By Dr Bob Sears
I was really hoping that my latest blog would be entitled “Finally, Someone Cares About the Autism Epidemic!” But alas, it is not to be. The word “epidemic” is being reserved for the hundred or so cases of measles we see in the U.S. each year (no fatalities), or the very tragic twenty to thirty annual deaths from whooping cough. But autism? Don’t worry, it’s NOT an epidemic, because the government continues to reassure us it’s not an epidemic (Past blogs have been featured here 1.)
Tell that to the one million or more children currently affected (2.)
Remember back when autism was 1 in 10,000 and eventually 1 in 1000? Then 1 in 150 came along, and some of us got worried. Last year we were told it had jumped to 1 in 50. So, I was certain that “the powers that be” would finally step up and declare an emergency. Either that, or show us research that demonstrates autism is on the decline. But silence? SILENCE? What’s up with THAT?
What got my blood boiling again was the latest news (which I didn’t actually see on the NEWS): 1 in 48 Minneapolis children ages 7 to 9 have autism (3.) For Somali children in the city, the number is 1 in 32. We’d heard about the Somali problem a few years ago, and the government figured the Somali issue was due to some sort of genetic factor. The rest of our children in the area, whose parents were voting constituents, were safe. Not so. This latest study shows that Caucasian children in the city have an autism rate of 1 in 36. In other ethnicities, it’s less-commonly identified, thus diluting the total number down to 1 in 48. So, it’s not just some genetic factor unique to certain populations.
As autism continues to rise nationwide, we are no closer to an answer as to why or what. We know it’s partly genetic, but why? We know it’s largely environmental, but what? We all have our theories, and we have some great treatment options to help improve, and in some cases, resolve the disorder. But as long as the government continues to pretend that this isn’t an emergency, and continues to hold back funding for the right kind of research, I’ll have to keep writing on this blog, and continue seeing new patients with autism in my pediatric office every week. I want to go back to treating diaper rashes, colds, and smiling sympathetically as moms complain that their babies aren’t sleeping through the night. You know, the old days, when children were healthy, and virtually all of them developed and thrived socially and behaviorally as toddlers.
I’m tired of getting my weekly “Eye on Influenza” newsletter from the public health department. Where’s my “Eye on Autism” weekly update? If 1 in 48 of my infant patients is going to develop a disorder, I want to know that the government is on top of it. I want to know that someone, anyone, cares.
Dr. Bob Sears
Pediatrician, TACA Physician Advisor, and author of The Autism Book
1) Past Dr Sears previous “Who Cares” Blogs:
2) Autism Statistics http://www.tacanow.org/family-resources/latest-autism-statistics-2/
3) Minneapolis Somali Autism Spectrum Disorder Prevalence Project 2013 http://rtc.umn.edu/autism/doc/Autism_report.pdf
Would it make sense to start something on change.org? Just curious if people start making more noise, who would be the people we should focus on hearing this noise? Who do we think hearing this noise from the many many parents and people involved in treating autism would be the person to petition to make some kind of difference? Thanks for posting this!
Change.org will make it a left wing political issue.
Change.org has had issues in the past with sharing petition signer information. I know Autism Speaks and National Autism Association have had recent petitions for a National Autism Strategy using other tools including whitehouse.gov
I am very conservative, but I join everyone who would end vaccine mandates.
Parents of children with autism are too exhausted to fight! At least this mama is!!!
I wholeheartedly agree with you Allana! xxx
You might wanna talk to Dr. Eisenstein, at Homefirst Health Clinic in Chicago. The staff at the clinic is aware of only a few diagnosed cases of autism among their now 50,000 unvaccinated clients – taking into account that their history goes back 35 years, in a general population of the same size, we’d expect 250 or 300 cases, or more. Among those same clients there are reportedly virtually no asthma, allergies or diabetes. The implications are obvious, and staggering. The doctor’s own testimony as to the number of unvaccinated clients can be heard starting at 14:00 into the interview at:
It is the food we eat. Food supply quality is being compromised for quantity and shelf life longevity to feed the masses. Don’t eat grocery store shelf food or what FDA says is safe, make smarter choices for yourself. Human genocide is presently occurring with GMO produce.
yes! heal your kid’s toxic gut and lift the fog. Currently reading the GAPS diet protocol book.
