The real facts and figures about autism

When 1 in 88 is Really 1 in 29

In 2007 The CDC announced that autism affected 1 in 150 children in the United States.  What the CDC failed to make clear to the general public is that the numbers they reported in 2007 were actually from data collected in 2002.  The numbers were five years old.  After the 2007 announcement from the CDC, Raymond W. Gallup and F. Edward Yazbak, M.D. FAAP wrote an article titled,“When 1 in 150 is Really 1 in 67.” As the authors of that article explained, the data reported in 2007 involved 8 year-old children who were born in 1994.
In March, The CDC announced that autism now affects 1 in 88 children (1 in 54 boys) in the United States.  True to form, The CDC failed to make it clear that the numbers they reported on March 29, 2012 were from data collected in 2008. The numbers are four years old.  The CDC also failed to mention that their number of 1 in 88 reflects their calculation of autism for 8 year-old children who are enrolled in the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network.  This study monitors the rate of autism among children in 14 communities in the United States.  The following map of the United States shows the states (in blue) where ADDM data is collected. However, please realize that even though the STATES are colored in blue, the data is only collected from very specific areas within each state.  I think this is a little misleading, but then, we’re talking about The CDC so what can you expect?
States where ADDM data was collected for the year 2008 - reported March 29, 2012.

When I look at the map above, the first thing I notice is that the information used to estimate the autism rate was gathered from states that, according to IDEA data, do not have the highest rates of autism.  Again… It just seems that if The CDC really wanted to know the true extent of the autism epidemic (or really wanted to report it accurately), they would look at the areas where the rate is known to be the highest.  Wouldn’t you think?
The table below shows the autism rate by state, according to the U.S. IDEA data.  This is data that is reported by public school systems throughout the U.S. and reflects children who have an autism diagnosis and are receiving intervention services through the school system.

Looking at the table above and comparing that with the map of ADDM sites, we can see that of the ten states that have the highest rates of autism, according to the IDEA’s data, only one (Pennsylvania) was even looked at by The CDC. Well, maybe we should cut The CDC a break. After all, the table above shows the autism rate for the 2009-2010 school year and the ADDM data was gathered in 2008.

This graph is from 2008-2009 school year… admittedly still too close to the 2008 data collection for The CDC to plan. Somewhere I have the graphs from earlier years, but for now I’m just going to have to go on record as saying that in general, the states where the autism rate tends to be highest (according to IDEA) are states that are north of The Mason Dixon Line. There are several possible reasons for this… northern states get less sunlight proportionately, so people who live in the north get less vitamin D.  Northern states also have much higher concentrations of heavy metals in the environment from coal mining and coal burning power plants. This is important because it’s not just the mercury and aluminum in the vaccines that causes autism.
Vaccines contain free glutamic acid, which destroys glutathione. Couple that with pediatrician’s advice to “take Tylenol” (which also destroys glutathione) and you have a child whose system is not able to detoxify. When a child is not able to detoxify and he or she lives in parts of the country where there are high levels of heavy metals (and other types of pollution), you get higher rates of autism. The metals and other toxins in vaccines are doing a lot of damage… but even without the metals in the vaccines, the fact that glutathione is depleted by the free glutamic acid in them means that even if you got rid of all of the mercury and aluminum, vaccines would still cause the neuro-immune-gastrointestinal problems known as “autism.” And just as we can see from the graphs of Texas (below), the damage will be more pervasive in areas where there are lots of environmental toxins.  It’s not just vaccines and it’s not just (other) environmental toxins… it’s BOTH.
I should clarify that the northern states are certainly not the only places where there are high levels of pollution – and there are plenty of heavy metals in many of the southern states as well. Texas, for example, has an abundance of pollution, including that which comes from coal and oil. To see how environmental pollution correlates with the autism rate, please look at the next graph:
Comparison of Autism Rates in Texas Schools with Pollution in Texas Counties.
Okay, so I guess my question is… Why is The CDC not looking at this?
Why do they continue to act like they have no idea what is causing the autism epidemic?
Here’s a clue…

To read more about mercury poisoning and autism, please visit Safeminds (after you finish here, of course).
If The CDC actually started gathering data for their autism prevalence reports from places where vast numbers of children are being poisoned by environmental mercury because they cannot detoxify and are continually exposed to it, more and more people would become aware that what we call “autism” IS mercury poisoning.  The CDC cannot allow that to happen, so once again, true to form, they refuse to study the children who got sick and they refuse to study the connection between vaccines, environmental toxins, and “autism.”

