Thursday, March 06, 2008

CNN Report Vaccine Could Have Triggered Autism in Girl's Predispostion

Explosive and upsetting report... important decision by federal court on claims vaccine may have injured girl... triggered autism... within 48 hours developed fever, and within several months diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder... does thimerisol cause autism, no linkage one theory, another theory is the child had an underlying mitochondrial situation... after vaccine, the underlying situation was aggravated by the vaccination...

from Sanjay Kupta report)

Parents, grandparents, all family members pay attention to the CNN Reports beginning with American Morning today.

Late morning CNN press conference Hannah's family speaks.

Don't miss the transcripts.

Larry King Live
Aired March 6, 2008 - 21:00 ET
Could Autism be Caused by Child Vaccinations?

Plus, a first -- federal health officials concede vaccinations contributed to a child's autism like symptoms...

...KING: The statement from -- the Health Resources and Services Administration has issued this statement on autism and the vaccine injury program; it says, in part, "HRSA has reviewed the scientific information concerning the allegation that vaccines cause autism and has found no credible evidence to support the claim. HRSA has maintained and continues to maintain the position that vaccines do not cause autism and has never concluded in any case that autism was caused by vaccination."

So, there they are disagreeing with the opinion stated by the vaccination group the government had look at it. What do you make of that, Cliff?

SHOEMAKER: Well, Larry, I think that we might be dealing with semantics here. Certainly, this was a case that was planning to go ahead as a test case in the Vaccine Compensation Act. It was one of the cases that was selected to go to a hearing in May of this coming year, on the theory that the vaccines caused autism. It did not go to hearing because of this concession.

You can say all you want about what the reasons are for it, and we aren't really at liberty to talk about what is actually in the document, the concession that was made. But it was a case involving vaccines and clearly this child does have autism.

I think we had two theories of causation which Dr. Poling can probably describe to you better than I can...


...SHOEMAKER: Thank you, Larry. I might add that one of the theories we were prepared to present in this case is the fact that mercury in the vaccine that were given back at that time can also lead to Mitochondrial dysfunction. In this case, we do not believe it was a genetic cause. We do not believe it was a cause.

CDC Statement on Autism and Thimerosal

A press release about Mercury in Thimerosal from the National Vaccine Information Center in July of 1999 press points out that, "The cumulative effects of ingesting mercury can cause brain damage." During this same month, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) alerted the public about the possible health effects associated with thimerosal-containing vaccines. These health-related organizations strongly recommended that thimerosal be removed from vaccines as soon as possible. Under the directive of the FDA Modernization Act of 1997, the Food and Drug Administration also determined that infants who received several thimerosal-containing vaccines may be receiving mercury exposure over and above the recommended federal guidelines.

CNN Newsroom
Aired March 6, 2008 - 09:00 ET

COLLINS: Important health news to tell you about today. The family of a Georgia girl speaking out about autism and vaccines a little bit later this morning. They believe a preservative in vaccines caused their child to develop autism-like symptoms. The parents took their case to a special federal vaccine court. It says they deserve compensation.

Here to sort this all out, chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

Sanjay, the government isn't actually saying that vaccines cause autism, are they?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: They are not saying that. They are being very specific. Well, this week with regards to this particular girl, 9-year-old Hannah Polling, they talk about her case specifically as someone who received vaccines around the age of 18 months old. And within 48 hours after that started to develop high fever, inconsolable crying, and then over a period of months, subsequently was diagnosed with symptoms that are consistent with autism spectrum disorder.

A lot of this is going to come out at a press conference later on this morning, but this may be the first case where there's actually compensation given to the family of the girl based on vaccines specifically.

I wanted -- you know, we've been looking into this for some time. I want to make sure you have a couple of important facts about the autism vaccine case specifically. This is what they're saying. "The facts of this case meet the statutory criteria demonstrating that vaccinations significantly aggravated an underlying mitochondrial disorder which manifested as regressive encephalopathy with features of autism spectrum disorder."

That's a mouthful, Heidi. COLLINS: Yes.

GUPTA: But I think what's important to point out here, is this particular girl as they tested her, they found that, in fact, she had the gene for a mitochondrial disorder. These are this sort of power houses in your body cells. She had the gene for that. So the question is: did this vaccine somehow worsen an already existing condition?


GUPTA: And exactly what happened. This may all raise more questions than answers. But this is sort of what we're talking about this morning.

