Andrew Wakefield’s Lancet Paper – Lancet Ombudsman “there is a scientific argument which is continuing and has yet to be sorted out to everyone’s satisfaction. “

Letter from the Lancet Ombudsman, Professor Charles Warlow to those asking for Andrew Wakefield’s 1998 Lancet paper to be reinstated in the Lancet.  The letter could have stopped at the second paragraph.  It didn’t.


Edinburgh EH9 XXX

17th May 2013

To all those who emailed me re the Wakefield 1998 Lancet paper and Mr Justice Mitting’s ruling on March 7th 2013.

I am writing the same letter to all of you because you wrote more or less the same email complaining that The Lancet has not reversed its decision to retract the above paper.

In fact this is an editorial decision which as Ombudsman is not my business; I have to deal with complaints about process, delays, rudeness and such like. Under the circumstances, therefore, I am not in a position to make a ruling on your complaint.

However, I think you should be reassured that not only is the paper extremely well known amongst interested scientists, and indeed most people involved in medical care and research as well as the wider public, but also that in a sense it still exists—in libraries around the world, in paper copies of The Lancet. Retracted articles do not disappear from the published (on paper) literature. The Wakefield article is therefore still accessible to most if not all those who are grappling with the problem of autism, bowel disorders and the MMR vaccine.

Notwithstanding the GMC’s reinstatement of Professor Walker-Smith I note that Mr Justice Manning remarked “There is now no respectable body of opinion which supports [Dr Wakefield’s] hypothesis, that MMR vaccine and autism/enterocolitis are causally linked.” Clearly there is a scientific argument which is continuing and has yet to be sorted out to everyone’s satisfaction.

Yours sincerely,

Professor Charles Warlow

Lancet Ombudsman

16 Responses

  1. An interesting letter which I take to mean that the ombudsman is sympathetic but powerless to do anything.

    A dilemma that is typical in modern science matters to the detriment of the general public.

    Later developments of this MMR vaccine to younger ages is farcical as even those giving the vaccine realise the take up rate for proper protection is unacceptable leaving only the downside of does it cause adverse effects to which again all agree that all vaccines come with risks usually vanishing small as we get older than one day, 8 weeks or even 12 months.

    We also reject the science of Charles Richet concerning anaphylaxis as the normal but unwanted reaction to repeat vaccines at the risk of our childrens health.

    We reject all science that tells us the higher the number of antigens the higher the risk excusing it by claiming people will get fed up of vaccines for trivial illnesses and rightly so.

    We seem all to ignore that somehow acetaminophen is given to babies before and after vaccines although for adults this is the single biggest cause of deaths and health problems to adults. Somehow we are to believe that although babies are the biggest users of this DANGEROUS drug they are somehow SUPER BEINGS with absolutely no babies suffering from this drug.

    In short the vaccine regime today and for the past 40 years has declined from unacceptable to downright dangerous and chaotic.

    Best visualised by the horrendous outbreak in South Wales where everyone wants a measles vaccine to work as they are going down ill even though multivaccinated with multipurpose vaccines.

    And of course the dilemma of someone getting his measles vaccine too late and then having to fight off umpteen live other viruses delivered into his sickening body from even more sickening making doctors.

    I seem to remember Andrew Wakefield demanding the UK use single measles vaccine which is exactly the SAFEST option for communities where a measles vaccine will change nothing for someone infected already with measles and not any other virus infection.

    I also note that the one person dead from measles in South Wales had the prophylaxis of ACETAMINOPHEN. Pity he wasnt one of the million or more sudden death infants as he would be guaranteed by doctors to be immune to vaccine adverse effects and acetaminophen adverse effects.

    His parents should pursue this matter with the authorities as they may be guiilty of helping a 25 year old to an early grave just as they may have a hand in 1 million plus cot deaths and tens of millions of autism children. The best way to defend this is to explain why SIDS occurs and not claim a 30 degree change of sleeping position means you live or die. What poppycock!

    USA with its vaccines has arrived in 2013 with Poorer Health and Shorter Lives. The rest of the world and especially the UK are fast catching up with USA.

  2. cially_in_schools_and_other_childrens_institutions/?aXAdMab Reduction in wi-fi and other microwaves especially in schools and other childrens institutions.

