In March 2008, the Poling family made headlines when government health officials concluded that childhood vaccines worsened a rare, underlying disorder that ultimately led to autism-like symptoms in their 9-year-old daughter, Hannah. A panel of medical evaluators at the Department of Health and Human Services determined that Hannah had a pre-existing mitochondrial disorder that was aggravated by vaccinations, and they recommended that her family be compensated for the injuries.
The Peetes talk with Terry and Jon Poling about the case and their advice for other families living with autism. They also talk about opening up a broader dialogue on the causes and treatments of autism. "From the medical standpoint, physicians really have to completely revise their whole concept of what autism is," Jon says. "Autism is really just a collection of symptoms that probably has 30 different causes to how you get there."