Friday, March 07, 2008
Parents in vaccine case still see good in shots
By Dr. Sanjay Gupta
Chief Medical Correspondent

I had a chance to meet the Poling family last night. Their 9-year-old daughter Hannah was diagnosed with "symptoms of autism spectrum disorder" and the government has recommended the federal vaccine court pay the family compensation (read more about Hannah's underlying condition here). Dr. Jon Poling, a neurologist, and Terry Poling, a nurse, are Hannah's parents. With all that has happened (watch video of Hannah's father talking about her reaction to the vaccinations) to their daughter, they still made it very clear they are not anti-vaccine. They agree, as most people do, that vaccines have been a great medical accomplishment and have saved and improved countless lives. The question they seem to raise, though, are they as safe as they can be?

I want to continue the discussion today. Couple of points. First of all, it seems as if parents bring up concerns about vaccines, they are automatically portrayed as anti-vaccine. Why is that? Is it possible to completely believe in the power and benefits of vaccines, but still have legitimate and credible concerns?

Given that thimerosal, the mercury-laden preservative, is now essentially out of vaccines (it may be present in trace amounts according to the FDA) except for flu vaccines, does that put that issue to rest for you? Or, do you believe there is something about the vaccines themselves - even without the thimerosal - that might be problematic? And, what would you do about it? Split up the shots? Delay them?

Editor's Note: Medical news is a popular but sensitive subject rooted in science. We receive many comments on this blog each day; not all are posted. Our hope is that much will be learned from the sharing of useful information and personal experiences based on the medical and health topics of the blog. We encourage you to focus your comments on those medical and health topics and we appreciate your input. Thank you for your participation.
I am in the unique position of having a son who almost died of HIB before the vaccine was available and having two adopted sons who both have autism but are not biologically related.

While I still believe in immunizations I certainly believe that they should be spaced out and not delivered in bundles. We just don't know what administering 5-9 shots at a time does to the body.

In addition to the thimerosal issue vaccines also have tons of other questionable ingredients including:
aluminum hydroxide
aluminum phosphate
ammonium sulfate
amphotericin B
animal tissues: pig blood, horse blood, rabbit brain,
dog kidney, monkey kidney,
chick embryo, chicken egg, duck egg
calf (bovine) serum
fetal bovine serum
human diploid cells (originating from human aborted fetal tissue)
hydrolized gelatin
monosodium glutamate (MSG)
neomycin sulfate
phenol red indicator
phenoxyethanol (antifreeze)
potassium diphosphate
potassium monophosphate
polymyxin B
polysorbate 20
polysorbate 80
porcine (pig) pancreatic hydrolysate of casein
residual MRC5 proteins
thimerosal (mercury)
VERO cells, a continuous line of monkey kidney cells
washed sheep red blood cells

It would be nice if more research was done to see what the effects of large bundled does might be on young immune sysems. While some children can obviously handle it some cannot.

I have no idea if my two boys developed autism as a result of vaccines but I do wish I had known more about the whole issue before I had let them be vaccinated.
We have too many children who are "sick" today. Whether it's autism, ADHD, asthma, allergies, diabetes, cancer or one of the many other conditions surrounding us - it seems as though "healthy" children are quickly becoming extinct. As a nation, we need to take seriously, the vaccine debate. Whether it's the mercury, live viruses or another ingredient causing harm - or the frequency and quantity of inoculations - we need to look closely at what we're injecting into our bodies and why. Does the benefit outweigh the risk? With the massive number of shots given today, it doesn't appear that we are acting with care.

Chicago, IL
One link that has been totally overlooked is the link to the FDA which shows the current content of thimerosal in our childrens' shots OTHER THAN the flu shot.

Parents are going into the doctor's office blind, with far too many pediatricians telling them "it's safe - there's no thimerosal".

Truth is the last thing pediatricians should be running from. Lack of it is what is causing, and will cause the failure of parents to even seek medical advice on this and other issues.

Having a discussion on safety with your child's doctor is not the place for lies. Every vaccine comes with the information on ingredients. Parents are entitled to read it before the consent forms are signed. Why are they not given full information and a true, honest discussion part of every child's visit?
I am happy to see the true issues being addressed here. Research is leading to a couple of key issues. mitochondrial function is at different levels in all people, the people with the lowest levels are being effected immediately by toxins, developing autism. people just slightly lower levels of mitochondrial function will have their issues manifest later in life as the environmental toxins accumulate. these will show in people as adhd, depression, alzeimhers, and other issues. THE KEY THING WITH VACCINES IS TO DEVELOP A SCREENING PROCESS TO DETERMINE WHETHER THE SYSTEM OF THE INDIVIDUAL INFANT/CHILD CAN HANDLE THE VACCINES. Thimerosol in itself may indeed not be the only issue, but the vaccines in general definatley are. Other parts of concern to this issue are the increase in todays industrialized world of environmental toxins in general which accumaulate in all individuals. these come from insectisides, preservitives, flame retartandts, cosmetics, cleaning agents, etc...
It is good to see light being shed on this huge issue, unfortunately in todays society the all mighty dollar will most likely continue to take precedence over human health.
I was so happy to see this article yesterday, that I start to call my friends that are going through the same thing I am with my 5 y/o autistic son. He was diagnosed in 2003, after numerous visits to the pediatrician and lots of insist that something was wrong with him since he received his vaccines between 6-15 months of age. The first respond I had when I tried to question about vaccines from several doctors was the same that if I didn't let them give it to him they were not going to take care of him.
As a mom and a family nurse practitioner, I follow the news about vaccines very closely. I have three young children and have had them vaccinated. I am for childhood vaccines, especially the more serious ones such a polio, MMR, and DPT. I question the large number of vaccines our babies and toddlers receive at once. I also feel some of the vaccines such as Hepatitis B, which has to be procurred from blood or bodily fluid contact, should not be mandatory. May require it if the babies mother is high risk. Do we really need to give our children a rotovirus vaccine? That should be optional for kids in daycares. Preventing some of these dreaded and deadly diseases is very important for our health and the health of our country, however, I believe much more needs to be done to examine the administration schedule for these vaccines. An open dialogue needs to exist between healthcare providers and parents on the vaccines, and options available for parents who wish to opt out of some of the vaccines, such as varicella, the hepatitis A or B series, and rotovirus, etc. More education is needed to provide parents with a choice on what they feel is best for them. As healthcare providers, we need to reconsider what vaccines truly need to be given and what ones are optional for parents. I feel we tax the infants system at such a young age and delaying or spreading out the administration schedule would be beneficial. Immunizations are a marvelous medical achievement that needs to continuously be reexamined and reevaluated for the best care of our children. Thanks

