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#31 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 01:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Astral Mama View Post
Can you reread my post and then demonstrate your understanding by explaining why that's not necessary?
I am not understanding. Please can you explain more clearly how you can find an effect that you are not measuring for?



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That's true. Many researchers have pointed out that the seemingly alarming, meteoric rise in ASD diagnosis rates matches very closely a drop in diagnosis of mental retardation (or non-ASD developmental disabilities, or "intellectual disability", which I believe is the current term of art.) That at least suggests the hypothesis that kids who were diagnosed as mentally retarded 50 years ago are now being recognized as being autistic.
I am familiar with the main points in the debate. It is my understanding that professionals agree that there is a real increase, albeit small.

I have failed to understand the position that says there is no increase, it's all about changed diagnosis. Followed by thimerasol is safe, as despite it being removed from the vaccines, Autism incidence has continued to rise. Surely it is one or the other? I am genuinely curious. I might be missing something that is really clear.

Again, at the risk of sounding like a broken record. I am not saying vaccines cause Autism. I am saying Autism is very complex and a huge umbrella for what will no doubt become smaller clusters of disorders on the spectrum.

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#32 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 02:15 PM
 
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I am not understanding. Please can you explain more clearly how you can find an effect that you are not measuring for?
The effect they were measuring for -- like so many previous studies -- was whether thimerosal exposure is correlated to diagnosis with ASDs. The evidence that it's not is overwhelming. If some portion of the population were particularly sensitive to thimerosal, for whatever reason, at least one of these studies would likely have shown there to be some overall correlation -- even if it was only true of a subpopulation.

Doesn't seem that complicated to me.


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I have failed to understand the position that says there is no increase, it's all about changed diagnosis. Followed by thimerasol is safe, as despite it being removed from the vaccines, Autism incidence has continued to rise. Surely it is one or the other? I am genuinely curious. I might be missing something that is really clear.
I don't see why you perceive those two facts to be contradictory.
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#33 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 02:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by karika View Post
http://www.naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=19...DD0A899DC62BDC

In case you are not aware of this woman, she worked for a major pharma company for 15 years and decided she could no longer continue on in good conscience.

The pharmaceutical companies are controlling what you hear and read in many instances. They control politicians and policy makers, magazines and 'health' organizations, insurance companies too. The ties and revolving door of pharma, govt positions, and the money trail are well documented. Any study presented is most likely approved of by pharma. Pharma is not in the business of promoting wellness. Think about it! If people were to become well, they would be out of business. All of the 'health' field bears this because of its very design. The 'health' care industry could not exist if there was health.
Okay, a couple of things here.

There is PLENTY wrong and corrupt within the pharmaceutical company, just as with every large corporation - don't get me started on the mass farming industry, for instance. However, that doesn't mean that all the food they produce is for us is poison. Nor are all drugs inherently BAD. I'm sure if you child had cancer or was in incredible pain, you wouldn't deny her the DRUGS that these companies produce, yet I bet I could come up with some "evidence" that those things are BAD for your kid. There will always be someone crunchier than you, more alternative than you, who sees your views as a shameful blind following of THE MAN. That doesn't make them right, though.

As for BIG pHARMa controlling EVERYTHING...they are a strong lobby, for sure. They do not own all the individual scientists, though, nor do they own all the journal reviewers, nor do they own EVERY doctor. They don't. Sorry. I work in a University health institute, and I can guarantee you that my colleagues are not paid by the pharmaceutical companies. Even if others are, that's what conflict of interest statements are about, and trust me - there are conflict of interests on ALL sides of this issue. That little article posted upthread by Geier and son? They have their own company where they inject anti-sex hormones into autistic children, to cure them from the damage they claim is done by mercury. They chemically castrate small children, and they get PAID to do it.

Oh, and for the record - health will always require care. Please. Next time you end up in the emergency room, maybe reconsider taking the help of these evil people, since you choose to vilify them openly.

