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Showing posts from February, 2018

Winter Olympics

Today�s post is about the non-academic benefits of treating classic autism, which mainly seem to come from raising cognition (IQ).

Our reader Liz from Australia, whose five year old daughter has been using Bumetanide for two years, was telling us recently in her comments how her daughter can now go surfing with her four brothers. While we do all want success at school and mastering practical skills like doing up shoe laces, the importance of being able to actively participate with siblings should not be underestimated. Some siblings may be angels, but quite often there is resentment about having a sibling with special needs. One way to compensate is to have cool talents like surfing, skiing, fencing - something you can do well.

When I started this blog I was contacted by an Australian doctor who has a son with autism, she went to the same university as me. Her son was diagnosed early with severe autism with MR/ID, but progressed remarkably well and attended a mainstream school. His chose…

Verapamil or Rezular (R-verapamil) for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?

A nasty condition that is equally nasty to spell - diarrhoea/diarrhea

Today�s post may help to explain why some people�s GI problems seem to vanish when they take Verapamil for their autism.

Verapamil is usually prescribed as an L-type calcium channel blocker, to lower blood pressure. This type of ion channel is widely expressed in the brain, the heart and the pancreas. The pancreas is where your body makes those digestive enzymes. Mast cells that release histamine also contain L-type calcium channels.

Verapamil blocks the L-type calcium channel Cav1.2, which in posts a few years ago I showed could be relevant for some types of autism. An extreme dysfunction of this ion channel leads to Timothy Syndrome, which is a single gene variant of autism with severe heart defects.  There is now some more recently published research which I have highlighted below.

L-type calcium channels as drug targets in CNS disorders
L-type calcium channels are present in most electrically excitable cells and are …

Online Autism Communities

I am often surprised what counts as academic research these days, but I stumbled upon one such paper that I thought might be of general interest. It is a study from 2017 of the 550,000 comments left on two popular forums, autismweb.com and autism-pdd.net. Both of these forums have since closed down.
Cataloguing Treatments Discussed and Used in Online Autism Communities A large number of patients discuss treatments in online health communities (OHCs). One research question of interest to health researchers is whether treatments being discussed in OHCs are eventually used by community members in their real lives. In this paper, we rely on machine learning methods to automatically identify attributions of mentions of treatments from an online autism community. The context of our work is online autism communities, where parents exchange support for the care of their children with autism spectrum disorder. Our methods are able to distinguish discussions of treatments that are associated with …

DHED, delivering Estradiol only to the Brain, also Lupron and Spironolactone

The Hungarian flag, for clever Laszlo Prokai

Lupron � partially right, but for the wrong reason?
In the US there undoubtedly are some quack therapies for autism, however on occasion we have seen that you can stumble upon an effective therapy for entirely the wrong reason. In the history of medicine there are drugs that were stumbled upon, or created by accident. In the case of the �Lupron protocol� which was promoted by a father and son (Geier and Geier), an extremely expensive therapy was apparently applied to hundreds of children, before being shut down by the medical regulators. Without going into all the details, Geier�s therapy combined chelation (antioxidants) and a drug called Lupron that causes a dramatic reduction in testosterone levels.In the jargon, it causes hypogonadism - diminished functional activity of the gonads (the testes in males or the ovaries in females). Lupron is another of those drugs that costs ten times more in the US than in the normal world. So a single inject…