No Link Between Increased Vaccination and Autism

vaccine autismIncreased exposure to vaccines during the first 2 years of life is not associated with the development of an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), despite that 33% of parents fear such a correlation, , according to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

Cumulative exposure to antigens, the portion of vaccines that stimulate antibody production, was gauged in 256 children with ASD and 752 healthy children in an analysis conducted by Frank DeStefano, MD, MPH, and colleagues from the CDC and Abt Associates, Inc.

Totals were calculated for the number of antigens children were exposed to in a single day, as well as the cumulative number of exposures up to age 2 years. 

Researchers found the average number of daily and cumulative exposures to be the same for children with ASD and those without.

Researchers also addressed the concern that the 2013 immunization schedule exposes children to a greater number of vaccines than the schedules of the late 1990s, stating that “the maximum number of antigens to which a child could be exposed by age 2 years was 315 in 2012, compared with several thousand in the late 1990s.” 

"These results indicate that parental concerns that their children are receiving too many vaccines in the first 2 years of life or too many vaccines at a single doctor visit are not supported in terms of an increased risk of autism," they concluded.

–Michael Potts


DeStefano F, Price CS, Weintraub ES. Increasing exposure to antibody-stimulating proteins and polysaccharides in vaccines is not associated with risk of autism [published online ahead of print March 29, 2013]. J Pediatr. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2013.02.001.