April 17, 2008, - 1:22 am

Paging Dr. Jenny McCarthy: More Bimbo Science

By Debbie Schlussel
Last year, I told you about self-anointed medical “expert,” Jenny McCarthy.
Yup, the same Jenny McCarthy who has a medical degree from the Hugh Hefner School of Advanced Silicone Medicine and Porn Sciences. And don’t forget her valuable medical expertise gleaned from her days hosting MTV’s “Singled Out” and her current scientific gig “dating” (euphemism) Jim Carrey.
Because her son is autistic, she looked for something to blame it on, and . . . voila, “child vaccines cause autism.” At least, that’s her theory and that held by a growing group of alarmists with the same medical “expertise” as McCarthy.

jennymccarthy3.jpgjennymccarthy5.jpg

Bimbo Science: Jenny McCarthy’s Strange New Respect

Bodes a Bad Prognosis For America

And it’s frightening parents from giving their kids necessary vaccines against diseases that are now making a comeback because of Jenny’s Bimbo Science. McCarthy and her ilk have succeeded in persuading otherwise responsible parents to retreat back to the Stone Age when it comes to their children’s health and available preventative medical treatments. Who knew that taking off your pants for the world (that’s how McCarthy reached the D-list) would cause modern pediatric medicine to regress decades?
It’s like a scene from the movie, “Idiocracy.”
Sadly, giant medical institutions are also buying into this chic, hip new fad of Bimbo Science. Yesterday, Henry Ford Health Systems–one of the largest chains of hospitals and health care centers–hosted former Playboy centerfold McCarthy at a large banquet to address its physicians and medical staff and impart upon them her B-movie and Playboy naked video medical theories.
A local TV station ran a clip of Henry Ford’s chief of pediatrics praising McCarthy’s bizarre views on vaccines. I thought I was daydreaming. But then it got worse. On video, McCarthy told the audience that her son is no longer autistic because she’s giving him certain vitamins and a gluten-free diet. She said she can take her son “on” and “off” autism in a three-month span, based on diet, exercise, and vitamin supplements. Hmmm . . . has she been channeling Tom Cruise? Autism is a mostly permanent condition that isn’t shed by a summer of workouts and cuisine at the spa.
But don’t tell that to Dr. Bimbette or the actual physicians at Henry Ford Healthcare.
Ironically, on the same day that McCarthy was on her Bimbo Junk Science tour of Detroit, a real-life brain scientist, Sam Wang, had a great op-ed against Dr. Jenny. Wang–whose sister is autistic and who is associate professor of molecular biology and neuroscience at Princeton University–is co-author of Welcome to Your Brain: Why You Lose Your Car Keys But Never Forget How to Drive and Other Puzzles of Everyday Life. That means he might know just a tad more about what causes autism than Jenny McCarthy, BD (Doctor of Bim).
Says Wang:

I am angry that this coverage is spreading dangerous myths. My sister, Karen, is autistic. In the 1970s, my parents wondered why she behaved so differently. . . .
Autism is a neurological disorder, and its signs appear by the age of 1 or even earlier. It is highly inheritable. In identical twins where one is autistic, the chance that both are autistic is greater than 50-50. Even non-identical twins and siblings are at increased risk. . . .
Recently, celebrities such as Jenny McCarthy and other activists have taken to the airwaves to repeat the myth that autism is linked to vaccination. Although peer-reviewed scientific evidence overwhelmingly opposes their views, they have attracted attention. In a recent discussion on Larry King Live, three pediatricians invited to make the case for science were no match for McCarthy’s star power. Situations like this could mistakenly persuade parents to leave their children unvaccinated and vulnerable to contagious diseases. . . .
What are McCarthy’s credentials? She is an actress and comedienne[DS: not sure she’s either of those] – with an autistic son. Her career took on new life after she wrote a best-selling pregnancy guide. Like all parents of autistic children, she wrestled with the question of what caused his disorder. She recalled that her son was vaccinated about the time his symptoms first appeared. Aha! That’s it. Here is an example of her reasoning: “I believe that parents’ anecdotal information is science-based information.” . . .
She concluded that two events happening around the same time must be linked. They used the principle that coincidence implies a causal link. [DS: Wang describes how a rescinded, mistaken study finding blamed autism on thimerosal, but McCarthy’s son] was born in 2002, after thimerosal was removed from vaccines.
The problem is compounded by “source amnesia,” in which people are prone to remember a statement without recalling where they heard it or whether the source was reliable. . . . Such errors of reasoning hinder us from distinguishing real causes from coincidences. . . .
I wish that preventing autism were as simple as withholding a few injections. . . . I understand the vital importance of vaccination, not only for maintaining our baby’s health but also protecting our community from infectious diseases. Our daughter’s next shots are in two months.

Sadly, the people who buy into Jenny McCarthy’s Silicone Bimbo Science aren’t the kind blessed with critical thinking skills or the kind to read an op-ed like this . . . even in McPaper (USA Today).
And that’s why McCarthy’s “scientific lectures” to Medical Doctors and personnel of a major hospital in a major city will continue . . . and will harm American children’s health.
Perhaps those parents who listen to McCarthy and risk their children to diseases thought to be a thing of the past are the latest form of Darwin’s “natural selection.”
You wouldn’t trust this peroxide blonde with built-in floatation devices to treat you for cancer. Why would anyone consult her for advice on their own developing kids’ health?
Don’t embrace this new “McCarthyism.” Skank “science” is bunk.

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45 Responses

just as likely sucking on a silicone tit causes autism, isn’t it? It sure takes away focus.

