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Fifteen Years After Autism Panic, a Plague of Measles Erupts

samzenpus posted 1 year,2 hours | from the paying-the-piper dept.

Medicine 668

DavidHumus writes "Some of the longer-term effects of the anti-vaccination movement of past decades are now evident in a dramatic increase in measles. From the article: 'A measles outbreak infected 1,219 people in southwest Wales between November 2012 and early July, compared with 105 cases in all of Wales in 2011. One of the infected was Ms. Jenkins, whose grandmother, her guardian, hadn't vaccinated her as a young child. "I was afraid of the autism," says the grandmother, Margaret Mugford, 63 years old. "It was in all the papers and on TV."'"

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668 comments

Jenny McCarthy (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348943)

Should be seen and not heard. Nor should anyone listen to her.

Re:Jenny McCarthy (5, Informative)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349033)

Adding up [jennymccar...ycount.com] . And Barbara Walters, that ignorant fool, just hired her.

Once again, Barbara, this isn't a "controversial" opinion, it is a murderous one. People die because of this.

Re:Jenny McCarthy (5, Interesting)

Freddybear (1805256) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349305)

Don't just tell us, call the advertisers of The View and tell them.

Re:Jenny McCarthy (5, Funny)

JavaBear (9872) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349313)

Yuck! She should not even seen.
Once upon a time, maybe, but no more. Please, for our sanity's sake, no more.

Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (0, Troll)

MrBandersnatch (544818) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348945)

- nt -

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348959)

If you'd had measles as an adult you might feel differently.

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348985)

Take a look to see if there are any corresponding changes in rate of autism? Here's a nice chance to run a natural experiment--the non-vaccinated become the test group...

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349169)

Mod parent down all you like, but cracking the numbers is actually a pretty good idea.

If the non-vaccinated kids have significantly lower rates of autism, we accept that the MMR jab is responsible in some way, even if we don't understand how yet.
If not, we accept that the whole MMR avoidance thing is utter bullcrap.

Sounds like a fair way to run an unbiased experiment to me.

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (5, Informative)

Optimal Cynic (2886377) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349255)

This has been done and the non-vaccinated children had very slightly higher rates of autism. http://www.jpeds.com/content/JPEDSDeStefano [jpeds.com]

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (5, Informative)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349283)

Mod parent down all you like, but cracking the numbers is actually a pretty good idea.

Numbers for what? The changes in autism numbers over the past decades are caused by changes in the diagnostic criteria. Your proposal seems more pointless that comparing apples and oranges. (Those can be compared at least spectroscopically, see Scott A. Sandford, "Apples and Oranges -- A Comparison," Annals of Improbable Research, Vol. 1, No. 3 (1995).)

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348999)

Feelings don't matter; what he said is factually correct.

Re:Outbreak, not "plague"; dont be sensationalist. (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349019)

Actually, he was exactly factually incorrect. This absolutely is a plague. A plague (as opposed to the plague) is defined as a significant elevation in a disease or pest's levels compared to the recent norm.

That's exactly what's being described here.

The heading is factually correct. (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349053)

Since the scientific definition of plague is a particular baccilus (enterobacteria Yersinia pestis), the usage of plague is entirely colloquial rather than medical. This is how you get the accepted term "a plague of $ANIMAL", e.g. rats.

And a 1000 fold increase constitutes a plague of sick people in colloquial terms just fine.

Re:The heading is factually correct. (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349153)

You mean the definition of "the plague" as opposed to "a plague". The two are not the same thing.

Re:The heading is factually correct. (1)

thaylin (555395) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349241)

Read beyond the first sentence of his post.

Re:The heading is factually correct. (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349351)

Also, I believe that before the advent of microbiology, many outbreaks of epidemic diseases were referred to as "the plague" simply due to the lack of more specific information..

gg (1)

game kid (805301) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348953)

One of the infected was Ms. Jenkins, whose grandmother, her guardian, hadn't vaccinated her as a young child. "I was afraid of the autism," says the grandmother, Margaret Mugford, 63 years old. "It was in all the papers and on TV."

