One last time: The latest Geier & Geier paper is not evidence that thimerosal causes autism

Several people have been sending me either links to this paper or even the paper itself:

Young HA, Geier DA, Geier MR. (2008). Thimerosal exposure in infants and neurodevelopmental disorders: An assessment of computerized medical records in the Vaccine Safety Datalink. J Neurol Sci. 2008 May 14 [Epub ahead of print]. (Full text here.)

Some have asked me whether I was planning on deconstructing it, given that the mercury militia has apparently been promoting it as “evidence” that it really, truly, and honestly was the mercury in vaccines after all that caused autism. I did mention it about three weeks ago, but I really didn’t do a full deconstruction because I didn’t need to. A new blogger called EpiWonk did a three part take-down that eviscerated this latest bit of “science” from Geier père et fils so thoroughly and with a much greater knowledge of epidemiology than I could ever muster, that I saw no need. However, since this study appears to be rearing its ugly head again, it’s worth directing you to EpiWonk’s three-part take-down. I had been meaning to to this anyway, but had gotten side-tracked by numerous other topics. To make up for my lapse, here we go:

  1. New Study on Thimerosal and Neurodevelopmental Disorders: I. Scientific Fraud or Just Playing with Data?
  2. New Study on Thimerosal and Neurodevelopmental Disorders: II. What Happened to Control for Confounding?
  3. New Study on Thimerosal and Neurodevelopmental Disorders: III. Group-Level Units of Analysis and the Ecological Fallacy

Enjoy! And the next time an antivaccinationist points to this particular study, send ’em over to see EpiWonk. Tell ’em Orac sent you.