Results matching “Andrew Wakefield”

In the British Medical Journal, Brian Deer provides extraordinary detail of the extent of fraud in Andrew Wakefield's paper, which, at the behest of trial lawyers, created a gigantic anti-vaccine scare that persists to this day, with untold numbers of measles cases resulting. Can you imagine the fuss if a doctor paid by a pharmaceutical company falsified study results for the profit of that corporation with adverse health effects? No signs of any class actions against trial lawyers or Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., though.

The Lancet paper was a case series of 12 child patients; it reported a proposed "new syndrome" of enterocolitis and regressive autism and associated this with MMR as an "apparent precipitating event." But in fact:

  • Three of nine children reported with regressive autism did not have autism diagnosed at all. Only one child clearly had regressive autism

  • Despite the paper claiming that all 12 children were "previously normal," five had documented pre-existing developmental concerns

  • Some children were reported to have experienced first behavioural symptoms within days of MMR, but the records documented these as starting some months after vaccination

  • In nine cases, unremarkable colonic histopathology results--noting no or minimal fluctuations in inflammatory cell populations--were changed after a medical school "research review" to "non-specific colitis"

  • The parents of eight children were reported as blaming MMR, but 11 families made this allegation at the hospital. The exclusion of three allegations--all giving times to onset of problems in months--helped to create the appearance of a 14 day temporal link

  • Patients were recruited through anti-MMR campaigners, and the study was commissioned and funded for planned litigation.

Update: Daniel Fisher independently makes the same point at Forbes; and Jonathan Adler @ Volokh has more links and quotes.

"U.K. Bans Doctor Who Linked Autism to Vaccine" - PointOfLaw Forum

The notorious Andrew Wakefield's license has been revoked for the "severe professional misconduct" involved in his dishonest work alleging vaccines cause autism. Update: see also this nice summary comic (via OL). And more: Brian Deer reporting and General Medical Council findings.

"MMR scare doctor 'acted unethically', panel finds" - PointOfLaw Forum

"The doctor who first suggested a link between MMR vaccinations and autism acted unethically, the official medical regulator has found. ... [Panel chairman Dr. Surendra Kumar] also said Dr Wakefield should have disclosed the fact that he had been paid to advise solicitors acting for parents who believed their children had been harmed by the MMR." [BBC] More coverage: Kathleen Seidel, Ronald Bailey/Reason "Hit and Run", Liz Ditz, more on MMR vaccine and litigation.

Around the web, February 15 - PointOfLaw Forum

Science and the law edition:

Around the web, February 12 - PointOfLaw Forum

  • California cities' and counties' is the only lead paint nuisance suit left standing [Calif. Civil Justice Blog]
  • Retailers in "panic" over court's last-minute reinstatement of phthalates ban [WSJ Law Blog; more CPSIA coverage]
  • Who needs skilled immigrants, anyway? Stimulus bill bars bailout beneficiaries from hiring international talent through H-1B visa program [Cowen, MargRev]
  • Home field advantage for state of Alabama and Jere Beasley against Sandoz in drug pricing lawsuit [AmLaw Daily]
  • Anti-vaccine figure Andrew Wakefield, accused of various impostures, wins Olbermann "Worst person in the world" award [Orac] But alas... [follow-up]
  • First post-Engle tobacco trial begins in Florida [Childs]

Roots of the vaccine-autism panic - PointOfLaw Forum

Dramatic new allegations of data falsification in the Times (U.K.) against British antivaccine crusader Andrew Wakefield, who, unbeknownst to many, had an ax to grind when he sounded the (now-debunked) alarm against the MMR shot: he was working with personal injury lawyers hoping to build a case against the vaccine manufacturers. (Mike Dunford, Orac, David Bernstein @ Volokh)

MMR vaccine and autism, cont'd - PointOfLaw Forum

At Spiked-Online, Michael Fitzpatrick details the latest developments in the collapsed U.K. litigation campaign aimed at proving a causal link between measles/mumps/rubella vaccine and autism in children. Dr. Andrew Wakefield, a leading proponent of such a link, has now dropped a libel suit arising from criticism of his role. Earlier coverage here, here and here; see also here and here.

Update: See also Paul Offit's piece on vaccine exemptions in Saturday's Wall Street Journal.

"MMR doctor given legal aid thousands" - PointOfLaw Forum

As reported in the Sunday Times (UK):

Andrew Wakefield the former surgeon whose campaign linking the MMR vaccine with autism caused a collapse in immunisation rates, was paid more than �400,000 by lawyers trying to prove that the vaccine was unsafe.

The payments, unearthed by The Sunday Times, were part of �3.4m distributed from the legal aid fund to doctors and scientists who had been recruited to support a now failed lawsuit against vaccine manufacturers.

Critics this weekend voiced amazement at the sums, which they said created a clear conflict of interest and were the �financial engine� behind a worldwide alarm over the triple measles, mumps and rubella shot.

�These figures are astonishing,� said Dr Evan Harris, Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford West and Abingdon.

�This lawsuit was an industry, and an industry peddling what turned out to be a myth.�

After UK vaccine panic, charges of misconduct - PointOfLaw Forum

Britain's General Medical Council will reportedly level charges against Andrew Wakefield, author of work alleging a link between the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine and such disorders as autism and Crohn's disease. In the wake of the public panic set off by Wakefield's work, vaccination rates slumped and measles incidence has increased in the United Kingdom. Reports the BBC:

His initial Lancet paper has since been disowned by the journal.

The editor admitted he would not have published the 1998 paper if he had known about what he called a "fatal conflict of interest".

Mr Wakefield was being paid to see if there was any evidence to support possible legal action by a group of parents who claimed their children were damaged by the vaccine.

Wakefield says he stands by his work and is expected to dispute the charges. "If found guilty, Mr Wakefield could be struck off the medical register.... He has since moved to the US." (more)(via KevinMD).