine and parent groups.

  188. #188 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    Um, no. I doubt it. Hey, as long as we are sharing personal anecdotes, I have two kids who apparently regressed around the recommended vaccination age. One was fully vaccinated, the other not at all. Neither had Tylenol. >>>

    Well, without knowing your medical history, including use of any medications during pregnancy and while nursing, it wouldn’t be fair to tell you what did or didn’t cause your children’s autism. FWIW, my younger child was never given acetaminophen either(at least not directly) until after he was showing signs of autism, and it was only one time, when he was 22 months, when he was ill with a fever that was causing him to become dehydrated. However, I used acetaminophen regularly during the last trimester of my pregnancy with him, and I also took Tylox (which contains acetaminophen) for post cesarean pain, which is why I am very interested in the studies wrt to acetaminophen and asthma, since he also had wheezing episodes as a baby and toddler, in addition to the autism, that he seems to have outgrown with age.

    At any rate, I am not saying that autism is caused solely by acetaminophen, only that it could possibly be a major contributing factor. That would be like saying there is only one cause of cancer. Nothing is that simplistic, and there are certainly other factors, including genetics to factor in as well.

  189. #189 notmercury
    February 26, 2009

    Jen Said: “Well, without knowing your medical history, including use of any medications during pregnancy and while nursing, it wouldn’t be fair to tell you what did or didn’t cause your children’s autism.”

    Even if you had this information, your insight would be unwelcome and meaningless. Thanks anyway.

    fwiw: I never used meds while nursing or pregnant.

  190. #190 Prometheus
    February 26, 2009

    Jen asks:

    “You are not addressing how frequent, smaller, and therapeutic doses in utero and in early childhood affect glutathione levels.”

    Actually, Jen, I did address just that. Let me quote from my own comment:

    “…acetaminophen depletes glutathione in the liver, the organ that metabolises it.”

    “Since the brain – the organ generally thought to be affected in autism – doesn’t do this, acetaminophen cannot deplete brain glutathione.”

    “…glutathione is made in the cells where it is used – circulating (blood) glutathione has “leaked” out of cells.”

    Let me be more clear, though, since I apparently wasn’t able to convey my meaning:

    [1] Glutathione is made by each cell in the body.

    [2] Each cell makes its own glutathione – they do not (in fact, cannot, because of the concentration gradient) absorb glutathione from the blood or plasma.

    [3] Circulating (blood or plasma) glutathione is glutathione that has “leaked” out of cells. It is at a much lower concentration in the blood/plasma than it is in the cells.

    [4] Acetaminophen (paracetamol) can deplete liver cell glutathione because the liver uses glutathione in one of the pathways that metabolise acetaminophen.

    [5] Other tissues in the body either don’t metabolise acetaminophen at all (e.g. neurons) or metabolise only a trivial amount of acetaminophen – this does not lead to depletion of their cellular glutathione.

    [6] To reiterate – brain tissues do not metabolise acetaminophen to any appreciable degree, so acetaminophen cannot deplete their cellular glutathione. In fact, even overdoses of acetaminophen deplete the glutathione of only one organ – the liver.

    There, that should be clear enough. If Jen comes back asking if small, therapeutic amounts of acetaminophen received in utero and in early childhood can deplete cellular glutathione and cause autism, we will know that she is incapable of assimilating new information.

    I’m sorry if I seem arrogant or condescending, but the “acetaminophen causes autism by depleting glutathione and causing oxidative stress” hypothesis falls apart as soon as you know a bit about the physiology of glutathione and the metabolism of acetaminophen.

    Prometheus

  191. #191 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    To reiterate – brain tissues do not metabolise acetaminophen to any appreciable degree, so acetaminophen cannot deplete their cellular glutathione. In fact, even overdoses of acetaminophen deplete the glutathione of only one organ – the liver.>>>

    Thanks for the explanation, and no, I don’t think you’re being condescending or arrogant.

    My question is…if the liver is exerting a good deal of energy metabolizing frequent doses of acetaminophen, do glutathione levels in the liver immediately return to normal? If not, is it possible that it may have difficulty processing other things that need detoxifying? I seem to remember reading about sulfation deficits causing problems with phenol processing, and in my son’s case, I did notice that his ears would turn very red at times, and my “googling” (since his pediatrician didn’t seem to know what would be causing it)came across some reading wrt sulfation deficits being caused by acetaminophen. After the offending foods were removed, the red ears went away. Would you care to expand on this?

  192. #192 Wulfstan
    February 26, 2009

    Am I the only one reading Jen’s refrain of tylenol and red ears and having deja vu about Cynthia Janak and her ‘gut feelings’?

    Now, as I said earlier I am not a research scientist and I can only base my opinion on what I know but I found something of great importance that further proves the causative factor of the infusion of L-Histidine in this vaccine…

    I am begging the FDA, CDC and Merck to please please look at my findings. I am not a research scientist but I was the one to have to put the pieces of this epidemic together for you. Check out the dates of the studies that I have referenced. This information was available pre-licensure of Gardasil. Find out who was asleep at the switch to let all these findings be ignored.

  193. #193 Joseph
    February 26, 2009

    @HalfordWatch: The formal response to Schultz et al. is Cox & McDowell (2009). There’s a response from Schultz, but it doesn’t actually address the main issues of selection bias and likely recall bias.

    This was Dr. Schultz’ announcement in the Schafer Autism Report:

    If you are the parent of a child with autism, I would greatly appreciate it if you would participate in my survey! I am Dr. Stephen Schultz and I also have a child with autism. Please visit the website I have set up on the UCSD server at http://autismsurvey.ucsd.edu to take the survey and for more information. After taking the survey, it is vital to have a friend take the “survey for a friend” on the same website-their answers will provide the comparison required for data analysis. If you know another parent who has a child with autism, please ask them to participate as well. Together we can make a difference!”

    (source)

  194. #194 Jud
    February 26, 2009

    jen writes: However, I used acetaminophen regularly during the last trimester of my pregnancy with him

    Mouse embryos apparently did not experience glutathione depletion in utero as a consequence of acetaminophen administered to the mother, http://toxsci.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/56/1/150 .

  195. #195 Bill H
    February 26, 2009

    @Jen

    The problem with phenol sulfation you’re referring to (your son’s red ears) seems to have something to do with the enzyme phenol sulfotransferase. That enzyme uses PAPS as a substrate to transfer a sulfate group to targets.

    Detoxification of the toxic metabolite of acetaminophen is accomplished by glutathione, a completely different system. (I included the wikipedia links for the structures of the molecules. Actually knowing what molecules look like has always helped me think about them).

    Since acetaminophen (more specifically NAPQI) isn’t metabolized by the sulfotransferase/PAPS system, acetaminophen overdose won’t cause this type of sulfation deficit. As far as frequent doses of acetamiophen go, there’s a lot of glutathione in the liver. I don’t think you’d see appreciable glutathione depletion unless overdose levels are reached.

  196. #196 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    Jen, you are not only a moron, but also a dishonest one. First you write:

    But unless someone compares rates of autism between those children who receive tylenol in conjunction with vaccines and those who don’t, we won’t know for certain. Oh, wait…someone did that already…(yes, I am aware of the limitations of this small study)

    Now, having been pointed out that the study you mention is not just small and limited but actually biased and thus worthless, you have the audacity to say:

    I’ve already read the critiques, and agree that there are problems with the study for the reasons you mentioned. I acknowledged this when I posted it.

    It is useless wasting my time arguing with you. Are you sure you don’t have an autistic personality disorder yourself? That would explain a lot.

  197. #197 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    jen writes: However, I used acetaminophen regularly during the last trimester of my pregnancy with him

    Mouse embryos apparently did not experience glutathione depletion in utero as a consequence of acetaminophen administered to the mother, http://toxsci.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/56/1/150 .

    Thanks for the info, but I believe that there’s a slight difference between an embryo and a fetus, right? The articles referencing acetaminophen and asthma do not note an association with asthma in early pregnancy, only late pregnancy, which makes sense, since that is when lung maturation accelerates.

  198. #198 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    It is useless wasting my time arguing with you.

    So don’t do it. Problem solved. ;)

  199. #199 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    As far as frequent doses of acetamiophen go, there’s a lot of glutathione in the liver. I don’t think you’d see appreciable glutathione depletion unless overdose levels are reached.>>>>

    I don’t want to know what you THINK. I want facts, please. I want to know why my child suddenly has multiple food intolerances, to the point that he cannot tolerate any kind of nutrition with the exception of the elemental formula and water. I want to know why his self injurious and aggressive episodes seem to correspond with the ingestion of Tylenol.

  200. #200 Alyric
    February 26, 2009

    So Jen is an anti-vax loon? How does this excuse the stupid name calling. Either you criticise what she writes – not hard or you don’t. The name calling remains stupid.

  201. #201 Drosera
    February 26, 2009

    So Jen is an anti-vax loon? How does this excuse the stupid name calling. Either you criticise what she writes – not hard or you don’t. The name calling remains stupid.

    Alyric, do you have any idea what is at stake? Anti-vax loons are not harmless idiots. If there are a sufficient number of them they will make it impossible to eradicate several dangerous viruses and may contribute to a pandemic of some mutated virus strain, potentially causing millions of deaths. Since they are oblivious to any form of scientific argument, as Jen here abundantly demonstrates, name calling seems to be the only way to penetrate their scull.

  202. #202 Rogue Epidemiologist
    February 26, 2009

    Wait, so Jen comes in as an anti-vaxer, but really it’s about paracetamol/acetaminophen/Tylenol??? Then WTF was the beef against vaccines? Can Jen just agree that vaccines should be delivered minus paracetamol/acetaminophen/Tylenol?

    What’s it going to be, Jen. Do you concede that we should stick to vaccinating our kids as long as we don’t give them Tylenol (I don’t see a reason for it anyway — babies are a lot more tolerant of fevers than adults)?

    Or are you going to shift your complaint with a new hypothesis-du-jour despite the best presentation of facts?

    Frankly, I think it’s shameful that a health professional would ever denounce one of the most effective preventive health practices ever developed.

