Beangirl made some good points:
I find it totally interesting that (for example in the case of vaccines purportedly causing autism) the only research supporting this was (supposedly) performed by THE GUY MAKING THE ALTERNATIVE VACCINE and has been completely debunked. But you still hear people ranting on about not giving the vaccine because “it’s a fact” that it causes autism. That one makes me nuts. They never seem to quote statistics about how much more sensitive diagnostic techniques are now, not to mention awareness. Or all the other environmental conditions that might be contributing.
That Dr Wakefield has clear conflict of interests issues with his alternative MMR vaccine, as reported by The NY Times. What kind of a quack do you have to be for The Lancet to withdraw your publication? Wow. Worse, of course, are the children and families who have paid for this fear-mongering and profiteerism from the misery of others. Shame on him for this unethical treatment of CHILDREN. He subjected 11 of them to lumbar punctures and colonoscopies they did not need to write his ‘research’. As the NYT says, ‘After Dr. Wakefield’s study, vaccination rates plunged in Britain and the number of measles cases soared.’ Measles can be fatal. It can cause encephalitis and brain damage; mumps in teenage boys and men can cause sterility. (Source: http://www.health.gov.on.ca/english/public/pub/immun/pdf/mmr.pdf )
Right there with you, Bean, on how environmental issues and better diagnostics may be contributors to the rise in autism.
Subversive Sewer, I agree, people (including me) can have a lot of opinions unsupported by facts.
Hannah Poling’s case is tragic, but how many people and lives have been saved by vaccines?
Having read about vaccines, I decided to continue with Madeline’s vaccinations but to more or less follow the common-sense approach heralded by Dr Robert Sears: A Parent’s Guide to Managing Vaccinations. Check out the sidebar link which includes Dr Sears’ alternative schedule for vaccinations, in comparison to the typical schedule recommended in the US. Good stuff. It makes sense to me that the human immune system doesn’t generally have to fight off multiple infections of serious diseases all at once. Hannah Poling received 9 doses and had those with mercury preservatives in them, which were in use stateside before 2001. If a 19-month old baby were infected by 9 illnesses, not in their weakened or non-infective form as in a vaccine, there’s probably a very high chance s/he would die from this catastrophic attack. It makes sense to me to not ‘confuse’ a young immune system with lots of vaccines all at once.
We are very, very lucky that we live here in Belgium where I had a long maternity leave that finished on Monday, and I’m now on parental leave for another 3 months. If I had to put Madeline in daycare, I might be more inclined (or obligated, even) to increase the vaccine tempo.