After a decade of denying any possible association between vaccines and autism, the government quietly settled a vaccine-autism case last fall. When news of the case leaked out to the public months later, government officials labelled the case of Hannah Poling an "anomoly." The truth is, nobody is in a position to know whether Hannah's case is an exception. Government officials have told CBS News that they have not tracked vaccine-autism claims to see how many of them might involve children with the same undetected mitochondrial disorder Hannah had... one that may have made her susceptible to side effects from vaccines, triggering her autism. Government officials have also acknowledged to CBS News that they haven't looked for common denominators in other autism-related cases which have been compensated in federal vaccine court. Yes, there are other cases that have been paid. As CBS News has reported, the government has been settling vaccine injuries that resulted in autism and/or autistic symptoms since at least the early 1990's, while at the same time telling the public there is no cause for concern. Not all of the cases are published, but some of them are and can be found by searching legal case databases. That... with the help of some well-placed sources... is how CBS News turned up at least nine more cases... and counting. Considering that only a tiny fraction of vaccine-autism claims find their way to the little-known vaccine court, these cases are just a sampling of the total that may actually exist in the population. Further, according to knowledgeable sources, vaccine injuries compensated in the past due to encephalopathy (or brain damage) "often" resulted in autism, but the autism label was not used. Again, the government does not track how many of the encephalopathy cases involved children who got autism or ADD after their vaccinations.
One important factor is often lost in the discussion of a handful of cases: the fact that the debate has shifted from whether vaccines have any relationship to some cases of autism... to what is the role of vaccines in some cases of autism. And how big is the pool of cases. If vaccines can trigger autism in any way, directly or indirectly, that contradicts all the rhetoric and dogma heard from many public and government health officials for the past decade. And it supports what many other researchers have been saying for a decade, often to deaf ears, even after they published in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
Which is probably why Hannah's case is resonating under the radar in the medical community. A government conference has now been scheduled for later this month to examine mitochondrial disorders like hers and autism or neurological "triggers" (i.e. vaccines). See below.
Mitochondrial Disorders of Childhood: Testing, Potential Relationships to Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Triggers for Neurological Deterioration June 29, 2008
Workshop Goals and Objectives
"Mitochondrial Disorders of Childhood: Testing, Potential Relationships to Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Triggers for Neurological Deterioration" is a workshop to be held on Sunday June 29th after the close of the United Mitochondrial Disease Meeting in Indianapolis at the Hyatt Regency Indianapolis. The workshop will convene 11 experts in mitochondrial disorders or autism to discuss how the neurology of mitochondrial disorders might inform autism research.
The conference is sponsored by a number of Federal agencies including DHHS, CDC, FDA, NINDS and NIMH. Observers are welcome as seating allows.
Hyatt Regency Indianapolis
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