Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Age of Autism hits a new low.

By now everybody who follows the autism blogosphere,has seen this picture,and read what Josh's mother had to say about it.

As someone who not only has an "autism" diagnosis,but also has severe GI disease,and has had a build like Josh's,I have a pretty good idea just what he has been going through all these years.In Josh,I see some of the very same problems I have.In particular the chest wall deformity (These are very obvious once you learn how to spot them.),the lack of muscle development,and the tall,skinny Marfan-like build. Like me,Josh is defintely very sick,and like me it would be a mistake to say what he has is "autism".But looking at the comments ,I see nothing about these problems,let alone any mention of conditions that might cause it,just a bunch of off topic drivel, about Nazis and eugenics.

The implication being Josh got this way from vaccines.

Let's look at this statement here:

I was very angered and upset on the days I attended the hearing, to hear Miss Smith say “there was nothing physically wrong with these children” perhaps she needs to see my son and live with what he has to live with.

Josh’s output in his ileostomy bag remains double the daily amount of stoma losses, due to untouchable bowel disease.

I have never had an ileostomy,my GI disease has always been more of the "chained to the toilet" variety,but cases like Josh,prove to me it would just be a waste of time,and effort to get one.As his mother implies about Josh,my BMs are many times the volume of food I eat,and always have.However let me say this, in order to have had an ileostomy,one would certainly have to have seen a gastroenterologist,and probably a surgeon,either of whom may have given you a more precise diagnosis than simply "autism".Ms Edwards implies that,like me,her son had not recieved any treatment for his GI disease.

While it is very dangerous to diagnose someone without seeing them,especially if you are not a doctor,based on my expeciences it is very likely Josh has both megaloblastic anemia,and a homocsyteine disorder,just as I do. Possibly undiagnosed.

Here is what some experts have to say about such conditions:

Less common forms of homocystinuria are caused by a lack of other enzymes involved in processing amino acids. These disorders can cause mental retardation, seizures, problems with movement, and a blood disorder called megaloblastic anemia.

Homocystinuria can be diagnosed by urine and/or blood tests, and should be done on any individual with lens dislocation.
Symptoms include:

Nearsightedness (myopia)
Dislocated lens of the eye (ectopia lentis)
Tendency to develop blood clots (thrombosis)
Failure to thrive in newborns and/or developmental delays
Tall stature with long thin limbs and fingers, chest deformities, scoliosis
Homocystinuria can be treated with dietary modifications and supplements in addition to medications, such as trimethylglycine (betaine) or vitamin B6 (pyridoxine).

National Marfan Foundation

Anemia is a common feature of all megaloblastic anemias. However, most patients are relatively asymptomatic because anemia usually develops slowly. Therefore, the absence of symptoms of anemia does not exclude the diagnosis of megaloblastosis. When a marked decrease in Hgb occurs, patients can present with dyspnea, light-headedness, palpitations, and heart failure. Patients with cobalamin deficiency can present primarily with neurological impairment. Specific aspects of the etiology of cobalamin and folate deficiencies are described below.

When obtaining a history with findings of possible cobalamin deficiency, obtaining evidence of anemia and neurological impairment first is important.Some patients can have gastrointestinal symptoms such as loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea, and constipation.Patients may have a sore tongue and canker sores.Patients may have symptoms of anemia.Early neurological symptoms include paresthesias in the feet and fingers,poor gait,and memory loss.At later stages,patients can have severe disturbances in gait,loss of position sense,blindness due to optic atrophy,and psychiatric disturbances.In some patients,neurological impairment can occur without anemia. Therefore, neurological symptoms may range from mild to severe, and cobalamin deficiency should be considered even with minimal neurological symptoms and the absence of anemia.

In the next phase of eliciting relevant history, obtaining a history that can help distinguish between the causes, such as inadequate diets, malabsorption, medications, and congenital disorders, is important.

A history of folate administration without vitamin B-12 therapy should be documented because folate may partially correct hematological abnormalities but will not stop the progression of neuropsychiatric complications.Dietary insufficiency of cobalamin is a rare cause of megaloblastosis. A history of a long-standing vegetarian diet without dairy products or eggs can suggest the possibility of this etiology.
Pernicious anemia is associated with autoimmune disorders. A coexistent history of autoimmune disorders such as thyroid disorders, type I diabetes, Addison disease, hypoparathyroidism, or autoimmune hemolytic anemia suggests the possibility of pernicious anemia.

A history of a gastrectomy suggests the possibility of cobalamin deficiency. Approximately 3-5 years must elapse for cobalamin deficiency to occur after total gastrectomy and approximately 12 years must elapse after partial gastrectomy.
A history of ileal resection, regional ileitis, and small intestinal lymphoma suggests intestinal malabsorption of cobalamin.

What is homocystinuria?
Homocystinuria is an inherited disorder in which the body is unable to process certain building blocks of proteins (amino acids) properly. The most common form of the condition is caused by the lack of an enzyme called cystathionine beta-synthase. This form of homocystinuria is characterized by dislocation of the lens in the eye, an increased risk of abnormal blood clots, and skeletal abnormalities. Problems with development and learning are also evident in some cases.

Less common forms of homocystinuria are caused by a lack of other enzymes involved in processing amino acids. These disorders can cause intellectual disability, seizures, problems with movement, and a blood disorder called megaloblastic anemia


How many ASD parents talk about seizues in ther kids ? ...

The GI manifestations of megaloblastic anemia have been known for decades,as has the neuropsychiatric manifestations of homocysteine,and folate metabolism disorders.

Celiac disease is a common comorbidity in pernicious anemia,and MB12 deficiency.Disturbances in folate metabolism can lead to "transient" high porphyrins,and tests where all all porphyrins are elevated,as they are with me,and most on the spectrum,usually point to genetic defects,rather than environmental damage as the primary initiating factor.Remember in autsm, it's genes first,then environment.Megaloblastic or pernicious anemia is one of countless diseases found to have mitochondrial dysfunction associated with it.

While homocystinuria,and similar disorders have been shown to have psychiatric disorders,that go along with them,they have not,as far as I know,been officially recognized to include autism,or "features of autism",but a little poking around on the web leads you to the Yahoo! group for homocystinuria,and messages like this

Hi everyone

My 9-year-old son is rcently diagnosed with hcu (2 months back) We
reside in India. Until now we were told that he was having Autism,but
now the diagnosis have changed (personaly, i feel like he still has
autism) My doc says hcu has similar fetures like autism. We have
already started on vitamin B6,biotine,folate .......i
i would like to learn more on how to help my son and what to expect on
the road ahead.

I believe the blame for not only informing parents about disorders like this,as well as the blame for not testing the children for such disorders in the first place,lies squarely on the shoulders of their doctors,who are either not aware such conditions exist,or believe they are "too rare" to test children for.Cystic fibrosis,and type 1 diabetes used to be thought of as "rare" too,once upon a time.So these children often only end up with a diagnosis of "autism",and nothing else,just as I did.