Pat on April 17, 2008 at 3:47 am

Debbie, I’m not sure why you have chosen to focus on one Playboy centerfold’s opinion with regard to this issue, when there are many scientists who have been asking the same question and are very concerned about a possible link between vaccinations and autism. Some pediatricians believe that it is not vaccinations per se, but rather, the rapid succession of vaccinations in small infants that may be linked causally to autism. Those who hold this view recommend delaying vaccinations until the baby is a bit older, and increasing the time period between each vaccination.
I am a retired RN and when I did a brief stint on pediatrics, we had a patient who had been born normal, had an adverse reaction to Pertussis on her third and last injection in the series, developed intractable seizures and became severely brain damaged. Not a single physician on that service (major research/teaching medical school) pretended that the vaccination was not directly to blame for the child’s brain damage. Granted this was an adverse reaction vs. autism, but it should reinforce the fact that vaccinations are not completely harmless.
We really do not know that there is or isn’t a link between autism and vaccinations, but it is something that I hope scientists will continue to examine.
Parents are frightened — they are frightened of communicable diseases that vaccines should prevent and they are frightened of autism that they fear vaccines may cause. I think we should have more compassion for them as they grapple with this dilemma.
By the way, I have a friend who has an autistic son (he inherited it from his father, though, that much is known) and she absolutely is able to control his behavior in large degree with diet and environmental controls. Just an FYI.

AmericanJewess on April 17, 2008 at 5:15 am

Btw… on the O’Reilly show I saw a clip of “Dr. Jenny” swear at and then nearly threaten to punch out two scientists who tried to contradict her diet/autism theory.
I guess that is proof by the scientific method with hypothesis testing; etc. /sarc.
Have a good pesach, Debbie.

Underzog on April 17, 2008 at 5:52 am

What a damn fool. The preservite the activists were so worried about has not been in use for quite some time-10 years. and yet the rates of autism are still growing. how do they explain that? The link between vaccines and autism was never strong, no one even knows what causes it, so desparate people look for any explaination at all.

mindy1 on April 17, 2008 at 6:37 am

Damn, and I could have avoided all that work to get my PhD just by getting a boob job….
live and learn, will ya??

Mistress_Dee on April 17, 2008 at 9:16 am

Debbie–
Not only has the vaccine/autism connection been disproven about a zillion times, the problem is that the advocates encompass such a large tent, that it makes no sense from that direction.
They blame thimerosal, even though it has not been in most vaccines for years OR they say that it is taking too many vaccinations at once OR it is a *type* of pertussis vaccine and on and on and on. Are there bad reactions to vaccines? Of course, but how come there were almost no autistic kids over the period of time when vaccines did have all those “bad” things in them?
While I buy into a neuro-immune etiology of the disease–check out the website of my friend Mike Goldberg–
http://neuroimmunedr.com/
There are many other issues here.
I speak with some background on this, as I have written articles on the subject, have talked at length with experts, and my wife teaches autistic kids.
1. Autism is being WAY WAY over-diagnosed, and the term has expanded beyond all meaning. If people can say that Bill Gates is “on the spectrum,” then I rest my case.
2. At least 75% of the kids my wife teaches have parents that are seriously screwed-up, and I am told that this is by no means just my opinion. Check out Elaine Hall’s “Autism the Musical,” and you tell me if
a) There is really much wrong with any of the kids other than Neal
b) The parents are normal
3. Many folks are making lots of money off autism, and are quite happy with the current situation whereby the kids stay sick forever.
4. There are almost NO autistic poor people, for the same reason that there are no third-world Greenies.

Red Ryder on April 17, 2008 at 9:24 am

The reason why many in the press and some scientists think this blonde is right is for a simple reason: they want to have sex with her. These folks will do anything they think will get them closer to fulfilling preverted fantasies.
I see it all the time on campus. The socially attractive, liberal 19-year-old can get away with the most insane comments. Both men and women will side with her for the reasons of her looks and loose morals.
Being married to a better woman than “Jezebel: the Democrat Fundraiser”, I can argue and contradict her to the fullest extent. However, the rest of the class turns on me to impress her.

bhparkman on April 17, 2008 at 11:22 am

Don Imus started this mass hysteria a few months before his “nappy headed ho’s” comment got him a cement suit. I must add that there is quite a bit of medical support for investigating the Thimerosol ingredient connection—but I don’t think vaccines have the additive any more. This has become the fall back position for the Global Warming people in case there ain’t no GW so they have something to remain hysterical about.

Howard on April 17, 2008 at 11:26 am

Just another symptom of the Oprahization of E!TV/Access Hollywood/People Magazine America.
Facts don’t matter, feeeeeeeeeelings do.
All you have to do is go on Oprah, The Shrews…er The View, or Ellen Degenerate and act all concerned, say “Aren’t you concerned?”, case closed.
As for McCarthy, can you say “washed up”? Sometimes I think many in media must be about the same age range as McCarthy, Madonna, and Sheryl Crow as they seem to think they are still relevant.

Jeff_W on April 17, 2008 at 11:33 am

bhparkman, you are right, the pinko babe will get a pass. In addition, all libs get a pass because being a liberal with pet causes is so easy. Who can root against it? “What, you don’t CARE!!!! about global warming?” “You mean you don’t CARE!!!! about the U.S. killing innocent civilians in Iraq?”
As long as you “care” that’s all that matters. Again, facts don’t matter, feeeeeeeeeeelings do.

Jeff_W on April 17, 2008 at 11:39 am

I saw a very funny T-shirt the other day. Written across the chest was : “I wish these were brains”.

