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Dr. Bob Sears's The Autism Book Brings Early Detection, Treatment, Recovery and Prevention To Light

The Autism Book By Anne Dachel
 
I just finished reading The Autism Book: What Every Parent Needs to Know About Early Detection, Treatment, Recovery, and Prevention    by Robert Sears, MD (Little Brown.)   Like many parents would naturally do, I looked for what he had to say about very specific questions:

1) How does Sears address the heated controversy concerning vaccines and autism?
2) What are the ways to treat and recover kids with autism?
3) How can parents prevent autism?
4) Has there been a real explosion in the incidence of autism

In the table of contents, I found, Part 2, Causes of Autism, Chapter 4, "What Causes Autism?  Mainstream and Biomedical."   As you may expect, Sears gives us a number of possible causes from genetics to environmental factors.  He goes into detail about them.  Concerning vaccines, he writes, "There is not enough proof to implicate vaccine mercury in the autism epidemic.  Some scientists, many alternatively minded physicians, and hundreds of thousands of parents believe otherwise." (p. 64)  Concerning the MMR vaccine and autism, Sears says, "The theory holds that the measles virus may remain living within the body after injection and may be taken up by immune cells that then can carry the virus to the gut as well as into areas of the brain." (p. 85)
 
I found more commentary on this question in the section, Preventing Autism.   (And when was the last time a doctor wrote on this topic?)  Sears starts off telling us, "Prevention is very important for any family that has a child with autism." (p. 328)  He then lists his recommendations for parents expecting another child which includes a section titled, "Avoid Mercury."  He cautions pregnant women about mercury fillings, fish consumption, and mercury in the flu shot.  "If you get a flu shot, make sure you get one without mercury, or at least get one that has only trace amounts of mercury." (p. 331)
 
With regard to vaccinating siblings of an autistic child, Sears writes, "Your next child might have the same genetic risks that your child with autism has.  It's therefore important to limit any factor that may be involved in autism.  If vaccines, or the chemicals in them, play a role in autism, then, obviously, limiting vaccines would be smart." (p. 337-338)

Furthermore, Sears adds, "Be aware that your baby will be offered his first vaccine (to protect against hepatitis B, a sexually transmitted disease) the very day he is born in the hospital.  Many hospitals administer it without the parents' even knowing.  Make sure everyone caring for your baby knows you don't want the hepatitis B vaccine." (p. 338)
 
What really got my attention was his recommendation to parents concerning vaccinating autistic children:

"I generally recommend that any child diagnosed with autism not receive any more vaccines.  Now, this is a very bold statement, considering that the majority of current research does not support a link between vaccines and autism.   However, research has not proven there is no link, because no study has ever compared the rate of autism in a large group of unvaccinated children with the rate in a large vaccinated group.  This type of placebo-controlled study is the gold standard of medical research." (p. 336)


 
Sears advocates for vaccines but he also suggests alternative scheduling with delayed vaccines and a reduction in the number of vaccines a child receives.  He acknowledges that many parents with an autistic child may not want to vaccinate siblings at all.  He writes that "parents should have the right to make this decision for their children."  (p. 337)
 
Sears continues to address this issue saying,  "There are cases in which a severe reaction to a round of vaccines seems to have triggered a decline into autism."  (p. 339)
 
"We also don't know exactly how common these severe reactions are, because no large research study has ever been undertaken to document the rate of severe reactions.  And most important, no one has yet compared the rate of autism in a large vaccinated group of children with the rate in an unvaccinated group.  Such a comparison would shed some much-needed light on this debate." (p. 339)
 
It's very hard to read this information and not not be scared about the risks vaccines represent.
 
In the first chapter, Sears makes one thing clear: The explosion in autism is real.  "Years ago the medical community was in denial: Autism couldn't be increasing so dramatically; we must be simply diagnosing it earlier and more thoroughly.  Very few professionals in the medical community believe that anymore.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has made it perfectly clear: Autism has risen dramatically in the last fifteen years.  Studies have shown that a small percentage of the rise in autism may be due to better diagnosis, but most of the increase is in the number of cases."
 