Now something else is all over them. Grats.

Herd immunity + Darwinism (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348957)

Nothing to see here folks.

Re:Herd immunity + Darwinism (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349069)

There is something to see here, darwinism. And its might is as magnificent as that of a river.

Re:Herd immunity + Darwinism (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349205)

There is something to see here, darwinism. And its might is as magnificent as that of a river.

Evolution is so powerful that it can be stopped by beavers?

hard to even parody (2, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348963)

"I was afraid of the autism," says the grandmother, Margaret Mugford, 63 years old. "It was in all the papers and on TV."

And here we have an illustration of your garden-variety Daily Mail reader [google.com] .

Re:hard to even parody (5, Insightful)

pr0nbot (313417) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349203)

I don't really blame her; she's probably doesn't have the kind of technical background that innoculates you against quackery. Nor do I really blame Andrew Wakefield; he's proven himself to be a poor scientist and generally a colossal douche, but in science there are mechanisms in place to deal with that (peer review etc). The real blame does indeed lie with the newspapers, who don't have a fucking clue about science and will send out the same guy who does the cinema reviews to cover a medical story. He of course studied Hispanic literature or whatever and doesn't know the first thing about science reporting, and falls prey to every logial fallacy and unconscious bias along the way.

Newspapers should take truth and accurate reporting seriously. They should have a science editor with a scientific background who can check the work of the reporters. If they're not going to do it, and the consequence is panics and deaths, then perhaps we (i.e. our government) need to do it for them via a regulator.

Re:hard to even parody (5, Insightful)

Optimal Cynic (2886377) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349281)

No, Andrew Wakefield deserves a good chunk of the blame. He has caused children to die by his self-aggrandising actions, and in a just world would be up on charges for it.

Re:hard to even parody (1)

bfandreas (603438) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349215)

"I was afraid of the autism," says the grandmother, Margaret Mugford, 63 years old. "It was in all the papers and on TV."

And here we have an illustration of your garden-variety Daily Mail reader [google.com] .

I don't get it. The study and its author(Andrew Wakefield) have been disgraced. There is a widely reported outbreak with actual deaths in the UK. And still the Daily Fail humped that hairy old chestnut in as late as early 2013. I don't read the Daily Fail but I wonder how they reported on the Swansea measles epidemic.

Meanwhile in the rest of the world we are currently discussing to exclude kids without jabs from school in order to finally exterminate this disease.

You .... (4, Insightful)

quantumghost (1052586) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348967)

You can't fix stupid.....you can only hope evolution takes care of the problem.

DR;PW (did not read;pay walled)

Re:You .... (4, Insightful)

Nerdfest (867930) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349023)

Modern society counteracts evolution by protecting the weak and stupid. Things are unlikely to improve unless we really improve the quality and availability of education.

You can't fix stupid (5, Insightful)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349087)

Things are unlikely to improve unless we really improve the quality and availability of education.

Education cures ignorance, not stupidity. In the immortal words of Ron White, "you can't fix stupid".

Re:You can't fix stupid (3, Insightful)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349117)

I prefer, "some people are educated way beyond their intelligence."

Re:You .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349123)

n options - pick n-1

Re:You .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349171)

Oh not even modern society can help the outliers.

Re:You .... (1)

gl4ss (559668) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349217)

the problem here was that they took education from their local newspapers.

had they been illiterate they would have avoided the problem.

Re:You .... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349247)

Modern society counteracts evolution by protecting the weak and stupid.

Ironically, this is also exactly what vaccinations do.

So is counteracting evolution good or bad?

Re:You .... (1)

Tseax (193552) | 1 year,1 hour | (#44349367)

Oh my, now that WAS funny!

