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MMR Vaccine Does Not Cause Autism, Says IOM

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, August 26, 2011

Claiborne Johnston, MD, a member of the committee and director of the Neurovascular Disease and Stroke Center at the University of Califorina San Francisco, acknowledged that the committee did not quantify the number of adverse events likely to stem from administration of any of these vaccines.

"You think about an apple. Can an apple cause choking?" he asked. "Our task was to determine whether an apple could cause choking, it was not to say how frequently does choking occur or to ask whether the benefits of an apple are outweighed by the rarity of choking."


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However, he added, "if you look at the safety issues that we did identify, where there was significant evidence you have some serious adverse events associated with these vaccines, particularly the live vaccines, those are rare, and almost always the vaccines are preventing more of the event that they're causing. So it looks like the net benefit for any given parent or kid is clearly positive."

Many adverse events are time-limited, such as fainting, and very controllable, he said.

He said committee members expect that the report will be more useful to clinicians than the public, and that providers "will use it to inform parents about vaccinating their kids."

See Also:
HHS Updates National Vaccine Plan
Healthcare Workers Still Skeptical About Flu Vaccinations


Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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4 comments on "MMR Vaccine Does Not Cause Autism, Says IOM"


Craig (9/14/2011 at 9:23 AM)
No correlation, yeah right. Why did George Bush seal all MMR court cases in 2001??? Why dont the amish, who dont vaccinate, have any autism, add, or adhd??? Its all money to you people...

WaltB (8/26/2011 at 10:34 AM)
"You cannot convince me that there is not a link in some way." This tells me two things: You are not interested in finding out what the truth is, and no one need bother showing any evidence to you anyway.

Pohtikle (8/26/2011 at 9:12 AM)
Old news really. You would think that the 1000 or so studies themselves would have closed this issue already. But once more conclusive evidence is not going to convince those people that choose not to vaccinate their children. I think the problem is more psychological now; if you don't have your children vaccinated then you are intentionally exposing them to harm and thus you are a bad parent. Nobody wants to admit to themselves that they are a bad parent, especially those zealous enough about their children's health to forego vaccination. (exaggerated for emphasis, please don't excoriate me). It almost begs for social psychology experiment.