Wednesday, September 22, 2010

CDC: No connection between vaccines, autism

From RTT News:

A new study from researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has rebuffed the connection between autism and exposure to vaccinations with a preservative called thimerosal.

The CDC's study is the most recent to speak out against the connection, which was first reported 12 years ago in The Lancet. The study has since been retracted and its lead researcher has been barred from practicing medicine.

"I don't think there is much worthwhile to study anymore with regard to thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism," Frank DeStefano, the CDC's Director of Immunization Safety, told WebMD.

For the study, DeStefano and his team reviewed the health records of 256 autistic children and 752 children without autism between 1994 and 1999. They found no significant increase in the risk of autism for children whose parents were exposed to thimerosal-containing vaccines.

And while the CDC's new data seemingly piles on to a heap of data contradicting the initial research, some doctors fear that the myth may live on.

"I don't think we should expect that the science is going to completely counter what is a largely emotional response," said Dr. Margaret C. Fisher of the Children's Hospital at Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, New Jersey.

"We are at a time in this country where there is a general distrust of science," she said. "I don't think people distrust their individual doctors, but there is distrust of the medical establishment."