Re:You .... (0, Troll)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349271)

I think I'm as amused by the reactions of the thirty-and-under-somethings here as I am by the vaccinations-cause-autism crowd. I'm not yet 60, and for my generation, measles, mumps, rubella (German measles) and chicken pox were childhood rites of passage. A tiny minority had permanent side-effects; I remember a grade-scool classmate who was deaf in one ear, supposedly as a result of measles. I *DO* recall the media hoopla from the Guillain-Barre cases after the 1976 swine-flu immunization campaign. I guess I'm saying that if YOU had a MMR shot and DON'T have a smallpox vaccination scar on your left bicep, then you're: 1) under 35, and 2) lacking historical perspective.

Re:You .... (1)

r55man (615542) | 1 year,1 hour | (#44349375)

Modern society counteracts evolution by protecting the weak...

Isn't this what vaccines do?

Re:You .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349131)

"You can't fix stupid"

Who's being stupid? The people spreading lies about vaccination, or the people believing the lies?
Or is it that you do have a problem with stupid but not with lies?

Re:You .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349339)

Actually, you probably shouldn't wish illness or harm to those people. It's not the kids' fault their parents won't vaccinate them.

Why would you even post a comment like that??? Is that what the world is coming to?

Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (2, Insightful)

TemperedAlchemist (2045966) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348975)

I enjoy telling the pharmacist that it's okay, I already have autism.

---

It concerns me that there's a growing distrust of medicine. Every day it seems there are more and more people who insist, "Doctors don't know anything." It's a very disturbing phenomenon that's getting people killed.

The medical community needs to start doing something about this.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (1)

EasyComputer (797633) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349005)

Perhaps they should stop killing people?

http://www.cnn.com/2012/06/09/health/medical-mistakes [cnn.com]

I enjoy telling the pharmacist that it's okay, I already have autism.

---

It concerns me that there's a growing distrust of medicine. Every day it seems there are more and more people who insist, "Doctors don't know anything." It's a very disturbing phenomenon that's getting people killed.

The medical community needs to start doing something about this.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349119)

Idiot.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349007)

It concerns me that there's a growing distrust of medicine. Every day it seems there are more and more people who insist, "Doctors don't know anything." It's a very disturbing phenomenon that's getting people killed. The medical community needs to start doing something about this.

Two things. Yes, medical professionals need to act more scrupulously. But also, education needs to be advanced. People don't understand science so when doctors tell them something they weren't telling them yesterday they get all in a tiff.

As long as the system is so clearly corrupted by money, though, people aren't going to trust health care professionals. As long as big pharma is taking meds off the market and replacing them with inferior versions in order to drive down demand for a generic and force people to continue to pay them, we're all going to know it's a scam. As long as doctors continue to prescribe whatever drugs the reps are wining and dinind them over, we're all going to know it's a scam. As long as hospitals continue to charge whatever the market will bear, we're all going to know it's a scam.

Trust (5, Insightful)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349071)

As long as the system is so clearly corrupted by money, though, people aren't going to trust health care professionals.

People didn't vaccinate their kids because they heard a (false) series of stories on the news. The problem wasn't that they didn't trust their doctor too little but rather that they trusted the news too much. If you saw a steady parade of (dis)information from a news source you regard as credible, why would you doubt it? Saying vaccines cause autism is a nice sound bite which is easy to understand whereas the counter argument that there is no credible evidence of any link is harder to explain.

As long as big pharma is taking meds off the market and replacing them with inferior versions in order to drive down demand for a generic and force people to continue to pay them, we're all going to know it's a scam.

Name one medicine that has been "taken off the market and replaced" with an inferior version.

Re:Trust (1)

wisnoskij (1206448) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349219)

But that information, counter to what your doctor was saying, would not be nearly as effective, or convincing enough to get on the news n the first place, if the medical field did not have a long history or getting things wrong spectacularly, and was not widely known as being completely corrupted by money.

Also it would of helped if they had not used mercury in the shots.

Re:Trust (5, Insightful)

cyber-vandal (148830) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349343)

Journalists have a long history of lying to their readers but somehow they are still trusted implicitly.

Re:Trust (5, Informative)

Cassini2 (956052) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349267)

In Canada, Losec was taken off the market as Nexium launched, to ensure patients switched to the new patented drug (Nexium) before the patents on Losec expired.

