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Autism - Support Across the Spectrum Autism - Support Across the Spectrum

Paradigm Shift: Autism is a Neuro-Immune Disorder...

Posted by on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:59 AM
  • 51 Replies

The paradigm of autism is shifting from being thought to be "genetic" to an environmentally triggered Neuro-Immune disorder.  Here is a fantastic article about this shilft:

http://www.ageofautism.com/2013/09/immune-treatments-for-autism.html#comments  (scroll UP for the whole article)

How many children with autism also have other immune challenges and food sensitivities (intolerances).  I know my son had 26!! (we had to test for it--it wasn't fully obvious at the time).  When we took out the top 4 food offenders, along with detoxing through vitamins, he made an amazing recovery.  Our story is on my journals page.


by on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:59 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Julie132
by Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 11:37 AM

Any thoughts??

Koltie6
by Bronze Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 11:53 AM
1 mom liked this
I absolutely believe this. My son has chronic health problems. As we treat these his autistic behaviors get better.
kajira
by Emma on Sep. 12, 2013 at 12:13 PM
10 moms liked this

I had some health problems as an autistic person. I FIXED those issues, via testing, vitamins, etc. Guess what? I'm still autistic and while I had comorbid health problems, my brain wiring is still wired for autism.

I believe autism is a brain wiring. If you can fix or cure it with vitamins, detoxing and environmental fixes, it's not the way the brain is wired, making it something other than autism in my opinion.

I personally believe we have more then one "type" of autism.... :/ One that's related to the body, that mimics autism wiring symptoms, that can be worked on.

Feeling better, definitely made me ACT better, but it didn't cure my wiring. I'm autistic. It's how I'm wired, so I don't believe that it's something doctors can fix.

JTMOM422
by Brenda on Sep. 12, 2013 at 12:48 PM
1 mom liked this

I am going to agree with Emma on this one. I think there are many forms of autism. Think about how no 2 people with autism are alike. I think some can be environmentally caused and others genetically. 


KatyTylersMom
by Silver Member on Sep. 13, 2013 at 1:12 AM
2 moms liked this

I absolutely feel that autism is an immune disorder where the brain is attacked and damaged by various toxins and environmental triggers.  I think the degree to which treatments that address the damage can be successful depend on how quickly they are begun after onset of symptoms and how the body can rally to repair and recover.  So perhaps for Emma had she had the dietary and other changes as a young child she would have had different results than she's had as an adult.  Or maybe not.  But the brain will re-wire itself in response to damage and the brain will relearn what to do with it's current wiring when parts of it are incapable of functioning.  So to say that autism is purely brain wiring is misleading.  The brain is responding to insult and destruction of itself and doing its best to retain functionality. 

I feel this also answers the question of why every person with autism is so distinctly different from the others.  If your brain is injured you have problems with the areas affected.  If that brain injury is caused by an on-going disease process then  you might see people like my son who have issues with motor control, speech/language, etc. but no OCD tendencies or sensory overload issues because those portions of his brain, for whatever reason, were not damaged. 

I think what's important to take away from this is that autism is brain damage.  Something is damaging our kids' brains.  You can treat brain damage with therapies but if you don't treat the underlying disease process CAUSING the damage and it keeps going then the therapies will not ever keep up. 

LIMom1105
by Silver Member on Sep. 13, 2013 at 11:44 PM
Here's my thought, which is purely based on my theory and nothing scientific so take it with a big grain of salt.

I think it's possible that it's an immune response gone awry. I have lupus and my immune system attacks my organs, so it's a similar idea. There are things I can do that prevent flare-ups, but the disease doesn't disappear. I feel more comfortable when I'm not in pain and my mood, everything improves. Daily pain and inflammation make me depressed, grouchy, and less able to cope with problems. But I still have an underling disorder that I cannot lose, I can only work on the symptoms.

