Navigation Links
Vaccine and autism debate masks real problem
Date:8/22/2012

EAST LANSING, Mich. The bitter debate over whether vaccines cause autism is masking real problems with the modern inoculation schedule and encouraging a growing number of parents to refuse recommended vaccines for their children, argues a Michigan State University scholar.

In his new book "Vaccine: The Debate in Modern America," Mark Largent writes that extremists for and against vaccinations have clouded the issues for parents seeking to make the best possible decisions for their children's health.

On one hand, there is no scientific evidence that vaccinations cause autism, Largent said, adding that vaccines are "one of the most effective tools in the public health arsenal."

On the other hand, Largent said some shots raise serious concerns among many parents, such as the vaccines against chickenpox and hepatitis B, which is typically given within the first days of life. Further, he said pediatricians and health officials have created an all-or-nothing approach to vaccinations that gives the false impression that all inoculations are equally important.

"It's a signal to parents that the vaccine schedule is an all-or-nothing affair that you either accept that the mandated vaccines are all equally valuable and comply with the entire schedule or reject it in its entirety," said Largent, associate professor in MSU's James Madison College. "As a result, parents who find some vaccines unnecessary are encouraged to question the entire vaccine schedule."

Fueled by celebrity activists, public anxieties over vaccines have emerged during the past 20 years, Largent noted. On one side of the debate is actress Jenny McCarthy, who believes her son's vaccinations triggered a series of seizures that led to his eventual diagnosis on the autism spectrum. On the other side are vaccine proponents such as actress Amanda Peet, who publicly supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's recommended vaccination schedule and declared that parents who do not vaccinate their children are "parasites."

Meantime, legislators in many states have loosened requirements on childhood vaccinations for attendance at schools and daycares. Today, more than half of Americans live in states that allow for philosophical exemptions to mandatory vaccinations often requiring little more than a parent's signature on an exemption form.

Public health officials worry that children who do not get all recommended and mandated vaccines pose a risk to those who get the full complement of shots. Although vaccines are not guaranteed to be effective, officials say the best way to guard against the spread of communicable diseases is to get all recommended and mandated vaccines.

Ultimately, Largent believes parents must accept responsibility to decide the best course of action for their children when it comes to vaccines. In his case, he decided against a doctor's recommendation to give his then 4-year-old daughter Annabelle a seasonal flu shot and supplemental vaccine for swine flu because she had already contracted the flu that year.

"Parents should examine the vaccination schedule, think about their child's situation and consider their options," Largent said. "That way, when they decide in favor of or against a vaccine, they are actually making a conscious choice rather than simply drifting into a decision that has been made by someone else."


'/>"/>
Contact: Andy Henion
henion@msu.edu
517-355-3294
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. NIH awards $7.8 million for innovative HIV vaccine approaches
2. IDRI and Medicago announce authorization to initiate a Phase 1 clinical trial for an H5N1 vaccine
3. Study: Vaccine targets malignant brain cancer antigens, significantly lengthens survival
4. Hepatitis A Vaccine for Children Lasts for 10 Years: Study
5. A vaccine for heart disease? La Jolla Institute discovery points up this possibility
6. FDA Approves Flu Vaccine for Coming Season
7. Potential Nipah vaccine passes primate test
8. TB Vaccine Promising as New Way to Fight Type 1 Diabetes
9. New Vaccine May Offer Protection From Deadly Nipah Virus
10. CDC Preparing Vaccine for New Swine Flu
11. Poor Sleep Hampers Vaccine Effectiveness: Study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Vaccine and autism debate masks real problem
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... First Choice Emergency Room , the largest network of independent freestanding emergency ... its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm facility. , “We are pleased to announce Dr. Ogunleye ... M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical Director of First Choice Emergency Room. , Dr. Ogunleye ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... , ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, June ... a Bronze Wellness at Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments ... of the 7th annual Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those who have experienced traumatic events may ... to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol abuse, as a coping mechanism. To ... for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers tend to feel a ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Pulmonary Hypertension Association ... it will receive two significant new grants to support its work to advance ... 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists for their work in ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® ... American Cancer Society and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to ... and other adults to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Research ... Devices Global Market - Forecast to 2022" report to ... the treatment method for the patients with kidney failure, it ... excess fluid from the patient,s blood and thus the treatment ... potassium and chloride in balance. Increasing number ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the ... 2016 - Forecast to 2022" report to their offering. ... up to date financial data derived from varied research sources ... with potential impact on the market during the next five ... comprises of sub markets, regional and country level analysis. The ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Ill. and INDIANAPOLIS , ... students receiving a Lilly Diabetes Tomorrow,s Leaders Scholarship is ... 2016 scholarship winners, announced today online at www.diabetesscholars.org ... let type 1 diabetes stand in the way of ... has supported the Foundation,s scholarship program since 2012, and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: