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High Court appeal won by MMR doctor

8th March 2012

A doctor, who was found guilty of serious professional misconduct over the MMR controversy, has won his High Court appeal against being struck off by the General Medical Council (GMC).

Professor John Walker-Smith carried out research with Dr Andrew Wakefield claiming there was a link between autism and the combined jab for measles, mumps and rubella in a study, later discredited, that triggered a significant fall in vaccination rates in the UK. The judge quashed a GMC finding of professional misconduct.

 

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Natasa Blagojevic

Thursday 8th March 2012 @ 20:11

The recent ruling by Judge Mitting, quashing the GMC verdict against Professor Walker-Smith, is very welcome news!



Professor Walker-Smith acted as medical professionals should, using his extensive knowledge and skills to help children who were truly ill. Very sadly, there are thousands upon thousands of children with autism who are not receiving appropriate medical care, in part because it is clear that Professor Walker-Smith and his colleagues were meant to act as a menacing examples to others. The GMC ruling was clearly a political act, completely removed from the medical needs of children like our own.



Our charity, Treating Autism, represents hundreds of families in the UK who have very ill children with autism. Getting appropriate medical help for our children is extraordinarily difficult (most doctors are too poorly informed and often reluctant to treat our children's numerous medical conditions); however, we also represent many families who have used biomedical treatments to improve the quality of their children's lives enormously.



We hope that more medical professionals and parents alike will follow the example of Professor Walker-Smith and look to the medical problems suffered by children with Autism Spectrum Disorders.



The Trustees of Treating Autism



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Recent study conducted by US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirms that children with autism face an increased risk for many common health conditions. This detailed assessment demonstrates that children with autism had much higher than expected rates of all of the medical conditions studied:



- frequent gastrointestinal problems

- asthma

- eczema or a skin allergy

- food allergies

- ear and respiratory infections

- severe headaches or migraines

- seizures



This much-needed research provides evidence that children with Autism and other developmental disabilities require increased health services and specialist services, both for their core functional deficits and for health problems beyond their core developmental disabilities.



Concurrent medical conditions and health care use and needs among children with learning and behavioral developmental disabilities, National Health Interview Survey, Schieve LA et al. 2006-2010. Res Dev Disabil. 2012 Mar-Apr;33(2):467-76. Epub 2011 Nov 24.



Anonymous

Wednesday 9th May 2012 @ 14:32

I remember a Swedish friend of mine telling me nearly 30 years ago they had found problems with the administering of ultrasound to pregnant women. Was this ever looked into further as when I was teaching up to 1996 never met one child diagnosed as autistic.


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