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Any chance i can ask about the MMR? is it likely to cause carnage???

(56 Posts)
QueenofVenus Sun 05-Jul-09 11:54:01

My DP and i have had a great debate about this last night, he has a son from a prev rel, i have 3 from prev rel, and we now have one on the way (only first trimester early days so WAY too soon to be arguing over it anyway, but you know how these heated debates go!) My 3 have NOT had the MMR nor will they ever! his son has, so we are greated with a great confrontation, he says its all bullshit and its MORE then safe, its just stupid people believing everything they hear/read angry i know of a handful of kids who have had 'reactions' to it (to varying degree's) 3 of which do now have serious autism! Can anyone help me out here, am i being, as he describes a 'stupid parent' or is there genuinly a cause for concern that although its not proven its not worth the risk???? help!

moffat Sun 05-Jul-09 11:59:50

SIL is convinced that the MMR played a part in her ds being ASD, but I always suspected something even before he had the jab and she didn't see it. Unlike her I had been around babies alot so was probably a bit more aware, so, because I know the background I do not accept that in that case the MMR "caused" it.

mosschops30 Sun 05-Jul-09 12:13:01

FWIW I dont think youre a stupid parent, we are all faced with endless decisions like this from the moment we concieve.

dd was born around the time of the original MMR scare, I was young, didnt know anything about research and believed everything I read in the media. She didnt have it.
As I got older and had ds, knew a bit more, decided that I would of course have him vaccinated, and then had dd done too.

IMHO there are no proven links between MMR and autism, yes some children experience reactions to it, but same with all vaccines. As moffat suggests most people who have been diagnosed as autistic, would have done so with or without having the MMR, its just that diagnosis often occurs at around the same age, so is often attributed.

There are lots of differing opinions on here, and everyone is entitled to believe what they want. I hope you can come to a mutual agreement with your dp

lljkk Sun 05-Jul-09 12:20:21

Oh heavens, you'll get a huge variety of responses here. Each of you will end up reading from them only what you want to. You might want to research what the high-risk factors are supposed to be for MMR-induced-damage; your DC may not qualify at all.

If you continue with strong disagreement, I sincerely suggest that when the baby-to-be reaches 13 months you flip a coin to decide it.

I am open-minded about the possibility of vaccine damage, but had no hesitations about giving my own DC the MMR. In fact, reading (on MN) Spidermama's recent experience of her 4 DC with measles made me stampede to the surgery to get DC4's slightly overdue MMR.

crokky Sun 05-Jul-09 12:22:14

Why don't you compromise and have single jabs? Only downside with them is the cost (and the fact that mumps is out of stock at the moment).

amidaiwish Sun 05-Jul-09 12:22:22

I think if anyone could answer your question then they would get a noble peace prize, this issue causes so much controversy.

My taking on it is that some children are more susceptible to problems from it, it is quite a lot of stuff given to children in one go.

My two DDs have had the first MMR and are having their boosters tomorrow. They are both fit and healthy.

Have your other children had single jabs instead? That is an option if you feel strongly, but not vaccinating against measles at all is not an option imo.

maria1665 Sun 05-Jul-09 12:35:17

They are understanding more and more what causes autism. There is a lot of research and discussion about it at the moment - and NONE of it concerns the MMR.

Of greater concern is the loss of 'herd immunity' once the number of people taking up the vaccine falls below a critical level. This means that children who CANNOT have the vaccine for whatever reason - too young, suffering with other health conditions such as leukimia - are exposed to the illness.

The arguments are perhaps different now than they were 10 years ago. Measles was, at that time, not seen as a threat - the vaccination programme had neutralised the risks it posed, and even those who hadn't been vaccinated for what ever reason, were receiving the benefit of herd mentality. Autism, 10 years ago, was just being properly recognised, and seemed to be everywhere.

Now the situation is different. Measles cases are on a dramatic rise - we've had two big outbreaks in my area. My baby was called in as part of an emergancy vaccination programme. She was already suffering from a bug, and the nurse was so worried about delaying giving of the vaccine that she called the doctor in to give a second opinion on whether to delay or not.