I don't believe vaccines cause autism directly. I believe we will never know exactly. That's just the way it is with science. We need to look at the risks and benefits. I hope that someday we live in a more accepting society where people don't feel the need to blame others for their misfortune. I hope that someday we live in a society where people realize money doesn't solve all of lifes problems. You can bet the lawyers are licking their chops with this news.....whether they win or lose.
While removing the thimerosal from most childhood vaccines is a good step, it does little to reassure me that vaccines are completely safe. While I think the majority of children can get the full schedule of shots and suffer no ill effects, I think that for others the consequences are devastating. Too much time has been spent dismissing parental fears as being unfounded and not enough researching the results of our ever expanding vaccine schedule. As soon as a vaccine is approved, it gets added to the list of shots recommended for all children. From there, the school board rubber stamps the list and makes it mandatory for school attendance. NJ, our home state and home to many pharmaceutical companies, has just mandated yearly flu shots (most of which still contain thimerosal) for school children. What can you do? You can either throw the dice, say the odds are in your favor and get all of the shots (including any future shots that get added to the list). You can get a religious exemption, in which case, you can't get ANY of the shots. Your last choice is to homeschool and we are fortunate enough to be in the position to try that. As for the vaccines, after hours and hours of research, I get my daughter the vaccines that are for serious illness which are actually a threat to HER. We get them one at a time with a lot of space between them. I am not totally comfortable making those decisions and try to get as much information as I can before I make them. I feel making those decisions should ideally be made with the assistance of a pediatrician who can help weigh the risk/benefit of each shot to her individually, however, doctors have abdicated that responsibility in favor of a bloated "one size fits all" vaccination schedule. I understand why they do covers their butts in case a child gets sick as they were just following the "standard of care". They could get sued if a nonvaccinated child has complications from chickenpox, but they are immune from litigation if a child develops autism after getting shots.
I would like to see the number of children who have autism that have not been vaccinated, compared to the number of vaccinated children who do have autism. Was autism a prevelant childhood disease prior to 1945?
Dr. Gupta,
as CNN's medical correspondent, shouldn't it be your job to explain and interpret the scientific data for the public? And yet, you made no mention of the many studies that have tried and failed to find a link between autism and vaccines. By all means, present both sides and advocate for more testing of the bundled vaccines. But, you can't just ignore the data.
I would find it comical if it where not such a serious topic...How does any study state: vaccines due not cause autism, when they do not know what causes autism. That also does not mean that it causes autism either.

Although it is starting to point torwards vaccines as a major factor in autism. either as the cause or the trigger

If we are using the scientic method. If there is a rise in autism...What change. cause and effect

example: your car is running smoothly and it is taken in to for routine maintenance, after which the oil light comes on. The first question that should be asked is: what work was done on the car, what changed. Dont just place the blame on the car...There is a good chance the mechanic did something wrong.

We might want to look at the following
1st: (Diet) preservitives in food should be looked at
2nd: (Enviroment)is this just a US problem or is it across the globe
3rd: (Genetics)has there been any genetic traits that can be determined
4th: (Prenatual care)has prenatual care changed over the last 50 years and how
5th: (Vaccines)has the type and volume of vaccines changed

Diet and Prenatual care can be adjusted on an idividual basis
Enviroment and genetics we are stuck with
Vaccines are different...We are told either vaccinate or your child cannot attend school...

Some questions for the medical community.

1. What would be the risk of removing the vaccines that are for non life threatning illness? This would reduce the number of vaccines given.

2. What are the risks of delaying the vacinnations until the child is older and more developed?

And third: are we this stupid
3. Are there still vaccines and medicines with mercury and aluminum and other heavy metals?
(these are know to be harmful... no level is good and definatly not for a child)

Lets get real research started to get this solved, before the medical community looses all credibility and people stop getting vaccinated altogether.
Vaccines are needed. But they need to be safe and trusted.
I haven't seen any reputable medical studies that show that vaccines are unsafe.

Compare that to the dangerous illnesses that we vaccinate against: measles, mumps, rubella, polio, influenza, diptheria, typhoid, hepatitis...

There was no question in my mind that my daughter would be vaccinated. I would consider it irresponsible to do otherwise, both as a parent and as a citizen.

Remember, for herd immunity to work, the majority of people must be vaccinated!
All the studies I've read seem to have been conducted by/paid for/used by the big drug making companies themselves, which doesn't do much to allay my fears. The 'data' has been collected by the companies, and then used by them to keep us buying those vaccines. This is a subtle form of corruption.

The fact that when our daughter was born they immediately wanted to give her a shot for Hep B- which contains more aluminum than the Federal Government advises for children at all- speaks volumes.

I'm not anti-vaccine, but I'm waiting until she is a strong and healthy child before even thinking about them, and even then I won't give them all to her, unless we travel to a remote and dangerous village in India where there are outbreaks of Polio.

When I was a child, I had maybe 6 vaccines. Now there are over 30, most of them not needed.

Chicken Pox- if you get it, your body developes the antibodies for it, protecting you FOR LIFE. But if you get the vaccine that our trusty CDC advocates, you have to get RE-vaccinated as a teen- and if you get the disease when that one wears off in a few years, you are in deep trouble indeed.
Wow, that's news to me that the flu shot contains mercury. I wasn't considering getting one, but I definitely won't be now.

I agree with Pat and would like to see some more statistics, especially comparing the rate of autism now to the rate before vaccines were popular.

Also, the mention of diet and preservatives is important. I think that has been overlooked.
Spacing vaccines is important as well as not giving them when a child is ill, on antibiotics, recovering from illness or having a fever. It is important to start identifying the risk factors for autism including a family history of autism, autoimmunity, developmental delays, immune disorders, metabolic defects, and mental disorders.

Thank you, Dr. Gupta for your intelligence and balance.

Dana Laake, Licensed Nutritiionist
Dr. Gupta, thank you for your intelligence and balance.

Educate before you vaccinate and then do so - safely. Separate the vaccines and have them given to your child only when the child is well, not on antibiotics and without a fever.

Read the book by Stephanie Cave, What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Children's Vaccination.

Parents can also have blood tests accomplished to see if there is already immunity that would make it unnecessary to have a booster.

Dana Laake
Dr Gupta:

I would like to understand why so many shots have been added to the schedule. I heard something about 10 shots in 1983 versus 36 today for the same kid. Why is this? I was 13 in 1983 -- were deadly diseases running rampant then and they needed 26 more shots?

Is it possible that the pharmaceutical companies treat the vaccine schedule like the treat the quest for any new product: they are trying to sell more stuff.

Please help me understand this!!

Too Many in NC
What I wish is that people would do less demonizing of pediatricians. Blaming, demonizing, suing, don't help anyone except lawyers. My dad as a pediatrician finds it so disheartening that the efforts of his office to provide vaccinations are so misconstrued, when in reality vaccinations are often a net monetary loss for pediatricians.