COLLINS: Yes. And it's very, very important to make that distinction between every child out there who may or may not have this sort of, I don't want to call it dormant, but this underlying condition that parents just don't know about, and then you get the vaccine and it comes out or, as they said in the ruling, it's exacerbated.

GUPTA: That's right. And as you point out, I think it is important to be very careful here. This is just one particular case that we're talking about. We don't even know all the details yet. They're going to come out later on this morning probably, but we do know that she had this underlying condition, she got the vaccines, and the time sequence was that she started to have some troubles.

Are they related? Did the vaccines contribute? Did the underlying condition have anything to do with this? These are questions we don't know the answers to for sure, but people are still trying to piece this all together.

COLLINS: All right. Forgive me, Sanjay, because everybody is talking about this, this morning...

Family of Girl in Autism Vaccine Case Holds News Conference
Aired March 6, 2008 - 11:00 ET

"No early signs," says father. Mother says Hannah bright before several vaccination shots in one day...

Parents go over details. Do not miss if you have children, grandchildren under the age of two-years old.

So, if you are a parent and you are about to have a baby or you are about to consider going through the next round of vaccinations, what do you do?

IMUS: Again, I'm not anti-vaccine. I want to make that clear because again, a lot of people that speak out on this issue, they try to corner us and say we're anti-vaccine. We are not. What we're saying is, again, like everything, cleaning products or any products you use in your home, with your child, you want to do things safely.

So, when you go to your pediatrician with your baby, you want to make sure that those vaccines, that you look at the packaging, discuss it with the doctor and that they do not contain any amount of Thimerosal mercury at all.

COLLINS: Yes, and that is something that I think a lot of us tend to take for granted. We go to the doctor and we do what we're supposed to do or what we're told to do. So, certainly worth a lot more questions indeed. Deidre Imus, we certainly appreciate your time with the Deidre Imus Environmental Center for Pediatric Oncology. Thanks so much.

Government Concedes Vaccines May Have Injured Georgia Girl
POSTED: 5:30 pm EST March 5, 2008
UPDATED: 11:01 am EST March 6, 2008
Government health officials have conceded that childhood vaccines worsened a rare, underlying disorder that ultimately led to autism-like symptoms in a Georgia girl, and that she should be paid from a federal vaccine-injury fund.

Medical and legal experts say the narrow wording and circumstances probably make the case an exception -- not a precedent for thousands of other pending claims.

The government "has not conceded that vaccines cause autism," said Linda Renzi, the lawyer representing federal officials, who have consistently maintained that childhood shots are safe.

However, parents and advocates for autistic children see the case as a victory that may help certain others. Although the science on this is very limited, the girl's disorder may be more common in autistic children than in healthy ones.

READ: Notes On Joint Statement On Autism/Vaccine Settlement Case

"It's a beginning," said Kevin Conway, a Boston lawyer representing more than 1,200 families with vaccine injury claims. "Each case is going to have to be proved on its individual merits. But it shows to me that the government has conceded that it's biologically plausible for a vaccine to cause these injuries. They've never done it before."

A lawyer for Hannah Poling, 9, and her parents has scheduled a news conference Thursday in Atlanta.

In an interview Wednesday with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Hannah's parents, Jon and Terry Poling, said the government's concession in the case will help pay for the numerous therapists and other medical experts their autistic child needs — now and for the rest of her life.

"At least we have some commitment from the government to take care of Hannah when we're gone," said Dr. Jon Poling, a neurologist.

Nearly 5,000 families are seeking compensation for autism or other developmental disabilities they blame on vaccines and a mercury-based preservative, thimerosal. It once was commonly used to prevent bacterial contamination but since 2001 has been used only in certain flu shots. Some cases contend that the cumulative effect of many shots given at once may have caused injuries.

The cases are before a special "vaccine court" that doles out cash from a fund Congress set up to pay people injured by vaccines and to protect makers from damages as a way to help ensure an adequate vaccine supply. The burden of proof is lighter than in a traditional court, and is based on a preponderance of evidence. Since the fund started in 1988, it has paid roughly 950 claims -- none for autism.

Studies repeatedly have discounted any link between thimerosal and autism, but legal challenges continue. The issue even cropped up in the presidential campaign, with Republican John McCain asserting on Friday that "there's strong evidence" autism is connected to the preservative.

The girl has a disorder involving her mitochondria, the energy factories of cells. The disorder -- which can be present at birth from an inherited gene or acquired later in life -- impairs cells' ability to use nutrients, and often causes problems in brain functioning. It can lead to delays in walking and talking.

