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Tabl e 8. 14
Specific sentences that cite the eventually retracted 1998 Lancet paper by Wakefield
et al.
Year of citation
The report by Andrew Wakefield and colleagues confirms the clinical
observations of several paediatricians, including myself, who have
noted an association between the onset of the autistic spectrum and
the development of disturbed bowel habit
Looking at the ages of the children in Wakefield's study, it seems that
most of them would have been at an age when they could well have
been vaccinated with the vaccine that has since been withdrawn
We are concerned about the potential loss of confidence in the mumps,
measles, and rubella (MMR) vaccine after publication of Andrew
Wakefield and colleagues' report (Feb 28, p 637), in which these
workers postulate adverse effects of measles-containing vaccines
We were surprised and concerned that the Lancet published the paper
by Andrew Wakefield and colleagues in which they alluded to an
association between MMR vaccine and a nonspecific syndrome,
yet provided no sound scientific evidence
In 1998, Wakefield et al. [34] have published a second paper including
two ideas: that autism may be linked to a form of inflammatory
bowel disease and that this new syndrome is associated with
measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) immunization
Vaccine scares in recent years have linked MMR vaccination with
autism and a variety of bowel conditions, and this has had an
adverse impact on MMR uptake [5]
When comparing MMR uptake rates before (1994-1997) and after
(1999-2000) the 1998 Wakefield et al. article [5] it is seen that
prior to 1998 Asian children had the highest uptake
This addresses a concern raised by a now-retracted article by
Wakefield et al. and adds to the body of evidence that has failed to
show a relationship between measles vaccination and autism (1, 2)
in terms of the number of related topics in the previous year. The convergent topic
sums up elements from multiple previously separated topics. In 1999, the topic of
Rubella MMR Vaccination is highlighted by an explicit label because it is associated
with several distinct topics in 1998. In 2004, the year Lancet partially retracted
the Wakefield paper, the prominent convergent topic was Developmental Disorders.
The visualization shows that numerous distinct topics in 2003 were converged into
the convergent topic in 2004. We expect that this type of topic-flow visualizations
can enable new ways of analyzing and studying the dynamics of topic transitions in
specific citations to a particular article.
Tab le 8.14 lists examples of sentences that cited the 1998 Lancet paper by
Wakefield et al. For example, as early as 1998, researchers were concerned about the
lack of sound scientific evidence to support the claimed association between MMR
vaccine and inflammatory bowel disease. The adverse impact on MMR uptake is
also evident in these citation sentences. Many more analytic tasks may become
feasible with this type of text and pattern-driven analyses at multiple levels of
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