    Let’s put a pressure on the authorities to reduce wi-fi and cell-phones in schools and kindergardens. And let us all do what we can to reduce it. Use cables when possible. And turn the Wi-fi off, when not in use ! Microwave technology is proven dangerous, destroying people slowly, children faster, the bees, and thereby our food. Listen to dr. Barrie Trower he explains it very well:

    On 16/5/13 20:10, “________________Child Health Safety_________________” wrote:

    > ChildHealthSafety posted: “Letter from the Lancet Ombudsman, Professor Charles > Warlow to those asking for Andrew Wakefield’s 1998 Lancet paper to be > reinstated in the Lancet. X, XXXXXXXXXXXXXX St Edinburgh EH9 XXX 17th May 2013 > To all those who emailed me re the Wakefield 1998 ” >

  3. hey john – I haven’t heard of this acetaminophen situation.

    Got any good sources of info / stats / reports at all ?

    Why is it administered in the first place ?

    And where did you see the info that the guy who died with measles in his system was taking or had taken acetaminiphen – got any links ?


  4. ok, so I see it’s tylenol, which I didn’t know.

    ( But still unaware of the issues you’ve mentioned )

  5. I googled and got some info but maybe you have some particularly good links I’d be interested in.

    So now we have a man with asthma and measles, taking paracetamol / tylenol / acetaminophen.

    I’m gonna put my money on a complication ( death in this case ) involving those two factors and the known possible complication of liver damage from the painkiller and measles.

    One article I read, says this :

    ” 12. Hepatitis
    Impaired liver function can occur during a measles infection , and it may not be as rare as previously thought. However, it appears to last only a short time and symptoms do not persist. It is more common in adults than children, and parents need not worry too much about this as a possibility. Studies have shown that it can occur and disappear without being noticed.”

    All hypothetical and from a non medico ( ie me ) of course.

  6. Well done Professor Warlow, You have taken a brave step to recover Medicine back to the Science it once was from the Religion it has now become.

    There is a tendency now for anyone who asks questions to be branded a heretic and dismissed as a Conspiracy Theorist, a term first coined by Richard Nixon to dismiss anyone who disagreed with him.

    Good Science has always relied on questions, there is no consensus unless everyone consents. By dismissing anyone who asks questions we can never move forward and be scientific in our approach.

    I am also buoyed by the fact that the DSM is being dismissed for not being Evidence Based. I suppose when they listed every human emotion as a “Disorder” they crossed a line with many people. Psychology is only as good as the “Thud Theory” and while it can be life-saving for patients when practiced one-on-one, it is not robust enough to be used as an Evidence Based Science. It is a product that has been over-sold for far too many years.

    If we opened the debate to Shaken Baby Syndrome or the now NAI as it has been branded, I believe we could eliminate deaths from SIDS and other unexplained conditions. Until vaccines are studied in a proper scientific, double blind, empirical, peer reviewed way, I will remain a skeptic. I would love to believe that there is a Magic Bullet that can be given to babies and children that is proven scientifically both safe and effective but until Science catches up with the Religion I will reserve an opinion.

  7. In regards to John Fryer’s post. While I too am vehemently concerned about the way the allopathic industry doles out pharmaceuticals uneccesarily, I believe Fryer’s statement that Wakefield DEMANDED that the single measles vaccination be used may be an exaggeration. My research has indicated that Wakefield’s only public statement on the matter occurred during a single press interview, sometime in the late 90’s where the interviewing press person asked a series of leading questions and Wakefield simply made a recommendation that people utilize the single shot. However, I wasn’t “there” so I don’t know for sure. Is there some evidence that Wakefield was actively DEMANDING that the U.K. utilize the single shots? I just don’t think that was really the situation and that statement may be misleading. It was the press, in response to Wakefield’s one-time recommendation to err on the side of caution. Also, the letter above states that the retracted Lancet report… it was an “early report” of the clinical findings of the 12 children undergoing treatment by Smith… the report did NOT contain a hypothesis about a link between MMR & autism. I will admit that the hypothesis of the connection of autism to the MMR could be applied to further studies using the scientific method based on the observations reported in the Lancet paper, however, the paper clearly stated that the “official conclusion” was that there was an environmental link.

    I would also like to remind everyone, or anyone new to this subject, that Wakefield claims that he and the other writers of the retracted paper, were asked to remove their reporting of the parents claims. I think it was 9 of the 12 PARENTS claimed that their children adversely regressed within a short time following their MMR vaccines. Three of the scientists/doctors involved in the writing of the paper refused to remove the information about the parents claims. The other writers eventually removed their names from the paper. Wakefield was fired, then YEARS LATER out of the blue, accused of misconduct by a journalist. None of the parents who worked with Wakefield and Smith, filed any complaint about misconduct by Wakefield or Smith. Smith and Wakefield went up in front of the General Medical Counsel and had their licenses revoked. NONE of the “science” of the paper was EVER found to be “fraudulent” and ALL the children were actually IMPROVING under the care of Smith & with Wakefield’s research efforts. They lost their licenses because the GMC decided that they did not get the proper signatures somewhere along the way. Eventually, Smith appealed the ruling by the GMC and his license was reinstated. Wakefield is working to file for libel against the journalist & another medical journal that published the journalists false accusations against him.