Pediatricians work exceedingly hard. If a person really wants to strike gold he does NOT become a pediatrician. Most pediatricians genuinely adore children and try to the best by their patients.
Dr. Gupta, I'm a Family Medicine physician. I see and immunize lots of children. Please include information on your broadcast about the removal of mercury from most children's vaccines. Flu vaccine still has mercury, but kids can get the nasal vaccine if parents worry about mercury. Most young parents have never seen how terrible the diseases we protect against are. Whooping cough, lockjaw, diptheria, measles, mumps, chickenpox, polio can kill or cripple children. Even if the child doesn't die or have permanent problems like deafness or paralysis, they spend a week hospitalized with an arm taped to a board to deliver food and medicines to save them.
We bunch vaccines, giving several shots at each visit because most parents cannot or will not bring the child back every few weeks for individual shots.
It would be valuable to study the effects on children of environmental pollutants, additives, and dietary influences. Genetic studies are expensive and time consuming, but with the increasing incidence of autism, should be considered.
Dr. Poling is certainly a sympathic figure, but he may well be remembered for unleashing a panic. For the first time in my life, I can see the imminent return of diseases we thought we had conquered. This terrifies me.

I don't think that vaccines are something that cannot be questioned, or that parents who want more information should be branded anti-vaccine. I will admit to being nervous watching my kids get injected. Nothing in life is completely safe, there are risks in vaccines. But they are much safer than the actual diseases.

The scaremongering out there IS because of a very vocal cadre of anti-vaccine activists. When their fight against the whole-cell pertussis vaccine dried up with the appearance of the acellular shot, they moved on to autism as a reason for their campaign.

The goalposts keep moving. It was thimerosal, then when the rates still increased it was toxins. Now the shots activate dormant mitochondrial diseases.

There will never be enough evidence for these people and there will always be scared, impressionable parents to listen to them.
I cried when I heard the news that the courts ruled in the Poling family's favor. I too knew that something had happened to turn my bright, growing infant in to a developmentally delayed autistic child. I wonder if this could be a degenerational disorder caused in part by having parents who were "changed" by being vaccinated? I too appreciate the balance. The doctor who discovered that bacteria was the underlying cause of GI ulcers was a laughing stock until he provided indisputable proof. I feel like the medical community has spent far too long saying "prove it is" instead of "prove it's NOT".
An issue that I have not seen discussed is that some vaccinations are "cleaner" than others. My children’s pediatrician left her previous practice because that practice insisted on using cheaper vaccinations (with more preservatives) because of the profit margin. She even winced when looking at the shot record of a new patient, my friend’s child, stating that they did not use that particular vaccine in her practice.
It is very hard to confidently make a decision about vaccinations when you can’t be sure if your child’s doctor is using the best vaccination out there or just the vaccination that will make him/her the most money.
Dr. Gupta,

Here is what I wrote to the NIH in January. It still sums up my thoughts. It should be noted that one of the genes for autism discovered last year codes for a MITICONDRIAL aspartate/glutamate carrier.

I am a former food process engineer who believes, because recent studies have implicated genes which code for glutamate synapses in ASD, we should investigate the effects of both INGESTED and INJECTED excitatory free amino acids (glutamic acid and aspartic acid) on children with these “autism genes”.

If excitatory free amino acids affect ASD children, it would explain both the impact of GF-CF diets AND a vaccine link. Vaccines have free glutamic acid added to preserve the virus. I have created and attached a chart showing where free glutamic acid comes from. It is found in extremely high amounts in processed wheat and dairy products – so much so that food manufacturers use these two items routinely to produce free glutamic acid in foods but with a “clean label”.

Consequently, a child may not improve on a GF-CF diet alone, because it doesn’t limit all potential sources of free glutamic acid – like soy. Children are tested at birth for PKU and phenylalanine is limited until the brain is hardwired by the age of 7. Why not treat the predisposition for autism similarly and limit the glutamic and aspartic amino acids in the diets of children with autism genes?

ASD also includes errors of metabolism for sulfur containing amino acids – like cysteine. Cysteine is converted to taurine and glutathione by the liver. Taurine regulates heartbeat and osmotic balance as well as bile production and was found to be low after a seizure. In ASD, symptoms include arrhythmias, digestive disorders and a high rate of epilepsy – suggesting that taurine production may be compromised. Glutathione levels are also lower in ASD leading one to conclude that possibly, cysteine metabolism may be responsible for the myriad and seemingly unrelated additional symptoms of ASD. It should be noted that glutamate interferes with the handling of cysteine. When cysteine metabolism is compromised, homocysteine levels may increase. The lower levels of glutathione may put ASD individuals at risk of mercury poisoning, since glutathione helps eliminates mercury from the body.

It should be noted that the NMDA receptors that respond to both glutamate and aspartate are found in the amygdala - part of the limbic system involved in the perception of taste and smell as well as fear. Activating the amygdala in ASD, causes gaze avoidance. ASD children may also over-react to smells and tastes and face to face encounters can overwhelm them with fear. Limiting excitatory amino acids that target the amygdala may help.

Japan consumes more MSG, and fish (a dietary source of mercury) than nearly any other country. Compared to the amount of mercury consumed in fish and the amount of MSG consumed in the diet, the MMR contribution was probably small compared to a typical Japanese diet. In Japan, the MMR vaccine was stopped in 1993. Autism rates still increased. Perhaps in Japan, the diet plays more of a role in autism than the vaccines. Children from other countries with a lower consumption of fish and MSG may find a stronger correlation between vaccines and autism.

New research studies into ASD should include people who are sensitive to the food additives MSG and aspartame. MSG-sensitive persons have reported a distinct lessening of symptoms by using taurine, ibuprofen, CoQ10, Vitamins B6 and B12, carbohydrate, foods high in butyric acid – like butter, and Magnesium. Perhaps they share some of the same genes that predispose a child to ASD. New treatment studies should look into these easily available, inexpensive and relatively safe compounds.

Based on what I have observed, here are my recommendations:

1. Treatment of ASD?
REMOVAL of excitatory amino acids (glutamate, aspartate) from VACCINES.
Glutamate and aspartate restricted diet (similar to treatment for PKU) in addition to GF/CF diet.
Supplementation of taurine, glutathione, vitamins B6, C, magnesium, CoQ10.
Increased carbohydrate.
Labeling of free glutamic and aspartic acid on food labels.
Glutamate blockers, anti-histamines and leukotriene blockers for children already suffering or getting vaccinated.
We should calm their surroundings, encourage quiet tasks and less-threatening contact to enhance communication. We need to give them space and not overwhelm them.