Pat on April 17, 2008 at 11:40 am

I must ask: Have you researched what is in vaccines? It really is documented and appears in many websites that vaccines – TODAY – do contain:
-mercury (deadly)
-formaldehyde (preservative)
-live organism of the disease ( instead of the previously used, dead cells).
-and other harmfull chemicals
Vaccines today, are not only harmful to adults, but imagine injecting these substances in small infants.
This is what we’re allowing into our bodies. This has been approved by the FDA, but what do they care? And who much are the pharmaceutical companies lobbying the government, and bribing officials.
Do you think, though, the officials at the FDA or the doctors, allow themselves or their families to have these? I don’t think so!
It’s time for us to STOP taking the “official” word on vaccines, on faith, and trust, and do some research on our own.

allat on April 17, 2008 at 12:08 pm

allat–
Notwithstanding that everything you just posted is wrong, let’s assume that you’re right.
Would it be better to get all the diseases, instead?

Red Ryder on April 17, 2008 at 12:36 pm

Debbie,
Please allow me to point something out that seems to have been missed in your comparison between Jenny and Dr. Wang.
Jenny has actually recovered a child with autism, Dr. Wang hasn’t.
Jenny = 1
Wang = 0
Her son was diagnosed with autism, she implemented the ground breaking medical interventions that parents (like me) have been using to improve the health and functioning of their children diagnosed with autism, with some, like Jenny’s son, completely loosing their diagnosis and becoming indistinguishable from their peers.
And before you start mocking “her” diet/autism treatment, you should probably know that the American Academy of Pediatrics is about to publicly endorse the GFCF diet as a means of successfully treating autism.
I am not sure that this is the most receptive crowd, but I am going to go ahead and explain why the diet works for most people with autism. It is not just a matter of ‘eat healthier, cure autism’
Most people who are diagnosed with ‘autism’ when examined medically, are found to have severe damage to their digestive tract. The finger like villi on the walls of the intestines that take in nutrients are damaged and often flattened like trampled carpeting and do not do their job. In addition, small fissures occur in the walls of the gut allowing undigested food and toxins that the body would normally expel, to enter the blood stream.
Two of the things that effect these children so profoundly are a protein in milk called Casein and a protein in wheat, oats, barley and rye, called Gluten. Because the GI tract damage prevents the break down of these proteins down into individual amino acids so they can be properly absorbed, they enter the blood stream still in peptide chains and once in the blood, they behave like morphine.
In fact at that point they are called casomorphine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casomorphine) and gluteomorphin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gliadorphin).
They plug into the opioid receptor cites in the nervous system and literally make our children high.
Removing foods from the diet of these kids is like a junkie kicking the habit. My son, diagnosed with severe regressive autism at 18 months, began making eye contact answering to his name again after only 48 hours on the diet. He had not done so in 8 months.
We didn’t really know what we were doing with the diet, and knew we couldn’t just feed him hotdogs and potato chips, so we decided to take a week, learn how to do it right. So after 5 days of him on the diet, we gave him pizza for dinner. He was gone again in 15 minutes. Rolling his head around like Stevie Wonder, high as a kite.
He has now been on the diet (and several other of the same medical interventions that Jenny is using) for the last 4 years and he is a dramatically different child, he is still “autistic”, but high functioning, in a typical classroom (with some help) and may not even meet the formal criteria for ‘autism’ any more.
When additional measures are put in place to actually help heal the digestive tract, the villi are restored to proper function and nutrients can again begin flowing properly to the BRAIN, that has literally been starved of the energy and chemical compounds that it needs to function properly.
This is one ONE piece of the medical puzzle of these kids.
You can’t judge a medical intervention by whom it works for. I have a masters in clinical counseling from Johns Hopkins, Hannah Poling’s father, who uses the same medical interventions as Jenny, is a Georgetown schooled, former Hopkins Neurologist. Is it bad when Jenny does it for her son but good when Dr. Poling does it for his daughter?
You may not like Jenny, but you need to understand that she is right. Vaccines do trigger autism, and the Department of Health and Human Services has admitted it and will be paying Hannah Poling in the ball park of one million dollars from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Fund for her vaccine induced autism.
Julie Gerberding, head of the CDC went on CNN last month and explained to everyone how vaccines trigger autism (http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.com/2008/03/julie-gerberding-admits-on-cnn-that.html)
The paradigm has shifted, and the CDC is now having internal discussion on changing the vaccine schedule, and they estimate that 1 in 50 children may be at risk for the predisposition for vaccine induced autism that Hannah Poling has.
And just because this whole thing was heralded in to the public forum by a bimbo, don’t make it any less true.

Ginger Taylor on April 17, 2008 at 12:50 pm

Red Ryder,
“Would it be better to get all the diseases, instead?”
For some kids, not most, but some, yes… the disease poses a much lower risk of long term damage than the vaccines.
Not everyone can be safely vaccinated any more than everyone can safely eat a peanut.
We have a responsibility to those vulnerable ones to find out BEFORE they are vaccinated if it is safe for them. If there is any doubt, they should be vaccinated on a much less aggressive schedule or not at all.
Vaccines are medication and no medication is one size fits all. They need to be handled just as carefully as any other medication going into a baby would.
Children at 8 weeks old are given 7 or 8 different vaccines at once in this country. These vaccines are NOT safety tested in combination. Most parent reports of adverse reactions to their doctors, 99%, are never reported to authorities.
When I was a child we got 10 vaccines before the age of 18 months. Now a child gets 36.
And for most it starts on the day of birth.
Too many, too soon, too close together, with too many toxins, given in combinations that are not safety tested, to children who are not screened to see if their immune systems are healthy enough to handle the load.
It is time to scale back the vaccine schedule.
When I was a little girl, with our mere 10 vaccines, there were no epidemics. It was enough and we have crossed way over the line and are now trading treatable viral infections for life long neurological damage and autoimmune disorders.