They are learning more and more about autism, and the link to MMR doesn't get a mention.

Have the argument by all means, but you may wish to look again at the pros and cons.

flockwallpaper Sun 05-Jul-09 15:14:01

No drug or vaccine is risk free, but measles can have serious consequences. I had DS vaccinated because I felt that the risks of not vaccinating him outweighed the risks of vaccinating him.

I would suggest taking the heat out of the argument by trying to gather the unbiased facts and making a list of the known pros and cons together.

juicy12 Sun 05-Jul-09 16:57:56

Oh my word, it is such a contentious issue. But one HUGE factor as well is your social responsibility to other people's children too. There needs to be a certain percentage (can't remember what, but it's a high one) of vaccine take-up in the community in order for the vaccines to be effective. So you could say that by choosing not to vaccinate, you're bringing down the percentage and thereby increasing the risk of an outbreak ~(which has happened before in parts of London, where MMR take-up is lower). I would hate to think that I'd put another child at risk by refusing to have mine vaccinated based on a now-discredited report. And, don't forget, Measles can cause deafness and can be fatal, mumps can be devastating for males and rubella can cause serious birth defects to an unborn baby. They''re not exactly harmless diseases. IMHO it's pretty selfish to expect other people to have their kids vaccinated and hope that enough of them have done it to keep your child safe. I'm not suggesting that's what you're doing, QoV, but I remember having this debate with an old work colleague who admitted this was what she'd done. I had both mine vaccinated, didn't think twice about it.

saintmaybe Sun 05-Jul-09 17:11:25

Wakefield's work has not been discredited

ShowOfHands Sun 05-Jul-09 17:17:03

It is very important to note, as saintmaybe says, that Wakefield's original work has not been discredited.

OP, all you can do is research and make up your own mind. Beware anybody else telling you what to do and why, regardless of their standpoint.

Can I recommend Richard Halvorsen's Truth About Vaccines book to you?

And it's not a choice between MMR and nothing. There are singles available but unfortunately at a cost.

You are not stupid or silly btw.

juicy12 Sun 05-Jul-09 20:49:53

No doubt this can rumble on for ages, but I would just like to correct Saintmaybe before I pop off to a less controversial area. This is a quote from just one of many articles surrounding Wakefield and his hocus pocus findings: "That study, by Dr Andrew Wakefield, has been discredited (he has since been accused of changing and misreporting results in his research) and high-quality, long-term research projects in a number of countries have found no link whatsoever between MMR and autism."
People will believe whatever they want, though, and the OP really shouldn't make up her mind on such an important issue based on the opinions a message board.

nickytwotimes Sun 05-Jul-09 20:52:45

I thnk everyone should have their kids immunised, unless ther is a genuine contraindication.
However, it is down to you as the parent as to what you do.
Don't listen to us lot on here, on either side of the debate. wink grin

PacificDogwood Sun 05-Jul-09 20:57:14

FWIW: DSs x3 all had MMR with no ill effects and any subsequent children will too.

I did simple risk assessment: risk of adverse vacc reaction no matter how small vs The Very Real And Much More Likely Risk Of Permanent Damage Due To Measles.

Yes, herd immunity and all that, too, but it was the above that swung it for me. I am a GP, not that that makes me a specialist, but I did do a bit of digging before making a decision.

<<will now leave this thread before I heed hard hat>>
<<bows out>>

TurtleAnn Sun 05-Jul-09 20:59:26

I am going to sound very one-sided here but here goes...
The Dr and his study have been discredited.
Measles, Mumps and Rubella are serious childhood illnesses that can result in the worst possible outcomes that you don't want to consider; death, serious mental impairment, infertility.
No study has yet been able to link Autism and the MMR and this has been one of the most replicated studies in recent years.

I don't think you are a silly Mum for being concerned. I am angry at the media for misleading you and not being accurate when they published the data in the first instance and not following the story through when they study was later discredited.

