Some Children Lose Autism Diagnosis But Still Struggle– Study

autismrainbowAt a Defeat Autism Now! conference in the early 2000’s, a panel of experts at the end of the conference were asked, “do you think there is any correlation between autism and ADD and ADHD?”  I recall being impressed with the answer.  Every single expert on the panel (and they represented thousands of autism children in their care) said absolutely, because they had seen over and over again children with autism lose their diagnosis and either become normal or end up with ADD or ADHD symptoms. I’ve also seen most autism children improve, but often struggle with anxiety or obsessive compulsive disorder.

The study (which you can read here… ), “Some children lose autism diagnosis but still struggle: Study shows social, cognitive symptoms resolved in 7% of youths with autism spectrum disorder, but they still needed educational services”,  follows a group of 569 children with initial diagnoses of autism, they had 38 who were available for follow-up. Initially there were 29% with autism and 67% as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The average age at diagnosis was 2.6 years and the average age at follow-up was 6.4 years.

 

At follow-up, here is what they found:

  • 68% had language/learning disability
  • 49% had ADHD, ODD or disruptive behavior
  • 5% had psychosis
  • 8% had no diagnosis and required no medical support.

 

Academically:

  • 26% were mainstream without need of support
  • 13% were mainstream with support
  • 29% were in integrated settings
  • 21% were in self-contained classes

 

Take home message for parents might be that most children improve, and many improve a lot.  Underneath it all are our precious children who have vast unique talents and abilities, often unknown or needing to be released.

 

I owe most of my deepest understanding of medicine and how to get to root causes of medical conditions, to the brave children and their parents who have battled with this misunderstood condition.

 

Thank-you to each and every one of you who has been patient with me and guided me in understanding autism and health, and wellness in general.

 

 

Dr. Paul

 

Oregon’s Vaccine Industry Legislator- Senator Steiner Hayward

OregonFlagWhen doctors turn legislator, and then act like they have the public’s best interest at heart, it is worth looking a little deeper.  In our “No on SB442” and “Yes for Medical Freedom” movement (which you can learn more about here and here… ) we encountered the biased anti-choice, anti-civil liberties, anti-parents choice, and anti-informed consent stand of Senator Steiner Hayward.

One can only wonder what conflicts of interest must have existed for her.  She spent the first several minutes (taking time away from those of us who would testify in opposition to her bill) claiming she had no connections to Pharma and had never taken a penny from them (now known to be untrue).

The blog: Senator Steiner Hayward’s SB 673: Drilling for Mandatory Gardasil Shots for 11 year old Kids? (which has been removed at the time of this writing but can still be Googled and can bring you here… ) sheds light on facts that makes it very clear that doctor Senator Steiner Hayward is pushing a Pharma pro-vaccine agenda that has nothing to do with protecting our children and everything to do with big profits for Pharma.  Sure, when it comes to vaccines, doctors can always hide behind the argument “vaccines are safe and effective,”  neither of which is true when it comes to the Gardasil that seems to be behind much of the legislative activity of Dr Steiner Hayward.

To stay in touch with what is going on with Oregon and vaccine bills, visit the web site: Oregonians for Medical Freedom by clicking here.

 

Dr. Paul

 

 

 

World Happiness Report 2015

Happy EarthAs a parent, I think of happiness as one of those things we wish for our children and loved ones. Inner joy, peace, and serenity that comes from that combination of love, safety, community, health, and a sense of purpose in one’s life is something we all strive for, regardless of where we come from or live in the world.
I write from the USA, the number 15 country in this survey. I grew up in Zimbabwe, number 115 out of 158 countries. I know that personally many things have at times enhanced or reduced my “happiness”, but would suggest you look at this report in a way that might guide you in how you can help improve our world for your family, for your country, and for the world itself.
At the top are Switzerland, Iceland, Denmark, and Norway, with average scores between 7.5 and 7.6. The rest of the top 10 are Canada, Finland, Netherlands, Sweden, New Zealand, and Australia, all with average scores above 7.28. Why have 4 countries remained on top since the last report of 2013?
Three-quarters of the differences among countries, is found in these six key variables: GDP per capita, healthy years of life expectancy, social support, trust, perceived freedom to make life decisions, and generosity. The differences in social support, incomes, and healthy life expectancy are the most important factors.
The positive experiences are happiness, smiling or laughter, enjoyment, feeling safe at night, feeling well-rested, and feeling interested. The negative experiences are anger, worry, sadness, depression, stress, and pain.
The study (found here… ) summary states, “Studies that follow children from birth into adulthood show that of the three key features of child development (academic, behavioral, or emotional), emotional development is the best of the three predictors, and academic achievement the worst”. I feel sad reading this, knowing that so much of our efforts in schools is focused on the academics, while our children are literally suffering emotionally and behaviorally.
“Since mental health is a key determinant of adult life satisfaction, and half of mentally ill adults already showed the symptoms by the age of 15, our focus should be on mental health, social support and connectedness. Altogether 200 million children worldwide are suffering from diagnosable mental health problems requiring treatment. Yet even in the richest countries, only a quarter are in treatment. Giving more priority to the well-being of children is one of the most obvious and cost-effective ways to invest in future world happiness.”

This report points out that societies with “generalized trust, good governance, and mutual support by individuals within that society are conducive to pro-social behavior, which raises well-being, by promoting social support systems, generosity, and voluntarism, honesty in public administration, and by reducing the costs of doing business”.
There is an entire book worth of take home messages from this report. As a dad and pediatrician to thousands, I say love, protect, nurture, and get connected and involved in your children’s lives. Of course we must provide economically (and that seems to always be the number one stressor), but growing up in Zimbabwe, where even today the average person survives on a tiny fraction of what the average American lives on, happiness has much more to do with love, emotional support, and community than it does possessions.
Get involved in your child’s life every chance you can. When our government fails to protect us from big business (capitalism) gone wild, such as mandated vaccines that make no sense (Hepatitis B for newborns whose mothers don’t have Hepatitis B as an example), we must use common sense and stand up for our children in the face of doctors who may have lost their own common sense in their attempts to conform to standards of care and arbitrary quality measures.

Dr. Paul

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