    All the while, Merck continues to keep on trucking in spite of evidence about their misconduct and in spite of all the dangerous pharmaceutical products they’ve had removed from the market. And if you really want to hear about unethical misconduct, look at the link between xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx and the AIDS epidemic.

    I don’t REALLY know what the truth is, because I wasn’t there. However, anyone who wants to bash the doctors who are working to help the victims of pharmaceutical companies, really needs to take some time to look into the big picture a little more.

  8. Hi thanks for the interest in acetaminophen and autism.

    First off I do have or rather the internet has hundreds of references. Add to that your own knowledge; in my case a chemist for many decades and you realise acetaminophen is a killer and the Big pHARMa KNOW IT. It contains a phenol moity which is useful for killing anything living!

    If you look at the chemical structure you notice that it is effectively poisonous and was known about over 100 years ago. Earlier drugs were safer with the dangerous parts taken out. But to make a cheaper drug they cut corners and got this killer passed for use. And kill it does by the hundred every year.

    But as Big pHARMa gets more deadly chemicals into general acceptance it becomes impossible to tell which one is the cause of which health issue you have or your baby has. Probably now a melange of half a dozen nasties.

    If I had ever taken this stuff and got some dire illness I would go to the police and complain. It can never happen because I would never take acetaminophen under ANY circumstances.

    The notion it destroys your liver is so stupid as to be another dangerous idea. Yes it does destroy your liver but given the chance it will destroy just about everything in you and probably works by taking out a few million brain neurons telling you you have a headache. Not exactly the best way to cure a headache. It probably harms the kidneys of babies more than the liver!

    This is a general, easy to read article with some useful comments. The work here is from SCHULTZ who has a place right near the top of the big pharma industry and so is probably telling the wise to take care. I have failed miserably to get him to comment on his work as he wont reply to me.

    One of hundreds of ways this stuff worked is by using up and changing glutathione (tripeptide) and so works hand in glove with mercury and many other dangerous chemicals, babies are exposed to in increasing amounts today.

    This means that any epidemiological study is almost certain to founder because of confounders and so for Schultz to get such a positive result – acetaminophen is linked to EXTRA cases of autism – then you can be sure it is 100 per cent accurate, despite all the hyenas that take down any useful research findings.

    Add exposures to mercury from all sorts of things plus the deliberate adding of dangerous fluorides to our water together with trying to make good food, fresh water, herbs and vitamins as unnecessary for the modern baby as the multidose carcinogens is now obligatory if you want your child to be educated.

    In short nutrition, and the science of my youth seems to be dead and buried by Big pHARMa.

    Or as I think – no one in authority knows anything about anything except how to deny everything.

    How do you get anything removed when it is certainly harming us?

    As shown here SYMPATHY but carrying on killing and maiming by an ombudsman who says its not up to me!

    It seems as if there is no one left in this world who has any power to stop anything dangerous from going from strength to strength in the market as we go from weak to weaker from IGNORANCE, INCOMPETENCE or here IMPOTENCY.

  9. A study showing the link of MMR to autism (with the help of acetaminophen)

    Note that the link MMR to autism varies from 4 times to 8 times depending on the situation. 0.1 is enough to send out ALARM BELLS, 2x will get COMPENSATION for harm in any legal system that is not CROOKED.

    One letter, no doubt objecting to someone daring to find a link of vaccines to autism?

    But no sign of anyone being concerned for over vaccinated babies, babies vaccinated too early or babies repeat vaccinated. Or even repeating this research to find if it holds up other than just denying it anyway.

    It is now forbidden for any doctor to prescribe acetaminophen. It is done by word of mouth with no proof! So anyone who challenges a doctor to write out a prescription for acetaminophen will probably find the doctor changes his mind very smartly!

    Six years later – nothing done, no interest, no publicity and millions of people taking dangerous acetaminophen when doctors are expressly forbidden to prescribe it by the regulators.


    And no sign of autism plateauing off yet!

  10. acetaminophen depletes glutathione

    Many fools will refuse to look at this simply because it comes for them from an unreliable source.

    Such arrogance goes a long way to explaining why we now measure many illnesses in percentage terms rather than the odd one in 10 000 or 100 000.