Ginger Taylor on April 17, 2008 at 12:58 pm

Ginger–
You forget that Gerberding is a much better politician than a doctor. (cf. immigrants and TB, etc etc)
My challenge to all the vaccine/autism idiots is simply this–
Explain the epi whereby kids have been vaccinated for 50 years, and there was no autism until the mid-1980s.

Red Ryder on April 17, 2008 at 1:02 pm

Ginger–
Great public health policy!!
How do you determine what kids should not be vaccinated, and considering that the killer childhood diseases strike early, is it worth the risk?
Like I said earlier–
There are very few poor kids with autism for the same reason that there are no third world Greens.

Red Ryder on April 17, 2008 at 1:06 pm

Back in 2001, I interviewed a lady whose two sons were autistic. They had received the vaccination, but, oddly enough, their sister also received the vaccination but was perfectly normal. As much as the lady was suspicious of the vaccination, she acknowledged to me that despite her intense research, she was never able to prove to herself that the vaccinations were the cause. You know, inconclusive at best.

richardzowie on April 17, 2008 at 1:46 pm

Red Ryder,
“Explain the epi whereby kids have been vaccinated for 50 years, and there was no autism until the mid-1980s.”
Autism was defined in the 40’s and at the time Leo Kanner, the man who defined the syndrome in the US could only find about 8 kids a year with the disorder. (Kids then only got 3 vaccines in their lifetime, if that.)
Since then it has been increasing, making it’s largest jump in the 1990’s at the same time the vaccine schedule made its largest jump.
And keep in mind, vaccines are not the only trigger of autism. In fact there are some children with autism who have never been vaccinated.
What everyone can agree on in this debate is that autism is an underlying genetic predisposition that is triggered by something in their environment. Those are successfully treating autism are treating it as a toxic injury. The increasingly toxic world we are living in contributes to the load these kids carry, vaccines are most likely just the biggest bolus dose of toxins that these kids get, and the one that overwhelms their immune and detoxification systems and starts the multi system crash that we see in these kids.
One of the only Amish children with autism (the Amish don’t generally vaccinate) that one investigative reporter could find was a child that lived under the smoke plume of a coal burning plant. (coal when burned releases mercury into the air)
There was a study done in texas that showed the rate of autism increased by something like 61 cases for every 1000 lbs of mercury put into the air by coal burning plants.
So increasing environmental pollution over the last century adds to the mix as well.
“How do you determine what kids should not be vaccinated, and considering that the killer childhood diseases strike early, is it worth the risk?”
There may be a few ways to screen for these kids before they regress.
About 70% of kids with autism don’t make enough of an amino acid called glutathione. It is the body’s “garbage man” that binds to toxins like lead, mercury and aluminum, so that the liver can process them out of the body. From day one, these kids are like toxic sponges who can’t get rid of what ever comes in, like most people can, and their little bodies just keep filling up with junk. (A bolus dose of aluminum or mercury in their shots may be the thing that set them over the edge, but so also lead paint on their Thomas Trains or living in a very polluted neighborhood. There are a few autism ‘cluster’ like the Northvale cluster in NJ where something like half the kids born to teachers who worked in one class room, Room 5, in a school in an industrial part had kids with autism.)
Testing for glutathione depletion at birth, and periodically during well baby visits would be simple and supplementing glutathione is as easy as going to the health food store and paying 10 bucks for a bottle.
We have been encouraging the medical profession to look into this for years, but because it touches on the idea that vaccines may trigger autism, resistance of looking at this very simple preventative measure has met with huge resistance.
Incidentally, touching back on Jenny and her ‘crazy vitamin cure’ glutathione is one of the supplements that works well for our kids (my son’s language increased dramatically when we put him on it) and zinc is also an important one. It turns out that zinc is one of the building blocks that the body uses to make glutathione and our children, because of the damage to their GI tracts, were not absorbing zinc from the food they ate and therefore could not make glutathione. (Which allows toxins like mercury to stay in the body, and one of the harmful things that mercury does in the body is damage the GI tract. And the vicious cycle is in place! See… the crazy vitamin cure starts to make sense when you actually sit down and look at why it works, doesn’t it?)
Another screening may be looking for mitochondrial disorders, like Hannah Polings. To diagnose one requires a muscle biopsy, quite invasive and painful, but a urine test to look for abnormal levels of Lactate, Pyruvate and Ammonia may tell us which kids are likely to have mitochondrial disorders.
We have really good leads on how to vaccinate smartly and safely. We need the medical profession to quit the denial that vaccines are only good and never hurt anyone to end so that we can prevent damage in the few kids who can’t handle them.

Ginger Taylor on April 17, 2008 at 2:06 pm

She is pretty tho :)

PrincessKaren on April 17, 2008 at 2:13 pm

Ginger–
Can’t reply to all of this now, but I think you would agree that Kanner is spinning in his grave over how the definition of autism has been expanded.
Note that Amish angle essentially re-states my point on poor kids not getting autism (as in their families have other things to worry about, and are less susceptible to pop culture). Mercury toxicity requires meagadoses, and then in utero. Living near a stack is orders of magnitudes too low.
Technically, glutathione is not an amino acid, but is a peptide that is made from three amino acids.
It is difficult to supplement (although you can certainly buy as much of it as you wish), since it does not absorb well. Saying that, there are several other key antioxidants that would come into play. The body is a marvelous thing, and deficiencies in one area are usually made up by extra activities in another.
In my judgment there will be no progress made on autism until we agree on a rational definition of the condition. Imagine treating some form of cancer, for example, if the definition expanded on virtually a weekly basis.
Sad to say, autism is just one more notch in the gun of junk science.

