Girl's Autism Symptoms Linked to Vaccines

Posted on Mar 6, 2008 in Autism, Heavy Metals

Federal Officials Say Vaccines Worsened Condition That Led to Autism Spectrum Disorder in Georgia Girl

By Kathleen Doheny
WebMD Health News


March 6, 2008 — Federal officials say a Georgia girl is entitled to compensation from a federal vaccine injury fund because she developed autism-like symptoms after receiving childhood vaccines in 2000.

Hannah’s father, Jon, tells WebMD he was not surprised by the compensation decision.

“When you are talking about the courtroom versus science, the burden of proof is different,” Poling says. “(But) we showed there was a plausible mechanism. We showed that an injury occurred shortly after her vaccination. Her growth curve went flat for months.”

The government has not said that childhood vaccines cause autism; rather, officials conclude that the vaccines given to the girl in 2000 aggravated a pre-existing condition — a mitochondrial disorder — that then manifested as a regressive neurological disease with some¬†symptoms of¬†autism spectrum disorder.

Those who believe there is a vaccine-autism link call the decision a victory, but those who see no link worry that parents will once again shy away from childhood vaccines.

“Nothing of this situation should be generalized to the risk of vaccines for normal children,” CDC Director Julie Gerberding, MD, said at a news conference. “None of this is going to change any of our recommendations stating the importance of vaccination¬†for every child.”