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Republished: The Worst of the Autism Biomed Movement

Due to the importance of the issue, I am republishing an excerpt from Debunking Denialism, an excellent blog that I recommend everyone follow. Please find the entire blog article here.

Many anti-vaxxers believe that autism is caused by vaccines, rather than being a differential neurological development pathway that can be detected prenatally.  They reject the huge body of research on autism, namely that autism is 83% genetic.

Because of this, anti-vaxxers are obsessed with “curing” autism.  Charlatans across the globe offer different, unproven (and often dangerous) “cures” for autism. Here are some of the most popular:

On bleaching children with autism:

It is based on an industrial bleach called chlorine dioxide that is used in pulp mills. Yes, that’s right; these quacks force bleach into the their autistic children, both orally and anally. Needless to say, this has no benefit and damages the child. … The concentrations used by these quacks are 3000x higherthan the maximum allowed concentration in drinking water.

On castrating children with autism:

[They] inject autistic children with a drug called Lupron, which is a substance used to chemically castrate sex offenders. Their false belief is that the preservative thimerosal (which only occurs in some multi-dose preparations of influenza vaccines) binds to testosterone, and if you get rid of testosterone by chemical castration (called the Lupron Protocol), you will also get rid of thimerosal and thereby cure or treat autism.

On using EDTA in children with autism:

Yet other autism quacks try to handle these alleged “heavy metal contamination” by injecting a chelating agent called ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA). The medical use of EDTA is, among others, to sequester metal ions such as lead and mercury. However, since autism is not caused by heavy metal poisoning, this does not have any therapeutic effect whatsoever. However, it can have another dangerous effect: it can sequesters calcium ions that has a vital function in the human central nervous system and if strongly perturbed, this can cause death.

Children have died undergoing this procedure, but of course, for the anti-vaxxer, a dead child is better than an autistic one.

curing autism
Image credit to Things Anti-Vaxxers Say

Parents believe in these cures and are exposing their children to them. We must continue to push for education of these parents.

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