  203. #203 wulfstan
    February 26, 2009

    I want facts, please. I want to know why my child suddenly has multiple food intolerances, to the point that he cannot tolerate any kind of nutrition with the exception of the elemental formula and water. I want to know why his self injurious and aggressive episodes seem to correspond with the ingestion of Tylenol.

    You understand that you don’t present facts to which you wish to receive facts in response? You present unvalidated assertions that are based on your assumptions and flawed perspective so are probably/possibly asking incorrect questions.

    I thought you had earlier claimed that your son had recovered after scoping?

    If I understand you correctly, you continue to give your son Tylenol until you come up with an explanation that satisfies you – irrespective of the distress that it causes him? That seems beyond harsh and more than a little unreasonable.

    I’m going to say that I don’t know the time stages of mouse embryo and foetus, so, please do enlighten me and explain why this is relevant.

  204. #204 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    What’s it going to be, Jen. Do you concede that we should
    stick to vaccinating our kids as long as we don’t give them Tylenol>>>

    Yes!

    (However, I still disagree with the one-size-fits-all approach to vaccination.)

  205. #205 Jen
    February 26, 2009

    I thought you had earlier claimed that your son had recovered after scoping?>>>

    My son has not been scoped yet. Dr. Krigsman has a long waiting list, and also requires lots of labwork, including multiple stool specimens before he can be seen, which I am still in the process of gathering. However, we couldn’t wait to start the elemental diet, due to the severity of his symptoms, which is why I’m paying hundreds of dollars per month for his formula, because insurance requires an actual diagnosis before they will pay for it. I still don’t know the extent of the damage in his gut. All I know is that he responded to the diet. Immediately. No more red ears. No more temper tantrums. No more visits to the state hospital. Gone.

    If I understand you correctly, you continue to give your son Tylenol until you come up with an explanation that satisfies you – irrespective of the distress that it causes him? That seems beyond harsh and more than a little unreasonable.>>>

    No, no, no. I didn’t realize a connection to Tylenol until recently. The last time we went through this with him was last year, after he had had some dental work done, and the dentist told me he would be a little sore for a day or two, and to give him Tylenol if he seemed uncomfortable. So I did. But the behaviors didn’t start right away, it took a few days, so I wasn’t able to connect the dots at that time. And the first time it happened, at age 7 was when he had fifth’s disease, and thinking back, I’d remembered giving him Tylenol for the fever. It was also during this time that he developed a particular liking for bananas…a highly phenolic food. I thought it was strange at the time, and questioned his doctors if there could be any correlation between aggressive behavior and bananas…as you can imagine, they thought I was the one who had gone bananas.

    So, after this recent episode, and not getting any answers or relief from any of the doctors I took him to, I came across some reading on sulfation deficits in autistic kids, and that’s when things started making sense.

    Mark my words, my children will never get Tylenol ever, ever again. In fact, I list it as an allergy on their medical forms, so there are no accidents. I get some strange looks, but oh well…

  206. #206 mandrake
    February 26, 2009

    Yes, of course. My thirteen years of experience as an LVN are completely irrelevant, and my first hand experience in raising two autistic boys and their improvements with biomedical treatments, as well as the thousands of other parents reporting the exact same results mean absolutely nothing. Gotcha.

    Actually, Jen, your experience as an LVN and a mother *are* irrelevant. Do you not understand the basic principles of science? Anecdotal evidence is not admissible.

  207. #207 Jen
    February 27, 2009

    Just FYI, for anyone that’s still interested, this is the reading that caught my attention wrt tylenol…

    “Since sulfur intake is low, and its oxidation is slow in many
    autistic children, sulfate is low, and PST activity is slower than it
    would be otherwise. It would seem that this sub optimality of
    sulphotransferase activity is a function of low plasma sulfate levels
    rather than of deficits in the actual enzyme. Cellular level
    enzymatic effects of mercury’s binding with proteins include blockage
    of sulfur oxidation processes and of the neurotransmitter amino
    acids. These have been found to be significant factors in many
    autistics. Thus, mercury, and any foodstuff that requires or uses up
    sulfate ions during its metabolism, will make the situation worse.
    These foodstuffs include foods that supply neurotransmitters, like
    bananas (serotonin), chocolate (phenylethylamine), and cheese
    (tyramine), apple juice (and one mother reports her child drank a
    quart a day!), citrus fruit juices, and paracetamol (Tylenol™). For
    instance, one or two minutes after a dose of Tylenol™, the entire
    supply of sulfate in the liver is gone!”

    http://www.newtreatments.org/Sulfur/ga/252/Autism%20and%20phenol-sulphotransferase

    Does anyone have anything to add to this, or am I completely off base here?

  208. #208 Prometheus
    February 27, 2009

    Jen asks:

    My question is…if the liver is exerting a good deal of energy metabolizing frequent doses of acetaminophen, do glutathione levels in the liver immediately return to normal? If not, is it possible that it may have difficulty processing other things that need detoxifying?

    To begin with, the liver doesn’t “exert a good deal of energy” to metabolise acetaminophen – especially if the does is within sight of the recommended dose. In fact, the “backup” metabolic pathway using glutathione isn’t used very much unless the dose is very high.

    Glutathione reductase rapidly returns “used” glutathione to service and the production of glutathione is readily “ramped” up to meet demand. In fact, the current best (and very effective) treatment for acetaminophen overdosage is N-acetyl-cysteine, which gets the rate-limiting amino acid cysteine to high levels very rapidly, allowing the liver to return its glutathione levels to normal and prevent damage.

    Repeated doses of acetaminophen induce the enzymes of the sulfation pathway, which is why people who take acetaminophen regularly can easily tolerate doses that would kill someone who rarely or never uses acetaminophen.

    I seem to remember reading about sulfation deficits causing problems with phenol processing, and in my son’s case, I did notice that his ears would turn very red at times, and my “googling” (since his pediatrician didn’t seem to know what would be causing it)came across some reading wrt sulfation deficits being caused by acetaminophen.

    The “ears turning red” question comes up a lot in autism discussion, but asking a group of mothers of children without autism, I found that it was a fairly common phenomenon. It happens to me occasionally, in relation to nothing that I can determine. The spurious association with “phenol-containing” foods has never been tested.

    You also seem to have confused/conflated “sulfation deficits” with acetaminophen. Acetaminophen does not deplete the body’s sulfate level. A few researchers used acetaminophen as a test agent to determine – so they thought – the “sulfation capacity” of children, which is probably the source of your confusion.

    The reason they did this is that acetaminophen is metabolised primarily by sulfation and only secondarily by glucuronidation. By administering a dose of acetaminophen and then testing the metabolic products in the urine, the researchers thought they could determine the “sulfation capacity” of the children.

    There are several problems with their line of reasoning:

    [1] The sulfation pathway is inducible – meaning that the more it is used, the greater its capacity becomes – so a child’s “sulfation capacity” depends more on their recent exposure to substances (foods and drugs) that use sulfation for their metabolism.

    [2] The sulfation pathway – like most metabolic pathways – is saturatable – meaning that it has finite (but expandable, with time) capacity, so the acetaminophen dose would have to compete with other compounds queing up for sulfation. If something else – a food or drug – had a higher affinity for the sulfation pathway, a larger amount of the acetaminophen dose would go down the gluronidation pathway.

    [3] The speed, capacity and affinity of the sulfation and glucouronidation pathways for acetaminophen show a fair amount of genetic variation. Just because one child’s ratio of sulfated vs glucuronidated acetaminophen is higher (or lower) than another’s tells us nothing about the state of their “sulfation capacity”.

    The final problem with the “sulfation capacity” study was that the researchers were clearly trying to prove their hypothesis that autistic children have sulfation deficits. They got one piece of data that was consistent with their hypothesis (although, in truth it only failed to contradict their hypothesis – there is a difference) and then made a lot of claims not supported by the tiny bit of data they collected.

    Prometheus

  209. #209 Prometheus
    February 27, 2009

    Jen asks again:

    Does anyone have anything to add to this, or am I completely off base here?

    The cited text is probably originally from about 1999 or 2000. It is the sort of over-inflated claims made from the very meagre acetaminophen metabolism study (a “pilot study”, actually) done in 1999. It has never been expanded or repeated.

    There are a number of clearly false statement in the archived web-page you linked to, characteristic of the sort of things I used to see written on the subject by parents who felt that they “understood” the subject and wanted to pass on (“..with advantages..” Henry V) to fellow parents.

    Like the child’s game, Telephone, the small kernel of data was rapidly swamped by the avalanche of speculation, supposition, erroneous assumptions and wishful guessing that were stuck to it.

    It’s not even one of the current “top ten” hypotheses among the DAN! practitioners, although they probably still prescribe things like the Feingold diet and Epsom salt baths (thought to increase sulfate levels by absorbing it through the skin) without remembering how those “treatments” got their start.

    So, I have nothing to add to that because it is all pretty much fantasy. I don’t know if you’re “off-base”, but that link is.

    Prometheus

  210. #210 Jen
    February 27, 2009

    It has never been expanded or repeated.>>>

    I know…personally, I’d like to see more study, but I will say (and yes, I’m well aware that my anecdotes don’t count for much) that I noticed certain food items (especially FD&C food colorings-they were his WORST triggers) seemed to trigger behavior problems in my son, and when the offending foods were removed, the behavior problems improved as well.

    [2] The sulfation pathway – like most metabolic pathways – is saturatable – meaning that it has finite (but expandable, with time) capacity, so the acetaminophen dose would have to compete with other compounds queing up for sulfation. If something else – a food or drug – had a higher affinity for the sulfation pathway, a larger amount of the acetaminophen dose would go down the gluronidation pathway.

    So would it be reasonable to assume that a child who, in addition to ingesting acetaminophen, and is also exposed to other items that use up sulfates over a period of time, would tend to have more problems than a child not exposed to these other items?

    I appreciate the additional insights, BTW, sans the personal attacks. Thank you.

  211. #211 Wulfstan
    February 27, 2009

    Prometheus, Joseph and others who have responded to an extraordinary range of questions, I want to thank you for the clarity of your answers on this thread – I have found them accessible and helpful.