Which only leads parents like Ms.Edwards,to go looking for answers elsewhere,answers the antivaccine movement is more than happy to supply.Not all parents are able,or willing to spend the time it takes to investigate alternative explanations,like metabolic disease,and even if they do go to a DAN!,and have the proper tests done,the chances are very good this doctor will go through all sorts of weird theories to blame vaccines.(Perhaps because he knew he coud not do this with me,the DAN! who did these tests on me,just handed me printouts of the results,and had me figure them out on my own.)

Since then,this same DAN! doctor has dumped me as a patient,even though he pretty much told me I was one of the sickest "autistics" he had ever seen.What you have heard is true,many DAN!s do not like to work with adults on the spectrum,they see us as pretty much of a lost cause, either in regards to the autism,or in regards to the "comorbid" conditions.

I must admit I have not been following what has been happening in the antivaxer blogosphere all that closely of late,but things have really gotten out of hand since the Wakefield retraction. Initially I had cast my lot with the antivaxers,because they were the only ones who recognized that serious medical conditions can,and do,exist with autism.Neurodiversity,much to its detriment,has barely addressed this issue,or has completely swept it aside.This is both short-sighted,and a gross mistake,as I will explain.

I am now in total agreement,that what I have,is not "autism".The same can be said for Hannah Poling as well,but far too many people believe otherwise.Reading the DSM-V was a real eyeopener for me.I have become to feel like an old-line conservative,who had cast their lot with the Tea Party movement before learning just how dangerous these people really are,and given the fact that there are those in Washington, who support both the analogy isn't that far off.

If you follow my posts at all here,you will see the over-riding theme here,is that there are serious medical conditions that are lumped under the broad umbrella of "autism",that should not be there.In short,I have come to see autism in the same narrow way the APA,and neurodiversity does.Now that I am largely recovered from my "autism",more educated about all this stuff,and in a far more rational state,I am prepared to take back every nasty thing I ever said about neurodiversity.You guys were right all along as far as to what autism is.

I therefore see it is in everybody's best interest,that we all work towards redefining these genetic,and metabolic disorders as something other than "autism",and I call upon those in the neurodiversity movement to help me do just that.We need to work towards getting a standardized panel of medical tests for those conditions,like folate metabolism,and mitochondrial diseases that can be falsely labelled as "autism",and we need to insist that all parents whose children have been diagnosed as "autistic",and have these problems,have this panel of tests.Not only would getting a more accurate diagnosis be better for these children,but the belief these children both have "autism",and are sick is one of the most powerful weapons the antivaxer movement has.For neurodiversity to deny this,only makes these people stronger.I would be far better to say to these people "We know your children are sick,but it isn't autism,and it isn't vaccines,let's all work together to help you find out just what is wrong with your kids.

We also need to work to change the direction research takes.Up until now,most research in this area seems to start with one of two preconcieved notions.1)That the kids have "autism" as a prevailing codition.The sheer number of different conditions that have been lumped under the banner of "autism" makes this sort of study absurd,and something with the same clinical symptoms,like seizures,GI disease,can have countless different causes.2)The researcher is someone who accepts "autistics" have serious medical problems,but is largely doing this research,to prove or advance their preconceived notions about vaccines,or is associated with an institution,with a strong anti vaccine bias.Both types of research need to be strongly discouraged,and in the aftermath of the Wakefield disaster,at least the latter is starting to come to pass,but we need to do more.

Actively,and vocally working to help prove that autism is nothing to do with severe GI disease, frequent infections,or metabolic disorders,and proving there are other conditions that do,would only help to promote the positive picture of the autism spectrum neurodiversity wants to promote,and would show they truly are concerned about the plight of all disabled persons.It would be a win-win for everybody,except for the most diehard of antivaccine extremists.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

APA Does it again! New DSM pleases (almost) nobody

"As somebody who has a child with a diagnosis of autism, I want to be able to turn to the official criteria and see a description that sounds like my child," Grinker says. "Right now my child sounds like three or four different disorders."

Yup.That sounds about right.

By now everybody has seen what the Amercan Psychiatric Assocition has
proposed for the new diagnostic criteria for autism.The criteria is vague,so generalized,that almost anybody could get an "autism" diagnosis.Reading this page dosen't really tell you all that much.The APA page on how they reached this criteria,however is a much more interesting read.If you are willing to take the time,and go through this with an open mind,it makes a great deal of sense.It only furthers my belief that most of us have been very wrong for years about just what "autism" is,and the need for all of us to work towards getting what most people call "autism" officially reclassified as several different disorders.

Some have claimed that intellectual disability is not among the considerations.Now I am no expert on intellectual disability,but one of the first things that stuck out at me was this:

In her introduction to the panel, Amy Wetherby, Ph.D., (Tallahassee,
Florida) noted that currently the core symptoms of autism are divided into three
domains: impairment in social interaction (e.g., impairment in the use of
nonverbal behavior; lack of spontaneous sharing; lack of social/emotional
reciprocity; failure to develop peer relationships), impairment in communication
(e.g., delay in or lack of development of spoken language and gestures; impairment in the ability to initiate or maintain conversation; repetitive and idiosyncratic use of language; lack of pretend play), and repetitive behaviors and fixated interests (e.g., preoccupation with restricted patterns of interest;inflexible adherence to routines; repetitive movements; preoccupation with parts of objects).

So language delay,and being nonverbal was discussed.One could possibly extend this to include generalized intellectual disability? Let's see what else we have here.

One of the next things I found was:

John Constantino, M.D., (St. Louis, MO), in his presentation,noted that,1) autism represents the severe end of a continuum of inherited social deficiencies that occur in nature and it is arbitrary where to draw the line between affected and normal states.; 2) there are no data that support Asperger’s disorder breeding true...

There goes one of the more beloved claims neurodiversity loves to tout.So much for that "natural variation".

In his introduction to the panel, Edwin H. Cook, Jr., M.D.,(Chicago, IL) noted that restricted and repetitive behaviors are currently de-emphasized relative to social impairment. Why should a child with mild social and communicative impairment whose main impairment is disabling restrictive and repetitive behaviors be considered to have less likelihood of autistic disorder? Is our lack of emphasis on severity of this area justified by the data or is it based on our “preoccupation” with social and communication function?

I agree.Far too much importance is placed on the social impairments,even moreso than on spoken language ability.

I was a little surprsed that Susan Swedo was part of the planning group,given that PANDAS/PITAND is not mentioned anywhere.In fact,the only mention of it anywhere on the site,is to rule it out as a psychiatric illness.

Susan Swedo, M.D., (Bethesda, MD), in her presentation, noted how little data
has been reported regarding the difference between fixated interests in autism
and obsessive-compulsive symptoms in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD),noting that there may be a clear difference between childhood onset obsessions and
adult-onset obsessions. Differences in treatment response, patterns of
comorbidity and neuroimaging findings suggest that in adults, obsessions seem to
fit best with anxiety disorders and in children are more closely linked to
attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and tic disorders.

