'Vaccine Court' Awards Millions to Kids With Autism But Won't Admit the Truth

autism kidsIt's been a confusing couple of weeks in vaccine-related news. First came the results of a recent study which found "no link" between the current vaccination recommendations and autism, then the federal Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (also known as "vaccine court") awarded millions of dollars to two children with autism for "pain and suffering" and lifelong injury-related medical expenses.

Huh? But I thought they just said there was no link between ... wait, I'm confused. If vaccines don't cause autism, why did the government pay millions of dollars to autistic kids as compensation for vaccine injury? I'm no expert, and there's not a ton of information out there on these particular cases (because access to medical records has been blocked from public view), but I'm wondering if this doesn't all boil down to a system of semantics designed to protect the medical powers-that-be.

Because while the government has yet to admit that vaccines caused autism in these (or any) children, they did "concede" to the fact that vaccine-induced encephalopathy (brain disease) produced "permanent injury, including symptoms of autism and ultimately an ASD diagnosis."

Remove a few words from that sentence and you get "vaccine-induced autism." It seems fairly obvious, doesn't it? Whatever you choose to call it, the reality of what these families have been through is heartbreaking:

Parents, grandparents, friends and neighbors of both children testified they were developmentally normal, if not advanced for their age when they developed seizures, spiking fevers and other adverse reactions to their vaccines. According to these eyewitnesses, the children never fully recovered, and instead began losing vocabulary, eye contact and interest in others around them, all classic symptoms of regressive autism.

So how are we supposed to reconcile stories like these with study results claiming "no connection" between vaccines and autism? My kids luckily both made it through the toddler phase -- and their pediatrician-recommended schedule of vaccinations -- unscathed. But if I had to do it over again, with all of this information at hand, would I choose to vaccinate? I honestly don't know.

Are you having trouble deciding whether or not to vaccinate your child?


Image via helpingting/Flickr

autism, toddler health, toddler development, in the news


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nonmember avatar Cass

If a peanut allergic reaction kills someone, you don't say that peanuts are deadly. Peanuts can be deadly to some people under the right circumstances. I don't know anything about that case, but lets be realistic here.

nonmember avatar Rylehn

I don't buy into the whole austism-vaccine connection. Both myself and my sister in law have boys very high on the spectrum. My son is non verbal. Neither were vaccinated precisely for this reason and yet both have it. And my nephew also contracted measles when he was seven. So what now?

dirti... dirtiekittie

no, i would not and do not have a problem with vaccines for my kids. even if there was some *slight* chance that it did actually cause Autism, look at the millions of children who have been given all their vaccines and never developed it. And look at folks like @Rylehn who has children on the spectrum anyway. 

vaccination is a personal decision that you should make as a parent. but fear mongering does nothing to help people make decisions or give them valuable information. and as was already said - you don't know these kids' medical histories, so who are you to know/say that it wasn't an allergic reaction vs just the vaccine? parents need to educate themselves and then make the decision that is best for them and their family. 

BethanyJ BethanyJ

I think vaccines can and do induce autism in more children than anyone or any entity (including the government) would ever care to admit.  I also believe that vaccines could have a role in brain damage leading to things besides autism, such as mood disorders, seizure disorders, and possibly autoimmune issues.  I'm rather certain that most of these things are listed on the package inserts of the vaccines, minus the "autism" I believe.  Most doctors offices won't give you the package inserts unless you specifically request them -- even then, it may be a fight.  On the flip side, I think that even with all these side effects, vaccines do work -- it's just at this high price.  So, we stop vaccinating, and ll these horrible disease will come back.  We continue vaccinating, and all these side effects continue to get worse.  It's a no win situation.  

nonmember avatar Dad

The argument just because your family is ok is not a good argument to assume everyone is ok with vaccines. Vaccines can harm individuals and the pay out through the vaccine injury compensation program is over $2 Billion.

It doesn't surprise me that some cases of autism comes from vaccines.

Autism is complex. Someday it may have 12 ways to acquire it (with from birth as one option) to vaccines to environmental toxins and other topics yet unknown.

I just think we have to get real and have a discussion that vaccines can hurt some people. Are we willing to take that risk without more info?

nonmember avatar Ashley

@BethanyJ: All vaccines have side effects, most serious ones are extremely rare. Any one who administers vaccines is required by law to provide a Vaccine Information Sheet written by the CDC. And package inserts from the manufacturer are easy to find by by googling it online if you want more in depth information.

Anne Dachel

In 2008 CBS News ran the story, How Independent Are Vaccine Defenders? http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-500690_162-4296175.html
Parents need to educate themselves when it comes to vaccine issues. It isn’t just about the science. Lots of people have everything at stake in denying a link between vaccines and neurological damage like autism. See the National Vaccine Information Center http://www.nvic.org/,
Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

Anne Dachel

If anyone is interested in INDEPENDENT RESEARCH on vaccines and their side effects they have only to look at the website for the new film, “The Greater Good,” (See trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ulmEGbwQsOU.) which explores the question of vaccine safety from both sides. There are over 200 studies that raise serious concerns about vaccine side effects. http://www.greatergoodmovie.org/learn-more/research/

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

Shrew2u Shrew2u

This article is misleading and the writer lacks either basic reading comprehension or ethics.  The proffers were made because the children experienced immediate, severe encephalopathic reactions to the vacinne(s) - not because the children were later diagnosed as autistic.  Unless the writer would care to point to peer-reviewed studies that equate or link by causation encephalopathy with autism, she should report the actual facts instead of her hysteria-tainted opinion.

My kids will continue to be vaccinated on schedule and as recommended by the CDC.

Anne Dachel

Health officials continue to tell us that their vaccines are safe but anyone looking into the controversy will discover that every study used to show vaccine are safe and not connected to disorders like autism have all been shown to be tied to the vaccine industry. There is a revolving door between our health care agencies and drug companies. The last head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Julie Gerberding, a long time denier of any link between vaccines and autism, is now head of the vaccine division at Merck.

Hundreds of people at the CDC have conflict of interest waivers because they're also financially tied to the drug industry. One has to wonder whose interests are foremost in the minds of these individuals.

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

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