  212. #212 Prometheus
    February 27, 2009

    Jen asks:

    So would it be reasonable to assume that a child who, in addition to ingesting acetaminophen, and is also exposed to other items that use up sulfates over a period of time, would tend to have more problems than a child not exposed to these other items?

    No, it would not be reasonable to assume that.

    You are assuming – as did the reasearchers who did the autism-sulfation study – that these children (or any children) are somehow running “close to the edge” of their ability to sulfate xenobiotic compounds. This is not true and has not been shown in any study.

    There is also a lot of conflation between the sulfation of xenobiotics (like acetaminophen and food) and the sulfation of proteins, sugars and the like. Even finding that someone has a “defect” in their liver’s ability to sulfate acetaminophen does not mean that their ability to sulfate cellular products is impaired. Different enzymes are used.

    Even when the enzyme name is the same, different enzyme isoforms are often used to do different things.

    If you are truly concerned about your child’s ability to sulfate xenobiotics, you should stringently avoid feeding them anything but highly processed and purified sugars, lipids and amino acids. The worst offenders for causing problems with liver metabolism are “natural” compounds – aflatoxin (found in peanuts) being just one example.

    Your concern about an occasional gram or so of acetaminophen is misplaced, especially if you are letting your child eat potatoes or green vegetables.

    Prometheus

  213. #213 anon
    February 27, 2009

    Prometheus,

    I agree with Wulfstan that this thread has become very enlightening. What I don’t see addressed, though could have very well passed over it and if so, accept my apologies – is the inflammatory component involved in vaccination and how that might affect an infant’s (or anyone’s) drug handling capacity. While fever containment seems reasonable to address mild vaccine reactions, I think this aspect is a bit overlooked. I’m not sure I agree with fever containment anyway, but that is another topic entirely.

    I agree with Jen, that discourse without condescension or personal attacks, is a positive position for the scientific community. I understand there are other blogs for one to peruse if the concern is to be handled more gently, but realistically, common courtesy should be widely applied.

  214. #214 Jen
    February 27, 2009

    Prometheus:
    Thanks again for the reasoned response. However, I feel I am left with more questions. I feel like I’m missing something, and I’m not really sure what, or how to elaborate on it. Perhaps it would be helpful to discuss what specifically about the article I linked to (and I realize it is very lengthy, and that you have a life outside of this blog!) in order to tease apart what you feel is “fantasy” and what about it is more in line with reality. If anyone else reading would care to jump in and help out, it would be much appreciated, as well. All I want are answers, and only truthful answers will do, even if that answer is: “I don’t know.”

    I just want to know what happened to my kid.

  215. #215 Bill H
    February 28, 2009

    Jen,

    I feel like I owe you an apology. I’m new to the whole commenting thing (I’ve been a lurker for some time now), and am still feeling out my persona. It’s easy to be snarky and condescending, but that’s not really me. More importantly, you don’t deserve it. You’re just looking for answers.

    Bill

  216. #216 anon
    February 28, 2009

    Bill,

    I hope you’re being genuine. If so, you encompass hope.

  217. #217 Jen
    February 28, 2009

    Thanks, Bill. Apology accepted. :)

  218. #218 Prometheus
    February 28, 2009

    Jen,

    There was so much wrong in the “article” you cited that it might be easier if I just show you where they went wrong in the first paragraph. Maybe that will give you an indication of how unreliable the rest of the information is.

    Phenolsulfotransferases (there are at least eight in humans) do metabolise phenol-containing xenobiotics (compounds made by other organisms – or synthesised – that end up in the human circulation). They do not metabolise hormones – that is the domain of an entirely different family of sulfotransferases.

    There are about 40+ known sulfotransferases in humans, but interestingly, sulfotransferases have no role in breaking down heme, hemoglobin, biliverdin or bilirubin (the last of which isn’t broken down but excreted intact). The author got that one completely wrong.

    Phenol-preferring sulfotransferases (the preferred name) are found in a variety of cells, including platelets (which are not, strictly speaking, cells), which make them easy to study.

    Although this doesn’t come up until the next paragraph, it’s important to realize that phenol-preferring sulfotransferases also don’t use circulating sulfate, so increasing the amount of sulfate won’t “fix” a damaged or defective “phenolsulfotransferase”. These enzymes use 3′ phosphoadenyl sulfate as a sulfate donor (that’s why they’re called sulfotransferases).

    The paragraph then segues into a discussion of Clostridia, although they seem to confuse C. tetani – which causes tetanus – with C. difficile, which can cause enterocolitis. In either case, the toxins produced by Clostridia are proteins, not “phenols”. Big difference, that.

    And sulfotransferases are not involved in metabolising any of the Clostridia toxins – not tetanospasmin, not C. difficile toxin A or B and not botulinum toxin (“botox”).

    I suppose this is nit-picking, but describing the action of tetanospasmin (the toxin made by C. tetani) as “reducing the production of GABA” when it actually reduces the release of GABA (and glycine), is yet another sign of the overall inaccuracy of the “article”. At any rate, confusing “tetanus” (which doesn’t cause enterocolitis) with C. difficile, (which doesn’t affect GABA or glycin release) is a major error.

    In short, I found almost everything the author said in that first paragraph to be wrong. And the first paragraph isn’t unique in its degree of inaccuracy.

    I could go on, but I’ve reached the end of the first paragraph. As you can see, to describe what is wrong in this “article” would take more time (and space) than it took for this person to write it in the first place.

    It would probably be best to just ignore everything in this article, because the chaff outnumbers the wheat ten to one (or more).

    Prometheus

  219. #219 Jen
    February 28, 2009

    It would probably be best to just ignore everything in this article, because the chaff outnumbers the wheat ten to one (or more).>>>

    Well, I’m not certain that it’s really fair to dismiss EVERYTHING in the article, especially since I was able to incorporate a few of the interventions suggested, and did notice improvements in behavior. It might be more realistic for someone in my position (scientific illiterate that I am) to just read it, but take it with a grain of salt. A bit of skepticism is a healthy thing, and that’s true with most everything in life.

    Whatever is going on with my kid seems to be affecting his entire body, and I owe it to him to get to the bottom of this.

    In addition to all the gastrointestinal symptoms that have been going on with him, he also had a mole on his back that started changing in shape. The dermatologist was doubtful that it was cancerous, but removed it at my insistence. The biopsy showed that it was moderately to severely dysplastic, and he actually had to go back and have more of the surrounding tissue removed. As if the poor kid hasn’t suffered enough. :(

    He also had his first seizure the day before thanksgiving.

    So, as you might imagine, I am quite alarmed by all of this, and am desperate and VERY determined to get to the bottom of it.

  220. #220 Katherine
    March 1, 2009

    Jen posted: I would LOVE to be proven wrong, so I can quit beating myself up for giving Tylenol to my kids and taking it for frequent headaches and back pain during my pregnancies. And I wouldn’t be pushing this so hard if I didn’t witness severe behavioral regressions in my older son after ingesting acetaminophen, an association that I am only recently realizing.

    Wouldn’t acetaminophen only be given when there is some evidence of pain or fever, or I suppose in some cases before a vaccination? Isn’t it likely that this pain or fever itself is what caused a behavioural regression rather than the medication? My son is not autistic and I know this is only anecdotal, but he frequently has behavioural issues when he is in pain or ill and I have heard the same from every other parent I know.

    Jen also posted: So, as you might imagine, I am quite alarmed by all of this, and am desperate and VERY determined to get to the bottom of it.

    I would be alarmed as a parent as well, and likely looking at everything that might even potentially help my child. I just don’t understand why you believe there is something “at the bottom of this” other than genetics.

  221. #221 Joseph
    March 1, 2009

    Well, I’m not certain that it’s really fair to dismiss EVERYTHING in the article, especially since I was able to incorporate a few of the interventions suggested, and did notice improvements in behavior.

    The thing is, Jan, you can read any article about any hypothesis, and after you incorporate interventions suggested, you’re bound to note improvements in behavior. Have you read about placebo effects in autism, e.g. Sandler (2005) ?

  222. #222 Jen
    March 1, 2009

    The thing is, Jan, you can read any article about any hypothesis, and after you incorporate interventions suggested, you’re bound to note improvements in behavior. Have you read about placebo effects in autism, e.g. Sandler (2005) ?

    Yes, I’ve read about secretin and the placebo effect. And from what I’ve continued to read on the subject, while not every child improved with secretin, it has been shown to help those children with chronic diarrhea. Even the study’s authors admit that there were some limitations:

    “Drs. Bodfish and Sandler noted, however, that the study had several limitations. Because the study was only four weeks’ duration, it could not detect any improvements that might have occurred over a longer period of time. Also, study participants received only one injection of secretin, and it is possible that more than one injection would be required before any effects were noticeable.”

    http://www.nichd.nih.gov/news/releases/secretin1299.cfm

    This is part of what makes treating autism so very complicated. What may work beautifully for one child, might do absolutely nothing for another. There is such a wide spectrum of symptoms and sensitivities.

    At any rate, I’d tend to agree with you wrt placebo effect if it were ONLY behavioral improvements that I noticed. You have to understand that these were not your ordinary, garden-variety temper tantrums. I’m talking about a kid that would physically attack police officers twice his size, would pick up heavy kitchen chairs and smash them to bits, then beat his head with the remaining pieces. He has left quite a trail of destruction in my house that will be costly to repair, including a huge crack in my new granite countertops! >:( Sometimes, he would go without sleep for days on end, and I think that it was actually this lack of sleep that may have triggered the seizure. The red ears also went away, as well as the very dilated pupils and profuse sweating. There was one time that he worked himself up so much that he jumped fully clothed in the middle of the night into the swimming pool!

    We started noticing a pattern during his admissions to the state hospital, that his behaviors would improve, even without any medical interventions. It turns out that while he was at the hospital, he didn’t care much for their food, and refused to eat. But, when he returned home, and food consumption resumed, the behaviors would slowly start to return.

    People who know my son IRL continually ask me what medication I have him on now, because he is just so calm and laid back now. He is on no medication, other than the dietary supplements prescribed by Thoughtful House.