(And while it's nice to see this statement in print, CDC officials continue to pretend that they're still not sure how much, if any, of the increase is real.)
 
For many parents, Dr. Sears has an approach that is too middle-of-the-road.  He admits that vaccines are linked to the development of autism, yet he continues to promote vaccinations.  It may seem like playing Russian roulette with your child's health, hoping that he or she isn't the unlucky kid who will be permanently damaged by getting vaccinated.  Many would demand we address this as a national health care emergency and never vaccinate another child until we could confirm vaccines were safe. 
 
I would however, ask you to consider what Dr. Sears's book really represents.
 
We live in a country where on any given day, doctors and news reporters tell parents that autism is a solely genetic disorder.  There is no cure.  There's nothing they can do for their child except behavioral therapies and psychotropic drugs.  Non-stop nonsense from officials comes to us everyday still telling us that the explosion in autism isn't real.  The most we can expect for our children is awareness.  Neither the American Academy of Pediatrics nor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have ever used the word crisis when speaking of autism.  Most of all, the medical community is presented as adamantly united in denying that vaccines are a factor in autism or that there are things parents can do to recover autistic children.  This is why Sears's book is outstanding.  He gives parents hope.  He shows up those doctors who can only claim ignorance and who offer nothing.
 
Sears's book sends the message: Autism is treatable; kids can improve and even recover with biomedical intervention.  It's packed with information on alternative medical treatments for autism--everything from GFCF diets, probiotics, supplements, chelation, and hyperbaric oxygen treatment.  He explores the concomitant health problems your child may have and how to eliminate/reduce them.  Things that took me years to learn about on my own, are explained in this book. 
 
I was impressed with the sources Sears provides for parents who want to learn more.  Under organizations, the websites for the CDC and AAP are listed right along with Autism One, TACA, SafeMinds, and Generation Rescue, to name only a few of the sites which provide information to challenge all the official denials.  Age of Autism is also included as "a daily web newspaper that discusses issues in autism."  
 
There are pages with study papers listed.  Among the name you'll find are Andrew Wakefield (and his paper on enterocolitis in children with developmental disorders), along with Russell Blaylock, Bernard Rimland, and VK Singh, and a host of others.
 
The Autism Book
is a huge barrage aimed at the fa├žade we've been told exists out there.  For a decade or more, the medical community and health officials along with their willing supporters in the press have tried to convince us that no one but desperate, misguided parents believe that vaccines can trigger autism.  We've been solemnly warned that biomedical treatments are unproven and dangerous.  For the last couple of years, Paul Offit's Autism's False Prophets has gotten publicity as a source for autism information written by a doctor.
 
Suddenly, The Autism Book appears, written by a well-credentialed, respected physician who is advocating for the autism community.  Sears has spent over a decade working with autistic children and improving their lives.  He offers hope.  It may not be all that many people would like, but it's the beginning.  We can't continue with one group of medical experts saying that vaccines have nothing to do with autism and another group allowing for a link between the two.  Reading Sears's book makes it clear that there are experts on both sides. 

To purchase a copy go to: The Autism Book: What Every Parent Needs to Know About Early Detection, Treatment, Recovery, and Prevention.

Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism

Comments

Katie Wright

It seems to me that the AAP and the CDC do not want informed consumers.
Anyone even admitting to the fact their are sometimes negative side effects to over vaccination is "anti-vaccine!"
Poor Dr. Sears promotes parental education and choice, God forbid. The whole world is going to come to an end if that happens.

Stan

Good review, Anne, and good for Dr. Sears. A significant step forward in the battle for mainstream recognition.