I'd agree with that,as long as you make that "seizure or tic disorders".Yet another "comormidity"? Looking around the DSM-V for OCDs,and related conditions,we come to the section on Stereotypic Movement Disorder.Here we have a whole complex of symptoms,that I have had for most of my life.Ones many have associated with "autism",myself included:

Stereotypic Movement Disorder
Sub Title
Stereotypic Movement Disorder
The work group is recommending
that this disorder be classified under Anxiety and Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum
Disorders or Childhood Disorders, if that section is retained

Repetitive, seemingly driven, and apparently purposeless motor behavior (e.g.,
hand shaking or waving,body rocking, head banging,self biting).
B. The disturbance causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social,
occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
C. The motor behavior is not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance or a general medical condition.
D. The motor behavior is not restricted to the symptoms of another mental disorder (e.g., compulsions in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, tics in Tic Disorder, stereotypies in Pervasive Developmental Disorder, hair pulling in Hair Pulling Disorder(Trichotillomania)).
Specify if:
With Self-Injurious Behavior: If the behavior results in bodily damage (or would result in bodily damage if protective measures were not used.

Sounds a helluva a lot like what a lot of us think of as "autistic " behaviour doesn't it? but if you look at the bottom of the page,and look at the conditions associated with this,nowhere is autism listed. Instead what you get is

Anxiety, Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum, Posttraumatic, and Dissociative Disorders
Disorders Usually First Diagnosed in Infancy, Childhood, or Adolescence

It sort of makes you wonder if this behaviour in "autism",might really be related to PANDAS,or PITAND,especially in those with immune problems since PANDAS causes OCDs

Regarding the difference between stereotypies in ASD and compulsions in OCD, the two symptoms are more similar than different in presentation. For example, when the repetitive behavior is interrupted,children respond negatively, regardless of whether the behavior is a compulsion or a stereotypy. Dr. Swedo noted three possible hypotheses regarding the relationship: that symptoms in autism and OCD are the same phenomena and result from similar etiologies; that they are the same behavioral abnormality, but represent different etiologies; or that symptoms in autism and OCD only appear to be similar but differ in nature and etiopathogenesis. Comparing ASD and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD), similarities between them include rigidity, need for sameness, and individuals being “cold” and socially isolated; differences include age at onset (earlier in ASD), degree of
impairment (greater in ASD), and presence of comorbid symptoms (more in

Then we come to one of the statements that really got to me.

Keith Widaman, Ph.D., (Davis, CA),in his presentation, looked at lifespan changes from the perspective of mental retardation. Cross-sectional studies of intelligence have shown that there are substantial improvements in many areas until the developmental period ends around age 20;after that point, stability is more likely.

Dead wrong.Clearly Dr.Widaman has never seen an adult who has had autism as a child, improved,and then regressed again,after a severe infection,or diet change.Metabolic or immune based "autism" is anything but stable.But there I am thinking like a patient or a parent again, and not like a doctor or researcher.Maybe these conditions are not really "autism" after all.

For mental retardation, which is considered a developmental disorder,the diagnosis is supposed to be made in the first 18 years of life. Does it therefore make sense to make a diagnosis of ASD and intellectual disabilities in someone presenting at age 50?

Again,entirely different model.

Regression is currently only included in the diagnostic criteria in Childhood Disintegrative Disorder (CDD),where it is required.Clinically it is commonly seen in Rett Syndrome but not included in the criteria, and is not even mentioned in Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Disorder,or PDD-NOS, although it is known to occur fairly frequently.

The paucity of reports is confirmation that CDD is a rare condition, with prevalence thought to be 1.1 to 6.4 per 100,000.

Maybe that's because it's been misdiagnosed as "autism".Or is it just another "comorbity"? Who knows?

2) deleting motor skills regression from the areas of regression in criterion B because of scarcity; and 3) in criterion D, having the diagnosis of CDD pre-empt a diagnosis of autistic disorder so that CDD with onset before age 3 is not diagnosed as autistic disorder (one-third to one-half of CDD patients show their regression between ages 2 and 3). Compared with autistic disorder, CDD has no significant difference in clinical symptomatology apart from its higher incidences of epilepsy and EEG abnormalities.

During the ensuing discussion, it was pointed out that regression may be a more common feature of autism than was previously thought with some prospective studies indicating that a loss of skills is the rule rather than the exception. In regressive autism, the skills are lost in the second year of life, while in “early onset” autism, skills are lost in the first year of life. There was general agreement that symptom onset is on a continuum between regression and non-regression and that defining the borders between the two can be difficult.

Anybody else find these statements contradict each other? Dontcha love that "more common feature than previously thought"?

Asperger’s disorder is essentially defined as meeting criteria for
autism without the language impairment. Lorna Wing introduced the term in
1981 to aid recognition of the part of the autism spectrum with good IQ and
language. It has increased awareness and recognition and helped to clarify
the core deficits of ASD, but also increases the possibility that there may be
over-diagnosis of ASD. Asperger’s disorder has also had an impact on family
studies of autism with regard to what we recognize as “caseness.” Dr. Happe
noted that the current criteria do not work: they do not allow for developmental
change, the early language criteria do not demarcate groups with different
prognoses, it is hard to apply the diagnosis for adult cases, and there is no
clear conceptual basis for the diagnosis. Dr. Happe concluded that although
there is a recognizable Asperger’s type and that some cases of classic autism
grow into this picture, she wonders whether there may be a better classification
schema. Sally Ozonoff, Ph.D., (Sacramento, CA), in her presentation, compared
high functioning autism (HFA) with Asperger’s, and noted that there were few
differences in their definitional DSM-IV criteria
; both require two social
symptoms and one repetitive/stereotyped symptom
, both are in the average range intellectually and have current fluent language. The main criterion distinguishing the two disorders is the requirement in Asperger’s that onset of language occurs at the expected time, e.g., single words by age 2. Dr.
Ozonoff noted that it is difficult to evaluate the literature since definitions vary across studies and that many children who are thought clinically to have
Asperger’s actually meet criteria for autism
(which supercedes a diagnosis of Asperger's). There is some evidence to suggest that Asperger's and HFA do not represent distinct disorders: they co-occur in the same families and do not “breed true” (i.e., family members of patients with Asperger's have HFA and
family members of patients with HFA have Asperger's); children with autism who
develop language have similar outcome to Asperger's; HFA and Asperger's are
indistinguishable by school-age; and although studies find better language
skills and/or verbal IQ in Asperger's, multiple studies have found no group
differences in other neuropsychological domains.

This is a fairly accurate description,but there are a couple of big factors they left out here.

  • How many Aspies do you hear about who have stereotypic or stimming problems as bad as autisic children do.I know I did until I treated my autism biomedically.

  • .

  • The brain differences between Asperger's and autism,clearly visible on MRIs.

    .The fact that there are families,like mine,where one sibling has autism,and another sibling has childhood-onset bipolar disorder or schizophrenia.This may be due to each sibling having a slightly different set of COMT mutations .

Chance mutations in the human genome, once incorporated into the gene pool, can have functional consequences for human populations when expressed through their specific protein alterations. Complex genetic diseases like schizophrenia and primary mood disorders are associated with clusters of these chance mutation changes and their associated protein abnormalities in the brain. Catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) is an enzyme that metabolizes dopamine in the brain in the extracellular space (homovanillic acid [HVA] is the intracellular catabolic enzyme). COMT activity in the human striatum is not critical to dopaminergic signaling, since dopamine reuptake proteins largely terminate dopamine action in that region. However, COMT activity in the frontal cortex is important because dopamine reuptake proteins are sparse, and COMT functions there to terminate dopamine action in the synapse. Because dopamine in the frontal cortex facilitates short-term memory, high COMT activity should inhibit this aspect of cognitive function. The gene for COMT is located on chromosome 22.