  223. #223 Katherine
    March 1, 2009

    Jen, it is great that you’ve found somehong that helps your son but I still don’t see why you are so certain that it is a single cause for both the autism and the digestive issues. Neither food issues not autism is so rare that they wouldn’t be expected to occur in the same person from time to time.

  224. #224 Jen
    March 1, 2009

    Wouldn’t acetaminophen only be given when there is some evidence of pain or fever, or I suppose in some cases before a vaccination? Isn’t it likely that this pain or fever itself is what caused a behavioural regression rather than the medication? >>>

    Initially, that’s what I thought too. This all started when we began working with a behavioral analyst that gave him skittles as a reinforcer. Ordinarily, I don’t let him have very much of that sort of thing, but I made an exception, because she made it clear that we needed to let him have some sort of incentive to make him do what we wanted. However, over a period of several days, I started noticing the behaviors returning, and since the skittles were the only thing new, I started reading up on FD&C food colorings and behavior. I wasn’t entirely convinced of a link yet, so just to be sure there wasn’t something else bothering him, I took him to his pediatrician to look him over. She couldn’t find anything obviously wrong with him, other than his throat looking a little red, but seemed to agree that this sudden onset of behaviors was unusual, so she gave me a prescription for Tylenol #3 and suggested giving it to him for a day or two to see if pain was really the problem. This didn’t really do much, so it was discontinued, and I continued to read up on the dyes, and I came across the Southampton study, and discovered that these are actually banned in parts of Europe now because of concerns wrt hyperactivity and behavior problems. So I removed all FD&C dyes, and to play it safe, sodium benzoate as well, and we actually had a few weeks of really good behavior, so I thought the problem was solved. I continued to read more, and discovered the Feingold diet, and decided to give it a try. Later on, when he started having issues again, and since aspirin and ibuprofen are not allowed, Tylenol was my only option for treating pain. At first, it seemed to help a little, but then I started suspecting that it might be aggravating his problems, and that’s when I discovered the above link. Things just made sense, and while there is quite a bit that I still don’t understand, it was enormously helpful.

  225. #225 Joseph
    March 1, 2009

    Yes, I’ve read about secretin and the placebo effect. And from what I’ve continued to read on the subject, while not every child improved with secretin, it has been shown to help those children with chronic diarrhea.

    Not every child improved with secretin? No child improved with secretin any more than would be expected from a placebo response. It’s possible that diarrhea improved, but nothing having do with autism did. In fact, some studies found placebo to be non-significantly better than secretin, and researchers wondered if they were looking at negative placebo effects. Note there are double-blind secretin studies in the sub-group of autistic children with chronic diarrhea. They find basically the same thing, except for one I believe.

    That’s beside the point, though. Placebo effects are significant in autism, and claims of improvement can be assumed to be due to a placebo response absent a more plausible explanation.

  226. #226 Prometheus
    March 1, 2009

    Jen comments:

    “Well, I’m not certain that it’s really fair to dismiss EVERYTHING in the article, especially since I was able to incorporate a few of the interventions suggested, and did notice improvements in behavior.”

    Funny thing, I’ve heard the same thing from parents who used everything from vitamin B12 to HBOT. They try a number of “treatments” and – voila! – their child is better.

    Even funnier – I saw exactly the same thing myself, when we tried a number of “remedies” to treat our son. Eventually, I noticed that “treatments” that had produced improvement in the past either stopped working or caused behaviors to worsen.

    After a few years chasing our tails, we realised that we were superimposing our “therapies” on a remitting-relapsing behavior pattern (“two steps forward; one step back”) and that our “treatments” had nothing to do with the improvements or the “regressions” (except, of course, the more aversive “treatments” probably did produce some behavioral worsening).

    Believe what you like, Jen, but remember our exchanges in the coming years when you start to wonder if anything is “working”. With luck, you’ll make this discovery before you end up in bankruptcy or, worse, end up hurting your child while attempting to help them.

    The article you linked to is about 90% untruths, confused and conflated “facts” and unsupported speculation. The part that is correct is only trivial facts, like the existence of phenolsulfotransferases and their action on phenol-containing compounds, as related in the first paragraph.

    It is not surprising that you should find some of the recommended “remedies” to be “effective”. If you get the chance, find an excerpt of a 17th century medical text and see what people thought was “effective” back then.

    Bleeding, purging, blistering and mercury were all once thought to be “effective” based on clinical observations. It wasn’t until we actually started testing the treatments (scientifically, you know) that we discovered how easily it is to fool ourselves into believing that something “works” when it doesn’t.

    The multi-centre secretin study, sponsored by Repligen (maker of recombinant secretin) showed that it was no better than an injection of saline. This study was never published – you might want to ask Repligen why – but the results were released by Repligen several years ago. Still, a number of parents and practitioners swear that it works.

    “It might be more realistic for someone in my position (scientific illiterate that I am) to just read it, but take it with a grain of salt. A bit of skepticism is a healthy thing, and that’s true with most everything in life.”

    I would suggest that you take this “article” you linked to with a train-load of salt. Skepticism is a good thing and never so much as when we find ourselves in agreement with someone. While we humans are very adept at coming up with reasons to not believe something we already don’t believe in, we are very bad at finding the flaws in things that seem to support our preconceived ideas.

    I’ve pointed out the flaws in just one paragraph of that “article” – I could do the same for each paragraph. Yet, since it seems to resonate with your beliefs on the matter, you have come up with a reason to keep believing what it contains – you’ll just add a grain of salt and convince yourself that it is still mostly valid, even if 90% of the statements of fact are demonstrably incorrect.

    Prometheus

  227. #227 HolfordWatch
    March 1, 2009

    Dr Edwin Cook discussed both secretin and the genetics of autism in his testimony during the Cedillo hearings. He was very interesting about both and presented the material in a clear, straightforward way.

    This overview of the Repligen autism trials does indicate that secretin isn’t worth pursuing as an appropriate treatment intervention – as Prometheus and Joseph comment, it’s unfortunate that this wasn’t written up formally.

  228. #228 John C. Welch
    March 1, 2009

    Jen, it is great that you’ve found somehong that helps your son but I still don’t see why you are so certain that it is a single cause for both the autism and the digestive issues. Neither food issues not autism is so rare that they wouldn’t be expected to occur in the same person from time to time

    Not only are neither terribly rare, (hello, household with lactose intolerance, mild reactions to hot dogs & capcacin, and rather colorful reaction to certain vegetables), but in some cases, both are the “go to” diagnoses. For example, my son is, for want of a better phrase, an “ADD Poster Child”. This is not surprising, I’m just as bad, if not worse. He’s also an only child, far more comfortable around adults than kids his own age, and up until really high school, very uncomfortable around kids his own age, in large groups.

    I had several go-rounds with school counselors who wanted me to agree that he had Asperger’s. They meant well, but were looking for a way to buttonhole him, so their ‘standard’ programs could fit him better.

    I refused as a) the psych he’d been seeing disagreed, and of the two, I know who was more qualified, and b) the behaviors they described only happened at school.

    I think a large part of it was that they didn’t want him to feel bad, or maybe fail a class, but my response was, “He’s going to feel bad for a ton of other reasons in his life, and if he fails, then he deals with the outcome, and learns how to avoid it in the future. Life involves failure, and this is a far better time to experience it than in his 30s.”

    It was all polite, but in the end, since I wouldn’t sign the papers, there wasn’t much they were going to do, and, no surprise, as he’s gotten older, we’ve worked together to find ways to deal with his ADD in ways that don’t require maintenance meds, etc. Slower going, but more effective in the longer term. (Much better than my unconcious way of dealing with it, in the bad old days before anyone really knew about it: Massive doses of caffiene. The few times I’ve seen a psych about it, they said, “Well, not as effective as other meds, but you wouldn’t be the first person with ADD to be a caffiene addict as a way of self-treating. Just watch your water intake.”

    So there are a lot of people using Autism/food allergies as some magical “see, it’s not that he’s being a butt, he’s GOT A CONDITION” so that they can get put in the right box.

    Doesn’t mean it’s true.

    Just like there’s no magic bullet, which is what your quest is all about.

    You’re looking for one “magic bullet” that will account for the dietary issues, the autism, the behavioral issues, and there’s probably not going to be one. In fact, your own actions show theire isn’t one. Your kid was in a lot of pain and discomfort from diet, acting out a lot over it, and when you changed his diet to alleviate that, he calmed down.

    You didn’t “fix” his autism in the least with that dietary change, it’s that he’s no longer in pain. Funny how the cessation of pain can calm you right down. You’ve also discovered, the hard way, that there are certain food dyes that he needs to stay away from.

    I hate to tell you this, but there’s nothing special there. Millions of people figure this out the same way: the hard way. You saw a reaction to the skittles, and intelligently, stopped letting him eat them. Surprise, that’s not some great miracle, that’s “Doctor, it hurts when I do this.” “So don’t do that.” “Hey, it stopped hurting”. You’re not a special snowflake here, nor is your kid. He just found another thing he can’t eat. That’s all.

    Chances are, your kid may always have a highly restricted diet. I’ve not been able to eat 4 very popular veggies, one of which I actually like, for almost 35 years, since I first discovered I can’t eat them. On the other hand, at a very young age, orange juice gave me hives. By the time I was 6-7, it didn’t.

    However, there’s no magic bullet that will let you say “THIS! THIS is what caused every.single.problem my child has.” Well, unless you want to count “genetics” as a magic bullet. But your insistence that it’s…vaccines/vaccines with tylenol/tylenol without vaccines/etc/etc/yadda show that you’re probably never going to accept the role of genetics here, even though, as we learn more about things like Autism, genetics seems to be the only cause that isn’t getting disproven.

    But hey, it’s your windmill to tilt at. Just don’t be surprised when it doesn’t turn into a dragon.