Red Ryder on April 17, 2008 at 3:04 pm

Wow! 21 comments already. I just felt impelled to comment on the cultural bias of this blog. We must keep in mind that large sections of our population agree that there is not a need for vaccinations or sanitary practices. Those among us who are illegal aliens are not overly concerned with vaccinations or spreading disease, nor are “immigrants” or VISA visitors from Asia, or other parts of the word. It sounds to me like Jenny McCarthy is just fitting in with emerging trends. After all, we don’t want to be culturally biased. Why should we impose our cultural values regarding vaccines & exhibit cultural superiority against the illegal aliens and the newcomers from Asia & other cesspools of the world who may not share our ethnocentric values?

c f on April 17, 2008 at 3:15 pm

Perhaps there should be studies of peroxide hair dye usage and IQ.
chsw

chsw on April 17, 2008 at 3:18 pm

cf–
Interesting that in all the “correlation/causation” crap that these autism activists come up with, no one wants to touch the very real point that diseases like TB that were virtually eradicated (and things like bedbugs) came back with all the immigration.
And, no one is more PC on this than Gerberding.

Red Ryder on April 17, 2008 at 3:28 pm

Sigh. Is autism the new ADHD? Do autistics get a handicapped parking space? I’m sick of these “junk science” nuts. Next they’re going to say autistics are allergic to their houses and that the taxpayers should build non-allergenic houses for them. This is just one little step away from Scientology.
McCarthy’s silicone probably caused the son’s autism. She can’t handle the guilt so she transfers the blame onto vaccines.

lexi on April 17, 2008 at 3:32 pm

Red Ryder, exactly right. One of the main problems I have with illegal immigration, and even a lot of the legal immigration is the spread of disease, lack of sanitary practices, & then to make matters worse, the financial drain that forces health facilities to close.
When I was a kid, I read about hoaxes like the Piltdown Man, or When Worlds Collide, & I wondered, how can anybody fall for this garbage? Now, it seems like these hoaxes have come back with a vengeance, and with all the information the Internet makes available for those who know how to use it, seemingly and deceptively rational people propagate this stuff. It’s impossible to keep a straight face when I hear about all of this.
This is coming at a time when it is hard enough to convince people over 50 to get flu vaccines, to get the new shingles vaccine when needed, or other preventive care. I’ve been shocked how many apparently educated people say they won’t touch any of these vaccines. Kooks like McCarthy hurt older people who are wavering on whether or not to get needed vaccines.

c f on April 17, 2008 at 3:46 pm

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080408112107.htm
The increase in diagnosis is because the criteria for diagnosis is not as rigid and is more inclusive than before… which is not necessarily a bad thing.
However, whenever this happens then it becomes politically and financially advantageous to give and maintain the diagnosis. That’s why you will be hearing about lots of children who were previously diagnosed becoming well. Instead of coming to the conclusion that the diagnosis was wrong, they will say they were cured or that such and such a treatment is beneficial or that they had a milder form or caught it early.
Universities and hospitals get paid lots in grants and from insurance companies for this disorder.
You see the same thing happening with bipolar disorder, ADHD and even breast cancer.
Like I said, not to offend anyone who has a debilitating condition, this is not a bad thing to be overly inclusive as long as it is not exploited.

Marshah on April 17, 2008 at 3:55 pm

I would like to submit that this scare is not “junk science” only incomplete science worthy of greater exploration. One of the best postings not wasting valuable type space with pejorative comments and unfounded criricism (e.g. not educated on any of the processes)is Ginger Taylor. The others will certainly fall into the belief that whatever the FDA “experts” say, they will believe is not junk science. Unfortunately, there are many studies that have passed many drugs that have since been recalled… e.g. the Vigor study which helped get the COX 2 inhibitor through called Vioxx (which we are still tallying the death tolls), as well as DES and Thalidamide to name only a few. The belittling comments of attack resemble the mentality of a Jerry Springer audience. There is no science in that for sure, only emotional reaction formation. Computers are now even accessible in trailer parks.

Dr. Doug on April 17, 2008 at 5:19 pm

Unfortunately Dr. Doug’s comments are on about the same level as those of Dr. Jenny. The comment about FDA experts is a straw man. The fact that there was incomplete, faulty and misleading research about VIOXX does not justify a pseudo-study by a crackpot that has absolutely no scientific evidence, but only anecdotal evidence that has been criticized by leading authorities. A few bad FDA approvals should not be used as a rationalization for lowering standards to the point that someone like McCarthy gets a platform at a hospital that has, at least in the past, had a good reputation. Of course, political correctness in med schools is a whole other story.