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As for any study that says there is no neurological damage from vaccines, the answer is obvious to me. Too many people have had a healthy child one minute and a damaged child the next. It happens after a vaccine every time. Numbers can be skewed, data can be 'interpreted'. Outright lies have been found in more than one 'study' by the major players. I believe what I know is true, injecting toxins can not create health. Health is created by avoiding those sorts of occurrences as much as possible (obviously we have to breathe).
Every time, huh? What about non-vaccinated autistic children? Is there someone in the shadows, holding a syringe, poking them while their parents are turned the other way? Sorry, but it's Just.Not.True that each case of autism is diagnosed after a vaccination.

Finally, as for "outright lies" being found in studies by the major players...you're so right. I have two words for you - Andrew Wakefield.

I totally, 100% support a parent's right to choose how to raise their children, and to decide what is best for their children, regardless of what that is. I do not support mandatory vaccinations, as they are not 100% effective, nor are they 100% safe (as with many other choices we have to make). My child was selectively vaccinated on a delayed schedule, while I made up my mind. Making a choice based on your beliefs is acceptable. Pretending to know what constitutes good science, and how research is conducted, to support your BELIEFS and try to convince others of your OPINION is different, though. Just as I would never take seriously someone who unequivocally touts the safety and efficacy of all vaccines, those who sit so forcefully (and equally blindly) on the other side are just as suspicious.
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#34 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 02:46 PM
 
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The effect they were measuring for -- like so many previous studies -- was whether thimerosal exposure is correlated to diagnosis with ASDs. The evidence that it's not is overwhelming. If some portion of the population were particularly sensitive to thimerosal, for whatever reason, at least one of these studies would likely have shown there to be some overall correlation -- even if it was only true of a subpopulation.

Doesn't seem that complicated to me.
OK, I still am not understanding why measuring mercury in and not mercury out, can give you any indication of how mercury is being excreted. How would you know if a child has problems excreting mercury if you only know how much went in? It is quite possible I am missing something very elementary here, and if I am, I would appreciate you pointing it out to me.

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I don't see why you perceive those two facts to be contradictory.
Either the incidence is increasing or it isn't. You can't have it both ways. Again, I could be missing something really elementary.

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#35 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 03:58 PM
 
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I am familiar with the main points in the debate. It is my understanding that professionals agree that there is a real increase, albeit small.

I have failed to understand the position that says there is no increase, it's all about changed diagnosis. Followed by thimerasol is safe, as despite it being removed from the vaccines, Autism incidence has continued to rise. Surely it is one or the other? I am genuinely curious. I might be missing something that is really clear.
If you are really asking for clarification, I'd suggest that you can have an increased incidence, as you stated, which can easily be attributable to a change in diagnoses over the years. There also may be an actual increase due to any number of reasons (lots of theories out there, right?) I think she's questioning you because there's no reason why both things can't be happening simultaneously? If diagnoses of autism are becoming more accurate (and thus increasing), taking Thimerasol out of vaccines wouldn't change this one way or another?
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#36 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 05:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Astral Mama View Post
The effect they were measuring for -- like so many previous studies -- was whether thimerosal exposure is correlated to diagnosis with ASDs. The evidence that it's not is overwhelming. If some portion of the population were particularly sensitive to thimerosal, for whatever reason, at least one of these studies would likely have shown there to be some overall correlation -- even if it was only true of a subpopulation.

Doesn't seem that complicated to me.
"But vaccine experts tend to look at the population as a whole, not at individual patients. And population studies are not granular enough to detect individual metabolic, genetic, or immunological variation that might make some children under certain circumstances susceptible to neurological complications after vaccination." - Dr. Bernadine Healy, former head of NIH

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#37 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 09:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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There are also those of us who don't agree with the idea that the ingredients in vaccines are toxic to our health or that they are poison or even toxic in the amounts that are present. toxicity is dose dependent. even water can be toxic.

"Parents are simply trustees; they do not own the bodies of their children"-Norm Cohen  Martial arts instructor intactlact.gifhomebirth.jpgnak.gif and mom to 4: DD1 (1/05) DS (7/06) DD2 (5/08) DD3 (2/11)
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#38 of 47 Old 09-15-2010, 10:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by karika View Post
http://www.naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=19...DD0A899DC62BDC

In case you are not aware of this woman, she worked for a major pharma company for 15 years and decided she could no longer continue on in good conscience.