Bravo! Thank you for this. Thank you very much.
The strange thing is, neither of my children have autism. Both my sons, however, have extreme food allergies and intolerances. Between the two of them (3.5 years and 20 months old) we struggle with FPIES, fructose malabsorption, MSPI, and IgE allergies to egg and peanut. (That’s what my blog is about, and sharing theories and recipes along with our story.)
Research for FPIES is even more rare than autism research; often, what little we know about the mechanics of FPIES is derivative from autism research. Maybe that can give an idea of how little is known about my sons condition.
I firmly believe our food supply contributes greatly to the majority of illnesses and conditions sweeping across our country, and am appalled at the lack of knowledge, interest, and ability to feed ourselves safely.
Further, as you say, people get up in arms about things which, while awful, are minute in severity and reach, while ignoring the elephant in the room.
Anyway, thank you for pointing out the obvious and shining a spotlight on something that needs to be addressed. My children may not have autism, but I believe all of these things are connected in some way. What helps one group helps another.
my oldest two have food issues, the worst being my middle son. i’m fairly positive it was due to the iv antibiotics we had in labor/birth, he is IgE allergic to penicillin. we’ve had to utilize both IgG and IgA tests to figure out what was going on. he takes a probiotic and l-glutamine every night, plus eats(willingly) sauerkraut to get digestive enzymes. i also try to do bone broth when possible, but it is difficult due to his limitations of lamb and turkey. to get clean stuff is so expensive. it’s been a hard 2 yrs working on this. and i feel very alone. most people(including family) think i am nuts.
I care.. With everything within me.
Thank you, Dr. Bob for writing this blog to help us scream for action. Sadly, I don’t think anyone cares. It is starting to feel more and more intentional.
I pray every day that someone will FINALLY open their eyes and recognize something is happening to our children. Until then I continue to get the sideway glances when I tell people my theories, and rude looks from doctors who tell me I know nothing.
GUT flora imbalance, antibiotic overuse in our milk, meats and everything, children on frequent antibiotics are more likely to be dx autistic. My son has PDD NOS, he has ups and downs, sometimes it is as though there is no issue, other times he cannot sit, he cannot hear what people are saying, he cannot be near others, he covers his ears, it is hard for him. His little body is out of sort and he just cannot stop being in overdrive, please keep working!!!
As a pediatrician and scientist I find you a loathsome “colleague”, “Dr. Bob:. How dare you minimize the risk of vaccine-preventable diseases all for the sake of your “autism crusade”! You’re just dumb enough to believe any old “statistic” thrown your way, and you’ve built enough of an audience of people who think you somehow have a science background that you have become a threat to public health. You act like you’re the only pediatrician that gives a damn about autism, which is untrue. You also act like autism is the only reason children have developmental delays, which is also blatantly untrue. I know people who have been hospitalized from influenza this year, including one of my own patients (who didn’t get a flu shot because mom had been scared about its safety)–yet I don’t have anyone with autism having been hospitalized for anything autism-related in the last several years. Right now in my practice area we’ve had 30 pertussis cases in the schools thanks to cluster of non-vaccinating parents, some of whom have bought the lies you sell in your so-called “vaccine book”. Of course I’ll bet money that those who run TACA don’t have the guts to put this on here, but I’m submitting it nonetheless because it deserves to be said. Chris Hickie, MD, PhD.
Your comment proves the point of the blog. You don’t seem to care much about autism.
The new statistic sourced on this blog was produced by the CDC. Currently there is no actual census for autism but we have those details stats for other health conditions listed on this blog.
At TACA we want safe public health standards and protection for all children. For those living with autism we want help. We also want more research and treatments available to those in need. Autism is the least funded disability in the US affecting the most children. I feel strongly we can achieve both goals and should. It should not be an “either or” proposition.