  229. #229 Jen
    March 1, 2009

    Even funnier – I saw exactly the same thing myself, when we tried a number of “remedies” to treat our son. Eventually, I noticed that “treatments” that had produced improvement in the past either stopped working or caused behaviors to worsen. >>>>

    If you don’t mind, could you elaborate on what you tried with your son (and I will understand completely if you don’t want to discuss your son’s medical issues here) and what specifically caused behaviors to worsen? Because that is a big concern of mine, believe it or not. I think that there is a stereotype of us “autism moms” that we will try ANYTHING, and in my case, that simply isn’t true. Before I even think about trying a new supplement or intervention, I read up on it as thoroughly as I can, and make certain I understand its purpose, in addition to continually monitoring him for any changes, both positive AND negative. (This is an instance where my years of nursing experience serve me very well.) Chelation is my biggest worry, and is also one that TH is at some point going to start pushing after his gut heals. Right now, I am just not comfortable with it, and I might never be comfortable with it, but it could be simply because I don’t have enough information. My “gut” tells me to tread very carefully. (I know, I know, gut feelings don’t count for much, scientifically speaking, as some of you have pointed out to me many times over the past few days.)

    For me, though, this isn’t about “curing” his autism. I know that no matter how many interventions we try, he will always be autistic. I accepted that a long time ago, which was why I never really did biomedical treatments with my son, until just recently, when I was essentially backed into a corner, and left with few other options. For us, this is more of a quality of life issue.

  230. #230 Jen
    March 1, 2009

    While we humans are very adept at coming up with reasons to not believe something we already don’t believe in, we are very bad at finding the flaws in things that seem to support our preconceived ideas.>>>

    Ah, yes. I came to that realization many years ago when I started questioning the whole religion thing. (Unrelated to the topic at hand, but similar parallels.) I’ll remember to keep that thought in mind as I continue this journey with my son.

  231. #231 K.R
    April 9, 2009

    This has nothing to do with what Jen was talking about.

    What about Cortisone injection (1 shot) during the first trimester? Could that cause brain damage?(I would think it would have to be used a lot to cause any kind of damage)

    The reason I ask is we have 3 sons 2 of them have autism (genetics right there I know and believe that) during the first trimester I was given a cortisone shot for inflamed cartilage (not knowing I was pregnant both times)but I still have in the back of my head that what if the cortisone triggered a gene fug up? not possible right? I just want an extra yeah it’s not possible and it would make hubby feel better about it too….so lets have at it please.

    Thanks Kel

  232. #232 Prometheus
    April 9, 2009

    K.R.,

    Your adrenals produce cortisol (cortisone) – about 100 mg per day in good times, more when you’re under stress (like pain, for instance). The amount that was injected was most likely less than a day’s production without the added stress of pain and pregnancy.

    In addition, most steroids injected for local inflammation are formulated for slow release, so the effect would have been spread out over several days.

    Additionally, there are people who are on chronic steroid medication for a variety of disorders – there has been nothing reported about an increase in autism among these people.

    Steroids can accelerate lung maturation in later fetal development, which is thought to be an adaptive response to maternal stress and the possibility of a premature birth. Apart from that, I’m not aware of any effects it has on fetal development.

    Prometheus

  233. #233 K.R
    April 9, 2009

    Prometheus,

    Thanks for the feedback!

    Kel

  234. #234 K.R
    April 9, 2009

    Prometheus,

    Thanks for the feedback!

    Kel

  235. #235 Amy Jones
    April 22, 2009

    Do any of you have a child on the spectrum who got sick hours after their shot? Have any of you become doctors afterwards in order to learn the science behind what happens to these children? There IS scientific evidence that prooves the gastrointestinal system and connect with Autistic kids will be added to the new version of the DSM in 2012.
    In fact some of you won’t even list your names…how sad. Must be nice to be able to write something so incorrect about a human being and doctor might I add whose research has helped a generation of parents RECOVER their autistic kids from vaccine damage. Your pathetic and whats worse is you have no journalistic integrety. Have you read any of Dr. Wakefields articles? I doubt it.
    Congrats…you look like an idiot. Site examples that are actually correct next time based on EVIDENCE. This is a science blog after all.

  236. #236 Chris
    April 22, 2009

    Yes, many of us do.

    And we are so very angry that Wakefield’s fraudulent paper has diverted funds and attention to the real needs of our children.

  237. #237 Blah Blah Blah
    April 22, 2009

    Amy Jones is such a common name that it might as well be a pseudonym.

    First. Correlation doesn’t imply causation. Getting sick after a shot does not mean that the shot caused you to get sick. Given that all chidlren get sick and all chidlren should be vaccinated it doesn’t mean anything at all.

    Second. Some of are already real doctors.

    Third- Science. You keep saying that word but I don’t think it means what you think it means.

    Fourth. You already know what’s in the DSM 2012? Provide citation

    Fifth. Note that the word is Cite not Site.

    Sixth. Where are the data showing recovery? Cite it. Wakefield Lancet paper that kicked all this off was fraudulent so you have no aetiological data now. Scientists who make stuff up are not trustworthy they tend not to have their articles read seriously after that.

    Seventh- Evidence. See Third regarding Science.

  238. #238 David
    May 21, 2009

    This debate has become a farce.
    The issue is simple. Those of us parents that have taken the time and trouble to ascertaine the ingredients and processes used to compile these vaccines can only be lft in a state of complete disbelief.
    Of my children (those that have not resided with me, but with their mother (a nurse)) have received multiple vaccines and I can see a difference.
    If you know that a given chemical is a biocide, whether it be a preservative, an emulsifier or the tissues of chicken embryos, to suggest that you inject it into any one least of all an infant, is absurd.
    If my child falls and cuts themselves, my first reaction is to clean the wound. But because these people in white coats come along with a language comprising of medispeak and tell you that no harm will come to your child, you are left either having to trust them, or trust in nature and provide them with the best possible diet, free of all corruptions as possible.
    The medical institutions seem to be insanely driven to promulgate more and more of these nasty cocktails, why?
    All culpability is denied and the producers of these poisonous mixtures protected from law. Why?
    It is time, that this madness stopped. Unless of course you believe that humanity has become too numerous and culling is required (Johnathan Porrit and Sir David Attenborough).
    All those of you who advocate this insanity, should before pushing this onto others, take all of the injections given to infants adjusted for your body weights. If you really believe these things to be harmless, you have no risk.
    So here you are, I call you out, right now. Come forward into the light and place your names so that you can become our guinea pigs. You should be fine with this since as you keep telling us, these injections are harmless.

  239. #239 Dedj
    May 21, 2009

    David – many of us that come here on a regular basis work, or have worked, in medical or health care. Many of us have recieved not just our childhood vaccines, but also many otherwise non-compulsory boosters or vaccines, in order to be allowed to work in healthcare. This does not include additional vaccinations that are sometimes required to work in ICU, Isolation units or renal care.

    We have already ‘called’ ourselves out. You fail.

    “If you know that a given chemical is a biocide,….to suggest that you inject it into any one least of all an infant, is absurd.”

    Why? If it can be shown that the overall net effect is a gain then why not? By what process does mere status as a ‘biocide’ negate all other possible actions by that chemical.

    Explain yourself.

    Now.

  240. #240 Chris
    May 21, 2009

    David:

    Of my children (those that have not resided with me, but with their mother (a nurse)) have received multiple vaccines and I can see a difference.

    The plural of anecdote is not data.

    he continues:

    If you know that a given chemical is a biocide, whether it be a preservative, an emulsifier or the tissues of chicken embryos, to suggest that you inject it into any one least of all an infant, is absurd.

    Just tell us exactly what preservative is used in the MMR. It comes as a powder that is mixed with sterile water and must be used within eight hours (and both the powder and mixture must be kept under certain conditions!).

    Also, tell us what issue you have with chicken eggs. I plan to have an omelet tomorrow for lunch, should I be worried?

    By the way, the MMR is only given after a child is over a year old, by then they are no longer infants.

    Also, do you know of any research that replicates what was in Wakefield’s now retracted paper? This one failed to replicate his tiny study:
    Lack of association between measles virus vaccine and autism with enteropathy: a case-control study.

  241. #241 leena
    January 29, 2010

    I am a parent of an autistic child who is now well on the way to recovery. She became autistic 2 months after her MMR jab. She suffers with her bowels, her stomach is distended, all due to the MMR jab. Dr Wakefield and J.Tommey are the only people who listened and helped with her pain. She can now talk and socially engage. Thank you Dr Wakefield for standing up to the members of the GMC who have interests in the pharmacetical industry that make vaccines.

    To all the parents, now that you know, you would be crazy to allow your child to have this vaccine.

    Ignore this crackpot who is trying to discredit Dr Wakefield, he dosen’t know what hes talking about and is probably employed by the very people who make this vaccine. BTW I am a medical professional too and am disgusted by what is going on. 1 in 64 kids are being diagnosed, due to this vaccine.

  242. #242 Dedj
    January 29, 2010

    Unfortunetly for leena above, the ‘crackpot’ had his opinions validated and (indirectly) substantiated by the relevant institutional authourity.

    Implied accusations of corruption and fraud may sound all well and good, but the rest of us would like to stick with the reality of what has actually occured, and not resurrect ten month old threads just to spill a load of cookie-cutter dross.

  243. #243 Chris
    January 29, 2010

    leena, the MMR vaccine has been used in the USA since 1971. If you are under the age of 40, you may have received the MMR as a child.

    Also, have you actually read this almost year old blog posting? Or are you just looking for blog postings critical of Wakefield and pasting your little rant without bothering to read them?

  244. #244 Chris
    January 29, 2010

    Hmmm, this is interesting. Leena uses the word “jab” and did not put a period after “Dr”. This must mean that she is in the UK. Wakefield has been in the USA running his clinic for the past several years (note, he is not licensed to practice medicine in Texas).

    I sincerely doubt that Leena has traveled all the way to Texas.

    I have no idea who J. Tommey is, though there is a Polly Tommey.

  245. #245 triskelethecat
    January 30, 2010

    @Chris: Not only has it been used since 1971 in the US, my elementary school recommended that all children get the MMR, so, even though I was WELL over the age of 1, I got the MMR in (according to my vaccine records) 1972. My sister was also over 2, and she got it (our mom bundled us off to the Health Dept, which had the vaccine). I can well recall the LONG lines of elementary school kids there who were getting the vaccine, so even if you are over the age of 40, you probably got it, at least in Michigan.

  246. #246 redrabbitslife
    January 30, 2010

    zOMG! Became autistic two months after the MMR vaccine? Holy smoke, stop the presses.