The pharmaceutical companies are controlling what you hear and read in many instances. They control politicians and policy makers, magazines and 'health' organizations, insurance companies too. The ties and revolving door of pharma, govt positions, and the money trail are well documented. Any study presented is most likely approved of by pharma. Pharma is not in the business of promoting wellness. Think about it! If people were to become well, they would be out of business. All of the 'health' field bears this because of its very design. The 'health' care industry could not exist if there was health.

As for any study that says there is no neurological damage from vaccines, the answer is obvious to me. Too many people have had a healthy child one minute and a damaged child the next. It happens after a vaccine every time. Numbers can be skewed, data can be 'interpreted'. Outright lies have been found in more than one 'study' by the major players. I believe what I know is true, injecting toxins can not create health. Health is created by avoiding those sorts of occurrences as much as possible (obviously we have to breathe).
So the impression I'm getting here is that you don't/ won't believe any study done by anyone ever because

1. They're all conducted by humans, who are inherently biased (regardless of the fact that reproducibility lends credence to the results)

2. They might come to a conclusion that's different than your opinion.

With that level of mistrust, you really can't rely on any study, can you? Not just those made by pharma. Because everyone who does a study has a vested interest in the outcome.
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#39 of 47 Old 09-16-2010, 09:48 AM
 
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If you are really asking for clarification, I'd suggest that you can have an increased incidence, as you stated, which can easily be attributable to a change in diagnoses over the years. There also may be an actual increase due to any number of reasons (lots of theories out there, right?) I think she's questioning you because there's no reason why both things can't be happening simultaneously? If diagnoses of autism are becoming more accurate (and thus increasing), taking Thimerasol out of vaccines wouldn't change this one way or another?
I was really looking for clarification, as I have not understood this apparent contradiction.

I think it is fairly well accepted that the increase is real, beyond changes in diagnostic criteria/improved diagnosis. However, some people have yet to accept this shift in consensus.

Inherent in the point you are making, if I have understood correctly, is the assumption that the increase can only be attributed to a change in diagnostic criteria or improved diagnosis.

In case this is not abundantly clear, I seem to be repeating this to make it really clear, I would not expect removal of thimerasol to result in a dramatic decline in Autism cases. I suspect that it could be part of the etiology in a fraction of overall cases of Autism.

Considering that it was administered to 4 million newborns a year, it is quite possible that within those 4 million, a fraction of a percent were negatively affected. And of course a fraction of a percent over 4 million can be quite a large number of children.

I still have not understood how this study could have been sensitive to an effect where children have difficulty excreting mercury if it was not measuring both how much mercury went in and how much went out. Telling me how much mercury went in cannot predict how much mercury went out, without measuring for it.

I also am surprised that none finds it peculiar that mercury plays a protective role with regards to whether children develop Autism or not. That seems counterintuitive. I guess more studies could be done to determine a biological basis for a neurotoxin protecting exposed individuals from neurodevelopmental problems.

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#40 of 47 Old 09-16-2010, 02:04 PM
 
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OK, I still am not understanding why measuring mercury in and not mercury out, can give you any indication of how mercury is being excreted. How would you know if a child has problems excreting mercury if you only know how much went in? It is quite possible I am missing something very elementary here, and if I am, I would appreciate you pointing it out to me.
I'm sorry, I've tried to explain it twice. I don't see how I can be clearer. But I'll try once more:

It's not directly relevant to this question whether some people excrete mercury more or less quickly than others (or anything else specific about how the body handles mercury.) The question is whether mercury exposure leads to ASDs. An interesting sub-question is whether mercury exposure leads to ASDs in some people but not others. (Whether that's because they excrete it more slowly, or, say, have some slightly altered protein or neurotransmitter that is somehow inactivated by mercury, or whatever else -- differing sensitivity to mercury could be caused by any number of different specific mechanisms.)

The real question is not about whether some people excrete mercury more slowly, it's about whether or not some people develop ASDs because of exposure to mercury. But the thing is, even if it's only a subgroup, unless it was a very, very minuscule group, or the effect was very, very tiny, it would have shown up in this or some of the many other studies that have been done on thimerosal and ASDs, because at least some of those people would have been included in the study groups and they would have been disproportionately diagnosed with ASDs, thus resulting in a correlation between thimerosal exposure and ASD diagnosis. There isn't a correlation, in this study or in the other studies that have been done.