Now that the Losec patents have expired, Losec is back on the market.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349137)

Not that the whole "healthy food" thing is part of it though. They really change their opinion about every year, regularly contradicting what was claimed "true" before. That kind of thing falls into the cases where some people in healthcare (not so much doctors, they usually know when they honestly don't have much of a clue) should follow the advice of "better be silent and thought a fool than open the mouth and remove all doubt".

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (1)

second_coming (2014346) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349103)

It doesn't help when you get conflicting information from seeing different Doctors. My wife is getting treatment for a partially paralysed vocal chord and depending on which Doctor she speaks to she get's wildly varying opinion on the cause and how to deal with it.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (4, Insightful)

Thanshin (1188877) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349259)

The answer to different medics having different opinions on a non-certain condition isn't to ask non-medics.

If you were building a bridge and two different concrete experts gave you two different opinions, you'd ask a third one or decide which you trust more based on other information. You wouldn't ask a shaman to invoke the spirit of the mountain into wet sand, and build your bridge with it.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (2)

drsmithy (35869) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349133)

It concerns me that there's a growing distrust of medicine.
It's not medicine, it's science, and it's a phenomenon that's common across the anglo countries.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349195)

Ok, I really don't have time for this, but this is an issue that I hold pretty dear to my heart.

Until I had my son, I knew of the whole lancet article and the study behind it, and made fun of all of the idiots out there that didn't get their kids immunized because it might cause autism.

But after my wife became pregnant with our son, I started looking into it. There is a link between the fever that kids get as a result of the immunization that can cause autistic spectrum disorder due to an underlying mitochondrial disorder, but this only happens in less than .01% of the time.

However, even knowing that, every time I have to take my son to the doctor to get immunizations, I literally have to force myself to do it. It's not that I think that it's going to cause it, it's not knowing what will cause it. There have been no significant studies that prove what causes autism, (to my knowledge,) to date.

(If there is, please point me to them, I would be very interested.)

Being told, "It's not this" and then when you ask what does cause it, you get "Well, it's complex, it's probably multiple things influencing the outcome, and we haven't figured out all the factors which causes it yet."
"So you can't really say 100% that this isn't a factor? "
"No, not 100%, but we're pretty sure..."

So, in the lack of understanding, is there any wonder why there's all of this suspicion and distrust of the medical establishment?

I'm just saying that if I, a very rational person with above average IQ, has fears and doubts about getting his kid immunized for things that are a remote possibility of contracting, or are relatively mostly non-fatal, (I contracted mumps when I was a child, even with the MMR,) then how can we expect Joe six-pack with his bible in one hand and the leaflets from his chiropractor in the other to still take his kid in for his shots?

So try to understand and don't judge to harshly, because this goes back to the middle ages when people didn't know what caused the Black Plague... in the lack of understanding, all sorts of fears/superstitions/irrational behavior will win the day.

 

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (5, Insightful)

thaylin (555395) | 1 year,1 hour | (#44349359)

When you ask "So you can't really say 100% that this isn't a factor? " you are asking the doctor to do the impossible. You can never say 100% to the negative, but that does not mean that it is true.

There is a link between the fever that kids get as a result of the immunization that can cause autistic spectrum disorder due to an underlying mitochondrial disorder, but this only happens in less than .01% of the time.

Citation please. You seem to be stating a fact without any sort of substantiation.

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (2)

Salgak1 (20136) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349211)

Not so much the medical community, as the educators. Science and math literacy is shockingly low and dropping. . .

Multiple examples:

Australia [experimentalmath.info]

India [scidev.net]

And the US [uncommondescent.com]

Fear that science might upset some religious applecart or pop-culture shibboleth is the mind-killer. . . literally. . .

Re:Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (3, Informative)

bickerdyke (670000) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349321)

That's just the pendulum swinging back from "Doctors know everything!"

And both is wrong.

Nowadays, thanks to studies, doctors know exactly that treatment A has a 70% chance to cure illness X, while treatment B has a 95% chance to cure it, but also a 1% chance that the patient loses e.g. his eyesight due to possible sideeffects.

