Measles is back, and it's because your kids aren't vaccinated: Scientific American Blog

This one's causing a dust-up over at the Scientific American's "60-Second Science" blog




Measles is back, and it's because your kids aren't vaccinated

David Biello

If you didn't vaccinate your kids, you too could find yourself partly responsible for the resurgence of a disease thought eliminated in 2000.

Measles—a highly contagious disease-causing virus—is making a comeback in the U.S., thanks to parents fears over vaccines. Fifteen children under 20, including four babies, have been hospitalized and 131 sickened by the red splotches since the beginning of this year in 15 states and the District of Columbia, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

The CDC had announced in 2000 that the disease was eliminated in the U.S. thanks to a vaccine that can completely control it. But fears of autism have led some parents to forego this treatment and at least 63 of the sickened children were unvaccinated.

Peditrician Pauline Filipek of the University of California, Irvine told ScientificAmerican.com this spring that parents who don't vaccinate their kids are putting the tykes at risk of long-forgotten diseases, like measles. What they're not doing: preventing autism.

"Many, if not most, of the younger siblings [of autistic children] never have any vaccinations," says Filipek, who believes that autism is not caused by vaccines. "And they are as autistic as the day is long."

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Measles is back, and it's because your kids aren't vaccinated: Scientific American Blog

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