I hope you get the opportunity to review this new Pertussis study: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/baboon-study-reveals-new-shortcoming-of-pertussis-vaccine/ . We all want protection from preventable diseases from products that work. I want to repeat this comment because it is important: I feel strongly we can achieve both goals and should. It should not be an “either or” proposition.
In the future, please be aware we will not accept derogatory comments on this blog. You can create an argument without name calling. After all, it would be nice if we had the same goals and would unify to help find answers for families.
Sincerely, Lisa Ackerman – mom and TACA Executive Director
Very well said, kind and to the point.
Chris Hickie – Your comments are disheartening to me as a mother to four children. Your comments imply you do not consider autism the life-threatening disorder that it is. I don’t fault you for this. Some of the most helpful doctors we have utilized were not helpful until they had children of their own who became affected by autism symptoms. My preference would actually have been for them to stay unknowing than to have a child affected. And my preference for you would be the same. However, should you ever have a loved one diagnosed with autism, you will need support to figure out the many issues with therapies, finances, insurance, behaviors, sleep, nutrition and how to deal with doctors.
Read the news! Every month in this country we are inundated with stories of Autism where the child eloped, some are found alive, others are hit by cars, or drown in puddles, ponds, rivers, etc. Still others are killed by their caretakers overwhelmed by the lack of help and assistance or just mistreatment. Which should be no surprise when we read comments like yours that put a concern for flu over that of autism or even on par.
The CDC has continually said that the recent pertussis issues are NOT because of non-vaccinators but because the DTaP is not potent enough. They went from DPT to DTaP because of the amount of serious reactions, brain damage cases and deaths from DTP. They have also expressed concern that Pertussis may have mutated and the vaccine may no longer be a match for preventing the disease or that many of these cases are not pertussis at all but parapertussis.
As a pediatrician and scientist you seem woefully lacking in knowledge of the realities of today’s children. Perhaps you are too young to remember when sick, ill, and neurodevelopmentally damaged children were the rare exception and not the norm.
In case you were wondering why so many parents are turning to alternative, compassionate caregivers, you might want to read your post again! My child will in all liklihood recover from a bout of the flu, or measles, or pertussis. But autism is forever, the gift that keeps on giving, and will require the care of others forever. The risks are high even into adulthood where they will be incarcerated, drugged, beaten, neglected, mugged, robbed, raped, and even murdered. Most will never live independently or hold down a job. When people throw the flu into this when talking about the lifelong realities of autism as if the thought of the flu will strike fear into peoples’ hearts it is laughable in the face of our realities!
Dr. Hickie, have you read Dr. Sears Vaccine book? Because I have, several times. I did not find it to be anti vaccine. I found it to take vaccines very seriously, and especially the DTAP because Pertussis is still a very real and active illness with serious health concerns. So I’m a bit confused by your severe response?
However, given that some children have been proven to have Autism caused by vaccines, I think it is a great service to have a book like Dr. Sears’ available for parents who want to study the issue and make an informed choice about vaccinating their children.
Why is the issue being framed that if you care about Autism, you therefore do NOT care about infectious diseases, the health of other children, or the potential value of a vaccine. That is not the case. But asking parents to ask no questions, take no ownership in the health of their child, and just accept that they’re ignorant because they are not doctors, is not going to win you any arguments.
Do you even know what you would consider an Autism-related illness that would cause hospitalization? Do you understand the relationship between Autism and the immune system?
Families with children with Autism are facing very real, life long and sometimes life threatening issues. They deserve your concern. Doctors that listen to them are too rare. Your attitude is not at all constructive and does not even seem well informed. We need everyone involved in this to stop throwing insults, and engage in open minded, informed discussions. We all have too much to learn, and too many kids and families are at stake.
Dr. Hickie, I want to thank you!
I so appreciate you putting your full name on your reply, so that those of us looking for kind, compassionate, open-minded pediatricians know not to present to your office.
