From Arlington Heights, Illinois, USA:
My daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of 15 months, 4 months after receiving the MMR vaccination. I noticed other parents have asked if the MMR vaccination contributes to the onset of diabetes and you said it is unlikely. Are you aware of research that is going on regarding this vaccination and the onset of type 1 diabetes in children? The Medical College of Wisconsin is conducting a study on this subject as well as a group in the Netherlands. There are also other parents out here that have been asking the same question as their child came down with type one after receiving the MMR vaccination. Do you have any comments regarding this?
Type 1 or autoimmune diabetes is a condition which starts many months or even years before the destruction of the insulin producing cells reaches the point where it becomes 'clinical diabetes' and extra insulin is required. It is very unlikely indeed that MMR immunization has anything to do with initiating the immune disorder; but a minor reaction at the time when endogenous insulin sources have become minimal may precipitate a need for extra insulin. There is a big national study in addition to the ones you mentioned, called DAISY, that is attempting to evaluate the possible environmental factors that trigger insulin dependance in the genetically susceptible. So far there is no incrimination of immunisation and that goes for chickenpox too. You must remember too that immunisation programs are an absolute cornerstone of child health and you should consult your doctor before rejecting them.
Original posting 4 Dec 97
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