There's no value in studying excretion of mercury -- at least not for this purpose -- because it doesn't actually get at the question (to whit: does mercury cause autism.) If there's some significant subpopulation that is liable to get autism from mercury exposure, a study like this wouldn't necessarily show that -- instead, it would show that the general population was liable to get autism from mercury exposure, because a random group of participants would include some mercury sensitives.

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Either the incidence is increasing or it isn't. You can't have it both ways. Again, I could be missing something really elementary.
I'm not trying to have it both ways. I don't understand why you find those two simple facts contradictory. I never said whether or not the actual rate of autism in the population was increasing.
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#41 of 47 Old 09-16-2010, 03:02 PM
 
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There are also those of us who don't agree with the idea that the ingredients in vaccines are toxic to our health or that they are poison or even toxic in the amounts that are present. toxicity is dose dependent. even water can be toxic.


Interesting study, thanks for linking it!
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#42 of 47 Old 09-16-2010, 10:53 PM
 
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Many posts have been removed from this thread which were either in violation of our guidelines or which were responding to such posts. I am returning the thread this one time for further discussion on the new study regarding the role of pre & postnatal exposure to vaccines/thimerosal in subsequent development of autism.

In order for the thread to remain open for discussion, it needs to remain on topic regarding the vaccine issue. Any further violations of our guidelines will result in either closure or removal of the thread. Please keep in mind:

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#43 of 47 Old 09-17-2010, 03:19 AM
 
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I'm sorry, I've tried to explain it twice. I don't see how I can be clearer. But I'll try once more:
Thank you for taking the time to reply, again.
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It's not directly relevant to this question whether some people excrete mercury more or less quickly than others (or anything else specific about how the body handles mercury.)
Why not? Surely exposure is only part of the picture? Why would you expect a uniform response across the population when exposed to anything?
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The question is whether mercury exposure leads to ASDs.
That is the question this study addresses, yes.

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An interesting sub-question is whether mercury exposure leads to ASDs in some people but not others. (Whether that's because they excrete it more slowly, or, say, have some slightly altered protein or neurotransmitter that is somehow inactivated by mercury, or whatever else -- differing sensitivity to mercury could be caused by any number of different specific mechanisms.)
I agree. It is an interesting question/subquestion. And one that I think is relevant.

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The real question is not about whether some people excrete mercury more slowly, it's about whether or not some people develop ASDs because of exposure to mercury.
I am not sure why you mean by 'the real question'? Is it an irrelevant question to ask if some people who were exposed to mercury were at more risk of damage due to a 'glitch' in their biology? If so,why?

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But the thing is, even if it's only a subgroup, unless it was a very, very minuscule group, or the effect was very, very tiny, it would have shown up in this or some of the many other studies that have been done on thimerosal and ASDs, because at least some of those people would have been included in the study groups and they would have been disproportionately diagnosed with ASDs, thus resulting in a correlation between thimerosal exposure and ASD diagnosis. There isn't a correlation, in this study or in the other studies that have been done.
I guess the part I am not understanding is how a correlation can be found between two phenomena without knowing if one of the phenomena exists or not. How could this study (or previous ones) have found this correlation if they were not measuring for it/did not even know if it is a real phenomena or not?
Also considering that 4 million new babies are born every year in the US, how many children would need to be in a study to get accurate data? Can 256 children represent the Autistic population in the US (approximately 750 000 from what I understand)?

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There's no value in studying excretion of mercury -- at least not for this purpose -- because it doesn't actually get at the question (to whit: does mercury cause autism.)
This is the part I am not understanding. It is subtle, but I think the question is probably CAN mercury cause Autism, and if so, under what conditions? Ruling out exposure alone within a relatively small sample does not rule it out altogether, or does it?
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If there's some significant subpopulation that is liable to get autism from mercury exposure, a study like this wouldn't necessarily show that -- instead, it would show that the general population was liable to get autism from mercury exposure, because a random group of participants would include some mercury sensitives.
I have read this a couple of times and I am still not sure I understand what you are saying. I will try and paraphrase.
Should a study be done that compares how well individuals in a sample excrete mercury, this would be not be valuable as it might suggest that mercury sensitivities are not associated with Autism, but something that exists in the population with no correlation to Autism?