COMT mutations are found in all three conditions,and it raises a few questions.
  • Do they play a role in the male predominance for autism,as they do in ADHD?Is it a cause for the son having autism,and the daughters having childhood onset bipolar or schizophrenia,as it is in our family?

  • Has anybody come close to figuring out if there are specific COMT mutations unique to autism,bipolar,or whatever?

See there are much more intersting questions out there than vaccines.

My problem is that so many adults with no developmental history worthy of an ASD have been wrongly diagnosed with them.If Asperger's is to mean true autism,but without the language delay,this should call into question the not only diagnoses of many who have been diagnosed with an Asperger's, but the numbers,and the epidemiology that has led to this idea of an "autism epidemic" in the first place.

The seventh panel addressed the question of how does comorbidity affects
symptoms of Autism?In her introduction to the panel, Sally Rogers, Ph.D.,
(Sacramento, CA) noted that other developmental disorders occur commonly with
autism (e.g., up to 86% also have non-verbal learning disorders) as well as
other psychiatric disorders (e.g., 20-30% with affective disorders, 33-75% with
ADHD), and various medical conditions (10-37%, with the rate depending on the
severity of the degree of intellectual disability. Dr. Rogers argued that one
way to address this comorbidity is to adopt a dimensional approach which could
address sociability and social capacities, communication, intellect,activity
level,motor skills and movement,mood and temperament, academic abilities,
adaptive behavior, maladaptive behavior/psychiatric symptoms, and health. Autism
could be viewed in the same way as we do intellectual disabilities (i.e., IQ) --
as a final common behavioral pathway of many different biological etiologies:
“the autisms,” as opposed to our current view of autism as primarily a familial
genetically-determined disorder with comorbidities occurring more frequently in
the more severe cases


Here again,the whole notion of "comorbidity" seems to center around neurodevelopmental ones.Nothing specifically about GI disease,metabolic or immune problems.And just what do they mean by "various medical conditions" anyway?If the Yahoo! groups I belong to,and various blogs I read,not just Age of Autism,are any indication,the numbers of those with these conditions are a lot higher than 10-37%.

Wandering or eloping has been a big issue for me,and it is for many with "autism".But if you do a search within the DSM-V,it only comes up in relation to dementia and neurocognitive disorders .Like intellectual disability,this may be an entirely unrelated condition,and one that is even further off the radar,as far as research funding is concerned.Eloping and wandering was a major issue with me,and only went away with biomedical intervention.I may be way off base here,but I wonder if eloping isn't some sort of immune-based problem,similar to what you see with dementia in HIV ?

One real bright spot here is the way some aspies are reacting to the changes.A lot of us are sitting back and laughing ourselves silly at their reaction to it all. Serves them right.

But the change is going to be hard for some people with Asperger's, says
Michael John Carley, executive director of the Global and Regional Asperger
Syndrome Partnership in New York and author of Asperger's From the Inside Out.
"I personally am probably going to have a very hard time calling myself
autistic". says Carley, who was diagnosed with Asperger's years ago.

Many people with Asperger's take pride in a diagnosis that probably describes some
major historical figures, including Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison, Carley
says. Under the new system, those people would represent just one extreme of a
spectrum. On the other extreme is "somebody who might have to wear adult diapers and maybe a head-restraining device. This is very hard for us to swallow," he says.

Returning to the summary page of the new name we have

New name for category, autism spectrum disorder, which includes autistic disorder (autism), Asperger’s disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, and pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified.

Differentiation of autism spectrum disorder from typical development and other "nonspectrum" disorders is done reliably and with validity; while distinctions among disorders have been found to be inconsistent over time, variable across sites and often associated with severity, language level or intelligence rather than features of the disorder.
Because autism is defined by a common set of behaviors, it is best represented as a single diagnostic category that is adapted to the individual’s clinical presentation by inclusion of clinical specifiers (e.g., severity, verbal abilities and others) and associated features (e.g., known genetic disorders, epilepsy, intellectual disability and others.)
A single spectrum disorder is a better reflection of the state of knowledge about pathology and clinical presentation; previously, the criteria were equivalent to trying to “cleave meatloaf at the joints”.

Which sort of gets back to what I was saying in my first post about everything being comorbid. Maybe we ought to stop thinking about autism itself as that big a deal,and concern ourselves more with finding the causes for these "associated features",that may be the bigger problems.If neurodiversity has to readjust,maybe everybody else has to as well.I am going through a very interesting personal journey.I am finding out that I may not have "autism" after all,but rather a sort of polymorphic metabolic syndrome,with that old devil "features of autism",and it's very possible that many children we say have "autism" really have the same thing.Especially if they have GI disease,and improve with MB12.

A hallmark of megaloblastic anemia is ineffective erythropoiesis, as evidenced
by erythroid hyperplasia in the bone marrow, a decreased peripheral reticulocyte
count,and an elevation in lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and indirect bilirubin
levels.The pathogenesis of these findings is the intramedullary destruction of
fragile and abnormal megaloblastic erythroid precursors.

An understanding of the source of cobalamin and folate is important to understand the pathogenesis of the development of megaloblastosis. Dietary intake is the source of cobalamin and folate because humans cannot synthesize these substances. Cobalamin must be bound to intrinsic factor (IF), and this complex is taken up in the terminal ileum. Once absorbed, cobalamin is bound to another protein, transcobalamin II (TCII), and is transported to storage sites. Abnormalities in any of these steps in cobalamin transport can lead to deficiencies in this substance. Considerable amounts of cobalamin are accumulated in storage sites; this explains why years elapse before cobalamin deficiency develops in patients who cannot take up dietary cobalamin.

The move to relassify Rett's disorder as a nonpsychiatric disorder is the sort of move that I would like to see here.In the words of Michelle Dawson "Genetic syndromes don't belong in our book,and I agree".But in order to get this "genetic syndrome" out of the DSM,parents are going to have to put aside their preconceived notions about vaccines,and ill-defined "dysfunctions" that they may or may not cause,and have their kids tested,for things like megaloblastic anemia,and folate metabolism disorders.If they did,we might end up a clear picture of a genuine metabolic syndrome by the time the DSM-VI comes out.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Some thoughts on Arthur Krigsman's newst study.

I finally got to reading Dr.Arthur Krigsman's article published last week,"Clinical Presentation and Histologic Findings at Ileocolonoscopy in Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Chronic Gastrointestinal Symptoms",and right away,there were a copule of things,I was ready to applaud.First,the fact he had included at least one patient in the study,who was as old as 36 years old.Secondly the realization,that changing the diet has no effect at all on severity of GI pain,something that I have been trying to tell people for years,and that neither parents or doctors seem to get.