That's pretty exact knowledge, but at the same time making the actual recommendation a bit of guesswork.

Re: Fear leads to Hate, Hate leads to Measles (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349347)

That is precisely the problem, medical doctors only know what they learn from medical school and drug companies. They are not scientists and know nothing of the scientific method, this was the case of a medical doctor performing "studies" that benefitted his practice and it blowing out of proportion.

Bad things happen when... (5, Insightful)

haus (129916) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348979)

large numbers of people follow the advice os someone who has no training, no proof, or even a decent grasp of cause and effect.

Re:Bad things happen when... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349089)

If you read about the back story here, you'll find that that's not at all what happened.

What happened is that the government decided to move us from 3 separate measles, mumps and rubella vaccines to one triple MMR vaccine. Shortly after that move a paper was published that claimed to find a link between the MMR vaccine and autism. That paper made big news, and caused parents to stop their children getting the MMR vaccine. Several papers were then published discrediting the original paper, and the government used this as a reason not to return to the (more expensive, and with more serious side effects) 3 separate vaccines. Unfortunately, by this point the bull had already escaped, and there was mass panic and rebellion against MMR vaccination.

Re:Bad things happen when... (2)

demonlapin (527802) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349329)

Be honest. Andrew Wakefield committed scientific misconduct that led directly to these illnesses. The bastard should go on trial for manslaughter for everyone who dies.

Re:Bad things happen when... (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349157)

It is troubling that in the media that sort of advice can be more prevalent than correct advice.

Thanks retards (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348981)

I hope your kids die

Re:Thanks retards (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349273)

Cleanse the gene pool of the stupid.

Next... (2)

puddingebola (2036796) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348991)

Are diptheria, whooping cough, and polio. You can terrorize people with media stories. People will take actions that are irrational in the face of an immediate threat. We seem to be unable to weigh the costs and benefits rationally of a course of action.

Re:Next... (1)

cusco (717999) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349345)

Already happening in countries where the CIA is known to have used vaccination campaigns for their own nefarious purposes (Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria). Polio is on the rise in all three countries. Short term goals trump the betterment of the world as a whole every time in the intel community.

Reminds me of a joke a Welsh priest once told me (5, Funny)

korbulon (2792438) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44348993)

Why wasn't Jesus born in Wales?

Because God couldn't find three wise men and a virgin.

"I keed! I KEEED!"

Re:Reminds me of a joke a Welsh priest once told m (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349341)

Why wasn't Jesus born in Wales?

Because God couldn't find three wise men and a virgin.

Irrelevant. Both the wise men and the virgin came from elsewhere.

Should be charged with child abuse (5, Insightful)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349011)

One of the infected was Ms. Jenkins, whose grandmother, her guardian, hadn't vaccinated her as a young child. "I was afraid of the autism," says the grandmother, Margaret Mugford, 63 years old. "It was in all the papers and on TV."'"

So she didn't listen to her physician. Sigh...

I'm of a mind that people like this should be charged with child abuse, regardless of their intentions. They are putting not only their own child at risk but other children as well. The science on this topic is unequivocal. Vaccines demonstrably save lives and not getting them demonstrably costs lives. Children who do not get the vaccines (without a documented medical needs exemption) should not be permitted to go to school or participate in activities with other children. Parents who do not vaccinate their children (again without a medical needs exemption) should have to explain to a court why they think they are entitled to put their child and others at risk of some very serious diseases. Yes I'm being harsh and yes I think it is appropriate the the magnitude of the problem. A vague fear of autism which is not based on credible scientific research is not sufficient grounds to not get vaccinated.

Re:Should be charged with child abuse (1)

awol (98751) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349077)

I completely agree. However, we have some complete nutters now declaring an anti-vaccination position as a religious practice and thus getting exemptions to these requirements on the basis of religious freedom / anti discrimination. WTF!!!!!

Re:Should be charged with child abuse (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349099)

That would be grounds for making vaccination mandatory, not its refusal punishable.

