What The Evidence Says = It’s Safe
MMR vaccine’s side effects are uncommon and usually very mild (DeStefano, et al., 2019). Common adverse reactions include injection site reactions, 5 to 15% get a fever, and 5% get a mild rash; anything more intense is really rare (DeStefano, et al., 2019).
How Effective Is The MMR Vaccine at Preventing Measles?
MMR vaccine is over 97% effective against measles and rubella, after two doses (DeStefano, et al., 2019).
Why Do People Think The MMR Vaccination Is Unsafe?
In 1998 Media reports circulated about a possible link between the combined measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) and autism or bowel disease (Rao, & Andrade, 2011).
Is There A Link Between Autism And The MMR Vaccination? = No
These reports were based on a case series published in Lancet by Wakefield et al., (1998) that was highly criticised by the scientific community, disproven by 6 comprehensive follow-up studies, and the scientists from the paper that started it all, were convicted of deliberate fraud (Rao, & Andrade, 2011).
Wakefield had been paid by a lawyer to find a link between MMR and autism (Rao, & Andrade, 2011). With the aim of getting the results they needed for a lawsuit (Deer, 2011).
Wakefield changed the information parents gave him to make it look like there was a link between the MMR vaccine (Deer, 2011). When the parents were visited by a journalist, their stories and what was reported in Wakefield’s paper were very different (Deer, 2011).
This has been highly publicised. But the damage is done. Many parents now worry and question not just the MMR vaccine, but many others.
Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel’s Autism
In a book titled, Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel’s Autism, Peter Hotez Md, PhD explored the organized political resistance to vaccines as a paediatrician, a vaccine scientist and a dad of a little girl with autism.
If anyone had motive to believe in the vaccine-autism connection, it would be this dad. He has the ability to find the truth as a vaccine scientist, and the issue is close to home as his own daughter suffers from autism.
Yet in his book dedicated to finding the roots of autism, that’s not what he found.
In Chapter 8: Vaccines Don’t Cause Autism, Dr Hotez, explained that the vaccine-autism link has no scientific basis and any claims to the contrary are either false or a pseudo-scientific half-truth.
In Chapter 9: What Does Cause Autism? He explored how far our knowledge on the genes and brains of kids with autism has come. We now know that that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) begins during pregnancy. But this syndrome only really starts to show itself between 18 and 24 months because that’s the age when a child’s brain is going through massive growth. This is when many social developmental milestones happen (smiling or rolling over); milestones which many ASD children miss.
Incidentally, this is the same age children are given their vaccinations. But the science definitely says that’s exactly what it is, a coincidence.
So should you trust the MMR vaccine = YES
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