2. Diagnosis of ASD?
Test for autism genes preferably AT BIRTH like PKU.
Tests for aspartic acid, glutamic acid, glutathione, taurine, cysteine, homocysteine.

3. Risk factors for ASD?
Autism Genes
Sensitivity to excitatory amino acids
Low taurine, Low glutathione
Sulfite Sensitivity
Vaccination with glutamic acid as a preservative
Damage to the microglia
Overactive immune system
“Junk food” diet
Aspartame in medications or vitamins or foods
Multiple food allergy

4. Biology of ASD?
Excess CNS sensitivity,
Inability to handle sulfur-containing amino acids,
Overactive immune response – linked to Nerve Growth Factor

5. Other areas of ASD research?
Common genes in Alzheimer’s, Parkinsons, ALS, MS, and excitatory amino acid sensitivity.
Study persons without ASD who suffer from overactive CNS or neurodegenerative disease and sensitivity to excitatory amino acids. See if they share same genes.
Could Alzhemier’s sufferers simply be ADS children whose brains were hard-wired before damage by the environment?

Thank you for this opportunity to share my ideas on this very important topic,

Please see this webpage that clearly shows why a wheat and dairy based processed food diet may be very harmful to a child sensitive to excitatory amino acids:
we split the shots tup...if youre going to vaccinate seems like it cant be a bad thing....convenience aside, doesnt it seem a like too much to a 25lb 18 month old infant to ever have more than a couple shots at once?

the medical community needs to determine susceptibility tests to help gauge a childs mitochondrial status true but until then and knowing vaccines are a smart preventive step, why not figure out which vaccines are needed and plan for a spreadout accordingly?
My wife and I have 5 children and she has a 17 year old daughter from her first marriage. Our five children have never received any form of vaccine ever. When my wife's first child was a toddler, she recieved a bundle of childhood vaccines and immediately thereafter was in an out of the doctor's office with ear infections. We knew from then on, we would never subject our other children to the foreign substances that make up vaccines. Our bodies were created with the perfect internal pharmacy with everything necessary to create and maintain perfect health. If monkey blood, sheep blood, formaldehyde and other foreign substances were necessary for health, then our creator would have made them a part of our biology. The root cause for modern day illness is simply that 1)individuals have given up being self accountable for their own health and well being and 2) have turned over way too much, and in some cases all accountability for their health, to the medical industry gods. If one will simply choose to eliminate the dependancy on prescription drugs, eat an all-natural/organic diet, get rid of the toxic chemicals and toxic people in their lives, and adopt the belief in themselves that they possess all that is required to live a healthy life, then that is the body and world they will create for themselves. We can start, by eliminating the prescription drug commercials rampant on TV. I'd rather see the Marlboro man riding his horse than another commercial adverstising the purple pill or how great my sex life will be if I take viagra. Wake up people and retake control of your life. You don't need drug companies or the medical industry to make your life better. As Nike says... "Just Do It!" By the way, our children are living proof that vaccines are not necessary to live a thriving healthy life. All the best!
Everyone appears to have some form of rationale judgment regarding the goods and bads of vaccination. Again the question was asked about the notion as the vaccination as the cause for or the catalyst for the possibility of causing autism.

The truth is that the vaccination program in the US over the past 50+ years have worked to eradicate some pretty horrible diseases. Polio and Haemophilus influenzae are several diseases that are now not that prevalent in the US. 1999 has "ZERO" cases of polio reported unlike 7 reported in 2002 in Haiti. Why is this so?

1975 Japan decided to do away with vaccinating for pertussis (whooping cough). Within 6 years the government there saw an increase in the number of cases for pertussis. Is this coincidence? I think not.

So going back to the notion that if something is wrong, like with your car, then you also have to look at the fact that a number of vaccinations have helped shape the ability at removing certain diseases that would otherwise kill or cripple our children.

So the question then comes ... should all vaccinations be given? In my personal and professional opinion there are certain vaccinations that can wait for a later date. I truly think though that the "life-threatening" vaccinations should continue to be given to give our children the best possible chance with having a healthy life.

In regards to Jody's comment on the loss of health children. Let's take into the simple fact that children are not eating healthy, have a less active life style, eat way too much fast foods, there are more processed foods, higher pollution in cities. So to say that vaccines are the cause to autism, ADHD, asthma, allergies, diabetes, cancer is such a gross overstatement that does not take into fact the other possible risk factors out there. Yes the thought process is correct that we do need to take yet another look at the vaccination strategy and also to ensure that the companies making the vaccinations are using safe and effective forms of vaccinations that will style perform the task that is required ... ie to protect our children.

educated physician.
Thank you for reporting on this matter. As the parent of a non-verbal seven year old boy who exhibits autistic behaviors, how do I know that he did not have the same mitochondrial problem Hannah did? Is it possible that some kids are "allergic" to vaccines/thimerisol, just like others are "allergic" to bee stings or peanuts?

My argument is this:

Most children will eat peanuts and not die
Some children will eat peanuts and die
Therefore peanuts are not safe for all children

Most children will get vaccinated and be fine
Some children will get vaccinated and not be fine
Therefore vaccines are not safe for all children.
Thank you for acknowledging that parents who question vaccine safety are NOT anti-vaccine.

We all take precautions when it comes to child safety. We recall baby equipment after a few parent reports their child has been injured. But no one seems to listen to the thousands of parents who say their child became ill after a routine vaccination.

Why, not err on the side of caution and take a look at the vaccine schedule. We used to only give 10 shots by kindergarten now we give 39!! Why??? What happened that lead to such a drastic increase?

Why are we still using multi-dose vials that require a preservative. When a simple change to single dose vials would eliminate the need for a preservative.

Why are we being given inaccurate information about when vaccines became mercury-free? There was NEVER a recall of the existing mercury-laden vaccines already in doctor's offices and warehouses which didn't expire until late 2004. This means that we won't be able to know until at least 2009-2010 whether or not it made a difference, because many children aren't diagnosed until they are school aged.
While there is the global success story of smallpox and the current efforts of eradicating measles and polio, it is important to understand that there are as many different ways of making a vaccine--live, attenuated, subunit, ect--as there are different types of virus. The problem with some vaccines is that we actually don't understand how they work, we just know that they *do* work. As a previous reader has commented, educate yourself, no matter if it's medical, financial, nutritional, anything at all! If you don't have some understanding of how it works, you should do some research before you decide to go through with it. And if you have decided that you're going to go for it, you should also understand the risks and possible repercussions. Nothing is a 100% guarantee in medicine.
I believe my son Mickie's Severe Autism was caused by an overwhelming assault on his immune system via Toxins-containing vaccines. Mickie has Selective IgA deficiency, and impaired methilation.

