I am the mom of an autistic child. In the needed learning to be the best mom he deserves I have found also the need to research, to exchange opinions and to learn in this journey doing a path and always searching equilibrium.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Research in Autism and Questions

One of my personal fields of interest includes the published research on concomitant medical problems to a diagnosis of ASD. I know that this kind of aspects are open a controversy, but before the beginning I want to clarify some points
a-The fact that concomitant medical problems in ASD are not part of the DSMIV implies what? It implies for me that so much is not known about ASD that these concomitant medical problems-able to be clinically detected- may/may not be related to some individual behavior used to diagnose ASD but they are not considered today as part of the diagnosis tool. What IF the behavioral autistic characteristics used to diagnose under the DSMIV are (or not) a manifestation of an untreated medical condition-detectable clinically but undetected today because the knowledge is not enough to know about the importance of? Therefore How can we be sure about the relation –or not-of medical conditions undetected to the autistic behaviors before the detection/treatment of these medical conditions?
b-The treatment of the properly detected/correctly diagnosed concomitant medical problem is the treatment of this ONLY, not a treatment for autism in advance. The cause of the concomitant medical problem (if it is able to be properly assigned) is not a CAUSE of autism in advance.
Hypothesis /theories/explanations should consider this important distinction. Until we know more about genetics/epigenetics- and impact of concomitant medical conditions in autism in a confirmatory way- this should be the discussion limits beyond personal beliefs about, IMHO.
c-There can be different aspects to consider for each field I will analyze (including placebo effect, natural maturity, stressing individual situations, etc).
I will focus for now in serious published literature on medical conditions able to be detected by certain biochemical testing in ASD.I have been thinking for a while about the presentation/comment of selected published literature on aspects not analyzed generally about:
1-Gastrointestinal issues-Fungus,Bacteria,Parasites, other in gut-Organic and physiological dysfunction
2-Immunological findings-Hypo and hyperresponsive-Immunological dysfunction
3-Endocrinological findings-Endocrine System-Hypothalamus, Pituitary Gland ,Thyroid Gland ,Parathyroid Glands ,Adrenal Glands Pineal Body,Reproductive Glands, Pancreas
4-Metabolic findings
The methionine cycle-The folate cycle-The Biopterin cycle-Purines and pirimidines- Urea cycle- Mitocondrial issues-Fatty acids beta oxidation-
Specific genetic metabolic problems-How many? What?
5-Brain research-
Neurotransmitters-Metabolism of neurotransmitters Serotonine, Dopamine Noradrenaline-Adrenaline
Language development
Nurturing and brain development
6-The controversy about heavy metals and Al
a-Transport system
b-Excretion system
7-The axis gut-immune system-brain. Recent research in the topic
8-Importance of combination of concomitant medical conditions in the health status, behaviour, cognition, language and education in ASD. How much? What areas?
What I propose to do is to analyze certain important papers- important IMO - and to present personal questions of my interest (as the mom of an autistic child) as discussion proposal.
What I propose is to AVOID in the discussion words like CAUSE/S and CURE/S of autism…and I promise to be the most short I can.
What I propose is to focus in 2 questions:
1-In general, autistic children/teens/adults have (certain medical problem here) more than non-autistic children/teen/adults?
2-Autistic children/teens/adults with (certain medical problem here) have the same symptoms and severity of non-ASD children with the same medical problem-considering other factors such as stress ALSO?

I will begin soon, not necessarily in order.
Thank you in advance.I have had some trouble with the initial post (Blogger) but I hope now all is OK.