    But wait, did your child do anything else in those two months? Go to a soccer game, maybe? Or eat at McDo’s?

    zOMG! Soccer causes autism! And so do Big Macs!

    I suspect Leena is indeed in the UK, where healthcare professional is a term that is now being expanded to mean “anyone who has ever opened a packet of bandaids.”

    Yeesh.

    As has been pointed out repeatedly in the past, Leena, autism is classified as a “developmental delay.” Not arrest. Not reversal. Delay. Meaning, handwaving and blame or none, a child with autism who continues to be nurtured will continue to develop socially, albeit at an altered rate and perhaps with an altered endpoint. There are many people who are denizens of scienceblogs who are on the spectrum, and who will tell you in no uncertain terms that they live full lives, and are not the damaged souls portrayed by your antivaccine quack movement.

    Please continue to love and nurture your kiddo, and leave the blame bullshit behind. Good luck.

  247. #247 Joseph
    January 30, 2010

    Leena’s comment is boilerplate anti-vax. It’s like the have a bot posting these things. Child became autistic X months/days after vaccine? Check. Child is now “recovering”? Check. Mainstream doctors didn’t listen but DAN/Wakefield did? Check. Everyone in a position of authority and the blog owner are employees of Big Pharma in disguise? Check. Medical professional themselves? Check.

  248. #248 Corina Becker
    January 31, 2010

    “As has been pointed out repeatedly in the past, Leena, autism is classified as a “developmental delay.” Not arrest. Not reversal. Delay. Meaning, handwaving and blame or none, a child with autism who continues to be nurtured will continue to develop socially, albeit at an altered rate and perhaps with an altered endpoint. There are many people who are denizens of scienceblogs who are on the spectrum, and who will tell you in no uncertain terms that they live full lives, and are not the damaged souls portrayed by your antivaccine quack movement.”

    As an autistic adult, I will validate this words. I’m currently 24, and while in between jobs and houses at the moment, am able to develop socially.

    And oh, wait, what’s this? I wasn’t diagnosed until I was 17.

    WOW!!! and that’s without the benefit of all the nifty programs and specialized schooling that’s available nowadays.

    Does this mean that every autistic doesn’t need aid and support? absolutely not. It just means I’ve clawed my way through life so far, and had a heck of a time with it, but am managing fairly intact. But that’s just me. I’m not everyone, and definitely not every autistic.

    But there’s plenty of us out there who WILL agree that being autistic does not mean living in a static state of non-development. It means living in a delayed and somewhat off the beaten track development.

    (and for the record, it’s been three months since my H1N1 vaccine. I’m in Canada, so that means the whole “toxin” version, and two months since my seasonal flu vaccine. And a couple of months since my last tetanus shot. oooooh…. still not more autistic)

  249. #249 john
    February 2, 2010

    Silenced Witnesses Volume II: The Parents’ Story
    http://www.whale.to/vaccine/silenced_witnesses2.html

    enjoy

  250. #250 Isabella
    February 7, 2010

    To be blunt, that’s the point. It isn’t yours,it’s vulnerable children. One of the Lancet children subjected to this ended up dangerously ill with a colon perforated in multiple places.
    Pearl C, Ware get your facts right. He was NOT one of the Lancet children.

  251. #251 Chris
    February 7, 2010

    Isabella, yes he was not one of the Lancet children. That in no way makes the lumbar punctures and colonoscopies any safer. Those were still invasive procedures done for no good reason.

    John Scudamore, perhaps you have heard of Scopie’s Law?

    In any discussion involving science or medicine, citing Whale.to as a credible source loses you the argument immediately …and gets you laughed out of the room.

    Of course the laughter is even bigger if you are webmaster of whale.to!

  252. #252 Antaeus Feldspar
    February 7, 2010

    If Jack Piper, the autistic child with the bowel perforated by a colonoscopy, was not one of the Lancet children, it really is a remarkable coincidence and it’s no wonder there would be confusion. The colonoscopy was ordered by Wakefield’s collaborator Simon Murch; according to Piper’s parents the intent was to establish a connection between his autism and bowel problems, the same connection the Lancet paper tried to draw; it took place at the Royal Free Hospital, exactly where all the Lancet children were seen.

    I can’t at the moment get information precise enough to determine whether Piper’s surgery took place before or after the publication of the Lancet paper, but it’s obvious that room for confusion is rife and a curt dismissal like “Get your facts right” is unjustified.

  253. #253 Valerie
    February 28, 2010

    I find it incredibly sad to see that the same issue continues unabaited with regards children`s reaction to immunizations. The reality is, it is not the vaccine which is the issue here, but the individual health state of the infant prior to administration of the various vaccines, this will determine the degree of reaction within the host.When a child is contraindicated, ( weaker and sicker – naturally immune compromised )they cannot react appropriately to the procedure of immunization. They can actually end up with a persistant low lying vaccine induced viral illness that can cause persitant ill-health and even death in cases of severe reaction. Where we have failed collectively as a society, over the last 20/30 years, and continue to fail is we did not collectively recognise that a greater number of compromised infants are now surviving, very pre-term infants, or infants who have suffered undue birth related trauma etc, and these are the generation of infants/children contraindicated when it comes to immunization. But Public Health continue to fail them, as we have not introduced strict screening for suseptible infants prior to immunization.The Medical Establishment also recommend that 95% of the herd require immunization for the full schedule to be effective. And currently between 12 and 15% are contraindicated. So in effect, the World Vaccine Programme cannot in all logic achieve its target if we were to screen out all infants at risk of serious reaction. The World Health Organisation would come under intense pressure if this reality became public knowledge. Too much vested interest and biases. The collective profession of Medicine put forward the theory “Benefits outweight Risk” theory, meaning that the weaker children pay the ultimate price, in our collective effort to provide effective “Herd Immunity”. Immunuzation is not the proper way forward to safe guard the collective ‘herd immunuty’,but better education around the issues that govern true health. Health (like Autism) is a spectrum, and some people are naturally weaker, through genetics, but also through poor diet, sanitation, and also environmental influences. This truth has to eventually picked up and promoted by the general public.Maybe if as a world, we were prepared to properly investigate some of the real factors leading to a weaker human genome, poor birthing practices, and proper promotion and regulation of best international practices within obstetrics maybe we could see a true reduction in the number of weaker infants born. Practices like elective ceasaraen section, pre-term Induction, Restrictive Maternal Positioning, Early Cord Clamping, etc etc. There are many things which could be reviewed within Obstetrics which could definatley maximize the future health and well being of a greater number of infants.Thus reducing also the numbers currently suffering serious adverse reaction. The Birthing Process is the single most important proccess we all have to go through to take on this life, and we fail to fully recognise that it can also influence personality development health and well-being of the infant… I have learned this truth the hard way, a mother of a severely birth traumatised infant, who went on to suffer Severe Vaccine Reaction, Viral Encephilitis, Chronic Bowel Disease, Persistent Viral Infection and eventually was diagnosed as “AUTISTIC” at the age of three. I have come full circle, my sons condition was identifiable post delivery, treatable and in some mild cases reversable, but definately totally preventable. But this truth came too late for him.

  254. #254 Chris
    February 28, 2010

    In the wall of text word salad I managed to pick this out:

    Immunuzation is not the proper way forward to safe guard the collective ‘herd immunuty’,but better education around the issues that govern true health. Health (like Autism) is a spectrum, and some people are naturally weaker, through genetics, but also through poor diet, sanitation, and also environmental influences

    Um, huh. And you have actual evidence that immunization does not contribute to her immunity? Because that pretty much goes against all epidemiology science and statistics.

  255. #255 Antaeus Feldspar
    February 28, 2010

    The Medical Establishment also recommend that 95% of the herd require immunization for the full schedule to be effective.

    No argument there.

    And currently between 12 and 15% are contraindicated.

    Can you support this claim with something besides bare assertion?

    So in effect, the World Vaccine Programme cannot in all logic achieve its target if we were to screen out all infants at risk of serious reaction.

    And here’s where you sacrifice any credibility you were granted by referring in capital letters to an entity, the “World Vaccine Programme,” that appears to be a pure figment of your imagination.

  256. #256 Chris
    February 28, 2010

    Antaeus Feldspar:

    And here’s where you sacrifice any credibility you were granted by referring in capital letters to an entity

    How much credibility do you give to anyone who decided paragraphs are optional, argues through blatant assertion and who employs random capitalization?

  257. #257 Antaeus Feldspar
    February 28, 2010

    There’s a reason I said “were granted” instead of “had earned”. It may not be exactly within the Principle of charity to give the factuality of a person’s assertions the benefit of doubt until/unless the assertions grow particularly doubtful, but generally I find it a good practice.

    I’m willing to believe that there might be a significant problem with people being vaccinated when a closer examination of their medical condition might contraindicate vaccination. The idea that such people constitute 12-15% of the population, however, is definitely not one that can be accepted just on say-so. (Though, to be truthful, I should have caught the assertion that infants might suffer a “low lying vaccine induced viral illness” even earlier than that. What on earth does “low lying” mean? I believe what it actually means, to an anti-vaxxer, is “something that I can argue is all over the place, even though people who are watching for such things have seen no signs of such a thing; I can simply argue that it was so ‘low-lying’ that they missed it.”)

  258. #258 Valerie
    March 1, 2010

    In responce to a remark by Chris,
    …’how much credibility do you give to anyone who decided paragraphs are optional, argues through blatent assertion and who employs random capitalization?’

    I would just like to say, it was not my intention to annoy, but I feel strongly that every society has notions of what one should believe and how one should behave. Some of these societal conventions are given explicit formulation in a legal code, others are more intuitively held in a vast body of ethical and practical judgements described as ‘common sense’. Anyone with a curious and well-ordered mind, and who can exercise free thinking, this my friend is what’s important.
    My own personal ideas and beliefs were hard earned. I may not pocess in your mind, the right quality of writing to express them appropriately, but the essence of my paragraph, no matter how articulately they are presented, remain the same.
    After all, the correctness of a statement cannot be determined by whether it is held by a majority or has been believed for a long time by important people. A correct statement is one incapable of being rationally contradicted.

