Andrew Wakefield

wakefield

Andrew Wakefield (b. 1957) is a British former surgeon and medical researcher known for his fraudulent claims of a causative connection between the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism. He also created the term ‘autistic enterocolitis’ to describe an unproven form of inflammatory bowel disease (not to be confused with irritable bowel syndrome).

In January 2011, an article by British investigative reporter, Brian Deer and its accompanying editorial in the British Medical Journal identified Wakefield’s work as an ‘elaborate fraud.’ In a follow-up article, Deer said that Wakefield had planned to launch a venture on the back of an MMR vaccination scare that would profit from new medical tests and ‘litigation driven testing.’ Wakefield’s study and public recommendations against the use of the combined MMR vaccine were linked to a steep decline in vaccination rates in the United Kingdom and a corresponding rise in measles cases, resulting in serious illness and several fatalities.

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