I think autism may be similar in this respect. You can do things that make someone feel better and therefore, other areas of life improve too. But autism is still there.
kajira
by Emma on Sep. 14, 2013 at 12:16 AM
1 mom liked this

I don't feel my brain is damaged, and find that really offensive.


Quoting KatyTylersMom:

I absolutely feel that autism is an immune disorder where the brain is attacked and damaged by various toxins and environmental triggers.  I think the degree to which treatments that address the damage can be successful depend on how quickly they are begun after onset of symptoms and how the body can rally to repair and recover.  So perhaps for Emma had she had the dietary and other changes as a young child she would have had different results than she's had as an adult.  Or maybe not.  But the brain will re-wire itself in response to damage and the brain will relearn what to do with it's current wiring when parts of it are incapable of functioning.  So to say that autism is purely brain wiring is misleading.  The brain is responding to insult and destruction of itself and doing its best to retain functionality. 

I feel this also answers the question of why every person with autism is so distinctly different from the others.  If your brain is injured you have problems with the areas affected.  If that brain injury is caused by an on-going disease process then  you might see people like my son who have issues with motor control, speech/language, etc. but no OCD tendencies or sensory overload issues because those portions of his brain, for whatever reason, were not damaged. 

I think what's important to take away from this is that autism is brain damage.  Something is damaging our kids' brains.  You can treat brain damage with therapies but if you don't treat the underlying disease process CAUSING the damage and it keeps going then the therapies will not ever keep up. 


KatyTylersMom
by Silver Member on Sep. 14, 2013 at 12:43 AM

Technically the enlarged ventricles, the over/under connectivity in certain areas, the lack of blood flow to the language centers due to inflammatory processes, which have all been seen in MRIs of people with autism are results of damage to the brain. There are even studies looking at certain markers and levels of substances that indicate brain damage which were found to be elevated in younger children with autism but that leveled off and decreased with age, perhaps indicating that whatever it is that injures the brain does improve and diminish with age. 

I'm certainly not looking to offend you but I'm also not about to sugar coat autism.  Autism is a collection of symptoms caused by a disease process that damages the brain to varying degrees which then results in the typical (but extremely varied) symptoms of autism.  People certainly can sustain brain damage and recover be it from a disease or a bullet, but my issue with autism is that it falls between the cracks of "psychological disorder" which would perhaps require some medication but mostly just therapy of some sort, and a true medical disease which could respond much better to something other than therapies to learn to live with the problem IF we could find the cause. 

Does having parts of your brain be damaged or not work right for whatever reason make you somehow less than anyone else? Not at all.  Gabrielle Giffords got shot in the head, is likely missing a rather large chunk of her brain, and I don't think anyone is going to say that her brain damage makes her less.  It might make it harder for her to express herself, harder to do the job she loves, harder to do a lot of things but less of a person worthy of respect?  I don't think so. 


Quoting kajira:

I don't feel my brain is damaged, and find that really offensive.


Quoting KatyTylersMom:

I absolutely feel that autism is an immune disorder where the brain is attacked and damaged by various toxins and environmental triggers.  I think the degree to which treatments that address the damage can be successful depend on how quickly they are begun after onset of symptoms and how the body can rally to repair and recover.  So perhaps for Emma had she had the dietary and other changes as a young child she would have had different results than she's had as an adult.  Or maybe not.  But the brain will re-wire itself in response to damage and the brain will relearn what to do with it's current wiring when parts of it are incapable of functioning.  So to say that autism is purely brain wiring is misleading.  The brain is responding to insult and destruction of itself and doing its best to retain functionality. 

I feel this also answers the question of why every person with autism is so distinctly different from the others.  If your brain is injured you have problems with the areas affected.  If that brain injury is caused by an on-going disease process then  you might see people like my son who have issues with motor control, speech/language, etc. but no OCD tendencies or sensory overload issues because those portions of his brain, for whatever reason, were not damaged. 