Back to the numbers…

After the 1 in 88 number was announced, I did a little bit of chicken scratch in an effort to determine what might be a closer estimate of the rate of autism.  Here is what I came up with:
I told you it was chicken scratch...
I’ll break it down…
The CDC reported that their “new” numbers represent a 78% increase over the previous number of 1 in 150.  Remember, 1 in 150 comes from data regarding children who were 8 years old in 2002.  The 1 in 88 number is regarding 8 year olds and the data was gathered in 2008.  The children were born in 1994 and 2000, respectively.  So to calculate the yearly rate of increase, I divided 78% by six, for an estimated annual increase of 13%.
According to The CDC, the rate among 8 year-olds in 2008 was 1 in 88.  Calculating the yearly increase (13%) yields the following estimates of the autism rate for 8 year-olds:
  • 1 in 78 (2009)
  • 1 in 69 (2010)
  • 1 in 61 (2011)
The current number (2012) for 8 year-old children diagnosed with autism is estimated to be 1 in 54.
To get an idea of the current incidence, including those younger children who have already been diagnosed but are not counted by The CDC because they are not yet 8 years old, I extrapolated out five years at the same 13% rate of increase.

Estimated rate of autism among children who are currently (2012) between 3 and 5 years of age.
Estimated rates of autism among U.S. children in 2012:
  • 7 year olds – 1 in 48
  • 6 year olds – 1 in 42
  • 5 year olds – 1 in 37
  • 4 year olds – 1 in 33
  • 3 year olds – 1 in 29
Extrapolating out for the next ten years at the same 13% yearly increase, the predicted rate of autism among 3 year-olds…
  • 2013 = 1 in 26
  • 2014 = 1 in 23
  • 2015 = 1 in 20
  • 2016 = 1 in 18
  • 2017 = 1 in 16
  • 2018 = 1 in 14
  • 2019 = 1 in 12
  • 2020 = 1 in 11
  • 2021 = 1 in 10
  • 2022 = 1 in 9

Sobering.  Isn’t it?

Think about this when The CDC tells you there’s no need to panic….
The Cost of Autism:
In 2006, the cost of caring for a person with autism over the lifespan was estimated to be about $3.2 Million.  And the costs of caring for all persons with autism in the United States was estimated at $35 Billion per year.
In mid-March, Autism Speaks released the results of research funded by that organization, indicating that the yearly cost of caring for Americans with autism has tripled since 2006, with an annual cost of $126 Billion. Interestingly, the report from Autism Speaks puts the cost spent per person at $2.3 Million over the lifespan, reflecting a decrease of more than half a million dollars per person when compared with results from 2006. It is not clear why the cost per person has come down… From what I have been hearing from many of my friends who are parents of children who carry an autism diagnosis, I believe the lower estimates of the cost of lifetime care may be related to the fact that more and more children are being denied the early intervention services they so desperately need. As funding for programs is cut, so are the services for children with autism.  If you don’t provide funding for services, the overall cost per person comes down.  The fact that the annual rate spent providing for all persons with autism has tripled is an indication that we do indeed have an epidemic on our hands.
We are spending $600,000 less per person, but the bottom line has tripled?
Tell me how that makes sense if it’s not time to panic?
One Last Thought…
As you ponder the thought of 1 in 9 children with autism by the year 2022, consider this:  As high as the autism rate is among the general population, it is even higher among children of military personnel.  And, if you are a child with autism and your parents happen to be in the military, you are even less likely than your non-military peers to receive early intervention services, which means you are more likely to have a poorer outcome over the long run.
Now think about this…  Historically, children of military personnel are six times more likely to enlist or be commissioned into military service. In my own family, my husband served 24 years. His brother served 22 years. Their father served 20 years.  Between the three of them, they served 66 years in the United States’ military.  That legacy stops with my children.  They are not fit to serve in the military.  They can’t pass the physical.
  • Vaccine manufacturers are protected from liability, which results in zero motivation for them to make safe or effective products.
  • The reason vaccine manufacturers continue to be protected from liability is because, in the extremely remote possibility that we may face a biological weapons attack, “we will need their vaccines… it’s a matter of national security.”
  • Because of their faulty products being forced on our children, within the next 20-30 years, there will be virtually no young people in America who are fit for military service.
To quote one of my favorite musical artists… Isn’t it ironic?