Before you go blaming Dr. Bob for every sickness under the sun why don’t you start looking at the dietary habits, vitamin d levels, sleep habits, sugar intake, physical fitness and gut health of those succumbing to disease. True health isn’t cheap and it isn’t easy and it certainly doesn’t come in shot. Sorry if your medical degree didn’t educate you on how to keep people healthy but rather how to make big pharma very rich. Why, instead of trying to inject sickness into the whole population are we not talking about optimizing health so the sick become more like the healthy, than the healthy like the sick. Is it too uncomfortable to ask a parent to stop feeding their kids pop tarts and fast food than it is to inject their kids with aluminum, formaldehyde and polysorbate 80 (or perhaps you haven’t read the package insert). My cohorts have replied with information that should make you think (if you chose) or you can remain as you are, part of the problem.
Even if the child is hospitalized for a childhood illness it is temporary. Autism is always permanent. I would take all of the childhood illnesses if I could take back my son’s autism. Why should you or the state be allowed to take that choice away from parents?
Dr Hickie, Pretty simple – WHAT DOES CAUSE AUTISM? HOW DO YOU TREAT IT? Do tell……. Answer that question satisfactorily and you can rest assured parents will give you the trust you so desire. Can you fit the answer to that on your RX pad??.
AND My guess is any parent who has a child with autism and comorbid medical issues would avoid you like the plague. I would.
The thing is, is it necessary to prevent everything we are preventing? Most of these disease are normal, non life threatening in most instances, illnesses. And yet we are shocking these into our babies because Dr.’s Say that’s what we ha e to do “or else”. I call bull! Between the vaccines and our fast food diets, we are obese, unhealthy, and incredibly unable to fight any disease. We have never had to build an immunity to small diseases. Therefore our bodies cannot fight the bigger ones. Yeah, VAX are great. And since the introduction of vaccines, we have so many more serious issues than measles and mumps!
Not sure where he said in his post don’t vaccinate to prevent autism. He is calling for people to work together to find out why autism is on the rise. Did you read the same article I did?
“Give them bread and circuses ( and pills) and they will never revolt” ( and then if that doesn’t work change the numbers around as best you can….)
Educate every person you know. Be relentless. Be the Media. As a taxpayer you should care bc?? As a mother you should care bc?? As a human being you should care bc???? As an educator you should care bc???
Please , Please share more and keep this message going strong!!!!
This tragic epidemic must stop, our future depends on it.
I think it is just “diagnosed” more, and not actually happening more. Plus, most of your kids with food allergies and pet allergies are results of over medicating your kids. Anti-biotics and hand cleansers. Kids need to absorb some of the “bad” in the environment and help their bodies to fight it, instead of trying to protect them from everything. I would bet that Autism might be very closely related to why there are so many allergies in recent years. I know it is an unpopular belief on this comment board, but parents need to accept that there are things their kids’ bodies need to learn to fight themselves.
George, there are many studies that do not agree the statement: “it is just diagnosed more.” Do you have a new reference to share? The new CDC study referenced in this blog states exactly the opposite: there are more cases of autism.
I agree food allergies are a big issue. We need more research why some kids do just fine and others acquire food and environmental allergies for some that are deadly. Its a complex issue and for the sake of all of futures more attention, support and research is needed.
my child has never had any antibiotics before, and he has a huge long list of foods he can’t eat, and a list of autism symptoms besides. we dont’ use hand sanitizers, and I expose them to germs to build their immune system.
My child never had a cold until he was 2…no sniffle, no cough, no vomiting, no diarrhea. You’re theory of not allowing them to have environmental exposure or allowing their “bodies need to learn to fight themselves” is non-factual. I can also disprove this theory because my son never had any antibiotics (maybe once since he was 2), never used hand cleaners…heck, we never worried if his pacifier was clean he just stuck it back in his mouth (as long as it wasn’t in something really gross)… he had a cat and 2 dogs his whole life, lived in a rural community… but he has autism. He now is on a strict diet because he’s allergic to all grains, milk, peas, pineapples, etc, etc… he also takes allergy shots for environmental (non-food allergies). I really should stop reading comments because people like you really get me upset because they have no clue what it feels like to have a non-verbal child, one that vomits and has violent diarrhea (directly related to food allergies), no empathy, no pretend play, stimms, lines up toys, high tolerance for pain, etc. To say that its “more diagnosis and not happening anymore” means that you have no real understanding of what autism is….unless you live it, please don’t comment EVER AGAIN on this subject because it shows your lack of KNOWLEDGE.