    And in responce to a question raised by Antaeus Fieldspar “What on earth does ‘low lying’ mean?”
    What was meant by this remark is my son is naturally immune compromised, and thus he does not pocesss the ability to heal or rid the body fully of an active infection, so it becomes persistent.
    It is how ever, my intention to put forward another way of thinking in relation to the practice of immunization. Maybe, there is a safer way, as taking a “one-size fits all” approach, can and does lead to secondary disability and sometimes death in an infant who is in some way contraindicated prior to administration.This is not my own assertion,this is a well known medical fact.
    Regards.

  259. #259 Antaeus Feldspar
    March 6, 2010

    It is how ever, my intention to put forward another way of thinking in relation to the practice of immunization. Maybe, there is a safer way, as taking a “one-size fits all” approach, can and does lead to secondary disability and sometimes death in an infant who is in some way contraindicated prior to administration.This is not my own assertion,this is a well known medical fact.

    But what is not a medical fact is your assertion that “between 12 and 15% [of the population] are contraindicated [for vaccination].” That’s an extraordinary claim, and we would need extraordinary evidence in order to accept it. Do you provide extraordinary evidence? You do not. Instead you put forth the eternal refrain of the conspiracy theorist: “everything I’m telling you is the truth, the way things really are, but the Big And Powerful Entrenched Interests are suppressing that truth.” That doesn’t make up for your lack of any supporting evidence; it only brings up the question, how would you know?

  260. #260 valerie
    March 16, 2010

    10 Years of intensive Research.

  261. #261 Chris
    March 16, 2010

    Evidence?

  262. #262 ameliagrace7
    March 17, 2010

    This is a quote directly from the General Medical Council’s (UK) findings on the Lancet study on January 28th, 2010: “The panel wish to make it clear that this case is not concerned with whether there is a link between the MMR Vaccination and Autism.”

    This is directly to Orac: Your article is not only the most ridiculous piece of journalistic trash I’ve ever read but its also factually incorrect! whats sad is that all of you are talking about how the parents that support Dr. Wakefield are in a cult but most of you made comments on this article that had no original thought other than what was written in Orac’s article, if you can call it that. The GMC (UK) made no findings on the MMR vs. Autism link. Read the decision on the GMC next time your going to publically write an article about something it usually goes along with something called “Journalist Integrity.” Look it up.

    On a personal note, I have a son with Autism who had a seizure 5 minutes after the MMR vaccine was adminstered with NO prior history of seizures. He was diagnosed with Autism 3 weeks later. He lost his speech, seized constantly, stopped looking us in the eye, stopped smiling. When I took him to the Dr. they said I’m sorry but he was born like this, interesting because I have video that proves he wasn’t. Doctors like Dr. Wakefield who founded Thoughtful House created a place where these parents can go to get help. My son now talks, laughs, looks us in the eye again after alternative treatments and goes to school with kids his age without even as much as an aid. I could care less of what you think of us as parents but we are fighting to see our kids get better and for those of us who have won we will never stop supporting the doctors who stopped at nothing to help us.

    Gag, barf do whatever you must but while your doing that I’ll watch my son sleep at night knowing that Dr. Wakefield and Doctors just like him helped bring my child back to me. Sad that all you believe is what you read because the stories behind this man would bring you to your knees. I’m sure someone will write something in response to this that finds some way to discredit him for his work and the lancet study but do you even know who he was working for at the time he came out with that study? What happened afterwards? Do some research more than looking at blogs and you may find that you may be the ones in part of the kind of blind faith cult that you see us in…..best of luck because honestly you people are the ones who need it, we’re all good.

  263. #263 Chris
    March 17, 2010

    ameiliagrace7:

    The GMC (UK) made no findings on the MMR vs. Autism link.

    And neither did Wakefield’s now retracted paper. There is nothing in that paper about the MMR causing autism. The only mention by Wakefield of that hypothesis is during his press reports.

    By the way, your story is just an anecdote. The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data.

  264. #264 Kelly
    June 10, 2010

    Well, I am glad to see there are still some thinking people around!
    I decided to check out Andrew Wakefield for myself and I am pleased to find there are people on this site that will stand up to the insanity presented by the great gifted intellectuals! How sad when one becomes so educated they are blinded by their own light.

    What I was looking for was a study done between a group of children where there was no autism and a group where there was autism and the ratio of vaccines given to said groups.
    There has never been a formal study done, the door is open here.
    But there is a group of children where there is no autism reported or recorded. This is a group of Amish children. Now for the death blow, there have been NO VACCINES GIVEN TO THESE CHILDREN. That would be the final word in my study.
    I am looking forward to the ‘intellects’ explaining this.

    Dr. Wakefield is NOT the first Dr. that has been vilified for voicing a connection between autism and vaccines. This will all die down and Dr. Wakefield will fade into the background and the next Dr. will be on the front line. Meanwhile the producers of the vaccines will make a few billion more and we will see 1 in 50 children afflicted with autism.
    Perhaps when 1 out of 2 children have autism the medical/scientific profession will take note. But then again that would be dependent on how much money would be involved.

    Still waiting for that study.

  265. #265 David N. Brown
    June 10, 2010

    Another anti-vax crank on an old thread… or is it the same one?

    News flash: The “Amish Anomaly” story was a hoax. On top of that, even Dan “18/3=29″ Olmsted admitted there were unvaccinated autistic children among the Amish.

  266. #266 Dinah Everett Snyder
    February 11, 2011

    Having just spent some time reading the posts attached to this blog on autism and Dr. Wakefield I would like to tell the author of the article , if it could be called such, that he has done a damning and despicable disservice to the now millions of children in absolute agony due to their symproms of an illness that they were not born with, and on whom governments,the medical establishment, the media and special interest groups have turned their backs.
    Oh! Wait, not exactly ! The special interest groups
    ( read : pharmaceutical companies) have found a way to profit even from this travesty by prescribing more and more drugs to alleviate the symptoms in these children.( which do not work .) Please be aware that attention deficit and related ” labels” are part of the autism spectrum and as such, these children support a multi billion dollar additional drug platform through such drugs as Ritalin etc.

    Scientific Integrity demands following the principles of ethical research, taking a hypothosis through to its own natural conclussion and NOT trying to make the science fit the need or preconceived idea/ notion !

    Contrary to what the media has said, Dr. Wakefield questioned a causal link between autism and the combination vaccine of Measles, Mumps and Rubella, noting that a new measles strain had been used in the combo jab.

    And, the study HAS been duplicated, ad nauseum, in the US, Japan and Australia in the years since Dr. Wakefields first paper hit the headlines.

    Further,many papers have been published that seek to understand the chronic inflammation of the gut associated with many autistic children.Papers have been published that look at the gut issues of ADHD children too, lest you think otherwise. And the evidence supports this as a relevant area of study, a relevant area of answer seeking.

    Rather than attack one man, governments and medical establishments would be better off finding ANSWERS to the question of autism. In fact, each and every person who pays taxes should be demanding that the FDA fund those critical studies, now ! Most especially in light of the fact that the FDA is seeking more and more funding ( read: OUR tax dollars) in order to finance “research” and
    ” development” in “critical areas” on behalf of drug companies, which are global entities and the biggest sector of commerce. They DO NOT need the additional support from a government entity, OR our tax dollars. Unless they intend to gift all tax payers with the resulting medications free of charge to both us and our insurance providers ( read: of course this is a joke ! ) The ignorance and bias on this ENTIRE blog site is indicative of the sick culture that we have become. Know this then, autism issues are no different to those of cancer, diabetes, HIV Aids and auto immue illness…and as such they ALL deserve our investment in Scientific Integrity and transparancy from the Department of Health and Human Services. Drug companies are merely interested in profit, not solutions. There is NO MONEY in a cure, you ignorant bunch of fellow people.

    Autistic children deserve our compassion and attention and their families NEED our help. But for the grace of god, there stands each and every one of YOU.

    If we are able to turn our backs on our wounded soldiers and our damaged children, what does that say of us, and what have we become? Shamed, you have all been shamed.

    Ignorance is no excuse.

    Should you have something intelligent to say, you may contact me at:
    dinaheverettsnyder@hotmail.com

  267. #267 Dinah Everett Snyder
    February 11, 2011

    Having just spent some time reading the posts attached to this blog on autism and Dr. Wakefield I would like to tell the author of the article , if it could be called such, that he has done a damning and despicable disservice to the now millions of children in absolute agony due to their symproms of an illness that they were not born with, and on whom governments,the medical establishment, the media and special interest groups have turned their backs.
    Oh! Wait, not exactly ! The special interest groups
    ( read : pharmaceutical companies) have found a way to profit even from this travesty by prescribing more and more drugs to alleviate the symptoms in these children.( which do not work .) Please be aware that attention deficit and related ” labels” are part of the autism spectrum and as such, these children support a multi billion dollar additional drug platform through such drugs as Ritalin etc.

    Scientific Integrity demands following the principles of ethical research, taking a hypothosis through to its own natural conclussion and NOT trying to make the science fit the need or preconceived idea/ notion !

    Contrary to what the media has said, Dr. Wakefield questioned a causal link between autism and the combination vaccine of Measles, Mumps and Rubella, noting that a new measles strain had been used in the combo jab.

    And, the study HAS been duplicated, ad nauseum, in the US, Japan and Australia in the years since Dr. Wakefields first paper hit the headlines.

    Further,many papers have been published that seek to understand the chronic inflammation of the gut associated with many autistic children.Papers have been published that look at the gut issues of ADHD children too, lest you think otherwise. And the evidence supports this as a relevant area of study, a relevant area of answer seeking.

    Rather than attack one man, governments and medical establishments would be better off finding ANSWERS to the question of autism. In fact, each and every person who pays taxes should be demanding that the FDA fund those critical studies, now ! Most especially in light of the fact that the FDA is seeking more and more funding ( read: OUR tax dollars) in order to finance “research” and
    ” development” in “critical areas” on behalf of drug companies, which are global entities and the biggest sector of commerce. They DO NOT need the additional support from a government entity, OR our tax dollars. Unless they intend to gift all tax payers with the resulting medications free of charge to both us and our insurance providers ( read: of course this is a joke ! ) The ignorance and bias on this ENTIRE blog site is indicative of the sick culture that we have become. Know this then, autism issues are no different to those of cancer, diabetes, HIV Aids and auto immue illness…and as such they ALL deserve our investment in Scientific Integrity and transparancy from the Department of Health and Human Services. Drug companies are merely interested in profit, not solutions. There is NO MONEY in a cure, you ignorant bunch of fellow people.