    Note most research is not in English speaking countries! What does this tell us?

    The link to Science Daily (a reputable journal) refers to the glutathione depletion by acetaminophen being known back more than 10 years ago.

    This research finding just one part of the long road to stopping the harm from harmful drugs and the illness and death from them.

    Vaccines at this time depleted massive amounts of glutathione from the deliberately added organomercury compounds. Mercury still in some vaccines today in 2013.

    Most autism cases also come in English speaking countries! One exception is China and allied countries there where they take on board USA medicine as the best in the world.

    Sadly in USA 2013 its Poorer Health, Shorter Lives but thats another story.

    Glutathione is therefore intricately linked to autism alongside possibly a hundred other adverse health problems

  11. [ED: Comment deleted.

    This comment was posted by a prominent member of a forum some of whose members for sport in their spare time disrupt other fora on the internet and attack, bully, abuse and harass ordinary people and parents of very sick children wanting to share information. These kinds of groups are organised for just such a purpose on the internet “The time for talking has passed. I draw the line at kidnapping, incidentally.” on sites owned and operated by opinion formers in the mainstream medical professions.]

  12. Rather than being pleased to have received this reply, I would have been horrified to have been so thoroughly patronised. Talk about being talked down to. I’m surprised you didn’t spot it.

  13. [ED: This comment deleted.

    Trolling and internet stalking by a clearly compulsive obsessive member of a forum whose members block discussion but some of whose members for sport in their spare time disrupt other fora on the internet and attack, bully, abuse and harass ordinary people and parents of very sick children wanting to share information. These kinds of groups are organised for just such a purpose on the internet. To quote Dr Ben Goldacre himself commenting on his own BadScience Forum: “The time for talking has passed. I draw the line at kidnapping, incidentally.“. This is on a site owned and operated by Dr Ben Goldacre as a high profile opinion former in the mainstream medical professions].

  14. Measles is one of the easiest of infectious illnesses to prevent with vaccines and the failure of the vaccine lobby to conquer the illness implying they and not the anti-vaccine lobby have to answer for outbreaks of the illness today.

    There is no known reservoir for the illness except for humans and this leaves just the vaccine as the source for the illness today.

    The same was true for smallpox which was eventuially eliminated by stopping mass vaccination programmes and not by increasing them or demanding higher vaccine uptake by people.

    Smallpox was finally banished many years after ALL smallpox vaccines in USA and the UK were halted and by a mix of proactive chasing contacts, isolation and ring vaccinating those who might be susceptible.

    Today we seem not to have the quality or dedicated personnel that succesfully beat the only vaccine preventable illness to date, that of smallpox.

    An intelligent guess is that elimination of measles should take a year and with less uptake of vaccines than has always occured in USA and the UK.

    And Andrew Wakefield has been badly misrepresented as all of us are when accused of being antivaccine. Every autism child has been a supporter of vaccines and most still are. And many followed his idea of single vaccines and discovered one vaccine was sufficient for measles and mumps and that the rubella vaccine was inappropriate at this early age. Repeat vaccines increase dramatically risks of anaphylaxis. The other issue still argued about is whether it is natural or wise to expose babies at ever lower ages to multiple live viruses at the same time, an event extremely rare in normal circumstances.

    More than half of the multivaccines with measles have been taken off the UK market or are not made today. Leaving the MMR vaccines still in use and adapted and changed so that todays MMR is not that of the time of earlier MMR research.

    The pinickity tearing apart of the research described is completely over the top and involves highly convoluted minds that leave out 12 researchers and the work of a top UK hospital and manage to change a brilliant piece of research into something that was wrongly withdrawn.

    If all other research went through this degree of analysis the scientific journals would all be out of business. It is hard to find any research paper today that is worthy of being called honest, correct or even finding something that we didnt already know. Development is painfully slow and often heads in the wrong directions.

    I still await for ANYONE to explain why a repeat vaccine is a good idea compared to the risk of anaphylaxis.

  15. Reblogged this on No Compulsory Vaccination and commented:
    If there was no evidence of fraud (and there wasn’t), this paper should have been automatically reinstated and Poul Thorsen’s 22 articles on the subject should have been retracted. But that’s not the way medical journals work, is it? And the original retraction had nothing to do with the veracity of the information on this article – it was all about protecting vaccination policy at a terrible cost to the victims of autism and the tens of thousands who have unnecessarily regressed into autism since Wakefield et al’s vilification.

  16. […] Developmental Disorder in Children” by Wakefield et al. Horton flatly refused, while Warlow denied having any responsibility for reconsidering the status of the […]

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