ADHD News & Research

New Study: Vaccines Don’t Cause Autism

New research finds that the MMR vaccine does not increase the likelihood of developing autism — even for kids at higher risk.

April 22, 2015

Do childhood vaccinations cause autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? This question has dominated the media and medical conversations across America for the last decade. A new research study answers it definitively: No.

The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, shows no correlation between receiving the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and being diagnosed with ASD. The study compared the risk of developing ASD after receiving the MMR vaccine in children with an older sibling with ASD and in children without a sibling with ASD. The researchers evaluated 95,727 children over a period of 11 years from birth to at least age five, and found no association between the immunization — either one or two doses — and risk of developing ASD in either group.

Children with an older sibling with ASD are at higher risk for an ASD diagnosis as well. The data showed that even this more susceptible group was no more likely to develop the condition after the MMR vaccine.

Children with an older sibling with ASD are significantly under-vaccinated, creating a public health risk for outbreaks of measles, mumps and rubella. This study should allay parents’ fears that protecting them from one condition would put them in danger of contracting another.