More threads by David Baxter PhD

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
Autism cases still on rise after vaccine change
January 8, 2008

New California finding refutes link between thimerosal and disorder

LOS ANGELES - Autism cases in California continued to climb even after a mercury-based vaccine preservative that some people blame for the neurological disorder was removed from routine childhood shots, a new study found.

Researchers from the state Department of Public Health found the autism rate in children rose continuously during the 12-year study period from 1995 to 2007. The preservative thimerosal hasn?t been used in childhood vaccines since 2001, but is used in some flu shots.

Doctors say the latest study adds to existing evidence refuting a link between thimerosal exposure and autism risk and should reassure parents that the disorder is not caused by vaccinations. If there was a risk, they said, autism rates should have dropped between 2004 and 2007.

The findings show ?no evidence of mercury poisoning in autism? since there was no decline in autism rates even after the elimination of thimerosal, said Dr. Eric Fombonne, an autism researcher at Montreal Children?s Hospital who had no role in the research.

Some advocacy groups blame thimerosal for the impaired social interaction typical of autism. Nearly 5,000 claims alleging a vaccine-autism link have been lodged with the federal government, which is deciding whether victims should receive compensation from a government fund.

Dr. Daniel Geschwind, a neurologist at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, said the focus now should be on exploring the causes of autism such as possible genetic links.

?Something else must be at play and we need to know what that is if we?re really serious about preventing autism,? said Geschwind, who had no connection with the study.

For their study, California public health officials calculated the autism rate by analyzing a database of state-funded centers that care for people with autism and other developmental disorders.

Autism rate rose over decade
They found the prevalence of autism in children aged 3 to 12 increased throughout the study period. For example, 0.3 per 1,000 children born in 1993 had autism at age 3 compared with 1.3 per 1,000 children born in 2003. Similar trends were found in other age groups.

?These time trends are inconsistent with the hypothesis that thimerosal exposure is a primary cause of autism in California,? the researchers wrote.

Results were published in January?s issue of the journal Archives of General Psychiatry. The study did not explore why there was an increase in autism cases.

Federal statistics show about one in 150 children in the United States have autism, higher than previous estimates. Researchers say it?s unclear if the increase is due to changes in how the disorder is classified or whether it?s an actual spike.

Autism is characterized by impaired social interaction and communication skills. There is no cure, but early therapy can lessen the severity.


Now, I think all those investigative reports and the hour long "discovery health" shows, and the like ought to now broadcast RETRACTIONS. Do we really know how many children are NOT getting their vaccinations because of the knee-jerk reactions of the media? There are literally hundreds of thousands of children whose parents stopped using vaccines altogether because of those unsubstantiated "theories". Seems like there always has to be a "reason" why a child is ill or diagnosed with an incurable condition--that usually develops in-utero. It's HUMAN NATURE. We aren't perfect. But people are very quick to jump on a bandwagon when it leads the blame to somewhere away from their doorstep!


I think even if retractions were broadcast some people would still believe it because they believe they saw it happen before their eyes. When you believe you witnessed something it's very hard to believe information that contradicts that.


I was never vaccinated as a child because my Dad didn't want me to get autism.

The fact that I landed with no voice because of his paranoia and emotional abuse escaped his attention.


What I was heard about link around autism and vaccines is all vaccines, not something like mercury poisoning or such. These is the sum of what I had read:

There are people who possess abnormal immunity system with normal people, this abnormal immunity system is inherited. Vaccines, especially at very young age when body still need development, can trigger this immunity system to react by destroying the stomach's defense system, which makes foods and other substances can't digested properly and so taken by blood to BRAIN.

The logic behind this is Vaccine, although weaken virus, still a virus. Even in normal people, it already show symptoms that the body struggle to fight it. How if the body can't fight it? There grow many kind of mental disorders.

Why this thing can't be proven is not because there are no proves but because all the people around vaccination study organizations, get their funds from companies that make vaccines.

The text itself claim, they still not see the monster, they only see a part of it.

While I don't know if it's true or not, because I don't find people that caught by autism in Indonesia, I'm agree it's better for infant to not getting too much vaccines before two years old. No double vaccine, especially MMR. And no reason for the mother to get more vaccine on her body while she already got vaccine at young age.

I'm more interested of how people who thinks these theory, try to solve their's children autism problems by like 4 alternative ways. The main way is through diet from glutein and kasein.

Well, whatever alternatives you found, be subjectif and trust more of what you see can help than doctors which (sorry) mostly skeptical to protect their's career.

Might try: ANDI | Autism Network for Dietary Intervention | Home of ANDI Bars


No evidence of why autism percentage goes higher either. ;)

Oh well, it still mystery, there only theories --whichever sides who said-- of why it is really happen, how to cure it, and I'm not researching deeper into it :/ .

At least I know I hate needles.

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
No evidence of why autism percentage goes higher either.

No clear evidence that it is higher, either. Rate of diagnosis is higher - is that because we're getting better at diagnosing autism or because we are misdiagnosing autism? or is it really that autism rates are increasing?


I have personally experienced the many emotions involved in autism - as a practitioner in the field- treating children with autism; as a student - studying autism for over 10 years; and as a former step-parent of a child with autism.

As a parent, the diagnosis is met with unbelievable grief and a sense of desperation to find a cure or to put blame on someone or something. Parents are then subjected to a barrage of controversial "treatments - many of which have no empirically demonstrated efficacy - and an overwhelming feeling of guilt if we don't try everything and anything to help our child "recover." Some parents believe it all and do in fact try it all - from chelation therapy to secretin injections to swimming with dolphins. Many parents accept anecdotal evidence as science and put their dreams in a fad that offers false hope of a quick "recovery." As a parent, I chose to throw myself into learning about autism and how to best serve the needs of my step-son using the principles of applied behavior analysis.

As a student and practitioner, I abhor those that promote these controversial treatments and who perpetuate the link between mercury and autism. So much time and money is wasted on dangerous treatments sometimes to the exclusion of implementing interventions that have over 30 years of scientifically proven and empirically demonstrated efficacy (ABA). It's sad, it's frustrating, and at times - dangerous.


Took a bit of scouting around about this... found out that websites that tell 'vaccines increase possibility on autism' are mostly commercial websites. I also email Lisa Lewis, the owner of , to make informations and facts there to be more organized but she reply me with words that seem like saying 'i dont really care about that' and just reveal that she concentrate on making incomes.

It still odd at first, because they say they have children that get cured from autism. But this day I remember about 'denialism' and denialism blog. I even found one about vaccine-denialists, which have another theme: vaccine cause SIDS. Funny also that celebrity jump into anti-vaccine bandwagon-- like they smell popular GOSSIP. denialism blog : Propaganda

So I assume what I though as alternative explanations above are just denialism. Although if I'm a parent of autistic child, I don't know what to trust. Science itself doesn't always right (because there are things that we still not able to reveal)and medical stuffs are far from my specialization.

For information,
Denialism is the employment of rhetorical tactics to give the appearance of argument or legitimate debate, when in actuality there is none. These false arguments are used when one has few or no facts to support one's viewpoint against a scientific consensus or against overwhelming evidence to the contrary. They are effective in distracting from actual useful debate using emotionally appealing, but ultimately empty and illogical assertions.
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