c f on April 17, 2008 at 5:37 pm

Red Ryder and cf: No one is saying that there should be no vaccinations – but the case of autism has been tied to the new vaccines.
Nobody is objecting to vaccines, but certainly the NEW type of vaccines have been tied to autism. So it’s a case of “which is worse, the cure or the disease?
You are welcome to take the NEW type vaccines if you want, and to take the risk by giving them to your newborns and young infants. The battery of vaccines for them is more than there ever was years ago. This is reprehensible and unconscionable.
You say I’m am wrong? In what way? Have you done research. And and have you also researched who are the purveyors of the vaccine. I’ll tell you who: The Pharmaceutical Companies, who stand to and do, make a mint.
Certainly, nobody wants a plague or an epidemic, but where to people get the idea that:
“We must keep in mind that large sections of our population agree that there is not a need for vaccinations or sanitary practices. Those among us who are illegal aliens are not overly concerned with vaccinations or spreading disease, nor are “immigrants” or VISA visitors from Asia, or other parts of the word.”
“Who are those among us?”
Instead of fighting and challenging us here, why don’t you do some research.
The overall population is FOR cleanliness and hygiene. And lack of sanitation is the cause of disease, this has been tied to epidemics. It has been documented that populations can be injected to the nth, but epidemics spread anyway because of lack of education of such. This happened in England and France and elsewhere, in the last century.
One must get an overview of the problem in regards to these times. It isn’t just illegal immigrants ( let’s lay the cards on the table: You DO mean grubby little Mexicans) – or legal immigrants (I myself, mean islamics who are allowed in, whose culture precludes use of washing hands and exposing their arms, and all that goes with it).
The overview I refer to, is the garbage mountains several stories high – which exists – alongside each city- garbage lots filled with plastics and material not absorvable by the earth. Garbage mountains with disease giving rats and roaches and ticks, and molds.
Which brings me to the problems of contaminated food and waterways – that also produce diseases.
Not to mention, the foodstuffs and animals loaded with toxins and insecticides.
So, it isn’t just the immigrants – legal or illegals or visitors, but the root causes of diseases that we must fix.
So, overall, people can insist on a patch, of we can all insist on being filled to the gills with preservative ( formaldehyde) mercury and the live organisms themselves, etc (seems you’re wanting that) or fix the NATIVE cause right here in this country.

allat on April 17, 2008 at 5:51 pm

I have been a teacher for students with autism since 1989. The majority of my autistic students did not have vaccinations and were all on the gluten-free diet. I never saw even one child get better from the diet and many had health problems. This diet only works for food allergies, it does not cure autism and neither did Jenny McCarthy. She is a disgrace and parents need to beware.

Fredicats on April 17, 2008 at 5:58 pm

It is embarrassing to have to include this information from the Government:
“MMR is a combination vaccine that protects children from measles, mumps, and rubella (also known as German measles). The first dose of the vaccine is usually given to children 12 to 15 months old. The second dose is usually given between 4 and 6 years of age.
In 1998, a study of autistic children raised the question of a connection between MMR vaccine and autism.
The 1998 study has a number of limitations. For example, the study was very small, involving only 12 children. This is too few cases to make any generalizations about the causes of autism. In addition, the researchers suggested that MMR vaccination caused bowel problems in the children, which then led to autism. However, in some of the children studied, symptoms of autism appeared before symptoms of bowel disease.
In 2004, 10 of the 13 authors of the 1998 study retracted the study’s interpretation. The authors stated that the data were not able to establish a causal link between MMR vaccine and autism.
Other larger studies have found no relationship between MMR vaccine and autism. For example, researchers in the UK studied the records of 498 children with autism born between 1979 and 1998. They found:
The percentage of children with autism who received MMR vaccine was the same as the percentage of unaffected children in the region who received MMR vaccine.
There was no difference in the age of diagnosis of autism in vaccinated and unvaccinated children.
The onset of “regressive” symptoms of autism did not occur within 2, 4, or 6 months of receiving the MMR vaccine.
Groups of experts, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, agree that MMR vaccine is not responsible for recent increases in the number of children with autism. In 2004, a report by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) concluded that there is no association between autism and MMR vaccine, or vaccines that contain thimerosal as a preservative.
There is no published scientific evidence showing that there is any benefit to separating the combination MMR vaccine into three individual shots.”
Of course I realize that we live in a society where conspiratorial and nutroot theories abound; conspiracies get more credibility than real science, and I guess some of the comments in this discussion reflect that.

c f on April 17, 2008 at 6:08 pm

As an Autistic myself, I am offended by what the bimbo said. I never got Autism through some vaccine, it was a result of my mother doing drugs and crap while I was still in the womb.
Autism is over diagnosed, this is true. There are people I’ve seen that I know couldn’t be autistic. It’s so sad that truly autistics like myself are misrepersented (yeah, as if everything else isn’t already?) by those with whackjob doctors claiming they have it.
The only thing this bimbo is good for is….well….I can’t say it here.

Squirrel3D on April 17, 2008 at 6:16 pm

Jeff_W,
You nailed their arguments exactly!
All I hear is, “Don’t you CARE about Global Warming? Animal Rights? a woman’s right to chose? Don’t you care?”

bhparkman on April 17, 2008 at 8:59 pm

Ginger Taylor, thank you for your thoughtful and intelligent comments.
Dr. Doug, you are right on and have this group pegged for what they are.
To have an autistic child is a terrible challenge to any family; I cannot understand where all this venom and hostility is coming from or why it should be directed at families who are devastated by this condition and who are motivated to help their child and to protect other families from suffering the same fate.
I will not dismiss out of hand the experiences of thousands of parents who observed neurological changes in their child hours or days after receiving a vaccination. I will not insult them by calling it “a coincidence.” We do not have all the answers; we do not know exactly what the link is between autism and vaccines, but we need to continue our investigation.
Red Ryder, I’m completely disgusted by your comment that your wife has said 75% of parents of autistic children are weird. Wow. I know three sets of parents with autistic children and they are the most normal, loving, caring and intelligent people I know. I’m sorry that your wife works with autistic children if she has this kind of disparaging attitude toward the parents. And by the way, writing a couple of hack articles about a condition does not an expert make.