Let us look at my state alone. 25 years agao there were SIX children in Oregon known to have Autism and receiving services, special education, therapies. Now, let’s say there was a sudden recognition that autism might be an under-diagnosed – under-recognized disorder that might be affecting some of our children that we were labeling as something else. They often refer to this as “diagnostic substituion”. I would expect that number of SIX children to go up some, let’s say a few percentage points. How about to 50 kids in Oregon with Autism. I still would find that jump alarming, wouldn’t you. And let’s say this newfound awareness swept in some kids with NO previous diagnosis before….”increased awareness”, I would gladly and generously give you another 50 children, though again alarming, so now we would have 100 kids in the state of Oregon, diagnosed with Autism and receiving services.
Now i have to admit that even this gives me pause as i personally do not believe that 25 years ago, 50 years ago that parents, teachers, daycare providers, sunday school teachers simply didn’t notice or recognized the distinct aspects of autism and report that they had children that didn’t simply have retardation or other obvious developmental delays but children who toe-walked, flapped their hands, screeched, smeared feces, couldn’t talk, couldn’t sit still in class, had to have one-on-one educational paras shadow them throughout their day, were prone to elopement, self-injury, lashing out at others, were not just socially awkward but seemed to find it painful to interact with other children and/or adults. I just can’t seem to wrap my brain around the idea that these things would have been missed and that schools should not be going broke and screaming about the costs of these record numbers of children if we simply called them something else, because no matter what we called them, the schools would still have had to deal with them, spend on them, etc. No these number are new and costing billions of dollars, so it simply cannot be diagnostic substituion. Plus the numbers of all other disabilities have held steady in my state based on population percentages.
So, the question is George, what is the number today vs. the SIX children known over 20 years ago. Taking into account the possible 100 I have given you as possible if it is simply better diagnosis, recognition, or diagnostic substitution. Well it is over 8,000, yes approaching 9,000….over EIGHT THOUSAND children in Oregon now diagnosed with Autism and receiving services, special education, therapies, etc. Over 8,000 children who will not likely go to college, join the military, get a job, get married, get a driver’s license, who will need care or supervision for the rest of their lives. Over 8,000 children in one small state alone, that didn’t exist a little over 20 years ago, but do now, who will cost us even more billions to house, feed, assist, care for…well, for a lifetime. These are not simply socially awkward people with quirks, those we used to call geeks. These are children with a profound and devastating developmental disorder, not easily overlooked or missed.
I hope you will rethink your theory!
Diagnosed more? Yes, it is diagnosed more. There are more cases to diagnose. The claim that it is only diagnostics that has changed is a claim that the rate has not changed. The claim that the rate has not changed is a claim that there is no epidemic. The rate has changed from essentially none to more than 1/100. That is not possible with a mere change in diagnostics.
You are the best Dr. Sears
The occurrence of Brain Encephalopathy aka. Autism Spectrum Disease is not an epidemic with just few sudden outbreaks, but is now a PANDEMIC with the incidence rate progressively increasing and prevalence expanding. There are many people who care and though exhausted, continue to try to fight the battle for truth in government and the release of research reports from Center for Disease Control, HHS, and National Institute of Medicine via Freedom of Information Act, proving that information that could have prevented the persistent increase in incidence was suppressed, i.e. hidden or just eliminated from reports. I am a fan of Dr. Brian Hooker, Dr. Robert Scott Bell, of Curt LInderman, of “Thinking Moms”, of Autism One, and the list goes on. I don’t know you Dr. Sears, but I will continue to read what you have to say. The more people that recognize that we are loosing generations to ASD will hopefully, bring enough attention to this Pandemic, to stop it, while finding solutions for management/treatment of the damage that has occurred.
Why is the presumption that government is the answer? Why does the government’s ‘opinion’ matter?
the government will never take on autism — it is politically infeasible. To focus on the genetic factors would be seen as a war on women (especially older women, career women, who wait to have children and have increased risk). To focus on environment would be seen as a war on families. To call it over diagnosis would be seen as an attack on the intentions of doctors and the child rearing abilities of the parents and teachers who demand the diagnosis.