He was diagnosed at 22 months.

Nothing, could have prepared me for what was to come. Chronic diahrea,for four years, then constipation for five years, self injurious behavior, head banging, wondering away, not wanting to eat anything but milk, not chewing, not gaining weight, low muscle tone, food intolerances, I could go on. He had received 15 vaccines by then.

He lost all speech and all eye contact. He was just miserable and all the life, just went out of him.
My beautiful bouncing baby boy had become a walking vegetable.

If I new then, what I know now; I would not have him vaccinated.
Admittedly, I am not a "scientist" and would never be mistaken for an "expert" on the subject of vaccines. But...

Common sense dictates our autoimmune systems are as unique to us as are our fingerprints and our DNA. In other words, there is no such thing as a "one size fits all" vaccine...and....while "herd immunity" is a worthy goal, the "herd" had an obligation to do all it can to protect individuals who are pre-disposed to adverse reactions, some of which can and do lead to death.

If you are going to "mass vaccinate" the "herd", first identify by scientific tests those who are susceptible for adverse reactions. Expensive? Sure. Impossible? No

You say "Given that thimerosal, the mercury-laden preservative, is now essentially out of vaccines (it may be present in trace amounts according to the FDA) except for flu vaccines, does that put that issue to rest for you?"

How in the world can it be put to rest when you yourself are not giving accurate information?? Trust in the vaccine program is being lost everyday when parents who are told vaccines are mercury free and they do a simple google of the keywords "FDA Thimerosal Vaccines" and they find 10 vaccines with thimerosal produced last year for kids under 17.

One brand of Tetanus Diphtheria contains 8.3 micrograms of mercury, a Tetanus Toxoid from Aventis is preservative level - 25 mcg of mercury and can be given to infants. Menomune is a meningococcal vaccine preserved with 25 mcg of mercury for kids as well, as young as 2 years in some cases.

Of course there are mercury free versions available for all these vaccines, but it is not the same as saying NONE of them "excepting flu" are preserved with 25 mcg of mercury and available for sale to private pay clinics.

It is also misleading to say trace vaccines are safe by saying the mercury is "essentially out". Vaccines with 3 to 10 times the concentration of liquid hazardous waste, with no proof of an established "safe dose" can in no way be left out of the conversation.

I love that you have come so far and have given so much attention to this issue. I would like you to investigate and report more on just when the preservative level infant vaccines "expired", when trace level infant vaccines will expire and when preservative level flu vaccines began in earnest. You will be surprised at what you find.

Thimerosal has NEVER been removed from the pedatric vaccines schedule.

Tim Kasemodel
Wayzata MN
Dr Gupta:
Thank you for this open forum and also for your open minded approach on Larry King Live last week asking questions about separating shots, waiting until kids are older, etc.... These are unanswered questions by scientists and the government. If they were so sure that there is NO link then why can't they address our concerns? If they are so convinced why is it so difficult to get the ingredients of the various vaccines from our pediatricians?

To the "anonymous" individual who calls us "these people" and that we are "scaremongering vocal anti-vaccine activists" SHAME ON YOU! It's clear from your opinion that all of your kids are fine. I have twins - one has autism and one doesn't. The one that does, met all of his milestones before his brother. Then he had back to back flu shots while he was on antibiotics......lost him after that. His twin brother was fine and wasn't on anti-biotics when he rec'd his flu shots. It's almost 3 years later, $200K and growing in medical interventions, therapies, parent training conferences. Perhaps before being so judgemental about something that is so obvious, you should go spend a few days with a family and their child with autism to see for yourself that what we are saying and believe in is an effort so that it doesn't happen to other children. We can't change what has already happened to our kids - in honor of our childrens journeys through autism, collectively we can speak for our kids who have trouble doing so. Numbers don't lie, and if you dig deeper 1 in 150 is most likely not the accurate number - how could it be? It's the CDC's estimate and we all know what they did with the VAERS study. It's time for Julie Gerberding to resign her posititon with the CDC - she is clearly protecting Big Pharama and the US Government from being exposed for criminal acts to innocent children and families.
I work for a drug company, pharma companies pay big money and lobby over many years to get their vaccines on the schedule, its the dirty truth. The other truth is that vaccines are developed in seperate silos from one another by different companies. They are not clinically tested as a given group -- in other words, where are the clinical studies that mimic the real world dosage schedule and I will start to believe the CDC's position that no harm is caused by vaccines. Where is the statistical analysis of safety and side effects in the real world for combined dosing of vaccines? Drug companies use these points to sell the efficacy of their individual vaccines but, when combined as groups, no data has been shown to tell parents for sure that vaccines combined from different companies for different diseases will meet the safety threshold as a group given over sustained periods of time in the first two years of life. The vaccine discussion must continue because new vaccines are being lobbied everyday to be added to the CDC list of mandated vaccines. As parents we have an obligation to educate ourselves and understand how vaccines get on the market. We are the voice of our children. If the scientists and clinicians can not answer our questions and have an honest debate over it, then we have nothing but a shell game going on. There is no doubt that vaccines can save lives on an individual disease basis and prevent massive outbreaks of fatal disease. However, the CDC has an obligation to public safety and should force the drug companies to do the work to understand the interaction of vaccine dosing schedules, active and inert ingredients used in the manufacture of vaccines, and importantly answer supply chain questions (the recent heparin debate with ingredients sourced from China) should have made this issue crystal clear. I do not want to hear that removal of thimerasol did not reverse autism rates, you can slice data to your advantage there. The fact is the number of vaccines given since thimerasol was removed has probably risen. Where is the data that charts the number of vaccines given under two years old against the number of autism cases? Where are our good scientific minds to think this through?
Thanks for the balanced coverage Dr.Gupta. I appreciate a mainstream media outlet presenting both sides of the issue!

My son is recovering from autism, and through this process we have found a number of underlying health conditions, including a genetic methylation defect.

I think there may be many children in the same boat as Hannah Poling who have underlying genetic disorders, or predisposition to reacting to vaccines. It's not fair to ask the parents of these children to vaccinate their children and make them responsible for a lifetime of caring for a profoundly disabled child.
Anyone who advocates this has never experienced what life for these parents is like, not to mention life for these children. You can't just write them off as collateral damage for the herd-immunity vaccine program.