I think what's important to take away from this is that autism is brain damage.  Something is damaging our kids' brains.  You can treat brain damage with therapies but if you don't treat the underlying disease process CAUSING the damage and it keeps going then the therapies will not ever keep up. 




kajira
by Emma on Sep. 14, 2013 at 12:54 AM
1 mom liked this

you and I will have to agree to disagree. I believe there's more than one TYPE of autism.. and I'm not damaged, I'm not brain damaged, and there's nothing wrong with my brain. I'm wired differently, and what I lack in some areas, I make up for in others.

I know you're all into the biomendical approach, but this attitude that your children are damaged, is going to hurt them int he long run. Think about that... it's hurtful... you aren't autistic - so I guess you wouldn't understand how it feels to see someone you respect say your brain is damaged.... 

Quoting KatyTylersMom:

Technically the enlarged ventricles, the over/under connectivity in certain areas, the lack of blood flow to the language centers due to inflammatory processes, which have all been seen in MRIs of people with autism are results of damage to the brain. There are even studies looking at certain markers and levels of substances that indicate brain damage which were found to be elevated in younger children with autism but that leveled off and decreased with age, perhaps indicating that whatever it is that injures the brain does improve and diminish with age. 

I'm certainly not looking to offend you but I'm also not about to sugar coat autism.  Autism is a collection of symptoms caused by a disease process that damages the brain to varying degrees which then results in the typical (but extremely varied) symptoms of autism.  People certainly can sustain brain damage and recover be it from a disease or a bullet, but my issue with autism is that it falls between the cracks of "psychological disorder" which would perhaps require some medication but mostly just therapy of some sort, and a true medical disease which could respond much better to something other than therapies to learn to live with the problem IF we could find the cause. 

Does having parts of your brain be damaged or not work right for whatever reason make you somehow less than anyone else? Not at all.  Gabrielle Giffords got shot in the head, is likely missing a rather large chunk of her brain, and I don't think anyone is going to say that her brain damage makes her less.  It might make it harder for her to express herself, harder to do the job she loves, harder to do a lot of things but less of a person worthy of respect?  I don't think so. 


Quoting kajira:

I don't feel my brain is damaged, and find that really offensive.


Quoting KatyTylersMom:

I absolutely feel that autism is an immune disorder where the brain is attacked and damaged by various toxins and environmental triggers.  I think the degree to which treatments that address the damage can be successful depend on how quickly they are begun after onset of symptoms and how the body can rally to repair and recover.  So perhaps for Emma had she had the dietary and other changes as a young child she would have had different results than she's had as an adult.  Or maybe not.  But the brain will re-wire itself in response to damage and the brain will relearn what to do with it's current wiring when parts of it are incapable of functioning.  So to say that autism is purely brain wiring is misleading.  The brain is responding to insult and destruction of itself and doing its best to retain functionality. 

I feel this also answers the question of why every person with autism is so distinctly different from the others.  If your brain is injured you have problems with the areas affected.  If that brain injury is caused by an on-going disease process then  you might see people like my son who have issues with motor control, speech/language, etc. but no OCD tendencies or sensory overload issues because those portions of his brain, for whatever reason, were not damaged. 

I think what's important to take away from this is that autism is brain damage.  Something is damaging our kids' brains.  You can treat brain damage with therapies but if you don't treat the underlying disease process CAUSING the damage and it keeps going then the therapies will not ever keep up. 





KatyTylersMom
by Silver Member on Sep. 14, 2013 at 1:05 AM

I'm just going based on everything I read.  Maternal antibodies attacking the developing brain = brain damage.  Harmful chemicals released into the blood stream by c-diff bacteria in the gut = brain damage.  Opiate chemicals leaked from holes in the gut into the blood stream = brain involement if not damage.  Lack of nutrients crucial to brain development = brain underdevelopment and/or damage. 