Otherwise you're punishing ex post facto.

Re:Should be charged with child abuse (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349111)

I'm of a mind that people like this should be charged with child abuse, regardless of their intentions.

I feel the same way about people who send their children to public school. With all the bullying, school shootings, and the dismal state of education, it is nothing less than child abuse to send a child to what may be an early death. These parents need to be locked up.

Don't even get me started about parents who take their children on car rides to the amusement park. Google the injury and death statistics for those two activities. It's madness. Put these parents in prison and throw away the key!

Re:Should be charged with child abuse (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349285)

This is not about "anti vaccination" nutters as the americans are misunderstanding it to be about.

This is about a specific vaccine (MMR) against measles, mumps, and rubella, which had scientific papers published about it claiming a link between it and autism. People were not ignoring the doctors, they were confused about which doctors to pay attention to. It later turned out that the paper's methodology was flawed, and that the correct doctors to pay attention to were the ones pushing MMR as a great thing (which it was). But that was far from certain, and to simply say "zomg, not paying attention to doctors" is missing the point – they were paying attention to doctors –just doctors who's opinion it was that the dangers of the vaccine were worse than the diseases it solved.

Making the vaccine mandatory (as some are suggesting) would actually have made the situation worse, as a lot of the problem was the government pushing MMR as being safe much too hard, and a lot of parents being suspicious of why it was being pushed so hard (thinking that it was down to cost saving, not down to actual medical evidence).

ty (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349017)

Thanks (in advance), Jenny.

Re:ty (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349141)

On behalf of all other Jennys : we feel tainted to bear the same name. I contemplated to change my name to distance myself as far as possible from this brain dead imbecile. So please be more specific in your name. I feel dirty by your words. As in guilty by association.

Re:ty (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349287)

On behalf of all other Jennys : we feel tainted to bear the same name. I contemplated to change my name to distance myself as far as possible from this brain dead imbecile. So please be more specific in your name. I feel dirty by your words. As in guilty by association.

Just don't change your number!

Re:ty (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349317)

I contemplated to change my name to distance myself as far as possible from this brain dead imbecile.

Jenny Coward? Is that you?

Re:ty (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,1 hour | (#44349373)

Thanks (in advance), Jenny.

Why don't you give her a call? 867 5309.

totally government spin (1)

collect0r (794706) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349037)

the story was leaked by a government minister that there was a lot of welsh people getting measles when in reality there was no epidemic at all. its all scare tactics by the newspapers and the government who in reality want you to be scared of breathing so that you do what they want you to do.

Read Andrew Wakefield's rebuttle (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349045)

Dr. Andrew Wakefield is the doctor that discovered that many children with autism have the same strain of measles (or was it mumps?) in their digestive tract as the MMR vaccine and suggested that further research be done to determine whether or not there is a link between the MMR vaccine and autism. That is all he said, but the media crucified him. Years later he wrote a book called "Callous Disregard" that shows his original paper, and then goes over each and every point the media and medical journals said about him and proves that they lied and fabricated evidence. Everything they said about his is completely false and he exposed a conspiracy between medical journals and drug companies. You've only heard one side of the story, open your mind and read the other side and then decide for yourself.

Re:Read Andrew Wakefield's rebuttle (5, Informative)

Sockatume (732728) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349125)

It's not like he held a press conference calling for a cessation of MMR vaccination and making a causal connection to autism.

It's not like he was secretly being paid over £400,000 by vaccine damage lawyers while the study was being performed, to draw conclusions that the study hadn't made yet.

It's not like he was trying to launch multi-million-dollar biotech companies that depended on the study's results coming out in favour of his hypothesis.

It's not like the data in the paper differ from the original patient records in ways that, by some amazing coincidence, all support the paper's claims.

No, Andrew Wakefield is clearly beyond reproach.

Re:Read Andrew Wakefield's rebuttle (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349181)

Pillock. He fabricated data itself. It was not the media that has the authority to pull him from the ranks of scientists.
There is no link between autism and vaccines. None.