All children need to be tested before they are immunized to see if there are any underlying conditions. So, isn't it time the medical community did the right thing and mandated pre-vaccine testing, so that ALL children could be protected???
Dr Gupta,
Can you tell us how much thimerosal was injected into babies (not older children, just babies) when autism first came into existence in the 1930's?
I believe the very 1st vaccine sets up a child for immune problems. I chose not to vaccinate my baby after my other daughter had 8 seizures after her 4month old shots. I did not want to pick and choose which diseases I thought my baby would be at most risk for and vaccinate for only those. I felt that keeping her immune system in-tact from the beginning was the safest approach. At age 5 my "never-vaccinated baby" has never had a sick visit!
Dr. Gupta,

Thank you for focusing on this timely issue regarding parental concerns about vaccine safety. As you reported, public health authorities and national medical organizations have extensively researched various hypotheses linking vaccines to numerous health issues, including autism, with no clear scientific evidence to indicate any cause and effect correlation.
A reading of the Poling case does not lead to the conclusion that vaccines cause autism; from the available information, she has an extremely rare condition that the government conceded may have been exacerbated by vaccines to the point that she developed autistic features.
Parents have a definite right to educate themselves regarding their children's health and collaborate with their medical providers. As a pediatrician, I would urge parents to look for sources of evidence-based medicine. Some commentators wrote critically of the CDC, IOM, and other public health organizations as if they were part of a conspiracy with pharmaceutical companies to maintain profits, and claim any mainstream research must be tainted by researcher connections with pharmaceutical money. But often, antivaccine groups offer anecdotal stories, or refer to studies done by researchers such as those in DAN!, who promise to diagnose autistic children with tests not sanctioned as medically sound, and then treat them with equally unfounded and dangerous treatments. Be wary of where the bias is on this side of the argument, as well, as DAN researchers make good fee-for-service money with their work and often receive funding from anti-vaccine groups.
Also, nobody should be inspired by reading Jenny McCarthy's poorly written and edited book, full of medical misinformation.
Commentators also talk as if public health officials sit in ivory towers or pharmaceutical headquarters, above the fray of daily patient management, when in fact the public health system is very involved in following up on postvaccination epidemiological studies looking for clearcut correlations between specific vaccines and specific outcomes, as well as conducting clinical research on areas of vaccine safety. No public health official or clinician should say every vaccine is 100% safe and effective. The entire purpose of the vaccine compensation program is to acknowledge that patients may be injured following vaccination, and these injuries deserve compensation. No medical treatment, in fact, not much we do during our daily lives is 100% safe and effective. We make choices all the time based on our perceived risks and benefits.
Speaking of making choices, I have been perfectly happy to work with concerned parents on devising individual vaccination schedules for their children, as long as I know they will return for follow-up visits. The purpose behind the CDC's consolidated vaccination schedule was to optimize our coverage with vaccinations. There are some populations that miss most of the recommended check-ups, and when we do have families in our offices who may be lost to follow-up, or who have already missed numerous visits, we try to keep their immunization coverage effective.
And the main concern I have with parents who choose not to vaccinate their children, for whatever reason, is that if their child with mild pertussis infects my 1 month old child who has not yet had the chance to receive his DTaP vaccine, and my child ends up in the pediatric ICU with severe breathing problems, or their friend's child with measles infects my 10 month old before his MMR vaccine, and he develops measles subacute sclerosing panencephalopathy, my children suffer the consequences of their misinformed choice. While the consequences of a severe infection their unvaccinated child suffers may be tragic, it is their family that suffers the effects of their decision in that case. When their child infects other children, that becomes a community tragedy.

Thank you again, Dr. Gupta. I urge you to keep in mind the overwhelming, evidence-based medicine supporting the efficacy of our vaccination programs and failing to determine a direct cause and effect correlation between vaccines and various health issues, even if you are inundated by people providing anecdotal stories or citing research studies conducted by less-than-reputable researchers, often funded by antivaccine groups.
As a neurodevelopmentally-minded general pediatrician with a special interest in autism, I am of course more than happy to provide any additional consultative support on this or other general pediatric topics. Thank you again for your informative story.
I have two children who I believe were vaccine injured. After 3 years of costly medical intervention, both are recovering. Having researched vaccines to death after the fact, I was shocked to learn how many toxic chemicals are in vaccines. Our policy toward these toxins is dangerously schizophrenic -- FDA says neomycin is not safe to be injected, but yet there it is on the FDA's list of approved vaccine ingredients. OSHA says mercury spilled in the workplace requires hazardous cleanup, CDC says it's OK to keep mercury in our vaccines. AAP president says all vaccines are safe for all children, but the vaccine package inserts clearly denote people who should not get those vaccines (egg allergies, neomycin allergies, etc.). These vaccines are given to children who have never been exposed to or tested for those substances, so how would anyone know if there would be a problem? CDC says vaccines don't cause autism, but has conceded numerous cases secretly. They know the truth, and so do I, and now a lot of other people are starting to figure it out. If I knew then what I know now, I would not vaccinate my children under the current schedule, and I would not vaccinate them with the current vaccine formulations.
One of the biggest mistakes proponents of vaccines make is the assumption that just because one vaccine presents a good risk/benefit ratio all vaccines will. We have seen in our lifetimes at least 5 examples which attest that some vaccines present poor R/B - the Salk polio which actually induced cases of polio, the Swine flu which had an extraordinary rate of adverse reactions, including G-B syndrome, the DTwP which was associated with infant deaths and lead to the creation of VAERs and the NVICP, the Rhotashield, which caused infants to suffer intussusception which would have killed them if they did have have immediate surgery, and the recent reintroduction of smallpox vaccine, which was killing the adults it was used on at a rate exceeding 1 in 10,000 from a previously unreported cardiac reaction.

So for our public health authorities to use paternalism bordering on arrogance to insist that ALL vaccines are both safe and necessary is specious at best.

In regards to the current pediatric schedule, there is little justification for using the Hep B, which has been associated with demylenation of nerve cells and is currently under fire in France because the makers seldom publically report the adverse events, especially when you consider that Hep B is primarily an adult disease contracted from lifestyle choices and for the most part is not and has never been a pediatric problem. This is compounded by the fact that any immunity confered by this vaccine will fade long before the child comes of age to engage in risky sex or use needles to inject drugs.

There is also a question with the chickenpox vaccine, in that since its introduction in the mid 90's children are no longer going through the rite of passage of having them. One result is now we are seeing an increase in the occurance of shingles both in frequency and in younger people. Chickenpox is basically a nuisance disease, and innoculation for it is justified more in terms of lost productivity for parents that mortality, but shingles is extremely painful and can have more serious consequences. Predicatably, health officials refuse to admit perhaps they were mistaken, and respond to this with the suggestion that we need to add more vaccines to the schedule in the form of an adult booster (which would be needed every 7-10 years like the tetanus shot).

Even the issue of thimerosal has not truly been laid to rest as some would like us to believe. Yes it has been reduced in pediatric vaccines (not eliminated because it is still used in production and then partially filtered out), but it is still in full amount in the flu shot, just added to the recommended pediatric schedule for a total of four doses by age 2, and it is also in adult formulations of many vaccines, including the DTP and flu vaccines being pushed on expectant mothers, meaning the still developing fetus will be exposed during critical times of development. It is important to note that organic mercury freely passes through the placenta, and tests conducted on pregnant women have found higher concentrations in chord blood than the blood of the mother.