AmericanJewess on April 18, 2008 at 12:35 am

Thanks for the kind words.
I wanted to leave one more post before moving on. The claim that there is no evidence of a link between vaccines and autism is a false one. There is a lot of evidence. I began making a list a few weeks ago and have more than 30 studies listed:
http://cloutieragency.com/redesign/drop/index_clean.html
But then found that TACA has a much better list of studies backing the autism/vaccine link and the science behind the GFCF diet and the other interventions that parents like me and Jenny are seeing work for our kids. Their list of studies was around 600 so I am not going to bother adding to my list when clearly theirs puts mine to shame. TACA is the autism group that Jenny is the spokesperson for:
http://www.talkaboutcuringautism.org/vaccines/autism-studies-april-2008.pdf
Pay very close attention to health officials like Julie Gerberding, the head of the CDC, when they make their ‘no link’ statements. They never say, “there is no link between vaccines and autism”. It is always very qualified and parsed. “There is no conclusive evidence of a link”, “We don’t believe there is a link”, “There are no government studies that support a link” (there are plenty of studies, just not by the government, we refuses to do the studies that would find a link).
Pretty soon it will get down to what the definition of the word “is” is.
The evidence is there. Last weekend representatives of the American Academy of Pediatrics attended the spring Defeat Autism Now conference, where Jenny spoke. This is the organization associated with the Autism Research Institute that has been the source point for all of these medical interventions that are working.
At the end of the conference, the AAP reps said that the science was there for them to take back to the AAP to get a partnership going between the two organizations to implement many of the interventions that Me and my bimbo pal Jenny are using on our children as standard practice in all pediatrician’s offices. Why? Because they work.
Kids are getting better, some all the way better.
I leave you with this:
http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.com/2008/04/autism-yesterday.html
Tonight a short film called Autism Yesterday is screening all over the country. It tells the stories of a few families whose children have recovered from autism doing what the Bimbo has done.
Watch the trailer, or the documentary on Amazon.
See for yourself. The kids are getting better.

Ginger Taylor on April 18, 2008 at 2:27 am

Gotta love it. Natural selection is not dead, but will be the result of true stupidity. The shame is that innocent children will suffer.
Fortunately most people are protected by the herd effect of vaccinations so they can their ignorance and survive too.

taffy on April 18, 2008 at 8:32 am

AmericanJewess–
Time to work on your reading comprehension skills?
Although my wife does teach autistic kids, the 75% figure is mine–her estimate is lower. But, who am I to argue with your gigantic sample of three families?
Feel free to call my work “hack” if you like, but considering that you don’t know who I am, and have likely not read the stuff, your opinion is not exactly well-informed.
BTW–After I got loads of hate mail on my piece debunking the autism/vaccine connection, Michael Fumento told me that the only other health issue that scores higher on the hate mail gauge is if you post an article attacking the Atkins Diet.
Fredicats and others with common sense, Thank You!

Red Ryder on April 18, 2008 at 8:37 am

Let’s try once more:
“In reporting on controversies in health and science, reporters tend to be tone deaf to what counts as scientific authority: national scientific bodies, which reflect the expert consensus on various topics can find themselves put on an equal footing with anyone who has an M.D. or Ph.D making any sort of sensational claim, thanks to the ìhe says/she saysî formula for achieving balance in the service of ìgood journalismî (truth being too difficult to adjudicate).
So, for example, when the Washington Post described the opening of a ìvaccine courtî in June 2007 to deal with some 5,000 plaintiffsí claims that vaccination caused their childrenís autism, proponents of the mercury link were described thus:
ìScientific advocates for the vaccine-autism theory, such as the father-and-son team of Mark and David Geier of Silver Spring, say fears about damaging public health programs have prompted scientists and the government to hide evidence of a problem. Many of the families believe that the medical establishment and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have conspired in a massive coverup. ì
No mention was made in the story of a truly astonishing trail of scientific controversy that has dogged the Geiers, or the fact that their research has been denounced by the Institute of Medicine. But now, in the case of Blackwell v. Sigma Aldrich, Inc. et al., the blog neurodiversity notes that a judge has thrown out not only the Geiersí testimony, but rejected the ìexpertiseî of a whole slew of the plaintiffís experts as not being scientifically relevant to the case. Hereís a flavor of the document:
ì[The] Plaintiffs proffered Dr. Mark Geier as their lone expert witness in the field of epidemiology. For the reasons that follow, this Court rejects the methodology utilized by Dr. Geier pursuant to the Frye-Reed test, and further finds that Dr. Geier is not an expert in the field of epidemiology.
In that context, the only published epidemiological studies that purport to find an association between exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism were written by Dr. Mark Geier and his son, Dr. David Geier. The Geiers maintain that they have found epidemiological evidence of causation in all 11 of their studies. Wyeth [one of the defendants] contends that their articles were published generally in relatively obscure or unknown journals that are not typically used to report significant epidemiological studies. Accordingly, this Court must review these studies in order to address the issues associated in this Frye-Reed proceeding.
Each of the Geier and Geier epidemiology studies uses one or more of the following databases: the Vaccine Adverse Effect Reporting System (îVAERSî); the Vaccine Safety Datalink (îVSDî); the Department of Education database (îDOEî); and the California Department of Social Services. On the record established in this proceeding, this Court finds that Geier and Geier improperly use these databases and draw conclusions from the data that could not be drawn through the use of generally accepted principles of epidemiology.
Dr. Geier testified that the methodology that he and his son utilized in their VAERS studies strictly replicated the methodology used by the Centers for Disease Control (îCDCî). On the record established in this proceeding, this Court finds that to be facially incorrect; indeed, there are significant and material distinctions between the CDC studies and the Geier and Geier publications.
The Geier and Geier studies refer to two CDC publications, namely Niv, et al. and Rosenthal, et al. Both of these articles address the adverse events that were previously accepted to result in some cases from administration of the vaccines. Accordingly, unlike Dr. Geier, the CDC authors were not attempting to prove or disprove that such adverse events were caused by vaccination. Instead, the authors sought to compare the relative frequency of the reporting of such events following vaccinations with two different vaccines.
Further, and significantly, while the CDC authors analyzed relative rates of reported reactions from different vaccines, they did not treat their findings as proof of causality. The CDC authors noted that a finding of a statistically significant difference in the reported rates of reactions between two vaccines does not allow one to conclude that one vaccine is more reactive than the other. Indeed, such a hypothesis, generated by VAERS data, can only be confirmed by use of a database that allows for a controlled study, such as VSD. As a result, Dr. Geierís claim that the Geier and Geier studies using the VAERS database were done in a manner that the CDC instructed is factually incorrect.î
It goes on:
ìÖthe American Academy of Pediatrics (îAAPî), in a May, 2003 posting to their website, strongly denounced the Geier and Geier publication identified as PX 48 (ìStudy Fails to Show a Connection Between Thimerosal and Autismî). The AAP expressed the concern about using the VAERS database in the manner utilized by Geier and Geier, stating: ìThis paper uses data from the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) inappropriately and contains numerous conceptual and scientific flaws, omissions of fact, inaccuracies, ” etc.
A google search of such links revealed such scientific sources as Rolling Stone Magazine, and World Net Daily. While I feel compassion for families with autistic children, the GFCF diet is clearly a bunch of hucksters with the latest fad, preying on victims such as families with autistic children to sell their latest potions & get rich, just like all the weight-reduction pills that steal peoples’ money & don’t work. To me, the “quality” of the “scientists” pushing such studies is about on the same level as the PC scientists that succeeded in forcing Larry Summers to step down from Harvard.

