Back in 2000 the National Vaccine Information Center, a consumer run educational non-profit, which “does not advocate for or against the use of vaccines” published an article entitled “Autism and Vaccines: a New Look at an Old Story.”
The article is still available on line:
The issue of the effectiveness and potential dangers of vaccines has raged on now for decades with increasing numbers of parents opting out of routine vaccination of their children. This has prompted a number of states to propose and / or pass mandatory vaccination legislation.
Now most of you who read me know that my wife and I had a profoundly disabled son. You can read all about our trials and tribulations in a series of four posts on this blog:
Michael was born on April 17, 1975 and, looking back, was perfectly normal, with absolutely no indication that there was any medical problem. He came home with a clean bill of health.. That Summer he got his shots. He ran a high fever, screamed all night. “That is to be expected. He’ll be fine.”
By Christmas he was in Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York with gran mal seizures.
I had the best neurologists money could buy.
They had no firm diagnosis. There was clearly something wrong with the frontal lobes of his brain. We had extensive genetic testing. “Are you two related?” No.
“It might be Krabbe’s Disease;” the tests were inconclusive.
We took him home. He never walked, spoke or sat up. Every meal he ever ate we fed him. Everywhere he ever went we carried him. He never gave us any indication that he could see or hear. One morning ten years later he woke up and simply died in my arms.
Two years after his first seizure, another doctor expressed doubt that Michael had Krabbe’s. He asked about the DPT vaccine we routinely had given to him.
He gave us a report from Britain indicating a number of serious neurological problems in infants. We contacted the CDC and were asked to provide Michael’s medical records for their “study.”
By 1985, the year Mike died, came the Coulter and Fisher report – persistent reports by parents in the U.S., Canada and Europe that their children were healthy, bright and happy until they received one or more vaccines and then descended into the isolated, painful world of autism marked by chronic immune and neurological dysfunction, including repetitive and uncontrollable behavior.
“There’s no question that DPT vaccinations save lives; they have lowered the annual pertussis deaths from about 1000 annually to less than ten. Unfortunately, as reported by the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), the form of the vaccine used and sanctioned by the Centers for Disease Control also kills as many as 900 children per year, and leaves one of every 62,000 children immunized with permanent brain damage.”
British researcher Dr. Gordon T. Stewart, of the Department of Community Medicine at the University of Glasgow, documented adverse reactions to DPT vaccine and evaluated the benefit to risk ratio for children in the United Kingdom. His research demonstrated that 1 of every 54,000 children receiving the vaccine suffered encephalopathy (brain disfunction) with rare instances of mental retardation ensuing. Other symptoms included fits of screaming, unresponsiveness, shock, vomiting, localized paralysis, and convulsions.
Back in the 1970s the DPT vaccine utilized “whole cell” antigens; it took until the 1990s to introduce an “acelular”vaccine (which uses only a portion of the disease cell as an antigen); the acellular vaccines supposedly had markedly reduced adverse effects.
The “purified” vaccine had been produced and used in other countries for over 15 years, before it was available here. The catch: it costs $9 more per injection at the time.
While most parents would happily cough up the additional nine bucks to ensure their children’s safety, drug companies lobbied to delay the use of the purified vaccine (acellular) for as long as possible — it might cut into their inflated 50 percent profit margins per vaccination.
The incidence of autism, like that of learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), asthma, diabetes, arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease and other autoimmune and neurological disorders, has risen dramatically in the U.S. and other technologically advanced countries, while high vaccination rates have caused the incidence of childhood infectious diseases to fall just as dramatically in these countries.
Instead of epidemics of infectious disease, there are now epidemics of chronic disease.
A University of California study published by the U.S. Department of Education in 1996 found that “The proportion of the US population with disabilities has risen markedly during the past quarter-century . . . this recent change seems to be due not to demographics, but to greater numbers of children and young adults reported as having disabilities.” The study concluded that “these changes may be partly accounted for by the increases in the prevalence of asthma, mental disorders (including attention deficit disorder), mental retardation, and learning disabilities that have been noted among children in recent years.”
I am going to be 77 years young soon. I grew up in the crowded streets of New York, went to public schools, and over the years met lots and lots of folks.
My entire generation had measles, mumps, chickenpox, etc. and no one went screaming into the streets, as if the plague had returned. Measles has re-appeared with less than 1,000 cases in a population of 330 plus million; not exactly what I would call an epidemic.
Mothers would hold “measles parties” in my youth. While I was vaccinated for small pox as a kid, I never caught mumps or measles or chicken pox though I did catch Rubella (“German measles”) with no lasting affect. I got all y shots in the Army. And we were all sick. My children caught chicken pox (all three, including Michael) and survived although my eldest daughter has a pock mark on her nose.
As for the DPT shot, my daughters received the purified vaccine, using only a portion of the cell – and the series of three shots was divided into nine. They were fully immunized with no adverse affects.
And thought I met lots of kids unvacinnated against measles, mumps or chickent pox I never met anyone with autistic like behaviors until the 1970s. When Michael became disabled my wife and I began moving in those circles – others parents with neurologically impaired children. I met my first autistic kid.
The number of children with autism today is simply astounding to me. This old guy thinks something is seriously wrong.
And we need do a hell of a lot more than pass legislation mandating childhood vaccination and relieving the manufacturers of vaccines of any liability for their products.
In his 1990 book Vaccination, Social Violence and Criminality, medical historian Harris Coulter, Ph.D., expands on the evidence he and Barbara Loe Fisher first presented in DPT: A Shot in the Dark and draws parallels between the residual learning disabilities and hyperactive/abnormal behavior caused by complications of disease or vaccine-induced encephalitis and the hyperactive/abnormal behavior and learning disabilities being exhibited by more and more American children.
No doctor ever linked Michael’s disabilities and death to his cellular DPT vaccinations.
They never will.
But I know; I just know how and from what he died.
Father and son – 1977. His brain damage was so severe that his life was already over and it was recommended that we “put him away”. My wife screamed at them: “Perhaps we’ll just put him in a bedroom drawer!!” He would die in my arms in 1985, just 2 months short of ten years old.