Letter: Is Microcephaly The New Autism?

We all live in the western communities and have to deal with mosquitoes every day. The Zika virus is all over the news and on everyone’s radar. We have been told that Zika causes microcephaly, a condition in newborns when a baby develops a head that is much smaller than normal. The CDC fact sheet on microcephaly tells us that “this is not a common condition” and it only occurs in two to 12 babies per 10,000 live births in the Unites States (www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/birthdefects/microcephaly.html). However, the Foundation for Children with Microcephaly (FCM), does not agree. The FCM is a foundation created exclusively to support families with children afflicted with microcephaly. They believe that microcephaly is a common birth defect that afflicts 2.3 babies in 100, and it is far more common than autism. Here is the statement from their web page (www.childrenwithmicro.org): “Microcephaly affects 2.3 percent of newborns. Microcephaly is common — it is far more common than other well-known disorders (i.e. autism). Microcephaly affects more than 25,000 infants and children in the United States alone each year.”

This difference in statistics prompted me to contact the FCM for an explanation. I spoke with Elyse Nardick, the assistant to the founder and CEO of the FCM. She told me the CDC statistics on microcephaly are wrong. She said that the condition is not rare and that her foundation’s statistics were provided by Dr. William B. Dobyns of the Seattle Children’s Hospital, an expert on microcephaly, who has been working with the CDC on microcephaly issues. He hopes to convince them to update their statistics.

The FCM web site states that, “most parents do not know why their child has microcephaly and may never know the cause — even with advanced genetic testing.” Could microcephaly be the next autism, another condition looking for a cause?

The Zika virus has been around for nearly 70 years without being linked to microcephaly until the outbreak in Brazil in late 2015. In fact, it has been reported that most people who contract Zika do not become ill and have no symptoms. If microcephaly predates Zika’s arrival in the United States, how can we be certain that Zika is the cause? Who benefits from linking microcephaly to the Zika carrying mosquito? The pesticide, insecticide, vaccine and genetically engineered mosquito industries are all positioned to cash in on billions of our tax dollars to save us from Zika. Before our elected officials show them the money, someone should ask why we already had an epidemic of microcephaly here in the United States long before the Zika virus arrived.

Anne Kuhl, The Acreage