Abdominal pain was easily determined in patients able to articulate
discomfort.In non-verbal patients,abdominal pain was indicated by
frequent,unexplained excessive irritability, awakening from sleep in a state of
unusual irritability or agitation, and uncharacteristic aggression.1 “Pain
posturing”,in which the child assumes a leaning position, providing direct
pressure to the lower abdomen, is a clinically accepted pain indication in this
population and parents were specifically asked about this.While initial patient
evaluation included a dietary history to explore the possibility of food allergy,this was not a common finding. However, in virtually every case, foods causing non-IgE mediated GI symptoms were avoided for 6-months prior to endoscopic examination.

In all cases, dietary interventions/restrictions did not significantly improve gastrointestinal symptomatology and initial laboratory evaluation did not provide an etiologic diagnosis.

I was more than a little ticked off.Krigsman,et al admitted that there was serious pain going on here,but they seemed to offer nothing as far as treatment or management of this pain was concerned.GI pain was something I brought up,the last time I saw my DAN! doctor.His only suggestion was that I try to get medical marijuana,which I am seriously looking into,but I neither have the money for it,nor meet the State of New Mexico's official criteria for it.Like so many with autism,my blood tests have never quite made it for a Crohn's diagnosis.

I then saw that they had used ileocolonoscopy to examine the patients, something no doctor was ever willing to do for me.

Of the 83 patients presenting with diarrhea without constipation, data on
ileal and colonic inflammation was available for 74. Of these, 59 (79.7%) had
inflammation in either the ileum, the colon or both locations. An additional 6
patients who presented with diarrhea but for whom ileal intubation was not
successful, had colonic inflammation, while 3 did not.For patients presenting
with diarrhea therefore,the estimate of prevalence of inflammation is between
65/83 and 68/83 (78.3%–81.9%). Data on ileal and colonic inflammation was
available on 19 patients presenting with constipation without associated
diarrhea.Of these, 12 (63.2%) had ileal or colonic inflammation.3 patients for
whom ileal intubation was not successful presented with diarrhea. All 3 had
colonic inflammation. This allows a more definitive estimate of overall
prevalence of inflammation in this group.Of the 22 patients presenting with
constipation alone,15 (68.1%) had ileal or colonic inflammation.


It then talks about ileo-colonic lymphoid-nodular hypoplasia,something I was found to have years ago,but nobody seemed to think was all that important.

My problem with this,is most of the literature on this,seems to come from Andrew Wakefield, and nobody else seems to want to study it much.

So the conclusion he comes to is this:

This study confirms earlier reports of a non-specific (non-Crohn’s disease, non-ulcerative colitis) mucosal histopathology in ASD patients with chronic gastrointestinal symptoms....It appears that the immunologic and inflammatory
activity in the bowel is part of a larger, systemic multi-organ immunopathology.
...While ileocolonic LNH has long been thought of as a ‘normal’ pediatric
variant commonly encountered in developmentally normal children undergoing
ileocolonoscopy, it is also a prominent component of the inflammatory response
in gastrointestinal infectious processes such as H. pylori gastritis,
Shigellosis,C. difficile colitis, and yersiniosis, among others.

The origin of the ileocolonic pathology is unknown.The pattern of inflammation may represent autoimmune disease,chronic infectious enterocolitis, food sensitivity/ allergy, or a combination of the above.Because virtually all patients were on some form of a symptom based restricted diet, the impact of specific dietary factors on symptoms and histopathology could not be evaluated in this study.

In short,we have no idea what the f**k is going on,and no way to treat it.

Well,the two things that stuck out in my mind were all the attention paid to the ileum,and this business about a "a larger, systemic multi-organ immunopathology".I may be all wet on this,but I have an interesting theory.What if the GI disease is all secondary to a genetic methylation disorder,or something related to MB12 deficiency,or metabolism? MB12 is metabolised in the ileum after all.The article did not mention if any of the people in the study were tested for megaloblastic anemia or folate metabolism disorders or not,but I wonder if this could not be the cause.

Megaloblastosis is a generalized disorder because nonhematopoietic cells, such as GASTROINTESTINAL and uterine cervical mucosal cells, can also have megaloblastic features. The etiology of megaloblastic anemias is diverse, but a common basis is impaired DNA synthesis. The most common causes of megaloblastosis are cobalamin (vitamin B-12) and folate deficiencies. The usual causes of cobalamin deficiency are pernicious anemia (PA, see Pernicious Anemia), failure of absorption of cobalamin in the terminal ileum...

I also wonder if the underlying GI,and immune issues so many of us with autism,and MTHFR problems have may be due to an unknown "new" condition originating in the

All this requires is an ability to look beyond vaccines as the possible cause for all this crap,yes crap.Open your minds,and you open yourself to all sorts of possibilties.

Has Krigsman,though,that is the question.While he is to be commended for not mentioning vaccines or MMR once,his past precedes him.I am no fan of case/autism/quackwatch,any more than I am of David Gorski,but his name on the study does raise all sorts problems.Especially for more mainstream doctors who want to take this stuff seriously.I would assume he still believes all this about vaccines,and thimerosol,since he has made no public statement otherwise.

Everybody at Thoughtful House seems to have a dark cloud over them, even though they are clearly doing some very important work.Perhaps they ought to let somebody else do some of this work for a while,someone who isn't tainted by all this vaccine stuff,and can look at things more objectively,and investigate other causes for these conditions.

Don't forget,I've lived with the GI disease of autism myself for almost fifty years.As a child/teenager, I had to go to the ER fo severe impaction more than once.The food reactions of head banging, severe stimming,and rages,with the acute malabsorption that follows it is something I know personally all too well.I've been through it all.Nobody wants to find an answer more than I do,but perhaps by allowing those who believe vaccines are the cause for it all,to do most of the research,we will never get to the real answers after all.

Monday, January 4, 2010

I almost was going to call this blog...


, after the ribbings I have gotten from certain neurodiversity bloggers about
GI disease and autism.

I still think that would be a great name for a blog,if anybody wants to use it.

I do have a diagnosis,and because of all of the autism frauds out there,it seems you always have to prove yourself,and put all of your cards on the table.I had planned to put all of my valid medical records about autism,folate metabolism,methylation,and porphyrins up as .pdf files,but Google/Blogger doesn't seem to allow you to upload.pdfs that easily.I have also had a number of people warn me against doing this,even though the files have no SSNs or really sensisitive information on them.

That said,I am well on the way to being completely recovered from my autism,as long as I avoid casein,and take all of this crap:

*Folinic acid,as prescription leucovor 20mg a day
*Tischcon CoQ10 200mg a day
(I have been found to have secondary mitochondrial "damage",and have many of the same symptoms,as primary mito,including regular "mito crashes".)
*Vitamin D3 5000 IU a day
*Heavy Metal Detox,maintenence dose of 50 drops once a day.
*Glutathione 1 gram a day.
*MB12 as spray or drops 25 mg a day.
*L-carnititine 500-100mg a day.
*HLC Mindlinx,and digestive enzymes that I basically pop like candy.
*Omega 3 fish oil 12 grams a day

Because of malabsorption,and inefficeint metabolism,fish oil often only works if you use it in large doses.It does not cause diarrhea if you need such high doses in the first place.

