No link between vaccines and autism

24 May

It now appears that an extensive review of the literature reveals conclusively that there is no link between vaccines and autism. In several countries, especially Britain, there has been a growing resistance to vaccines because of fears that they caused autism. But parents should remember the first rule of statistical analysis: "Correlation is not causation." For several years, the most significant pieces of evidence that a link existed was, first, that the number of cases of autism seemed to be correlated with the increase in vaccinations and, second, that autism appeared in children about the time of their first vaccinations. But a panel review of the evidence has strongly concluded that the link does not exist:

"The weight of that evidence is pretty substantial," said Dr Marie McCormick, an expert in child and mother health at the Harvard School of Public Health who chaired the panel.

"The overwhelming evidence from several well-designed studies indicates that childhood vaccines are not associated with autism," she added.

The same holds true for a mercury-based preservative called thimerosal often used in vaccines, the panel found.

When parents are faced with something like autism, that look for answers where ever they can find them. We have such a small understanding of autism that the vaccination link is an easy trap to fall into. The danger is that refusing vaccinations for your children because you feel that it might lead to autism in your children endangers you children (and those around you) far more then the vaccine. So the lesson is, get you vaccines.

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