Mummy Buzz


Court Ruling Revives Autism-Vaccine Link

Pure Coincidence?

Remember that explosive MMR-autism study that was later discredited? Well, it seems the controversial link between the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine and autism has reared its ugly head following an Italian court case.

In a precedent-setting decision, judges in Rimini awarded a family Euros 174,000 (nearly $225,000) after the Health Ministry conceded the MMR vaccine caused autism in a boy, now aged nine. Italian lawyers are now dredging up to 100 similar cases, which could lead to further legal action.

At 15 months, Valentino Bocca received an MMR inoculation, after which he began to exhibit autistic symptoms. According to an article in the Independent, UK doctors and health experts feel the link between autism and the jab is not causal but rather, purely coincidental—meaning the timing between autistic behaviours manifesting just so happened to coincide with the injection. 

Its own Department of Health is adamant that "there is a wealth of evidence showing children who receive the MMR vaccine are no more at risk of autism than those who don't." This, from the country where the saga started. In 1998, British medical journal The Lancet established a connection between the vaccine and autism. And even though the study was later thoroughly discredited and the findings retracted, many families continued to boycott the vaccination.

Proving such a correlation is difficult. And yet autism cases continue to rise sharply. Thoughts?