    Autistic children deserve our compassion and attention and their families NEED our help. But for the grace of god, there stands each and every one of YOU.

    If we are able to turn our backs on our wounded soldiers and our damaged children, what does that say of us, and what have we become? Shamed, you have all been shamed.

    Ignorance is no excuse.

    Should you have something intelligent to say, you may contact me at:
    dinaheverettsnyder@hotmail.com

  268. #268 Chris
    February 11, 2011

    First question, Ms. Snyder, why did you choose to grace us with your unsupported opinions on an article that is almost two years old? There are more recent articles on Wakefield, autism and vaccines. By the way, you are welcome to defend your position on those articles, we are not interested in private email debates. It is much more interesting when the discussion is public.

    Now let us go through some of those unsupported opinions:

    Dr. Wakefield questioned a causal link between autism and the combination vaccine of Measles, Mumps and Rubella, noting that a new measles strain had been used in the combo jab.

    Please show us the evidence for that. Plus be specific on which MMR vaccine he was discussing. Was the one approved for use in the UK before or after 1992 (the difference between them was the mumps strain)?

    And, the study HAS been duplicated, ad nauseum, in the US, Japan and Australia in the years since Dr. Wakefields first paper hit the headlines.

    Please list those papers, noting in particular if they are independent (Wakefield, Krigsman and their collaborators are not authors), how many children (there should be at least twelve), and which MMR vaccine they received (it should be either of the two used in the UK between 1988 and 1998, which means that the Japanese study is not suitable).

    I shall not deal with any more of your rant. If you had truly read this blog with coming up with this opinion “The ignorance and bias on this ENTIRE blog site is indicative of the sick culture that we have become.”, you would have commented on an active thread. Like the one on Bill Gates and the posted today.

  269. #269 NJ
    February 11, 2011

    DES @ 267:

    Should you have something intelligent to say

    We’ll wait for you to start {somehow knowing that it will never happen}

  270. #270 Antaeus Feldspar
    February 11, 2011

    Scientific Integrity demands following the principles of ethical research, taking a hypothosis through to its own natural conclussion and NOT trying to make the science fit the need or preconceived idea/ notion !

    If you really believed that, why on Earth would you support Andrew Wakefield? Trying to make the science fit the need AND the preconceived notion is EXACTLY what he was doing. If you don’t believe that, then ask yourself, “Which came first? Andrew Wakefield seeing the twelve children upon which he based the Lancet paper? Or Andrew Wakefield deciding that he was going to try and depict MMR as a cause of autism?” Remember, Wakefield and Barr went to the UK’s Legal Aid Board specifically requesting funds with which to try and prove an MMR-causes-autism hypothesis before Wakefield examined a single one of the twelve children upon whose cases his hypothesis was supposedly based!

  271. #271 Chris
    February 11, 2011

    I think Ms. Snyder was a post and run crank. She will not be coming back. It looks like it is time to close this two year old blog posting.

  272. #272 Narad
    February 12, 2011

    Not until I get “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad” out of my head.

  273. #273 Chris
    February 12, 2011

    I’m not sure I get the joke, Narad. But it made me laugh.

  274. #274 Narad
    February 12, 2011

    Dinah, won’t you blow your horn?”

  275. #275 squirrelelite
    February 12, 2011

    Narad was probably thinking of the line:

    “Dinah, won’t you blow your horn?”

    That seems to be what Dinah dropped to do.

  276. #276 Matthew Cline
    February 12, 2011

    Remember, Wakefield and Barr went to the UK’s Legal Aid Board specifically requesting funds with which to try and prove an MMR-causes-autism hypothesis before Wakefield examined a single one of the twelve children upon whose cases his hypothesis was supposedly based!

    Ooooh, interesting! Do you have a cite?

  277. #277 Chris
    February 12, 2011

    Can we just say the silly woman is gone? She never intended to defend her warped point of view in the first place. Wakefield was replicated in Australia? What? Who knew?

  278. #278 Dinah Everett Snyder
    February 12, 2011

    When people ( like you) use ONLY the information spoonfed to you by the journalists and medical journals something is sure to get lost in translation.
    You ask why I posted on an old thread, well, I posted because I was replying to ignorance and malice. Those are the types of things that somehow never seem to grow old and fade away. It was sad, sad to see such animosity on a blog and postings…have any of you seen an autistic child? Tried to comfort one? Hold one? Tried to look into the eyes of a non verbal, rocking in agony child who is clearly in pain. Have you tried to imagine the life of a mother as she deals 24/7 with a child of autism, locked away in their own private horror show of fear and anger and pain with no end?
    Didn’t think so.
    I will refrain from answering each of the specifics of the immature commentaries posted subsequent to mine not because I am unable, merely because they are regurgitative of the spoonfeeding of pharmaceutical supported word junkies masquerading as ” journalists”….may I suggest that you take time off from blogging ” opinion” and do a little self serving independant journalism of your own!

    In particular look at the studies of inflammatory gut in comparatives: ” normal” children versus autistic children.

    Further, I am neither ” for” nor ” against” Dr. Wakefield, rather I am intrigued at how the frenzy has frothed around the individual, while relegating the study to “irrelevance”, as opposed to attacking the Science.

    And it is hardly irrelevant now is it? There are far too many autistic children, many suffering horribly on a daily basis, for anything related, for better or worse, to be deemed ” irrelevant”.
    As for the mention of funding: no science, no experiment, no diagnosis and no treatment is free of cost.
    Funding is the cornerstone of science, and medicine.
    R and R is what Big Medicine rolls out as an excuse to charge the public astronomical prices for mediocre medicines, repackaged and revamped to restart the patent clock, while at the same time costing more on the consumer end, and less on the pharma end ( how many times can they R and R a color additive for eg? to restart the patent clock!)

    The papers which I mentioned earlier, as being subsequent to the Lancet Paper by Wakefield are indeed peer reviewed and NOT in any way affiliated with the original UK team.
    In fact one was published in 2010….

    And, just as some sub groups of Jews are predisposed to certain cancers, other ethnic and genetic groups are predisposed to certain illness. Black people IN Sub Saharan Africa are predisposed towards TB. The question is merely: WITHIN that subset, what are the factors of emergence, or cause, and WHY are some, in some way ” protected” ?

    Dr. Wakefield is ONE man….his was ONE study…..many years have passed ( sadly) there have been many others and yet autism is on the rise….denialists say otherwise, the numbers prove my point.

    Vaccines are NOT being handled cautiously enough from lab to consumer, Gardasil is another example…..it has been turned down in India after too many adverse reactions, while in the states it has been recently approved for boys too ! The study was conducted on 15 year olds and up, yet the FDA approved it for children as young as 9…..are they insane? Medications handed out like candy to children with ADHD carry this on their packaging info, ” the exact nature of the treatment mechanism is unknown”….. and the studies are all for short term periods of no more than 5 weeks….yet many many of these children have been on those meds for years, some started as young as 3 years old….

    My point is merely that medicine has run amok, at the expense of our health, we are the most vaccinated country on the planet, and yet we are also the sickest country and spend the most per person on healthcare, while ” outcome” is no better and in fact is dropping sharply…I cite World Health Org on this by the way.

    And in the meantime you write drivel about misreported and bastardized personal attacks, making light of what is a truly horrific issue, autistic children and what their families endure. Governments, media and Medicine has turned their backs on these families and YOU sensationalize it with verbal rubbernecking.

    There, this Dinah has blown her horn, I will not return to this ethically and morally flawed site, and you can read more from me in my upcoming book:
    FDA; CrimesAgainstHumanity:
    Is FDA the Rogue Militia for Big Medicine
    and why it matters……

    Cure? don’t make me laugh….why would they want a cure…for anything…

    yes indeed, go back to singing on your railroad…to nowhere.
    Dinah Everett Snyder.

  279. #279 Matthew Cline
    February 12, 2011

    @Dinah Everett Snyder:

    It was sad, sad to see such animosity on a blog and postings

    Well, when someone commits scientific fraud which contributed to the resurgence of measles in the UK, animosity isn’t exactly an unexpected reaction.

    have any of you seen an autistic child? Tried to comfort one? Hold one?

    If you have the sympathy for autistic children which you imply we lack, then you should be angry at Wakefield for causing autism research resources to be wasted in unfruitful areas.

    I will refrain from answering each of the specifics of the immature commentaries

    Asking for citations is immature? Well, since you haven’t actually named any of these studies I guess that yes, asking for citations in immature.

    rather I am intrigued at how the frenzy has frothed around the individual, while relegating the study to “irrelevance”, as opposed to attacking the Science.

    If Wakefield had merely been wrong, had merely done sloppy research, then we would only have attacked the research he’d done. But he had massive undisclosed conflicts of interest, and committed research fraud, so we attack him as well.

  280. #280 Orac
    February 12, 2011

    Other “wisdom” from Dinah in the comments of this post:

    It is past time that the truth be revealed and I challenge the mainstream media to pick up their pens and start accurately reporting the truth to consumers about the chronic dangers associated with vaccines. For too long the media and FDA has been complicit in the coverup, allowing Big Medicine to reap tainted rewards from a fraudulent practise: that of vaccinating our vulnerable population groups: the young, the elderly and pregnant women. This is a crime against humanity and, Mr. Holden sir, you should be morally and legally obligated to try the pharmaceutical industry in a courtroom for this malpractise towards the population. Later this year a book will be published: FDA; CrimesAgainstHumanity…..and vaccines top the list for the sheer number of humanitarian violations, and don’t forget Guardasil which is an abomination and now being offered to our young boys, as if putting our daughters in harms way were not enough for these criminals. Convict each and every one. Time to clean house!

    Dinah’s a new antivax wingnut. I don’t recall having come across her before.

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