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I'm not trying to have it both ways. I don't understand why you find those two simple facts contradictory. I never said whether or not the actual rate of autism in the population was increasing.
Repeating your statement without explaining it does not help me understand. However, I accept that I do no need to understand everyones point of view.

Perhaps there are others on this thread who understand more clearly what you are saying and can explain it to me more successfully.

Something that is on my mind with regards to the 'only the exposure is the relevant question.'
Prior to the vaccine being introduced, Hib was something pretty much every child was exposed to. Was exposure alone responsible for developing Hib Meningitis? No, only a very small percentage of children (20 - 60 cases per 100 000) were developing Hib meningitis, pointing to something specific to the child/Hib interaction, and not exposure alone. Taking a sample of 1000 children would not have helped identify who was at risk for Hib meningitis.

Anyway, I realise I am not about to crack the answer to these questions, but I am concerned that the action points given in the first article posted in this thread:

Quote:
# Discuss with parents that data from a recent case control study indicates no increased risk of autism from prenatal and infant vaccination with thimerosal-containing vaccines.


# Further discuss with parents that this latest study adds to data collected from four previous studies, all of which fail to demonstrate any connection between the development of autism and prior exposure to thimerosal-containing vaccines.
could be misleading. I do not know how many parents would know to ask whether exposure alone is what predicts whether a child develops Autism or not.

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#44 of 47 Old 09-17-2010, 05:04 AM
 
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Ema-adama: I'm not sure if this is exactly what Astral Mama is trying to say, but I'll take a stab at it.

Astral Mama: Please feel free to correct me where need be.

Let's assume that some kids will be negatively impacted by recieving thimerosol to the point that it turns them autistic. It could be because they don't excrete it properly, they're allergic to it, it reacts with an enzyme in their blood, whatever. The reason why doesn't matter, let's just assume that being exposed makes certain kids autistic.

If that were the case, a study like the one done would show that the moms who got less thimerosol= less kids with autism. Moms with more thimerosol= more kids with autism. Whatever the reason behind why the kids react that way to thimerosol, that would be the result. Since it's not the result, it doesn't matter what the theory is regarding the problems with some kids and thimerosol because the numbers show that that problem simply doesn't exist.
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#45 of 47 Old 09-17-2010, 02:38 PM
 
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Let's assume that some kids will be negatively impacted by recieving thimerosol to the point that it turns them autistic. It could be because they don't excrete it properly, they're allergic to it, it reacts with an enzyme in their blood, whatever. The reason why doesn't matter, let's just assume that being exposed makes certain kids autistic.

If that were the case, a study like the one done would show that the moms who got less thimerosol= less kids with autism. Moms with more thimerosol= more kids with autism. Whatever the reason behind why the kids react that way to thimerosol, that would be the result. Since it's not the result, it doesn't matter what the theory is regarding the problems with some kids and thimerosol because the numbers show that that problem simply doesn't exist.
Certainly that seems to be what the authors of the study are proposing, but I don't agree with the conclusion based on the data presented. For one, the differences in the amount of exposure between the two groups was tiny. And yes, the mean exposure in the control group was slightly higher in most categories, but not all. Heck, in the comparison against the kids with ASD with regression, the prenatal exposure was almost double for the case children. *gasp* Of course that only amounts to a difference of 1.6 micrograms or so. Given the other 100 to 245 micrograms given through the child's first 20 months of life, I don't think this could reasonably be considered the deciding factor. My point is that the tiny differences seen in the chart don't tell me anything. Both the control and case groups received levels of cumulative mercury exposure generally considered to be unsafe. And unless you have one side that was exposed to much less mercury than that, a study like this means jack squat to me.

Second, if children who ultimately regress into autism are vulnerable for some reason, then their threshold of what could be considered safe for them might be considerably lower. I am guessing that is what eda-adama was getting at.