But I am still very sick from my GI ,metabolic,and immune problems.Which is why I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to all of the neurodiversity bloggers whose blogs I railed so much at about "comorbid conditions".They were right,I was wrong.I now can see

When it comes to autism...

Everything is comorbid...ESPECIALLY THE AUTISM ITSELF.

My recovery is so great,even at my age,that I can say that almost anybody can recover from their autism,even the most severe cases.I also know from all the various Yahoo! groups I belong to,that biomed,as great as it is,only seems to cure the autism itself...exactly what neurodiversity types say cannot be cured.I have talked with parents whose autistic children are intellectually disabled,who have been "cured" with biomed.

They are still intellectually disabled,but they are no longer austisic.

As great as biomed is,and as much as mainstream science wants to deny it works,it does have its limitations.It seems to be a victim of its own success.There are biomed parents who are now planning what colleges to send their children to,when they had been told to plan to send their children to group homes instead.They are lucky ones.Those of us who aren't so lucky are facing a new problem:

What happens after the autism goes away,and you or your child are still sick?

While I realize there are exceptions,many DAN!s seen unprepared about what to do in such a siutation,which is where I find myself.

I'm an old fart.I was born on July 8,1960.It is highly possible I was exposed to mercury in the womb,as my mother has told me she had her first fillings when she was fourteen years old.When I was five months old,I had acute bacterial meningitis,with pulmonary complications,possibly pneumonia,as my mother said I was in an iron lung much of this time.As with all of the children,whose parents claim were vaccine-injured,my mother said I went into the hospital a different baby than when I came out.I had serious developmental problems right from the start.I could not walk until I was about three.I had many severe apraxias,and was never was able to do simple things,like catch a ball,or ride a bicycle.I was in diapers until I was nine years old,and when I wasn't deathly ill from one infection or another,I spent most of my time eloping, head banging,or smashing things.Based on what has happened to me in the past year or so,I can say that much of this behaviour was due to food reactions, although nobody knew this at the time.Because as with more recent episodes that I can clearly trace to food,they were always accompanied by gastrointestinal pain,and abnormal BMs.I always came around hours later,or the next day,with no idea what I had done,or in the case of my eloping,where I was.

Like my friend Johnathan Mitchell,I was kicked out of a couple of kindergartens,but it never seemed to bother me.I was too busy running around naked,excessively stimming,and smashing stuff to let anything bother me.I was well into second grade, when it finally dawned on me you aren't supposed to take your clothes off in school.

Like most autistics,I spent most of my time in and out of special education.In the 60s,and 70s,special ed was even more of a dumping ground for behavioural problems,and criminals in training,than it is now.When I wasn't busy seeing psychiatrists in school,I was mostly eloping/wandering around the school property.It was amazing,that you could say you had to go take a leak,and could just start wandering around the property to your heart's content,and nobody hardly noticed or cared.

I have no idea exactly what psychiatric diagnoses I received when I was in school.The Baltimore County school system has a policy of destroying every student's records,other than grades,as soon as they graduate,but obviously I did have a diagnosis,because when I was in sixth grade,and observed head banging,there was an effort by the school to put me away at the (in)famous Rosewood Center.I would have ended up rotting there,had my mother not stepped in,and fought the school on my behalf.

Starting in about the fourth grade,when it became clear that I wasn't just slacking off,and I really couldn't hold a pencil,and write,I started having intensive occupational therapy that lasted into middle school.I had no friends in any of the teachers,and I certainly could have used some.All of my teachers,from kindergarten to high school said they were afraid of me.

In school,I was always getting beat up,and my stuff stolen.When I was nine,and my parents got divorced,and yes I was a major factor,we moved to a house on the border of the woods next to Liberty Reservoir.The neighbors there made our life even worse than the kids in school did,and once they tried to kill me with their hunting rifles.It was like living in the middle of "Deliverance",or a Stephen King novel.Not the ideal place for an autistic kid.

I have had gastrointestinal problems my entire life.Notice I didn't say
"bowel disease",and on those occasions when my mother gave me enemas,and forced me to sit me directly on the toilet,my BMs always stopped up the plumbing they were so large.At the age of thirteen,the nature of my problems switched from impaction to malabsorption.At the age of seven,I had rheumatic fever,and began having chronic problems from this eleven years later. Evidence of rheumatic heart disease was found in my early twenties,but the hospital did not inform me of it for nearly twenty years later.

From the age of seventeen to twenty two,I had pneumonia five times.For a while,my lung disease was so severe,that the combination of it,and my GI disease led my doctors to think I might have cystic fibrosis,a common differential diagnosis in autistic kids with both GI,and immune related lung disease.

But of course I didn't have CF,or any other disease the hospital could readily find,so given the nature of my autism,I was thought to be Schizoid,a fairly common misdiagnosis,given what the DSM says about it.It took me until 2008,to finally get my official autism diagnosis ,and the doctor who ordered the evaluation said he was doing it to prove me wrong,because he "didn't think I had autism" either.In weeks,I went from not having a diagnosis,to once again having a diagnosis so severe,I was put on the fast track to a state-run group home,and once again having my mother intervene to keep me out.


I got my autism diagnosis about a year into one of the worst regressions of my life,after yet another acute case of bacterial meningitis.Prior to this,I had experienced several years of quasi-recovery. I had improved,but not truly recovered from my autism,which I now know to be possible only with biomedical treatment.I knew I probably had a diagnosis,but wasn't all that concerned with getting one,and wanted to just put all this autism crap behind me.

Then I got sick.

Like a lot of people,with autism of an immune,metabolic,or mitochondrial basis,my autism had reverted to the most severe point where it was when I was a child,but I had maintained my adult intelligence.I was an innocent babe as far as all that had happened with regards to autism in the intervening years,especially on the web.I knew there must be places out there where all of the issues I was facing were being discussed,and dealt with. I knew there were places where parents of children congregated,but I wanted to know how adults dealt with issues like head banging, self-mutilation,rocking,elopement,and excessive vocal stimming,like I was dealing with.

The first places I ended up were autistics.org,and Aspies for Freedom.When I started posting about problems of a nature like this,I completely bewildered by the response I had gotten.I had caused a real uproar.People were angry at me.They said I was painting an unrealistic picture of autism.That I was saying it was worse that it really was.That I was trying to scare them into wanting a cure.So I was quickly banned from both places,and they went back to talking about what they were going to do for Autism Pride Day.

The idea that autism was something to be celebrated,and made your life a better one was completely alien to me.It was,and is,the nuttiest thing I had ever heard of.These people don't say they're from the "Wrong Planet" for nothing.It took me a couple of years to really try to grasp the mindset behind it,and once I did,I realized how truly dangerous,and antiprogress these people really are.

Neurodiversity has taken Theresa Binstock's "gotta be genetic" fallacy,and carried it to its most extreme conclusion.

Neurodiversity has taken this lie,that in the dozen or so years since Binstock made the observation,has been completely disproven,and built their own bigger lie around it.Central to neurodiversity,is the belief that


Your autism is not a medical condition that happens to effect the brain,the way epilepsy,or Alzheimer's is,no your autism is YOU.Treat any part of it,especially medically,and you destroy the person.Neurodiversity bloggers can make all the noise they want about this or that biomedical treatment being "unscientific",or "unproven",but deep down this is the real reason they oppose it all.