I’m not trying to say that autism isn’t a diagnosis that demands medical attention, or that it is unimportant from an epidemiological standpoint. But looking to government to save us from this type of abstract threat loaded with political landmines is wishful thinking at best, and intellectual laziness at worst. The better question to ask is what else can we be doing to help reduce the instance of this disorder in our population?
lacouturelibertaire – let me introduce you to some broke families who have 12 year olds still in diapers, have seizures and haven’t slept in a decade…. I am pretty sure they can tell you why the government’s opinion matters. I’m pretty sure Ron Paul as a medical professional and a libertarian could tell you WHY the government’s opinion matters on this particular subject.
I agree with this. No one has any idea of what it’s like to live in a family with with a child with severe autism unless they have experienced it themselves and the government (as representatives of the people) should tackle all the issues (including that of people with disabilities), not just the more politically appealing (and perhaps less difficult) issues..
1 in 36 white kids in somali or everywhere?
Hi Jessicaa – The study featured on this blog was only for Minnesota. Other surveys have the rate somewhere around 1-50 but they happened a few years back. As Dr.Bob stated the rate used to be 1 in every 10,000 not too long ago. More stats and how the data is collected can be found here: https://www.tacanow.org/about-autism/
Thank you for your interest and support.
End vaccine mandates.
In 1998, my son was 1 of 4 autistic children in an elementary school of 250. At the time the CDC insisted that the rate of autism was 1/2500 and not changing. Now the medical community insists that autistic children were around all the time. I know when the word autism came into my vocabulary. I was about 30 years old and it was described as a rare illness. Now the rate is 1/88. Both the statement that the autism rate was 1/2500 and not changing and the statement that these children have been around all the time say the same thing. There is no epidemic.
I do not blame the medical community for wanting the public to believe that there is no epidemic. I just wish it was true. Since it is not true the medical community has to find a cause. That cause has to manifest with the autism epidemic. It has to cover the geography which includes all of the US, Europe, Canada, Japan, Korea, China, Australia, New Zealand and other countries. It has to manifest in the past 30 years. Vaccines fit this profile. But vaccines are the pillar of western medicine. The medical community is in the uncomfortable position of explaining the epidemic without impugning vaccines and they have nothing else to point to. No wonder they keep insisting that the autistic children have been around all the time. No epidemic – no problem.
Yeah right. My personal experience belies the claim on no epidemic and so do the CDC statistics. They are the ones who had to ratchet up from 1/2500 to 1/88. That is an increase in the numbers and that means an epidemic.
The medical community has a mantra: “Correlation does not equal causation.” This is true. But there is a lot of circumstantial evidence tying vaccines to autism:
1. The geographical coincidence of autism and vaccination covers the entire world.
2. The chronological coincidence of autism and vaccination covers the last 30 years.
3. Parents insisted that their children were okay. They received a vaccine, got sick and came out on the other side autistic. The medical community took all of these reports and dismissed them as anecdotal.
4. Parents came out with video records of their children being fine before vaccination. Post-vaccination their children got sick and came out on the other side autistic. The medical community took all of these records and dismissed them as simple post-hoc events.
5. Autism was not in the general public’s vocabulary 30 years ago.
6. The word for autism among the Somalis of Minnesota is “The Minnesota Disease”. They did not have autism back in Somalia where coincidentally they did not vaccinate. In Minnesota it is 1/30 among them.
7. The first injection of HepB gives 11 times the toxic level of aluminum which is neurotoxic. The medical community claims that there is nothing in the vaccines that could cause autism.
8. They also claim that the aluminum is not a problem since there is aluminum in the food. They ignore the fact that only 0.3% of the aluminum is absorbed. (Their statistics, not mine)
9. When the medical community said that the rate is 1/2500, when the medical community said that autistic children have been around all the time, when the medical community said there is nothing in the vaccines that could cause autism, when the medical community said that the injected aluminum is not a problem since we get more than that in our food, they have been fooling themselves – and fooling the public.
