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News Roundup [abridged Versions Appear In The Paper Journal]

Increase in autism due to change in definition, not MMR vaccine

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: (Published 13 January 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:112
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne
  1. New York

    Changes in the definition of autism, rather than use of the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR vaccine), led to increased diagnosis of autism in the United States and probably in Europe, says a study from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota (Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine 2005;159:37-44).

    Before the late 1980s and early 1990s, these children were diagnosed as retarded or having developmental delay, lead author William Barbaresi, a developmental paediatrician, told the BMJ.

    The prevalence of autism increased more than eightfold in the United States, from 5.5 (95% confidence interval 1.4 to 9.5) per 100 000 children in 1980-3 to 44.9 (32.9 to 56.9) per 100 000 in …

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