Federal officials say the law bars them from discussing the case or releasing documents without the family's permission. However, The Associated Press obtained a copy of the concession by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services officials.

According to the document, five vaccines the girl received on one day in 2000 aggravated her mitochondrial condition, predisposing her to metabolic problems that manifested as worsening brain function "with features of autism spectrum disorder." In the 1990s, the definition of autism was expanded to take in a group of milder, related conditions, which are known as autism spectrum disorders.

The document does not address whether it was the thimerosal -- or something else entirely in the vaccines -- that was at fault.

The compensation fund lists problems with brain function as a rare side effect of certain vaccines. Such problems are enough on their own to warrant compensation, even without autism-like symptoms, and the fund has made numerous payouts in such cases.

The Health Resources and Services Administration, which is in charge of the fund, said: "HRSA has maintained and continues to maintain the position that vaccines do not cause autism."

A Portuguese study suggested that 7 percent of autistic children might also have the mitochondrial disorder, versus one in 5,000 people -- or 0.02 percent -- in the general population, said Dr. Marvin Natowicz, a Cleveland Clinic geneticist.

"Even if they're off by a factor of seven" and only 1 percent are afflicted, "it's still a striking statistic," he said.

Others said they doubt the Georgia case will have much effect.

"No link between mitochondrial disorders and autism spectrum disorder has been made in mainstream medicine," said Dr. Michael Pichichero of the University of Rochester in Rochester, N.Y., who has consulted for the government on vaccines and has received speaking fees from vaccine makers...

Review of article Vaccines and Autism Myths and Misconception

Here's a site that appears to be disappointed with David Kirby's rundown of the case.

reference to other studies...

Includes some of same info word for word (maybe a press release)

same wording

Government Concedes Vaccine-Autism Case in Federal Court - Now What?
Posted February 25, 2008 | 12:42 PM (EST)

First Autism vaccine link - How Hannah made history

Will be on Larry King Live


Lists the studies

Developmental Regression and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in a Child With Autism
Jon S. Poling, MD, PhD
Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery Johns Hopkins Hospital Baltimore, MD

Richard E. Frye, MD, PhD
Department of Neurology Boston Children's Hospital Boston, MA

John Shoffner, MD
Horizon Molecular Medicine Georgia State University Atlanta, GA

Andrew W. Zimmerman, MD
Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery Johns Hopkins Hospital Kennedy Krieger Institute Baltimore, MD,

Poling study
Developmental Regression and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in a Child With Autism


Wednesday, March 05, 2008
Developmental Regression and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in a Child With Autism
After David Kirby's disclosure of the court papers in the Hannah Poling case last week, it became clear that the child in this study was the same child whose autism claim was conceded by the DOJ to be paid by the Vaccine Injury Compensation Fund.

What I didn't know until today was that her father, Jon Poling, MD, PhD, was the lead author on the paper...

Note in following article:

Jumping in for my readers... this is not true. Thimerosal began being taken out in 1999, but is not yet fully removed...

This article is from Atlanta Constitution

In a move autism family advocates call unprecedented, federal health officials have concluded that childhood vaccines contributed to symptoms of the disorder in a 9-year-old Georgia girl.

While government officials continue to maintain that vaccines don't cause autism, advocates say the recent settlement of the girl's injury case in a secretive federal vaccine court shows otherwise.

Hannah Poling requires one-on-one care at all times. Her family is trying to get details of her case opened for public review.

Jon and Terry Poling with 9 year-old daughter, Hannah. They couple says the symptoms of autism began in Hannah after shots she received during a doctor visit when she was 19 months old.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has concluded the family of Hannah Poling of Athens is entitled to compensation from a federal vaccine injury fund, according to the text of a court document in the case. The amount of the family's award is still being determined.

The language in the document does not establish a clear-cut vaccine-autism link. But it does say the government concluded that vaccines aggravated a rare underlying metabolic condition that resulted in a brain disorder "with features of autism spectrum disorder."

Government concedes... David Kirby

The claim, one of 4,900 autism cases currently pending in Federal "Vaccine Court," was conceded by US Assistant Attorney General Peter Keisler and other Justice Department officials, on behalf of the Department of Health and Human Services, the "defendant" in all Vaccine Court cases.

The child's claim against the government -- that mercury-containing vaccines were the cause of her autism -- was supposed to be one of three "test cases" for the thimerosal-autism theory currently under consideration by a three-member panel of Special Masters, the presiding justices in Federal Claims Court.

