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Can the MMR or other vac ever cause autism?

(335 Posts)
StarlightMcKenzie Mon 18-Aug-14 22:04:15

plus3 Mon 18-Aug-14 22:10:49

I don't believe vaccines cause autism. I am not convinced by this paper. Sorry.

AuntieStella Mon 18-Aug-14 22:11:52

A key bit from the full text:

"Rather than concluding that the first MMR vaccine could be playing a causal role in autism in these children, the study authors instead attributed the increased risk to greater numbers of autistic children receiving timely vaccinations in order to participate in State of Georgia special education services."

MostWicked Mon 18-Aug-14 22:13:52

Simple really.

PandasRock Mon 18-Aug-14 22:15:39

Star, are you in the mood for a flaming, or what?!

You know my views on this, and it am mightily glad that I didn't have dd2 or ds vaccinated, but this thread probably won't go well (when do they ever?)

I wish I had the energy to get involved, but I am in the death throes of summer holidays from hell, and I'm not sure I can face it.

Interesting read, though, and I have had some interesting links popping up in various news feeds over the last couple of weeks (now just need to find the time to actually read them properly).

StarlightMcKenzie Mon 18-Aug-14 22:17:20

I didn't asked 'does' it? I asked 'can' it?

StarlightMcKenzie Mon 18-Aug-14 22:17:33


StarlightMcKenzie Mon 18-Aug-14 22:17:35

I didn't asked 'does' it? I asked 'can' it?

StarlightMcKenzie Mon 18-Aug-14 22:19:10

Pandas I'm HE ds from Sept (if can get dodgy permission)!

When can I meet your brood? Or at least the not now so teeny one?

gamerchick Mon 18-Aug-14 22:21:05

No. I wish people would stop beating this tired monkey.

PandasRock Mon 18-Aug-14 22:23:56

I've dipped in and out of the SN board, so have been vaguely following your HE stuff. I admire you - I couldn't do it! Am counting down the days until school starts back blush

If you're around and know of a vaguely suitable softplay (or similar hell) then we are free this week (I warn you that dd1 is particularly scratchy atm though, and dd2 is reacting in typical Aspie ways. Ds is bonkers but charming)

Otherwise after school starts I can bring positively giant ds along somewhere

callamia Mon 18-Aug-14 22:30:33

There's some interesting work that suggests that African-American children are more likely to be diagnosed with certain disorders based on a racial bias, rather than a real inter-racial difference too.

CatherinaJTV Tue 19-Aug-14 08:34:48

no, it cannot. The explanation for these results is very easy and was given by the authors of the original study which actually collected the data and consisted of real epidemiologists:

This data was collected in Atlanta and is cherry picking the data from black boys from the entire data set. A black Atlantan boy is significantly more likely to be poorer than their non-black peer, and have significantly worse access to health care. A child who has not been vaccinated with MMR at 36 months of age, where the recommendation at the time was 15 months, is likely not to receive adequate health care, and MUCH less likely to be diagnosed with autism. The title for this paper could as well have been

poverty and medical neglect protect from autism (diagnosis).

This is just one example of the piss poor and desperate "science" the vaccine-autism protagonist base their false ideas on.

SideOfFoot Tue 19-Aug-14 18:50:22

I haven't read the link.

How on earth can you ever prove that the MMR or any other vaccine can't cause autism. You can't prove a negative. There were no black swans in the world ........until some were discovered.

The most you can ever say is that there is no evidence that the MMR or any other vaccine causes autism.

If you go by court cases that have been won you might even be tempted to conclude that there is indeed some evidence that they do in fact cause autism.

callamia Tue 19-Aug-14 18:57:02

Cause is too strong a word.

It may be that some children are born with a predisposition toward being particularly sensitive to some vaccines, this might explain some of gut symptoms seen in some children with autism. However, we simply don't know. We don't know enough about this to warn against MMR; the risks associated with the diseases it protects against outweigh a hypothetical risk associated with neurodevelopmental regression/autism.

Skina Tue 19-Aug-14 18:59:44


gamerchick Tue 19-Aug-14 19:02:05

Well I had a gut feeling from birth long before anybody stuck any needles in him and my heart sank when he reached crawling age, long before he had any mmr.

Or maybe it was the heel prick test that did it.. or the gas and air in labour hmm

MysteriousCircusZebra Tue 19-Aug-14 19:02:15

Good post SideofFoot.

noblegiraffe Tue 19-Aug-14 19:11:39

I've had a look through the paper and sample size for each group seems notable by its absence. They comment that they had to cut off analysis at a certain point because otherwise a group would contain fewer than 5 individuals doesn't fill me with confidence about the rest of the groups.

And yes, poor kids who are presented to the doc for vaccination are surely more likely to be presented to the doc for diagnosis, because it shows that those families have access to healthcare.

LittlePeasMummy1 Fri 22-Aug-14 16:48:57

I have to analyse this sort of data for work and am always suspicious when a paper reports a finding about a very specific group of people. What has usually happened is that an overall analysis has found nothing, so they go on a 'fishing expedition' to analyse sub groups within the data set. In this paper, the analysis of the data set overall produced a result that was only marginally statistically significant. I suspect they probably then analysed lots of different groups and found the positive result that they are reporting. This type of analysis is subject to what is called 'type I statistical error' which is basically where, if you do enough analyses, by chance, you will find a positive result, i.e detect an effect that is not there. Add to this all of the other limitations that have already been pointed out and I would say it provides no evidence...

EdithWeston Fri 22-Aug-14 17:33:46

If you throw enough processing power at a data set, you'll probably find correlations

But that's not a synonym for causation.

HoleySocksBatman Sat 23-Aug-14 08:14:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HoleySocksBatman Sat 23-Aug-14 08:16:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

honeysucklejasmine Sat 23-Aug-14 08:28:01

Correlation is not causation, exactly as EdithWeston says.

No, no, absolutely not, no. link

Interestingly, there has been some recent research on the number of neurological connections in the brains of Autism patients. They found there were more. link

Hurr1cane Sat 23-Aug-14 08:37:33

Of course it can.

Vaccines CAN cause brain damage.

Brain damage CAN cause autistic traits.

It CAN yes.

I don't believe there's a massive correlation.

But if I had another child I would not risk them.

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