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The Vaccine/Autism Link: Finally Discredited?

by verdemama on February 4, 2010

Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past decade, you’ve heard about the debate swirling around the alleged link between the MMR vaccine and autism. Earlier this week, the esteemed medical journal Lancet retracted the controversial paper that linked vaccines with autism and fueled a backlash against getting kids immunized. Not only could the results of the 1998 study never be replicated, but it turns out the lead researcher had been taking money from a lawyer suing vaccine manufacturers. Doh!

I was definitely one of those parents freaked out by the possible vaccination/autism link and the seemingly tons of anecdotal evidence to support the claim. Not panicked enough to skip immunizations altogether—because they are obviously critical in preventing a number of gnarly diseases—but enough to have my son immunized on an alternate, slowed-down and spaced-out version of the vax schedule, similar to the one suggested by Dr. Robert Sears.

{Side note: If you’re confused about vaccinations—and really, what parent isn’t?—I’ve found The Vaccine Book to be a really helpful resource. It lays out the straight dope about immunizations and the diseases they treat, and while Dr. Sears is pro vax, he does address parents’ concerns without making us feel like we’re crazy conspiracy theorists who have no understanding of how medicine and biology work.}

I’ll still immunize Orion on an alternate schedule because I think it’s easier on his system to not introduce so many viruses, chemicals and the like into his body all at once. But I admit, I breathed a major sigh of relief when I heard the vaccine/autism link has been discredited.

What about you? Has this revelation changed the way you think about immunizations?

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