Wakefield should kill himself for the damage he has done to kids and science. I would be very happy.

preying on the desperate (2)

rkhalloran (136467) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349319)

Many other researchers were unable to duplicate Wakefield's work. He formed a company to promote his therapies for this problem that others were unable to find, and neglected to inform anyone of the potential conflict-of-interest. When the press exposed this, his co-authors backed away from the paper. The British medical board looked at his work, including questionable therapies on autistic children, and found him guilty of dishonesty and abuse of patients, and revoked his medical license. The Lancet retracted his article. I feel for the parents dealing with a full-out autistic child (my wife and I are raising an Aspergers/ADD grandson), but unproven therapies based on debunked theories aren't going to honestly address their problems.

This is just fear-mongering itself. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349057)

It should be obvious with a change of over ten times as much in a single year that blaming it on something fifteen years ago is just as much nonsensical.

They didn't suddenly become not-immune, they've been not-immune for a while.

If you're going to complain about the anti-vaccine people not being scientifically rigorous, you have to do so yourself.

Re:This is just fear-mongering itself. (1)

fastest fascist (1086001) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349187)

That's what happens in an outbreak - a transmissible disease gains sufficient foothold in a community to spread wider than it usually does. It doesn't happen all the time, otherwise it wouldn't be unusual. Herd immunity provides protection when circumstances otherwise would conspire to allow for a disease to suddenly spread across a population.

Re:This is just fear-mongering itself. (5, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349191)

It's like driving without a seatbelt on. You're fine, because you're unlikely to have a car crash. Maybe you can drive like this for a decade, until one unlucky day, a drunk guy goes through a red light and into the side of your car at 30 miles per hour. Suddenly not having a seatbelt becomes a huge problem.

Similarly, this community could sit there with its low vaccination levels quite happily, because it's surrounded by a big country mostly composed of people with the common sense to get vaccinated, and because of that, measles has a hard time getting around and reaching these poorly-vaccinated areas. Until one day, someone who happens to have the virus moves in, and it has the run of the place.

WSJ gets the figures wrong. (1)

miketheanimal (914328) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349065)

From TFA and quoted by the poster: "A measles outbreak infected 1,219 people in southwest Wales between November 2012 and early July, compared with 105 cases in all of Wales in 2011." Wrong, see: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/may/02/measles-epidemic-swansea-teenagers-targeted-vaccinations [guardian.co.uk] (May 2nd) "The headline total for measles across Wales is now at 1,170 cases. The number of laboratory confirmed cases in the outbreak stands at 370 out of a total of 850 samples tested." So the outbreak is exagerated by more than a factor of two.

Re:WSJ gets the figures wrong. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349235)

whatever, you snob... just don't question government mandated vaccines when the shit hits the fan OK?

miketheanimal gets the figures wrong. (1)

Sockatume (732728) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349327)

You're complaining that they compared total case reports one year to the same statistic in the preceding year? And you want them to, instead, compare two completely different measures of a disease's prevalence at different times?

Re:WSJ gets the figures wrong. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,1 hour | (#44349363)

Hmm, "Early July" versus an article on "May 2nd".

One's out of date. I expect a lot more samples have been tested since then to get that final number.

And that's why you should listen to experts (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349081)

When the people who know what they're talking about are in widespread agreement about some issue, that's generally an indication that what they're saying is the best understanding of the issue available. If you instead decide to follow the advice of someone who is totally unqualified, that's probably going to point you towards the wrong conclusion. Especially when, as in this case, everything turned out exactly as the experts predicted it would.

So yeah, listening to Jenny McCarthy rather than just about every doctor on the planet about medical issues is stupid. And I'm sorry the kids have to suffer for their parents' stupidity.

Re:And that's why you should listen to experts (2)

gnasher719 (869701) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349173)

When the people who know what they're talking about are in widespread agreement about some issue, that's generally an indication that what they're saying is the best understanding of the issue available. If you instead decide to follow the advice of someone who is totally unqualified, that's probably going to point you towards the wrong conclusion. Especially when, as in this case, everything turned out exactly as the experts predicted it would.

