Scientists today reported a breakthrough observation regarding the development of autism. Take it away, New York Times:
Scientists are reporting the earliest behavioral sign to date that a child is likely to develop autism: when and how long a baby looks at other people’s eyes.
In a study published Wednesday, researchers using eye-tracking technology found that 3-year-olds diagnosed with autism looked less at people’s eyes when they were babies than children who did not develop autism.
But contrary to what the researchers expected, the difference was not apparent at birth. It emerged when babies were 2 to 6 months old, and autism experts said that may suggest a window during which the progression toward autism can be halted or slowed.
In other words, babies show signs of autism well before they are given the MMR vaccine (current CDC guidelines do not recommend vaccination of this sort until babies are at least one year of age). In case you’re somehow lost, MMR is the vaccine some people think — thanks to Jenny (pardon) McCarthy — causes autism.
For the record, Jenny (pardon) McCarthy’s son Evan was two and a half when he received his MMR shot that turned him, in the words of Derek, ’tistic. If she really cared about her son’s health, maybe McCarthy would have taken him in for the MMR during one of the age slots recommended by the CDC: 12-15 months for round one, and 4-6 years for round two.
OK, that was unfairly judgmental, way over the line, and I shouldn’t have commented on her health care decisions because I’m not a doctor. (Just like Jenny (pardon)!)
For the record, my favorite part of this whole story: it turns out Evan was never autistic to begin with. Not now, not at two and a half years old, and — if we could go back and try to look into his eyes — probably not at two to six months either.
And to think, I just spilled digital ink discrediting Jenny (pardon) McCarthy.
Time for bed.