Friday, February 5, 2010

MMR & Autism Journal Retraction

The MMR (mumps, measles, and rubella) vaccine is the subject of major controversy and stress for many families. I know Lani and I have had several discussions about this vaccine in particular because of the panic involved with the potential to cause autism in our precious little bundles. I got the MMR vaccine, so did Hubby, my sister, Lani, and just about every person I know. We are all perfectly fine. But then you start to doubt yourself because supposedly there is factual evidence that there is a link between the MMR vaccine and autism.... or so we thought.

This story (Medical Journal Retracts Study Linking Autism to Vaccine) flashed across the news this morning while I was out of the room. When I came back in the room, Hubby gave me the cliffs notes of the story. The journal that Dr. Wakefield wrote back in 1998 about his study linking the MMR vaccine to a cause of autism has been retracted. What?! Yep.

Dr. Wakefield's sample of kids was from his son's birthday party. Lovely. How very random of a selection... NOT! So for 12 years, this study has wrecked havoc on pediatricians and parents. I had Hubby ask our pediatrician about this a few months ago because I didn't want to see like the "paranoid mom" if I didn't have to. Our pediatrician was really great about it - which made me glad that we chose him. He recommended a book (that I can't remember the name of at the moment but will ask next time we go in) to read that explained why Dr. Wakefield's study was not very credible.

Now here we are with a retraction of his study for a few reasons, but mostly because it was unethical. I am no doctor, but how Dr. Wakefield got from point A to point B makes no sense to me. It's just very interesting to me. I seriously breathed a huge sigh of relief when I heard that news story this morning, and even more of a relief.

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