Cynthia made a good point about the difference now between Dr. Sears' and Dr. Mendelsohn's time: the huge increase in cases of neurological and autoimmune disorders. The PTB can't hide behind a lack of 'critical mass' any longer. Sad, but true, about human nature, and the nature of power.

rileysmom

Autism Grandma, I'm very impressed with that web site you posted. Thank you.

Autism Grandma

Re Post by harshita:
"When will mainstream medicine make peace with Bio medical interventions?"

I fear it will take many more years before this may happen, and not until huge changes are finally made in our entire medical system. The drug industry will continually lie cheat and steal to prevent any therapies besides their own drugs and vaccines from being accepted. It is our job to buck the system and research and help our children because that is their only hope.

There are more doctors like Dr. Sears coming out and speaking out about autism and vaccines. Here is a newer website that I just discovered today:

International Medical Council on Vaccinations

A Resource for Physicians and Laypersons

http://www.imcv.info/

Real Doctors
Medical doctors speak the truth about vaccines.
Medical doctors convey the results of thousands of hours of study

Real Problems: Autism is Just the Start
Autism is just the the beginning.
SIDs, Autism, ADHD, Asthma, learning disabilities. The everyday consequences of vaccines.

About
International Medical Council on Vaccination brings awareness of vaccine issues to the forefront via medical doctors. Newly organized with a concentration on its Website under development as of July 2009, the Site will quickly become a massive library of articles, videos and presentations by doctors speaking out on the dangers of vaccines. The aim is to be an educational site for doctors who are beginning to question and become aware of the problems caused by vaccines and, additionally, a go-to resource for the public at large.

Vision Statement
International Medical Council on Vaccination will become the most comprehensive educational center on the Internet for physicians seeking the truth about vaccines. This will change healthcare as we know it.

Mission Statement
International Medical Council on Vaccination will provide educational tools through media including articles, videos, podcasts and webinars to everyone seeking the truth about vaccines.


Lynn

This seems like a signficant step in the right direction. Dr. Sears has name recognition and clout with new parents. Finally there is a statement in a book on this topic recommending no more vaccines for a child diagnosed with autism. But shouldn't this apply to any child diagnosed with a neurological problem, like SPD, Tourette's, OCD, ADHD, etc? And maybe even "bipolar" (with its 4000% increase in the last decade)?

I empathize

It is nice to see someone listens. Few ever do. How many time to I see some so called expert from the AAP on TV, who incidently doesn't treat Autism, saying things like: there is no evidence GFCF diet helps in Autism? Just because they haven't gotten around to doing any studies doesn't mean you just dismiss the testimony of hundreds of thousands of parents. And, for decades the DAN Protocol has said their are methylation problems in Autism and has treated them with supplements. All these years we've all been marginalized as quacks over this. And yet last week a mainstream study was reported as having made this big "new discovery" of methylation problems in Autism and how they might have a drug to treat it. I guess the methylation issue matters now and is worthy of notice since there will be a drug to sell. (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100408123245.htm). I guess it matter now that a drug is involved.

My point is when tens of thousands of Autism parents are onto something for decades, instead of just dismissing us out of hand, perhaps itis time to actually consider what we are saying. After all, we have a history of being right.

mom2Dan

My cousin took her newborn baby to Dr. Sears. Her husband is a physician and was insisting on full vaccinations. I managed to stop them from getting the HepB and Dr. Sears was delighted. He also was able to convince her (brainwashed by bigpharma)husband to stop vaccinating, at least for the time being. He is a good man who practices what he preaches.

magdaleni

The U.S. does not have a national GMC, but each state has a medical board which is comparable. In California in 1999 Dr. Robert Sinaiko's license was suspended for treating yeast related ADHD in a child involved in a custody dispute instead of the standard drug treatment desired by the other parent. After loss of his practice, reputation, and hundreds of thousands in legal fees,his license was finally restored after new members joined the medical board and more tolerance for alternative therapies had developed. The possibility of loss of license is still an ongoing issue for physicians departing from the standard of care in any state. Dr.Sears was very brave in writing this book.