c f on April 18, 2008 at 5:06 pm

Debbie, I know a few autism families, and the kids seem pretty tragic. The common link is the parents believe that they know the cause (lead, vaccine) and that they deserve a payout (one filed a lawsuit). This is like a lot of disease based litigation: loads of hot air, anti-science. The autism juggernaut is a collosal fraud and shakedown, fueled by lawyers and various hacks who can’t make an honest buck. Also: Happy Passover.

Anonymous1 on April 19, 2008 at 12:17 am

Happy Passover, Debbie.
Obviously, you stirred up a hornet’s nest. I am not an expert, nor do I have any experience with autism. Therefore, I will limit my comments to the cultural phenomenon of the reactions on this column and elsewhere.
If you want to hype something, get a stupid actor, musician, or someone famous who speaks well, looks good, and emotes well on camera. They serve as spokespersons. They can articulate any idea, no matter how stupid, dangerous, or otherwise and people will believe it. Maybe it’s because they want to get close to the spokesperson or they turn off their brains, but they will believe it. Otherwise, it’s just an opinion. What is truly disturbing is that medical professionals are using Jenny McCarthy to talk to them instead of real medical researchers. Maybe they do want to have sex with her afterward.
As for what all of you have written, remember, the scientist Robert Koch wrote the laws of causality. If you want to prove a link, you must use his laws.
Debbie, if you weren’t so sensible, you could espouse some conspiracy theory in front of a group of experts–but you’re not the Playboy centerfold skank that they want to…..

Loser on April 19, 2008 at 2:35 pm

Don’t forget that this same crap was peddled by Robert Kennedy Jr., self-appointed scaremonger in chief in Rolling Stone Magazine-who knows how many people bought into this fearmongering from anti-business liberals with their own ego-driven publicity agendas? P.S. I’m a real doctor who gets it that we would still have diphtheria and measles running rampant and polio would not be near eradication, like smallpox, if it weren’t for vaccines.

Lisa on February 2, 2010 at 6:40 pm

I honestly couldn’t even make my way to the end of your blog. It’s so filled with hatred and anger, and you have no idea what millions of parents are going through right now.
I am a mother of two sons who both regressed and were later diagnosed with Autism because of vaccines. My sons are not both ‘coincidences’, I and my husband saw them, we saw the head banging & loss of eye contact within hours of the youngest’s 4 month shots.
And guess what, OUR PEDIATRICIAN KNOWS NOTHING ABOUT AUTISM. TWO OF THEM, ADMIT THEY KNOW NOTHING!!!! THEY REFUSE TO WORK WITH ANOTHER CHIRO. FOLLOWING DAN PROTOCOL (THE ONLY THING THAT HAS LED TO BOTH SONS SPEAKING!!!)
THEY REFUSE BECAUSE THERE’S NO ‘FACT BASED MEDICAL EVIDENCE’, BUT THEY ALSO REFUSE TO LEARN ANYMORE ABOUT THIS EPIDEMIC.
So I understand growing up with an Autistic sister obviously sucked pretty badly for you. But here’s a wake up call-there’s a GREAT chance it was environmental. Unless she gets a blood test to show it’s genetic your sister was poisoned by some heavy metals somehow, be it vaccines, water, the list goes on and on.
All we want is further testing. Jenny McCarthy DOES know more about Autism than most doctors. Having a kid on the spectrum will do that to you.
I seriously hope you have found the empathy in your heart for ALL of us parents who experienced real vaccine induced Autism and quit singling out the really pretty actress you’re so painfully envious of.

Lydia Bush on March 31, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Your example of your two kids both having it actually makes the case that it is *not* the vaccine and more likely something that the parents do.

    DS_ROCKS! on November 29, 2012 at 6:15 pm

Ok, so it is ‘Wang’s’ sister who had Autism. Makes it even worse that you are SO critical when you have no first hand experience. Jenny is an amazing mother and an inspiration to so many!!!

Lydia Bush on March 31, 2012 at 4:19 pm

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