• Proponent of Autism Scare Sacked from Medical Council

    You may have heard about it before: the MMR (Measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine is linked to autism. Not true. Read on.
    by Justine Camacho-Tajonera .
  • Vaccine

     

    In a recent news article on Telegraph.co.uk by Tom Chivers, it was reported that Dr. Andrew Wakefield, the proponent of the link between the MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella) vaccine and autism was dismissed from the General Medical Council of the U.K. due to unethical and irresponsible research practices.

     

    Big Autism Scare

     

    His initial research published on the Lancet, a U.K. based reputable medical journal, purported that the MMR vaccine caused the condition of autism in children. Even though his initial results were scanty (the research was conducted on only eight child respondents), the effect was worldwide panic among parents. A lot of otherwise rational parents started re-thinking whether it was right or not to have their children undergo the "triple jab" vaccine for fear of exposing them to possible autism.

     

    MMR-Autism Link Disproven

     

    Since the time Dr. Wakefield published his findings, a lot of other research has been conducted (including a study on 500,000 Danish children in the New England Journal of Medicine) which disproves the link between the MMR vaccine and autism.

     

    In the UK, the cost of this scare, perpetrated by the media, has been a rise in reported cases of measles (and even deaths resulting from some severe cases).

     

    Implications for Filipinos

     

    If you have been affected by this MMR vaccine-autism scare, remember that the chances of your child getting measles because he didn't get the MMR vaccine is higher than the chances of his getting autism at all. Weigh the likelihood of the consequences and consult your pediatrician.

     

    More importantly, consider it a privilege that you have access to the MMR vaccine. Most Filipino children are deprived of basic medical services due to the level of poverty in the country.

     

    The recommended age to get your child vaccinated is between 12-15 months. Consult your pediatrician about your child's immunization schedule.

     

    Other Relevant Articles:

     

    Read more about the after-effects of vaccines and when to call your doctor.

    Find out more about when to see a developmental pediatrician and what to expect (for possible autism or other developmental delays).

     

     

    Image from Flickr.com/prashant.

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