This is neurodiversity's "big lie".One that I know any of the many parents who have used DAN! or biomedical treatments on their children with Down syndrome,cerebral palsy,or cystic fibrosis would be glad to take up with you.By extension,any autistic who chooses to treat any part of their autism medically is filled with self-hatred,and needs to seek psychiatric help for it.

The neurodiversity bloggers,diagnosed,and otherwise,need to realize that biomedical treatment for autism is here to stay,and it works.The studies coming down from on high,verifying the "science" of it are never going to magically appear,like manna from heaven.What you are probably going to see is that more and more mainstream doctors,and psychiatrists begrudgedly saying that autism is not "hard wired" into the brain after all.That the chelation,the supplement cocktails,and the hyperbarics do work for reversing or "curing" autism,"we don't know why this stuff works but it does",or some such variant is what you are going to be hearing.And neurodiversity will start sounding more and more like the activists who oppose giving children cochlear implants,on the grounds that it poses a threat to "deaf cuture".People who think they are doing something to better the lot of disabled people,but in the end,are just talking a lot,and not saying anything that really matters to people with autism,who truly want to improve their lives.

"Neurodiversity is a religious cult. That pretty much says it all.

I tend to think of it more in the way we think of fever. I think this is a collection of many, many different disorders. And part of the reason why you see so much polarization in the community is because there is a tendency for people to think that their experience is the same as everybody else with a child with autism.

It’s quite believable to me that there are many children who develop autism in the context of having severe gut pathology, of having autoimmune problems, of having lots of other problems. And some of these kids really do recover. And that is quite different from the autism that was originally described in the 1940s and 50s - where it looks like you have it and you are going to have it for the rest of your life. And at that point, it’s a disorder that is mostly manifest by these huge social deficits

Smashing the spectrum

No we can't all get along.

Dr.Thomas Insell is right.The idea that someone who is an expert about
"Doctor Who","Star Trek",or paleontology,and may just also happen to be a social cripple,can have the same disease as someone with severe intellectual disabilites,or that either of these people can have the same condition as someone whose "autistc symptoms" are central to a metabolic,mitochondrial,or autoimmune complex,makes about as much sense as saying that a person who has bacterial pneumonia has the same condition as as a person with Dengue fever,because both can cause a fever.We need to stop this silly game NOW.Ari Ne'eman is not Conor Doherty,is not Hannah Poling,we need to stop pretending that they are.

We need to tear down the entire classification system for ASDs,and rebuild it from the ground up.

I propose something entirely different from what the Amererican Psychiatric Association has. It may not be that there is an "autism epidemic",after all.It may just be that there are too many different conditions,that have been tossed into the
jumbo dump trailer called "autism", and it's time to empty the whole thing.To that end I offer two entirely different solutions,neither of which the APA is going to pay the slightest attention to.

1) Keep Asperger's the way it is,fold the milder PDD diagnoses into Asperger's,take it out of the ASD classification,and make it its own distinct personality disorder.Then take the "autism" or "features of autism" cases with key metabolic/mitochondrial, autoimmune,and GI disease elements out of the autism classification entirely,and reclassify them as a new syndrome.Then work on reclassifying those with primarily intellectual disabilities and "autism" as having something else entirely.

There are certain very corrupt high profile organizations,that neither neurodiversity, nor the pro-cure people esecially like all that much,who would scream bloody murder if the "autism" cash cow they use to fleece desperate parents and well meaning fundraisers out of millions of dollars,was taken away from them,but they are standing in the way of progress as much as neurodiversity is,and need to be taken down.There are a lot of ways of doing this.

2)Sit down an make up a list of all of the "comorbid" conditions that occur with "autism",then go to the DSM diagnotic citeria,and see if any of the following are listed:

Autistic regression,especially repeated regressions triggered by food reactions or immune crises, intellectual disability (AKA "mental retardation".),inabilty to speak,with or without ID, nonverbal learning disabilities,developmental delay,ideomotor,limb-kinetic,verbal,buccofacial, ideatioal,costructional,and oculomotor apraxias,aggression and violence towards others,property destruction,self-abuse,eloping or wandering,GI disease, metabolic/methylation,or mitochondrial disorders,autoimmune disorders, seizures,and a high frequency of systemic fungal/yeast infections.

No they are not.Yet if you,or your child are autistic,and complain about any of these things to your doctor,the chances are very good,the doctor will just shrug his shoulders,and say it's "just part of the autism","we don't know why but it just is."

OK,so if these things really ARE "just part of autism" then MAKE them just that.Add all of these to the official diagnosis.Make it so that,in addition to the existing criteria, you would have to have at least three or more of these conditions to have ANY condition even remotely connected to autism.

Then we could really see if there was an "autism epidemic" after all.

Mercury definitely...

Vaccines maybe not that much

You will get no argument from me that mercury causes autism,but maybe we have been looking for most of it in the wrong place all along.

What if it isn't something injected into our children,but something mothers are taking into their bodies while carrying their babies? What if vaccines were only a TRIGGER ,and the majority of the damage had already been done in the womb? There are two possible sources,fillings and fructose.

Antivaccine types like to talk about the "autism epidemic" starting with the MMR jab,but what if it really goes back to ,the 1985 "New Coke" disaster,and the reintrodution of "Coca-Cola Classic"?

This was really the first widespread use of high fructose corn syrup in a widely used commercial product.High fructose corn syrup is chock full of mercury.

Almost half of tested samples of commercial high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) contained mercury, which was also found in nearly a third of 55 popular brand-name food and beverage products where HFCS is the first- or second-highest labeled ingredient, according to two new U.S. studies.
HFCS has replaced sugar as the sweetener in many beverages and foods such as breads, cereals,breakfast bars, lunch meats, yogurts, soups and condiments. On average, Americans consume about 12 teaspoons per day of HFCS, but teens and other high consumers can take in 80 percent more HFCS than average.
"Mercury is toxic in all its forms. Given how much high-fructose corn syrup is consumed by children,it could be a significant additional source of mercury never before considered. We are calling for immediate changes by industry and the [U.S. Food and Drug Administration] to help stop this avoidable mercury contamination of the food supply," the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy's Dr. David Wallinga, a co-author of both studies, said in a prepared statement.
In the first study, published in current issue of Environmental Health, researchers found detectable levels of mercury in nine of 20 samples of commercial HFCS.
And in the second study, the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
(IATP), a non-profit watchdog group, found that nearly one in three of 55 brand-name foods contained mercury. The chemical was found most commonly in HFCS-containing dairy products, dressings and condiments.

The question is,how much HFCS would a pregnant mother have to consume before she puts her baby at risk for autism? The study on mercury and dental fillings,shows ths depends on how many fillings she has. So the amount taken in should also hold true for HFCS.

