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Rep. Dan Burton introduces AAPS Public Affairs Counsel, Kathryn Serkes, at a joint news conference to announce a bill on the vaccine compensation fund and the study of childhood vaccines.

March 21, 2003
Contact: Kathryn Serkes 202.333.3855
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Study: Childhood Vaccines Exceed Federal Guidelines for Mercury & Link with Neurological Disorders & Heart Disease in Children

Complete Ban Could Prevent Autism, Speech Disorders

Washington - A new study of mercury in childhood vaccines demonstrates that the doses are in excess of the Federal Safety Guidelines, and shows alarming evidence for a link between these excessive doses of mercury from thimerasol-containing vaccines and neurodevelopment disorders such as autism and speech disorders, as well as heart disease

Those are the findings of the study published in the current issue of the peer-reviewed Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons (JP&S), authored by Mark Geier, M.D., Ph.D, President of The Genetic Centers of America, and David Geier.

The authors also conclude that the U.S. should ban the use of thimerosal in all vaccines. "It is to be hoped that complete removal of thimerosal from all childhood vaccines will help to stem the tragic, apparently iatrogenic epidemic of autism and speech disorders that the United States is now facing," write the authors.

The authors point to exploding rates of autism since introduction of thimerosal in vaccines. In less than 20 years, the rate increased by more than 800 percent, from one in about 2,500 children in the mid-1980s to one in about 300 children in 1996.

"Many in the scientific community have, initially, been highly skeptical that thimerosal, an ethylmercury preservative in childhood vaccines, could be associated with neurodevelopment disorders," write the Geiers.

BACKGROUND: In 2001, the Institute of Medicine concluded that exposure to mercury in vaccines and neurodevelopment disorders could not be linked because of indirect and incomplete information, but that the link was biologically possible.

This study now confirms that, showing that there was a 2 to 6-fold increased incidence of neurodevelopment disorders following an additional 75-100 microgram dosage of mercury from thimerosal-containing vaccines compared to thimerosal-free vaccines.

METHODOLGY: The study consists of two parts. In the first, the authors evaluated the doses of mercury that children received from thimerosal-containing vaccines, as part of routine US childhood immunization schedule. Those doses were compared to the US Federal Safety Guidelines for the oral ingestion of methylmercury.

Secondly, in order to analyze the effects of thimerosal in vaccine recipients, they analyzed the incidence rates of neurodevelopment disorders and heart disease reported following thimerosal-containing vaccines in comparison to thimerosal-free vaccines. The data used was from the government's Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS). Vaccines compared were Diptheria-Tetanus-whole-cell-Pertussis and Diptheria-Tetanus-acellur-Pertussis.

Also, the authors analyzed data from the US Department of Education on the number of children of various ages in US schools who were reported with various types of disabilities in comparison to the mercury dose that children received from thimerosal in their childhood vaccines.

CONCLUSION: "In light of voluminous literature supporting the biologic mechanisms for mercury-induced adverse reactions, the presence of amounts of mercury in thimerosal-containing childhood vaccines exceeding Federal Safety Guidelines for the oral ingestion of mercury, and previous epidemiological studies showing adverse reactions to such vaccines, a causal relationship between thimerosal-containing childhood vaccines and neurodevelopment disorders and heart disease appears to be confirmed," write the authors.

The AAPS, a professional non-partisan association, was established in 1943 to protect the sanctity of the patient-physician relationship from third-party interference.

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