Your GP has all the facts. The NHS have published advice on this and your practice nurse at your GP surgery will have time to talk all of this through with you if you book an appointment to speak to her and get the MMR - booking the appointment doesn't commit you to having the jab but it does allow you to get the evidence from someone who understands it.

Can I recommend the book 'Bad Science' by Ben Goldacre.

StarlightMcKenzie Sun 05-Jul-09 21:00:58

Message withdrawn

hedgiemum Sun 05-Jul-09 21:15:09

You're not stupid, just trying to do the best thing for your DC. At the time you chose for your older DC to not have MMR, there was a lot of scaremongering in the press. The stuff in the press put me off MMR - I wanted to do singles measles jab instead. But DH was a research scientist at the time and did extensive research and felt comfortable with MMR, so I decided that since it was his area of expertise we should go with his opinion.

So all my DC have had MMR and all other vaccinations. No bad reactions to them at all. My take on the whole thing is that MMR and other vaccinations are not suitable for some children (your Dr will have told you if this is the case for yours), so those of us whose DC can be immunised and contribute towards herd protection, should do so for the sake of all children.

Since you state categorically that your older DC will never be getting MMR, I would like to encourage you to look into single jabs instead, if they haven't already had them.

Loopymumsy Sun 05-Jul-09 21:17:05

Message withdrawn

FiveGoMadInDorset Sun 05-Jul-09 21:22:52

Couldn't make up my mind with all the informations so my DD has had singles and then the booster last week, Ds booked in for singles from August. Couldn't not vaccinate but didnt want the all in one.

joybee Sun 05-Jul-09 21:38:43

My two had the single jabs and then the MMR booster when they started school. I agonised over the decision tbh. Though the medical evidence seems to be quite clear there is no link. Maybe now I might choose differently. It wasn't an option to do nothing though.

bigstripeytiger Sun 05-Jul-09 21:47:53

My thinking around this was very similar to PacificDogwoods:

Risk of vaccine Vs Risk of measles.

The low level of vaccination meant that I didnt really think about herd immunity when deciding whether or not to vaccinate my children. I was convinced that the risk of getting measles was high enough that it would benefit my children to be vaccinated.

My 3 have all had the MMR.

Spidermama Sun 05-Jul-09 21:59:11

I'm happy with my decision not to vaccinate. My four have recently had measles and throughout I was still confident I've made the right decision.

If you'd like some reading material to help you argue discuss with your dp I would suggest this or this for starters.

QueenofVenus Mon 06-Jul-09 10:31:06

Thanks everyone for the feedback, just been reading through them all and must admit im surprised at things ive learned, for starters, and im ashamed to admit it never even occured to me re the 'herd immunity' blush and i did expect there to be a fair few negative opinions re MMR, im more than ok to admit when im wrong, or im worrying unecassarily, if there truly is no risk, then i may consider looking into them having MMR. I dont want to risk my children or other peoples children by not properly vaccinating them. Will have to go and do some more reading......

saintmaybe Mon 06-Jul-09 10:31:35

I have a child with autism and a family history of epilepsy and auto-immune conditions. I will not be vaccinating my dcs, what they choose to do as adults is of course up to them.
Of course I've done lots of research, of course I've had doubts, of course I'm doing what I think is best for my children.
how can I do otherwise?

I would disregard anyone on either side of the debate who says it's an obvious no-brainer. There's a lot to think about.

But I'm happy with my decision too
(waves to Spidermama)

Powdoc Mon 06-Jul-09 10:47:09

Saint - there are obviously a lot of issues with immunisation and I totally support every parent's right to make the decision that they think best. However, I would just add that, of course, leaving your children to make up their minds as adults doesn't necessarily resolve the issue. For example, mumps in an adult may, I understand, cause infertility in some cases. Measles can be a serious illness and there are posters in my GPs to warn that 1 in 10 (I think) children with measles are hospitalised.

As I said, I totally support your right to make the decision you did, but just wanted to point out to the OP that there are lots and lots of factors which need to be weighed up before deciding not to vaccinate (as I am sure you did).

OP, IME, reading Ben Goldacre and understanding more about the original MMR study really did help me decide that my DD WILL be getting the shot when it's time.

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