Among the study subjects, the highest exposures to mercury from maternal dental amalgams during pregnancy were associated with an increased risk of being diagnosed with autism (severe clinical symptoms), in comparison to an ASD (mild clinical symptoms). Furthermore, the risk of increasing autism severity became significantly manifest among those study subjects with 6 or more maternal dental amalgams during pregnancy in comparison to those study subjects with 5 or fewer maternal dental amalgams during pregnancy. While other potential confounding factors in the present study such as: race, age, gender, and region of residency were examined in statistical modeling, these factors did not account for the adverse effects of mercury exposure from maternal dental amalgams during pregnancy on the offspring observed in the present study.

Holmes and coauthors (2003) examined prenatal sources of mercury exposure
among patients diagnosed with autism in comparison to matched controls. It was observed that patients diagnosed with autism (8.35 ± 3.43) had exposure from significantly increased numbers of maternal dental amalgams during pregnancy than controls (6.60 ± 3.55).In contrast, Adams and others (2008) observed that patients diagnosed with autism (5.5 ± 4.2) had similar numbers of maternal dental amalgams during pregnancy as matched controls (6.6 ± 3.6).

Mercury taken in by the mother has been shown to be present in the baby at birth,as well as being present in breast milk.

Also, mercury from maternal amalgam fillings leads to a significant increase of mercury concentration in the tissues and the hair of fetuses and newborn children. Furthermore, placental, fetal, and infant mercury body burden correlates with the numbers of amalgam fillings of the mothers (Mutter et al. 2007, Palkovicova et al. 2008). Finally, mercury levels in amniotic fluid and breast milk correlate significantly with the number of maternal dental amalgam fillings (Mutter et al. 2007).

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Placental to Fetal Transfer of Mercury and Fetotoxicity


1) Department of Chemistry, St. Marianna University School of Medicine

(Received December 12, 2001)
(Revision accepted for publication February 28, 2002)

Mercury vapor is known penetrate the placental barrier more easily than inorganic mercury. A relative amount of mercury accumulates in the fetus after exposure of pregnant animals to mercury vapor. Mercury concentration in fetal organs is much lower than that in maternal organs except the liver, and fetal liver shows significantly higher mercury concentrations than maternal liver. In fetal liver, a substantial portion of mercury is bound to metallothionein (MT), which plays an important role as a reservoir of mercury during the prenatal period. The mercury retained in fetal liver is redistributed to other organs, such as the brain and kidney, with diminishing MT levels during postnatal development. Consequently, an increase in mercury concentration in the brain and kidney of the neonate is observed. In studies on animal offspring in utero exposed to mercury vapor, behavioral changes, such as radial arm maze, morris maze and lever-press durations, are observed when the levels of mercury vapor exceed the threshold limit value (TLV).

Maybe these kids had already gotten so much mercury in the womb,that the vaccines were only a trigger,and not a cause.Greening our vaccines is a good idea,but maybe we ought to worry more about greening our sodas,jellies,and teriyaki sauces for now.The same goes for discouraging girls and women of childbearing age from getting amalgam fillings.Worrying about vaccines may be like being concerned about smoke damage to the upholstery of your car when your house is on fire.

It's also possible that the amalgam study was ignored because it was from the Geiers, who were tainted by the Lupron disaster,but replicating it should be easy enough.Has anybody looked into the rates of autism among Orthodox Jews,who obey strict rules of Kashrut ?Everybody knows about "Kosher Coke" by now,so they obviously avoid HFCS as much as possible.Given the lack of coverage these studies have gotten from people like David Kirby,and the folks at Age,you do have to wonder why they would have ignored them. The neurodiversity types who claim it's a one-sided vendetta against vaccine makers may have a point here.

Autism activism,and autism treatment,be it from the neurodiversity side or the biomedical side is largely emotional,and comes from the gut.While this is to be expected,it usually prevents you from looking at the big picture,and seeing things rationally.And yes,both sides have their share of wackos.Neither has a monopoly on the truth.

I will never forget the first time I encountered a really zealous biomed mother in one of my Yahoo! groups.This woman was complaining about how no DAN! doctor would see her,or her child.She was not about to bother with a piddling little formality,like getting her child diagnosed, let alone finding out if her child needed the treatments,she knew her child was autistic.She wanted him treated with everything,and wanted it done now !To their credit,no DAN! would treat her,but it just proves how too many biomed parents race headlong into this stuff without first learning what their child's needs are.

As successful as biomed has been for me,I would not recommend anybody go ahead with it,until you have had these tests.Nor would I suggest you use just any chelator.Most of the advocates of strong chelators,like ALA,DMPS,or DMSA,have no idea just how fragile our bodies can be.The Cutler protocol,used by most parents and doctors,was designed for adults with amalgam fillings,who were otherwise healthy,and genetically normal.Malabsorption,immune problems, metatabolic disease,and nutritional deficiencies can all impact the way chelation works,yet this is rarely taken into consideration by doctors and parents,who advocate a one-size-fits-all approach to chelation.Chelation doesn't kill,ignorant parents and practitioners do.I was lucky that I found one of the few DAN! doctors that understood this.

Folate Metabolsism

Chelation,MB12,and folinic acid were key parts of my recovery,but not until I had gone to a DAN!,had the right tests done and learned just why I needed to take this stuff in the first place. The first tests he gave me were to find out if I had high porphyrins,COMT mutations,also found in schizophrenia (I have both COMT1,and COMT2 mutations.),
errors of folate metabolism (It just so happens I have both C677T and A1298C mutations as well.),homocysteinemia,and megaloblastic anemia.Basically he found I had the whole metabolic picture.This in someome waaay too old to have gotten the MMR vaccine.

So,is autism a metabolic disease?In many cases,I would say it is.My autism,my immune problems,my lack of muscle development,and my unexplained hyopogonadism,are probably all metabolic in nature.And we have just begun to find all of the metabolic defects that are involved with autism.This woman might agree with me. Hell,some forms of autism might even be related to neural tube defects,or Down Sndrome,considering all three can involve the same genes.

This raises a great many questions that nobody bothered to ask before.Is this a case of "dysfunction",or of actual mutations,as it is with mitochondria?Certainly as many autistic children and adults need to be tested for these mutations as possible.Assuming the mothers who had these children all took folate and B vitamin supplements while they were pregnant, there was some obvious reason it was not reaching their babies.Was the mother excreting them in her urine,was there some sort of ineffcient metabolism involved with both the mother and the baby? These are the sort of questions we need to be asking instead of going over the same well worn ground about vaccines.The parents and doctors who see patients with Down Syndrome,might be able to provide some of these answers,but they are not coming forward.The example of mitochondrial disease,and autism,gives us some idea why.

It has been over a year,since mitochondrial disease has been officially recognized to exist with autism, but there has been little outreach from mainstream mito groups and doctors.I know from writing to such people through the Yahoo! group,these people are very conservative in their views about medicine and science.They are put off by what they see as the zealotry,and inflexibility of the autism people to blame everything on vaccines,with an unwillingness to look for explanations elsewhere,and to make up all sorts of wild conspiracy theories instead.So they think they are just a bunch of crazies on a vendetta against vaccine makers,who care more about this than they do their children.This may not be the truth,but it is the perception. Until everybody takes a step back,and reasses the way they see this problem, we are never going to make any further progress.