The possibility of autism is a good enough reason for parents to forgo vaccinating their children. Unfortunately, autism is only one problem with vaccines. Aluminum is put in vaccines to force the immune system to react. If you ask the medical community how aluminum works its vaccine magic they do not know. They only know that it forces the immune system to react. Along with the growth of the vaccine schedule we have seen an incredible growth of immune system issues including: juvenile arthritis, juvenile diabetes, celiac, food allergies, skin allergies, lupus, asthma and other issues. The asthma rate in school age children is 9.6%. There is an epidemic of epipens in schools. Can the aluminum be the cause of the immune issue epidemic? We won’t know if the medical community has anything to say about it.
Even though the public has suffered an epidemic of autism and immune issues with the vaccine schedule, the medical community steadfastly refuses to compare the health outcomes of vaccinated children against the health outcomes of children who are not vaccinated. They claim that they cannot deprive children of the benefits of vaccines. It would be immoral. How convenient.
If you are a parent you look at the possibility of childhood illnesses. They typically last a few days. If they are really bad they last for a few weeks. Now look at the immune issues and autism that have grown up with the vaccine schedule. They are all for life! The vaccine mandate says that parents have to take the risk of life long illness with their children and prevent the possibility of childhood illness.
The medical community reacts to all of this with an attitude that says “Vaccines are a necessary part of public health. If you think that your child has been damaged by vaccines, I am sorry you feel that way.” Why would the medical community feel otherwise? They bear no responsibility if a child gets injured by vaccines.
The parents bear the responsibility if a child gets a vaccine preventable illness. They have to nurse the child back to health. The parents also bear the responsibility if a child gets autism or an immune issue. The medical community bears no responsibility for either case. They are the hired help. Freedom (choice) and responsibility belong together. The medical community bears no responsibility for vaccine outcomes. They should not be allowed to force their choice on parents.
End vaccine mandates.
Ah yes, thanks The Ed for bringing it back to the [tired] “vaccines are to blame” argument. I am sure that’ll steer this thread in the right direction.
The life threatening issues we’ve had, thus far, have been from vaccinations..very high fevers, breathing difficulties and GB… and non of those reactions ended up being recorded as vaccination induced because, as the Dr told me, “They do a lot of good and we don’t want them to get a ‘bad’ name…. I just want honesty on both sides of this debate….and respect for parents decisions…
thanks for your work and thoughts. You have given so many people confidence with your books and internet info.
we know genetics are involved …and the numbers may be “on the rise” as more people are diagnosed …..my 55 year old partner was diagnosed at age 50 …. He has been ASD for 55 YEARS! So why are the numbers on the rise? Because he wasn’t added to the statistic 50 years ago!
Epidemic usually refers to infectious diseases. Autism is not contagious. Also, while it’s obvious to everyone something is going on, it is still only diagnosed by a set of behavioral patterns. You can’t do a blood test to see if that diagnosis is accurate. It’s not that people don’t care, it’s that there’s still not an identified cause…. yet.
Usually being the key word. The actual definition is “affecting or tending to affect a disproportionately large number of individuals within a population, community, or region at the same time.” I’d say autism fits that.
We hope this blog achieves the goal of calling attention to autism. What is clear to me after 14 years on this journey: until the answers are scientifically proven for all subtypes of autism – we are guessing.
Some thoughts on next steps for research: I think our search should start first with the parents who have a child with autism. We need to listen to their stories and use their observations as important clues. We need to treat each case individually as to their needs and origins. Then we should completely review the cases of recovery as reported by the NIH in January 2013. Let’s learn what happened to these children and then understand what helped make them better. After all, we want each individual with autism to achieve their full potential and live in good health.
Until we get autism on any radar of people with influence we will guess and be frustrated. More importantly until science is done – not enough people will believe our stories.