Keisler wrote that medical personnel at the HHS Division of Vaccine Injury Compensation (DVIC) had reviewed the case and "concluded that compensation is appropriate."

The doctors conceded that the child was healthy and developing normally until her 18-month well-baby visit, when she received vaccinations against nine different diseases all at once (two contained thimerosal).

Days later, the girl began spiraling downward into a cascade of illnesses and setbacks that, within months, presented as symptoms of autism, including: No response to verbal direction; loss of language skills; no eye contact; loss of "relatedness;" insomnia; incessant screaming; arching; and "watching the florescent lights repeatedly during examination."

Seven months after vaccination, the patient was diagnosed by Dr. Andrew Zimmerman, a leading neurologist at the Kennedy Krieger Children's Hospital Neurology Clinic, with "regressive encephalopathy (brain disease) with features consistent with autistic spectrum disorder, following normal development." The girl also met the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) official criteria for autism.

In its written concession, the government said the child had a pre-existing mitochondrial disorder that was "aggravated" by her shots, and which ultimately resulted in an ASD diagnosis....


While government officials continue to maintain that vaccines don't cause autism, advocates say the recent settlement of the girl's injury case in a secretive federal vaccine court shows otherwise.

Thimerosal Content in Some US Licensed Vaccines
updated January 28, 2008

Current vaccine products
As stated above, nearly all vaccine products used in the recommended pediatric immunization schedule (for children 6 and younger) contain no thimerosal or only trace amounts. Trace amounts are defined as 1 µg or less of mercury per dose, resulting from manufacturing processes. These vaccine products have been reformulated with other preservatives or reformulated as single-dose products only.

Products containing only trace amounts of mercury include Tripedia (DTaP, Sanofi Pasteur) with <0.3 µg per 0.5 mL dose; Pediarix (DTaP-HepB-IVP, GlaxoSmithKline) with <0.0125 µg per 0.5 mL dose; Engerix B (hepatitis B, GSK) with <0.5 µg per 0.5 mL dose; and Fluvirin Preservative-Free (inactivated influenza, Chiron Evans) with <1 µg per 0.5 mL dose.

Only two products for use in infants and children, both inactivated influenza vaccines, contain thimerosal: FluZone (Sanofi Pasteur) with 12.5 µg per 0.25 mL dose and Fluvirin (Chiron Evans) with 25 µg per 0.5 mL dose. FluZone with thimerosal is available as a multidose vial and is labeled for use in children aged 6 months and older. FluZone is also available as a thimerosal-free product, as 0.25 mL unit dose syringes for use in infants 6 to 35 months of age and 0.5 mL unit dose syringes for children 3 and older. Fluvirin, also available thimerosal free (containing trace amounts), is available as 0.5 mL unit dose syringes and is labeled for use in children aged 4 and older. Both of these thimerosal-free inactivated influenza vaccine products may be less available this year than the similar product containing thimerosal. Live-attenuated influenza virus vaccine (FluMist, MedImmune) is thimerosal free. The FDA maintains an Internet site listing all vaccine products and thimerosal content (

Thimerosal in Vaccines
See also "Mercury in Plasma-Derived Products"

** Thimerosal is approximately 50% mercury (Hg) by weight. A 0.01% solution (1 part per 10,000) of thimerosal contains 50 µg of Hg per 1 mL dose or 25 µg of Hg per 0.5 mL dose.

*** The term "trace" has been taken in this context to mean 1 microgram of mercury per dose or less.

1 HibTiITER was also manufactured in thimerosal-preservative containing multidose vials but these were no longer available after 2002.
2 Children 6 months old to less than 3 years of age receive a half-dose of vaccine, i.e., 0.25 mL; children 3 years of age and older receive 0.5 mL.
3 A trace thimerosal containing formulation of Fluzone was approved on 9/14/02 and has been replaced with the formulation without thimerosal.
4 FluMist is not indicated for children less than 5 years of age.


Hunkston said...

Does anyone reading this have previous experience with making an accident claim? A friend of my mother recently had some complications when giving birth. It wasn’t her fault and there weren’t natural complications but were due to someone else. If seen companies that deal with compensation claims but don’t know if there are grounds for claim of medical negligencein a birth injury claim! Has anyone ever heard of anything like this?

Net the Truth Online said...

Sorry am not aware, specifically, but a google search does produce potentially helpful results.