Anne

This is a step in the right direction! As more doctors begin to speak out (and publish!:), others will have courage to do the same. I'm sure there are many other doctors out there who know what's been happening to our kids, but have been too fearful to speak up. No one ever wants to be "the first one out on the dance floor", but once someone else is out there, they feel more comfortable joining in. Thank God there are a few (and growing number) of brave docs willing to put themselves out there for our kids! We'll need plenty more if our voices are to be heard, but I hope the tides are finally beginning to turn (though I've been hoping that for 10 years)! Enough is enough!

tri tri again

hey, I'm just happy this week that biased journalism still does not cure lack-o-Pulitzerism.

Garbo

Any bets on the countdown until Trine Tsoderos and the Pharma Tribune have a hit piece on Dr. Sears?

Cynthia Cournoyer

I wonder if anyone is going after his license yet. Good thing the United States doesn't have a GMC!

This is a good sign, but Dr. Mendelsohn was skeptical too and wrote volumes before he died. He was the go-to doc on vaccine skeptics. Yet 30 years later, here we still are. Hopefully Sears is a step in the direction of more to come. Mendelsohn never had so many affected parents screaming to be heard. Too bad it had to get this far before the mainstream gives us the time of day.

Kristina

That's a lot more bold than I would expect, after reading his pretty aggressive "alternative" vaccine schedule in the Vaccine Book. I'm very pleasantly surprised.

Harshita

When will mainstream medicine make peace with Bio medical interventions? Parents with children diagnosed with autism have to go against the media, their doctors, public opinion to try and help their children.
How many times have I heard doctors/other professionals decry all the things that are healing our children. We are depriving them of nutrition if we put them on a diet(nope-they should live on jam doughnuts and Pizza only), We are endangering their lives if we dont vaccinate, we are dangerously overdosing them if go higher than the RDA on vitamins and minerals, We are experimenting on them if we try treatments such as hbot, and God forbid if we dare to chelate, treat inflammation or even try to give them Rxs to control their absence seizures. And ofcourse the biggest cardinal sin of all - we are wasting money that should be put into standard "Proven" therapies.
I want Doctors/therapists to read this book, not parents.
I think... no- I hope that Dr Sears book is a step towards educating people about the critical medical issues that are being researched in autism

candace

yes i would love to read his book..

Natasha

Thank you so much for featuring this book. This is another step to bridge the gap between the two sides of the autism community. I can't wait to read the book.

casey

Wow, it's like you know he knows the truth, the real truth, but he won't get published if he outright says it. Seems like he's done a good job walking the line. It's a good start if you ask me.

But I wonder what, if at all, will be said on the TV book tours. Plus, you gotta wonder with the conflicting sides of his two sons....
Oh well. It's getting the word out!

mary

Interesting. Taking on some "heavy hitters" - amalgams, vaccines and the fishing industry. Brave man. Based on your quotes, Dr. Sears seems to write in a "read between the lines" kinda way. Good way to get the info out there.

Bob Moffitt

I will be greatly surprised if Dr. Sears is given the standard "book tour" publicity exposure on national television shows .. that is routinely given authors writing about less "controversial" subjects.

However, ANY exposure he receives will be a great opportunity to inform the viewing public that VACCINES HAVE NOT BEEN SUBJECTED TO THE SAME "GOLD STANDARD" .. DOUBLE-BLIND RESEARCH .. THAT OTHER DRUGS AND MEDICINES MUST UNDERGO BEFORE GAINING APPROVAL FOR PUBLIC USE.

Tina M

I'm intrigued. I'd like to read it. Hope I win one.

DebinIL

God Bless him for being so bold. I hope he holds up well when the PR blitz against this book starts. The good news is, negative publicity will still be publicity and he will reach more parents who are on the fence about their decisions.

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