They did have unique access to an interesting data set. What questions would have made this study better? Maybe it would have been helpful if we knew why the autistic children had been exposed to less mercury overall. Did some of the parents stop vaccinations after their child began to regress? How about finding out how many of the parents in the control group vs. the case group noticed vaccine reactions prior to the regression and of what severity? Table 2 shows the minimum exposure to be 0 in all categories. Does that mean there were unvaccinated individuals in each group? It would be interesting to see how many. Although in such a small study, I can't imagine it would be statistically significant. Maybe offering a different model of the data would have told us more? Measuring the ability to excrete mercury would, I agree, be cool to look at, but was probably well outside the scope of this study. I just feel like they missed an opportunity to make any really useful observations.
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#46 of 47 Old 09-17-2010, 02:53 PM
 
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OK, I still am not understanding why measuring mercury in and not mercury out, can give you any indication of how mercury is being excreted. How would you know if a child has problems excreting mercury if you only know how much went in?
There are a number of things to be considered here. First, this issue has been studied (e.g., here); ethyl mercury is largely, and among children quickly, excreted in the stool.

So, great, one has the basis for a test of impaired mercury excretion, even if it's not really applicable to the study at hand, right? If it's abnormally low after a known dose, the question becomes where it's hiding. The liver and blood are obvious places. Liver biopsies are going to be a hard sell, but still.

So what if there were another way to follow up a finding of poor stool excretion? Fortunately, there is a population with known impairment of mercury excretion, those with polymorphisms in the genes GSTT1 or GSTM1. Where do they put it? In the blood, and thereby it diffuses into the hair (which is not an active excretion mechanism).

This, however, represents a problem for the "poor excretor" hypothesis as posited in terms of autism, which is based on lower levels of mercury in hair tests (hence such wild claims as the Geiers' "brain testosterone sheets," which are needed to play "hide the missing mercury" and thus, e.g., sell Lupron).
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Heather, if that is what Astro Mamal is saying, that the data does not show any relationship between exposure to thimerasol and diagnosis of Autism, I would expect that to be supported by a larger sample. As in the Hib example I gave, if we are talking +-50 per 100 000 cases, you would need a massive sample to see any pattern. Clearly not every child who was exposed to thimerasol was diagnosed with Autism. And of the children who were diagnosed with Autism, there are a multitude of reasons that are known already. I would not expect to see thimerasol being an issue in every Autism diagnosis. So, we start talking about very small numbers.

But here is the problem. Even if we are talking tiny numbers like cases per 100 000, over 4 million (birth cohort per year in the US), that can add up.

This is not to say that I or anyone else can make a claim that thimerasol is implicated in the diagnosis of Autism. It is to say that we do not have enough information.

I can understand a concern that by even admitting to one case, there is a fear that a large number of families with Autistic children will perhaps feel that thimerasol is the root cause for their child's diagnosis. And it could create a hysteria in the media and homes across the world. Which I can understand authorities wanting to avoid. But the fact remains, there is not enough evidence to support any claims being made on thimerasol. Studies that look reassuring on the surface, are being used in such as way as to smudge the issues.

I do not know what the solution is. The PR around this issue is basically making it difficult to really ask the necessary questions. And I really do understand the need to reassure the public. And the probability that the number of children with an Autism diagnosis related to thimerasol could be very small, if there is even a causal relationship. However, I am troubled by the possibility that in a small number of children it was an issue, and those children are being missed.

Final thoughts.

This is a study funded by the CDC, a body that has an interest in reassuring the public that vaccines are safe and effective. I do not think this needs to make them an unreliable source, but knowing that they have a history of selectively providing information to parents (the differences between the pink book and the parent pages as a starting point), makes it worthwhile to look into the claims being made to parents, IMO anyway.

It is also worth noting other sources of funding from different pharmaceutical companies. Again, this does not need to invalidate the study, but should be taken into consideration. It is too easy to discredit studies (either way) by just dismissing the authors. Although I am aware that different people have different biases that make them more critical of some authors than others.

I think it is a pity that the issues that need to be discussed are brushed away essentially due to PR efforts on both sides. I also think it is a pity that those who are knowledgeable and working in the field are not more patient in their explanations. Questioning the claims being made does not make the questioner an idiot.

Otto, when I have more time to look into the details of what you have posted, I am happy to post any thoughts I might have.

Megan, mama to her little boy (Feb2008) and introducing our little girl (Dec 2010)
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