One final thought is that almost without exception, the scientific studies touted as disrpoving the autism-vaccine link are not really science as much as they are mathematics. Nearly all did not actually examine any patients, did any lab work or anything that we would normally think of as clinical science. Nearly all were actually just statistical manipulations using data bases which may or may not have held enough pertinent information to reacha conclusion one way or the other. This is why the people who originate these studies do not say "disprove" when they publish. Instead they use "is not consistant with the theory of a vaccine autism link" or something similar. They know that to word it any other way would be tantamount to fraud; they leave it up to the Offits and Gerberdings of the world to do that.

Recent editorials in both the NEJM and Lancet have attested that almost no study in any area of medicine actually gets peer review or follow up studies to confirm first findings. Seems there just isn't any funding for work like this. And considering that the overwhelming lion's share of funding comes from the companies who profit from products like medication and vaccines, that is just the way they like it.

Dad Fourkids
"While there is the global success story of smallpox and the current efforts of eradicating measles and polio,.." Smallpox was last eradicated in the countries where AIDS started and at about the same time. Is there or is there not a connection given smallpox "shots" were given with reuseable needles used with questionable sterilization techniques, among other things. The current use of oral live polio vaccine in countries with poor sanitation, ie open sewers, will never eradicate polio, these programs expose as many children to polio and they think they are protecting.
The failure of the medical community to even recognize the developmental disorder epidemic in this country speaks volumes about their knowledge of possible causation. Being they have no treatments, don't have any idea what's causing them, and until recently didn't even know there was a problem- does not instill trust in their collective judgment. That's what this is about-judgment and trust.
You say you have no idea what is causing this problem yet many medical professionals rule vaccinations out in spite of mountains of data to the contrary. You attempt to dismiss any science that doesn't fit your forgone conclusion. Peer review-what a laugh! Evidence based-Please! That shows poor judgment on your part. One doesn't need a medical degree to detect bias and denial.
Many just don't trust you anymore.
I don't trust doctors and I don't trust vaccines.
Dr. Gupta, so the Poling girl has "symptoms of autism spectrum disorder" and all this time I thought she had autism spectrum disorder with the symptoms". This explains everything!
If there is anything that the Poling case has clearly brought to light it is that there is a subset of people who have

Recall the words of Dr. Kelley as noted in the concession document:

He continued to note that children with biochemical profiles similar to CHILD's develop normally until sometime between the first and second year of life when their metabolic pattern becomes apparent, at which time they developmentally regress.

Regression does not mean an "environmental" cause is solely at work. A genetic predisposition plus a crisis--often a fever--can cause regressions due to mitochondrial disfunction.

This is being completely ignored in many of the discussions.
When did we as a society become so trusting of all vaccines? Why were we once so sure they were heaven-sent instruments to save us from disease? Why are we able to grasp the concept that other drugs made by the same manuafacturer may have had skewed studies, or fudged safety data, but the vaccines made by the same people are beyond question?? And when did we start thinking that all babies can tolerate so many at one time?

Each time I took my youngest son home from the pediatricians office after his shots he would be screaming, arching his back, projectile vomiting, and he would get severe yellow diarrhea that would explode out of his diaper. Everytime I would call, and my pediatrician would assure me that these were normal reactions. I thought he had caught a stomach bug at the pediatricians office, it never occured to me that these could be signs of adverse vaccine reactions. No one ever mentioned that could be the slightest possiblitly. But the reactions got worse and worse. He never got better. The sreaming eventually stopped and in its place was a stoic blank stare. I now know that his body could no longer stand the pain from the brain inflammation, so it shut down, blocked everything out. Our pediatricians could offer no explanation on why my son regressed into autism. Basically, if you are not asking for a vaccine or antibiotic from your pediatrician, they have little to offer you than "good-bye and good luck".

We are not able to make a claim in vaccine court because the 3 year statue of time has past. He is 10 years old and non-verbal.

The vaccine program in this country has serious flaws. By not addressing the flaws, it will eventually fall apart. But don't blame families like ours or the Polings or the thousands and thousands like us. The blame rest squarely on the people who have ignored our tragedies.

I keep reading people actually fall for the Government statement that the Poling girl does not have Autism, but that she has autistic like behaviors.
Autism is diagnosed solely by observation!! If you exibit autistic behaviors, you are Autistic!!
This word manipulation is just another attempt to full the public into thinking that vaccines really don't cause autim safe. When is reallyty, they do.
Doctor Strange said
"and the main concern I have with parents who choose not to vaccinate their children, for whatever reason, is that if their child with mild pertussis infects my 1 month old child who hasn't had a chance to receive his DTaP vaccine, and my child ends up with severe breathing children suffer the consequences of their misinformed choice. While the consequences of a severe infection their unvaccinated child suffers may be tragic, it is their family that suffers the effects of their decision in that case. When their child infects other children, that becomes a community tragedy."

I could just as easily turn that around and give you the flip side of the coin. "The problem I have with pediatricians who choose not to give their patients information about the risks of vaccines, for whatever reason, is that if their vaccines are injected into my 1 month old child whose immune system hasn't developed yet and who may have an underlying problem that's never been tested for, my beautiful child could wind up severely disabled and need lifetime care. When their misinformation affects their own children, it's their family that suffers the effects of their decisions. But when their patients are affected and become autistic, creating a burden for those families and society as a whole, that becomes a community tragedy." With 1 in 150 kids being diagnosed, we passed community tragedy long ago.
If it's my "responsibility" to risk my child's health by getting him vaccinated in order to protect Doc Strange's 1 month old, then it must also be Doc Strange's responsibility to my child to make sure that those vaccines don't damage my child and send him into autism. When I see the AAP start to admit the risks of vaccines for individuals instead of harping on epidemiology, and doctors start to lobby for safer vaccines, I'll believe the pediatricians have their hearts in the right place.
Statements such as these crack me up:

"I don't think that vaccines are something that cannot be questioned, or that parents who want more information should be branded anti-vaccine. I will admit to being nervous watching my kids get injected. Nothing in life is completely safe, there are risks in vaccines. But they are much safer than the actual diseases."

I would much rather my son have measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, influenza, etc. than autism! People need to put this in a parent of a wonderful child suffering from autism, I have seen there are now three is no longer a choice between leaving my children unvaccinated or being protected from certain diseases...I must choose whether my children will be unvaccinated, protected against some diseases or possibly autistic...seriously consider every disease that is on the current vaccination schedule...would you rather have your child live a life with autism, or risk measles?

