This could go on and on as did the 911 blog controversy. Wikipedia has a very good summary and here is an important paragraph:
In 2001 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health asked the U.S. National Academy of Science’s (NAS) Institute of Medicine to establish an independent expert committee to review hypotheses about existing and emerging immunization safety concerns. This initial report found that based on indirect and incomplete evidence available at the time, there was inadequate evidence to accept or reject a thiomersal-autism link, though it was biologically plausible.
Since this report was released, several independent reviews have examined the body of published research for a possible thiomersal-autism link by examining the theoretical mechanisms of thiomersal causing harm and by reviewing the in vitro, animal, and population studies that have been published. These reviews determined that no evidence exists to establish thiomersal as the cause of autism or other neurodevelopmental disorders.
The scientific consensus on the subject is reflected in a follow up report that was subsequently published in 2004 by the Institute of Medicine, which took into account new data that had been published since the 2001 report. The committee noted, in response to those who cite in vitro or animal models as evidence for the link between autism and thiomersal:
“However, the experiments showing effects of thimerosal on biochemical pathways in cell culture systems and showing abnormalities in the immune system or metal metabolism in people with autism are provocative; the autism research community should consider the appropriate composition of the autism research portfolio with some of these new findings in mind. However, these experiments do not provide evidence of a relationship between vaccines or thimerosal and autism. In the absence of experimental or human evidence that vaccination (either the MMR vaccine or the preservative thimerosal) affects metabolic, developmental, immune, or other physiological or molecular mechanisms that are causally related to the development of autism, the committee concludes that the hypotheses generated to date are theoretical only.”
The committee concludes:
“Thus, based on this body of evidence, the committee concludes that the evidence favors rejection of a causal relationship between thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism.” [bold in original]
Further evidence of the scientific consensus includes the rejection of a causal link between thiomersal and autism by multiple national and international scientific and medical bodies including the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Medical Toxicology, the Canadian Paediatric Society, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, the Public Health Agency of Canada, and the European Medicines Agency.
A 2011 journal article reflects this point of view and described the vaccine-autism connection as “the most damaging medical hoax of the last 100 years”.
The problem is that putting people off vaccinating all children has got dangerous consequences as there has been a rise of diseases that have almost been eradicated such as measles and believe me measles is a very unpleasant disease for children to have.
Like with many things in life you have to take facts and decide for yourself if the risk is acceptable. Every time you smoke that cigarette (if you are a smoker) or pick that drink you will face a choice of risk versus benefit. This can also be extended to your bacon sandwich, crossing the road or going canoeing. We need utter safety we stay in a bubble at home and that is what these odd ratios are about.
Anyway hope you have a good weekend and enjoy yourself.