To me if we can't face the nature of autism how can we hope to find better ways to help our kids?  My daughter is currently in a really fantastic program (Brain Balance) designed by a neurologist which focuses on building up her weaknesses and then integrating them with her strengths.  It is the kind of program often used for people who have had strokes or other forms of BRAIN DAMAGE.  And guess what?  It's really working.  She's a little less than halfway through it, has suddenly potty trained, is much more coordinated in her movments, is speaking better, is better able to organize her thoughts to actually do things like tell us about her day (which she could never do before), and it's all from a therapy that is based on treatments that work for brains that have been damaged to get them to relearn how to function. 

She, as a person is not damaged.  She is a kind loving wonderful little girl who has amazed me with how sweet and helpful she is with her much more affected little brother, how hard she works in school, and how ready she is to greet every day with a huge smile and enough energy to power an entire city.  And I don't find it at all hard to separate the wonderful person she is from her physical biology which is not as it should be. So I'll work hard to help her fix the latter which will only let her be more of the former.


Quoting kajira:

you and I will have to agree to disagree. I believe there's more than one TYPE of autism.. and I'm not damaged, I'm not brain damaged, and there's nothing wrong with my brain. I'm wired differently, and what I lack in some areas, I make up for in others.

I know you're all into the biomendical approach, but this attitude that your children are damaged, is going to hurt them int he long run. Think about that... it's hurtful... you aren't autistic - so I guess you wouldn't understand how it feels to see someone you respect say your brain is damaged.... 

Quoting KatyTylersMom:

Technically the enlarged ventricles, the over/under connectivity in certain areas, the lack of blood flow to the language centers due to inflammatory processes, which have all been seen in MRIs of people with autism are results of damage to the brain. There are even studies looking at certain markers and levels of substances that indicate brain damage which were found to be elevated in younger children with autism but that leveled off and decreased with age, perhaps indicating that whatever it is that injures the brain does improve and diminish with age. 

I'm certainly not looking to offend you but I'm also not about to sugar coat autism.  Autism is a collection of symptoms caused by a disease process that damages the brain to varying degrees which then results in the typical (but extremely varied) symptoms of autism.  People certainly can sustain brain damage and recover be it from a disease or a bullet, but my issue with autism is that it falls between the cracks of "psychological disorder" which would perhaps require some medication but mostly just therapy of some sort, and a true medical disease which could respond much better to something other than therapies to learn to live with the problem IF we could find the cause. 

Does having parts of your brain be damaged or not work right for whatever reason make you somehow less than anyone else? Not at all.  Gabrielle Giffords got shot in the head, is likely missing a rather large chunk of her brain, and I don't think anyone is going to say that her brain damage makes her less.  It might make it harder for her to express herself, harder to do the job she loves, harder to do a lot of things but less of a person worthy of respect?  I don't think so. 


Quoting kajira:

I don't feel my brain is damaged, and find that really offensive.


Quoting KatyTylersMom:

I absolutely feel that autism is an immune disorder where the brain is attacked and damaged by various toxins and environmental triggers.  I think the degree to which treatments that address the damage can be successful depend on how quickly they are begun after onset of symptoms and how the body can rally to repair and recover.  So perhaps for Emma had she had the dietary and other changes as a young child she would have had different results than she's had as an adult.  Or maybe not.  But the brain will re-wire itself in response to damage and the brain will relearn what to do with it's current wiring when parts of it are incapable of functioning.  So to say that autism is purely brain wiring is misleading.  The brain is responding to insult and destruction of itself and doing its best to retain functionality. 

I feel this also answers the question of why every person with autism is so distinctly different from the others.  If your brain is injured you have problems with the areas affected.  If that brain injury is caused by an on-going disease process then  you might see people like my son who have issues with motor control, speech/language, etc. but no OCD tendencies or sensory overload issues because those portions of his brain, for whatever reason, were not damaged. 

I think what's important to take away from this is that autism is brain damage.  Something is damaging our kids' brains.  You can treat brain damage with therapies but if you don't treat the underlying disease process CAUSING the damage and it keeps going then the therapies will not ever keep up. 







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