Saturday, September 18, 2010

Vaccine Debate...Leave all doors Open.

No matter what side of the vaccine debate you sit on, don’t expect this issue to be resolved anytime soon. This week the Vaccine-Autism Court Awarded $1.5M to the Poling Family for their daughters autism injuries related to vaccines. Expect to see the families and professionals who are passionate about the connection revitalized by this decision.

In response to the question "Donna what do you think?"  
I do NOT think that children should forgo critical vaccines.
I don’t know a parent of a child with autism who wants to see outbreaks of eradicated diseases return to our communities. Today the scientific community has not found a link that directly connects vaccines and autism. Also, true is that we live in a world where drug companies by their own practices have made themselves suspect and families are distrusting. Autism receives less than 5% of the research funding of many less  prevalent childhood diseases. Research is still in the infancy stages based on dollars and time invested. Therefore, I don't believe that every possible connection or trigger has been researched. There has not yet been enough time, science or money dedicated to ALL of the possible connections, or all of the possible illness's we are dealing with that currently fall under the ASD umbrella. That said,  I don't believe that "every" family who reports their child’s autism was caused or triggered by vaccines has been proven wrong. Until we can say "that there is NO case and  NO child in which their autism is the result  - albeit directly or indirectly - of vaccines, the policy/schedule for delivering vaccines, every individual child's immune system, or a world is so polluted vaccines somehow deliver a final immune system blow to some kids our children deserve for all doors to remain open for investigation.

Every parent wants an answer.  I do not know what caused Nicky’s autism.  I do know Nicky's autism had a trigger. Nicky hit all of his developmental milestones in the first 18 months of life. He talked, played and laughed. Below are two pictures that show what I call his BA and AA, for before autism and after autism (ironically the only AA or BA he will probably ever get). He was an adorable connected kid. His only known health challenges were immune system related, tummy problems, ear infections then pneumonia at 20 months. When he emerged from his pneumonia he stopped talking and began a rapid decent into autism. He was diagnosed with ASD at 24 months. Today he is classified in a group of kids who have "Regressive Autism". Kids who get skills and then loose them, vs those who don't develop them.  He now has a duel diagnosis of autism and epilepsy, and we don’t know how or why. 
Nicky After
Nicky Before
The family, who won the vaccine award, believes without a doubt that vaccines were the cause of their daughter’s autism. Their win confirms it was impossible to disprove a connection. This story is similar to what thousands of other families have reported experiencing. Children are described as normal, happy and precocious in their first 18 months. Then after vaccinations develop high fevers, stop eating, don’t respond when spoken to, and begin showing signs of autism, including screaming fits.  

Finally, in acknowledging Hannah's injuries, the government said vaccines aggravated a disorder Hannah had which didn't "cause" her autism, but "resulted" in it.  My son is one of the approximately 4,800 cases awaiting disposition in federal vaccine court, not because I know vaccines caused his ASD, but because I don’t know what did and no one can tell me. Until someone can I will do what I can to not leave any stone unturned. 

Until there is more funding, until more research is done there will be no answers. Our kids deserve an answer, we all deserve an answer. I don't sit on either side of the debate, I just want to learn the truth. 


  1. my heart is aching today. i sooooo need another mom dealing with an ASD child (single mom, biz owner too). I also have a non-ASD child (girl), who has to bear with mommy's split focus on her ASD brother.

    Donna, we have so much in common, yet never speak or see each other. I saw your Autism Day by Day email today. I have sooooo many pics of my son PRE-shots where his eyes sparkle and he's very alert and engaged with the world, looks into cameras, etc.

    @ 2 years old, he became glazed over, a little less engaged, speech delays and less "babbling", finicky diet, poor sleep habits (all of which were NOT there as an infant). The shots debate tears me apart and I feel helpless, but I BELIEVE THERE IS A LINK. PERIOD.

  2. Just one good question to consider. I don't need an answer, just think there may be another obvious trigger being overlooked. Right before the vaccines and subsequent obvious drop into autism, how many of these babies were teething, living on pain meds and Orajel? Posibly with an ear infection and gastric upset that's typical with teething, even if it only seemed like a bad cold? Autism doesn't happen in 1day.