Dear Dr Sears,
Thank you so much for helping our children with autism. I have 3 kids and my 8 year old is autistic. I loved your book on vaccines while pregnant with my third child. I feel much better being educated on vaccines and I didn’t think you were biased either way. My children are vaccinated and have their flu mist but I di believe its a personal choice. I am thankful my children are healthy and happy. Being a parent of an autistic child I always worry about his future. Will he be treated well, will he have children, hold a job, go to college, drive all the things I just assumed would happen in my children’s future. It’s so hard these days to see all the post from people who get upset over people wanting answers for autism. I’ve always supported research for all diseases and illnesses. The more we know the better. It’s hurtful that people unaffected don’t support me back. People I’ve thought of as friends and even coworkers (who have never walked a mile in my shoes) all have their biase mean opinions and have no problem sharing it without considering who they may hurt. All I want is a great future for my son and if you ever met him you would agree that he deserves that too. He is a wonderful caring boy who I hope will one day will have answers and any help he needs to be a productive person in life. May we all love and care for each other equally with no hate or judgement. May we help educate and research any illness or disease that any single person may suffer from. Love one another! Thanks for thinking of ways to help my child succeed I appreciate you!
Wow. Where do I begin?
If you belong to TACA you should already know that CHILDREN CAN RECOVER from autism. That there are a verity of treatment options. And that Lisa tirelessly collects and verifies any study she can put her hands on.
Could every child recover (including severe cases)? Probably not with the tools we have today. But new tools are added to the tool kit every year.
Can the government do more? Of course it can. But so can we the parents! We each fight this war every day solo. It is time we listened to Lisa and start comparing notes. What worked for whom and what did not work? There are 30,000 families here. Compare that to typical autism study which is 28-50 children. So yes, some of you are too exhausted to help. But I am sure that we can find enough people here that would be willing participants.
Last, Lisa needs financial support to get this going. Please consider joining me and making a donation. This is money well spent. It could be that you are fighting an aspect of the disorder that someone already figured out how to overcome or at least cope with.
If we work together there could be hope.
I’d like some real numbers on populations whom do not vaccinate ever. I’d bet my paycheck that far less if any autism exists. Let’s see the numbers folks!
The statistics are shocking. I would like to pass along some information re: my 53 yr old son who is an autistic savant. Within the last 3-4 months he has been taking 1 tsp. of Carlson cod liver oil and 1 tsp. of liquid zinc from Kirkman laboratories. Since taking these supplements I have seen a REMARKABLE change. As he says – I am even most all the time. He is still taking meds. I will talk with his dr. about reducing some of these. Also he has taken several supplements for many yrs. But the only recent change is with the cod liver oil and zinc. As an adult receiving services for those with developmental disabilities for 30+ yrs. he has been victimized in ways I would never have imagined -. victimized by people at all levels of the system. I am a whistle blower and could never have imagined the degree of retribution that has followed my reporting of very serious victimization. I find the following quote to be most appropriate – when you can’t refute the message you change the facts and when you fail at that you attack the messenger. This attitude does nothing to improve the brokenness of the system. I now believe he not only suffers from minimal brain damage (from birth) and autism but, also, from PTSD as a result of his victimization in this most broken system. I hope this great improvement continues. Katie Couric did a segment on autism. She said that in the next decade 500,000 children with autism will turn 18!!.My son has some very choice words about his experiences! However, I will not list them here! AUTISM IS IN NEED OF IMMEDIATE ATTENTION!
I have a two year old. He’s not up to date on his vaccinations, partly because I haven’t made the appointment and partly because I don’t know what to think of vaccinating him when I read and hear so many differing opinions about what causes autism. I’m not a big believer in the medical world, as in, I think there is tons of information put out there that is used to help put money in the pockets of those working in the medical field rather than to help people. Money makes the world go ’round and it seems that gets more true as the years go by. I too would be interested in knowing stats about how prevalent autism is in communities that do not vaccinate versus those that do.
You are so wrong about Autism being Genetic. My son, his dad and I had all types of tests and everything came back negative, especially the genetic one. My son regressed a month after he received the MMR shots.
Reblogged this on Help save our kids future.
An Eye on Autism form sounds like a plan if only someone or something would be on the receiving end a well as the reason for diagnosis, testing, and result
God bless you Dr. Sears
Thank you so very much Dr. Bob!