There seems to be an enormous distrust to experts in general. First hand experience: When the CSI TV show showed who digital photos could be magnified and give clear pictures in incredible ways, I tried to explain to my wife that this was just absolutely impossible. She wouldn't believe it. It was there on TV, so it had to be true. Never mind that at the time I was actually working in computer graphics, including reading scientific papers how to scale up digital images while making them look slightly less crappy, she wouldn't believe it.

Then she met some woman who was working in IT (never heard what that woman was doing in IT - I suppose helpdesk somewhere), and that woman said what CSI showed didn't work, and she came home and told me that actually photo enhancement as in CSI doesn't work. When I said "that's what I said all the time", she said "no you don't know about these things, but this woman is working in IT so she knows".

Vaccination... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349105)

can happen at ANY time at ANY age. While injecting babies with all sorts of shit is really flaky, the only thing it should change your opinion of is WHEN to do it. Wait a few more months. Wait a few more years. A vaccination is still a vaccination.

Re:Vaccination... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349297)

Idiot 2.0

Certain diseases are deadly for new born babies. Don't wait. It could kill your kid.
Vaccines are safe. Diseases are not.

Eradication (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349107)

We need to get more ambitious with eradication of disease instead of all this partial vaccination. Vaccines are nice, but it's even better not to need them. Yes, it's difficult. Yes, I see the issues getting through the final stages of Polio eradication. But I also have a small pox vaccination scar which half the people on slashdot do not have - 'cause you didn't need it. Eradication should be far cheaper long term than just fucking around with vaccinating a lot of people (but not enough) indefinitely.

Re:Eradication (1)

Shavano (2541114) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349249)

That's very true, but when the lunatics and charlatans have political control in infested areas, you can't achieve eradication. That's why we still have polio and polio vaccines. To achieve eradication, you must have a disease that has no non-human hosts (e.g. polio, measles, smallpox) and governments willing for employ mandatory vaccination of everybody. And of course you must have highly effective vaccines. Not all vaccines are that effective.

Paywall (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349127)

As is par for the course with WSJ articles, once they see x number of referrals coming from a popular social-media-like site, they throw up a paywall. Can we simply stop linking to WSJ for this reason alone?

On the bright side though.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349129)

Autism is down.

Re:On the bright side though.. (1)

fastest fascist (1086001) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349201)

Is it?

Acutal Measles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349261)

I'm not debating the effectiveness of the Measles vaccine (it is one of the vaccines that has the numbers to back up its claims), but are we sure that these are cases of Measles? I would assume that it is one of the few diseases that is outwardly obvious, but I also know that there was a controversy a while back at least here in the US where the CDC was running a "Get Vaccinated" campaign using massively inflated numbers. They were claiming that one of the seasonal flu varieties was spreading like wildfire because of the "uneducated anti-vaccine people", but it was discovered they were throwing in anything that was even close to the symptoms of the seasonal flu vaccine into their publications. Later actual testing found that a vast majority of the cases they were siting were not even covered by the seasonal flu vaccine. I'm all for calling out the stupidity and lies of idiots, but it should be done no matter which side of the line they are on.

Devils advocate (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349325)

to play devils advocate here, medical scince has been wrong before:
like when they started to routinely shot radiation into childrens necks in the 40s-60s to shrink their thyroids.... ended in increased cancer

I am not saying you should never trust modern medicine, but what is modern today is ancient tomorrow.
fish oil good....and now its bad.

also the amount of vaccines a child gets before they are one year oldhas almost doubled since most of the people reading this site were born

a "before" and an "after" in the life of our son (5, Funny)

RudyF (1546401) | 1 year,2 hours | (#44349333)

I know as a fact there was a "before" and an "after" in the life of our son -- he was an apt big baby till he was 26 monthes. Then he got this compulsory vaccination (we're French) and he was 'elsewhere' for a few days. To make it short, my son is now 8.5 years old and he's a non verbal autist.
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