Also, I would love to know if my child is unvaccinated, what are the odds that he will develop measles or any of the other diseases on the vaccination schedule? My guess would be the odds are less than 1 in 150.
There are no controlled, double-blind, placebo safety studies on vaccines. If there were we wouldn't see these instances where vaccines are pulled from the market because of adverse reactions.
Instead our kids are the guinea pigs and they wait to see what happens - they're immune to any lawsuit, so what do they care...
Read Eric's Story at

Read Jonny and Sierra's Story:Vaccine-Induced Autism at

and more at

Raymond Gallup
A parent and US Navy Vietnam-era veteran
USS Vulcan
Norfolk, VA
I want to start off by saying that I am the parent of a three year old boy with ASD. I have always been "on the fence" about vaccines. I am no longer torn.

It is ridiculous that people think it makes sense to say "autism usually shows up between 2 and 3 when a child would normally start speaking". Parents are saying that their child regressed within days (sometimes hours) of receiving shots. The connection is obvious.

If you do about five minutes of research on vaccinations you can find that there clearly is no way to know that all vaccines are safe for all children. It is easy to preach "herd immunity" until you yourself have child who clearly does not fit in the "herd".

My son has had a great deal of testing, he shows the same immune system issues, and methylation issues as have been mentioned. There clearly is something going on with these kids. You don't magically end up with all of these kids with the SAME underlying medical issues. The kids who regress at 18 months are a window into the problem. Most children only get shots at 2, 4, 6, 12, and 18 months. The only age that
regession would be obvious is between 12 and 18 months. How would you know if a 2 or 4 month old baby regressed or had stalled development?

We need research into the underlying medical issues of autism, and we need it fast. We need doctors to realize there ARE underlying medical issues and not dismiss these children as having a "developmental" or "behavioural" disability. Why on earth would anyone assume a child would bite themselves or bang their heads and there wouldn't be a medical reason for it. If you talk to any parent of an ASD child you will find that there childs symptoms have been dismissed by many a doctor. It's a gross miscalculation.

Those of you who are so sure vaccines (or anything else containing toxins) are safe clearly do not have an autistic child. I can't afford to trust everything I'm told. My son's life depends on it. He's a blessing and he's sick. I'm being told to get him speech therapy. I'm sure that will help cure his inability to detoxify.

We need doctors to help us, not ignore us and the facts. I'm not convinced that the only trigger is vaccinations, I think there are many others, but the vaccines play a huge part.
How many children have you heard of who have only a fever and then regress? I think we have to look at the numbers! There are many thousands of parents with the same story. There child had shots and then the regression began.

I appreciate that other things may be "triggers" for these kids, but you cannot use that as a reason to justify the safety of the current vaccination schedule.

Why do so many people choose to continue to ignore the parents with children who have regressed? Obviously a neurologist from Johns Hopkins and his wife who is a lawyer and a nurse, aren't credible enough for some.
Dear David:

As probably one of the few people who has read and commented on all 4,665 pages of the Autism Omnibus Proceeding I can only say that the government not only doesn't know what's happened to our children, but is actively ignoring many promising avenues of research.

For example, the government's own expert witness stated he believed the Urinary Porphyrin test was an accurate measure of a person's body mercury burden. However, that same witness expressed no opinion on the research which showed some people have difficulty ridding themselves of mercury, even though the research was conducted by the very same scientist who created the Urinary Porphyrin test! What gives?

Similarly, in the third case heard, that of Colten Snyder, the young boy recovered after IVIG treatments. In trying to explain away this miraclulous recovery, the government's expert witness credited it to the two half-hour a week sessions he spent with his speech therapist! (My own wife, a speech therapist of nearly 20 years found this assertion very funny!) More importantly, the speech therapist at issue had previously testified and stated she had never seen such an amazing recovery in all of the autistic children with whom she worked and credited it to to the work of Dr. Bradstreet and the IVIG treatments.

The evidence of the three cases was compelling and clear. Something has happened to our children, and the government doesn't have a reasonable answer. By contrast, the bio-medical community is recovering many children. The difference could not be more profound. I don't understand the reticence of the medical community to look at these recovered children.

On a pesonal note, I thank you Dr. Gupta for providing this forum for many of us to share our thoughts about this vitally important issue.

All the best,
Kent Heckenlively
Legal Editor, Age of Autism
Being a parent of a twin and seeing both of them suffer from vaccine damage and I spend more than $1000/month to supplement them naturally I can not say enough about the environment and vaccine causing havoc in little children.

We have analysed everything(we never touched alcohol, smoking etc, have kids at late 20s, no genetic issue, no allergy etc). It was like clear ...I said "No" to vaccine citing "Thimerosal" but was convinced by 5 people in doctor's office and they read out "Formaldehyde, Aluminium" but no mercury.. I had no background on microbiology and in front of 5 nurses and doctor with 2 little kids at hand.. had to surrender myself. They injected 6 vaccine in same day.

First forward after 2 months girl got asthma.. kind of.. son was suspected PDD-NOS. We never gave up.. continued day-night. Gracious GOD atleast blessed us to continue natural remedy therapy.. they both are better today.. But they missed growth for almost an year. Did not gain any weight. Just did not progress.

About 30 vaccine in 2 year .. and so many thousands of damaged children still not much research.
I would like to respond to "Doctor" Strange's fearmongering attitude that implies that every parent who choses not to wholesale vaccinate their children is putting his children at risk. This is an extremely unfair "bullying" tactic being used against parents who may already be dealing with one or more severely disabled children and who have been expressing a valid concern for which it is imperative that any studies being done in the area do not overlook any possibility of a connection. Some adjustments in the delivery of vaccinations within the public health system may make a huge differences without compromising public health in any way - I repeat - without compromising public health in any way. These parents are doing society a great service by injecting the pharma industry with a dose of awareness and, I hope, conscience. No one engaged in these discussions wants to put anyone's child at greater risk for any disease (or, I would hope, for a disability).
Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN's chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends -- info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.
CNN Comment Policy: CNN encourages you to add a comment to this discussion. You may not post any unlawful, threatening, libelous, defamatory, obscene, pornographic or other material that would violate the law. Please note that CNN makes reasonable efforts to review all comments prior to posting and CNN may edit comments for clarity or to keep out questionable or off-topic material. All comments should be relevant to the post and remain respectful of other authors and commenters. By submitting your comment, you hereby give CNN the right, but not the obligation, to post, air, edit, exhibit, telecast, cablecast, webcast, re-use, publish, reproduce, use, license, print, distribute or otherwise use your comment(s) and accompanying personal identifying information via all forms of media now known or hereafter devised, worldwide, in perpetuity. CNN Privacy Statement.