Autism & Gastrointestinal Concerns

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Internet Resources

Neurological diseases with systemic features (particularly with significant gastrointestinal symptoms) may be approached from a complementary medicine model that recognizes the role of the abdominal nervous system with regard to etiology and treatment.
David McMillin, Douglas Richards, Eric Mein, Carl Nelson
Inflammatory Bowel Disease Treatment: Effectiveness, Safety, and Adherence; New Developments in Endoscopy; New Insights Into Irritable Bowel Syndrome; Barrett's Esophagus: The Challenge Continues; Chronic Hepatitis C
Bret Lashner, Charles Lightdale, Kevin Olden, Brian Fennerty, Rowen Zetterman
The gut-brain connection is now recognized as a basic tenet of physiology and medicine, and examples of gastrointestinal involvement in a variety of neurological diseases are extensive.
Eamonn M. Quigley, David Hurley
In the syndrome of autistic enterocolitis, although the gut lymphoid tissue is an important focus of disease activity, the major symptomatic impact is evident in behaviour and development.
Andrew Wakefield, Scott Montgomery
Bobby Kennedy Jr recently shared with the fact that "lower level special education" classrooms across America are filled with autistic children writhing on the floor in agony from "autistic enterocolitis". More evidence of a lack of critical thinking and pitiful use of gut wrenching pathos to bolster a pathetic and unscientific argument (his ginned-up conspiracy theory about thimerosal and an international cabal protecting thimerosal from criticism and various entities from lawsuits.). (Discussion and acknowledgements from, "Prevalence of chronic gastrointestinal symptoms in children with autism and autistic spectrum disorders.")
Autism Diva
Treatment for candida albicans infrequently results in a cure for autism. However, if the person is suffering from this problem, his/her health and behavior should improve following the therapy.
Stephen Edelson
Constipation is a frequent finding in children with gastrointestinal symptoms and autism, particularly in the rectosigmoid colon, often with acquired megarectum. The absence of any correlation between the clinical history and the degree of fecal impaction in autistic children confirms the importance of an abdominal radiograph in the assessment of their degree of constipation.
Nadeem Afzal et al
An endoscopically and histologically consistent pattern of ileocolonic pathology has been identified in a cohort of children with DD's. This syndrome may reflect a subset of children with DD's with distinct etiological and clinical features.
A.J. Wakefield
Unrecognized gastrointestinal disorders, especially reflux esophagitis and disaccharide malabsorption, may contribute to the behavioral problems of the non-verbal autistic patients.
Karoly Horvath, John C. Papadimitriou, Anna Rabsztyn, Cinthia Drachenberg, J. Tyson Tildon
The link between bowel disease and autism has been that gastrointestinal disorders were evident before the diagnosis of autism. This appears not to be true. A further claim was that first the gastrointestinal disorders, and then the autism, were cause by vaccination (either with measles vaccine, or MMR). This paper does not address that issue, but it effectively demolishes the theory on which the original claims of a link were made.
Some cases of late-onset (regressive) autism may involve abnormal flora because oral vancomycin, which is poorly absorbed, may lead to significant improvement in these children. Fecal flora of children with regressive autism was compared with that of control children, and clostridial counts were higher. The number of clostridial species found in the stools of children with autism was greater than in the stools of control children. Children with autism had 9 species of Clostridium not found in controls, whereas controls yielded only 3 species not found in children with autism. In all, there were 25 different clostridial species found. In gastric and duodenal specimens, the most striking finding was total absence of non-spore-forming anaerobes and microaerophilic bacteria from control children and significant numbers of such bacteria from children with autism. These studies demonstrate significant alterations in the upper and lower intestinal flora of children with late-onset autism and may provide insights into the nature of this disorder.
SM Finegold et al
There were 182 children in the study; parents of 136 of the students were absolutely certain that one or more foods exacerbated the child's hyperactivity. The foods they considered most suspect were sugar, food coloring, and milk, in that order.
William Crook
The first line of protection against dysbiosis and intestinal toxicity is strict control of intestinal permeability, the ability of the gut to allow some substances to pass through its walls while denying access to others.
Leo Galland
Even if it develops that the GI pathology is unrelated to the etiology of autism or its unique behavioral symptomatology, the discoveries appear to verify what parents and physicians have long suspected, namely, that many autistic children have abnormal GI function
John F. White
Effective treatment of the Leaky Gut Syndromes requires avoidance of enterotoxic drugs and allergic foods, elimination of infection or bacterial overgrowth with antimicrobials and probiotics, and dietary supplementation with trophic nutrients.
Leo Galland
Experts suggest that early detection and treatment of pediatric GERD may result in an improved long-term outcome as well as a better quality-of-life. This educational activity will provide physicians, pharmacists, nurses, and other pediatric health care professionals with current data and discussion on the diagnosis and management of pediatric GERD, as well as related clinical trials and guidelines. This information will better enable health care professionals to provide the education, reassurance, and practical guidance crucially needed by parents of children with persistent symptoms of GERD-related conditions.
Harland Winter et al
Seventy five of 91 patients with a histologically confirmed diagnosis of ileal lymphonodular hyperplasia and enterocolitis were positive for measles virus in their intestinal tissue compared with five of 70 control patients. Measles virus was identified within the follicular dendritic cells and some lymphocytes in foci of reactive follicular hyperplasia. The copy number of measles virus ranged from one to 300 000 copies/ng total RNA. The data confirm an association between the presence of measles virus and gut pathology in children with developmental disorder.
V. Uhlmann et al
The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of chronic gastrointestinal symptoms in a general population of children with autism or autistic spectrum disorder (ASD). The study site was a clinic specializing in ASD in a large pediatric medical center serving a 10 county area in the midwestern USA. In a sample of 137 children, age 24-96 months, classified as having autism or ASD by the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic, 24 percent had a history of at least one chronic gastrointestinal symptom. The most common symptom was diarrhea, which occurred in 17 percent. There was no association between chronic gastrointestinal symptoms and a history of developmental regression. The potential phenotypic association between autism and gastrointestinal symptoms is discussed.
Cynthia A. Molloy, Patricia Manning-Courtney
The purpose of this proposal is to learn about the gastrointestinal function of children with autism and determine if relationships exist between digestion, allergy, motility and behavior.
Harland Winter, Tim Buie, Rafail Kushak
In a case-control analysis matching on age at index date, calendar time, and general practice, we found no increase in a history of chronic gastrointestinal inflammation, coeliac disease, food intolerance, or recurrent gastrointestinal symptoms among children with autism compared with those without autism.
Corri Black et al
Ohio State University Medical Center is one of 12 sites nationally studying an investigational medication for treating children with autism and gastrointestinal problems. The medication is an oral dose of human immunoglobulin, which contains antibodies to antigens that are thought to overstimulate the immune system and activate an autoimmune response. Some experts believe that the gastrointestinal problems and immune reactions may even be a cause or aggravator of autistic symptoms in some children.
During the early part of 2005, Thoughtful House's plush blue-and-white website indicated that the 49-year-old British former gut surgeon and laboratory researcher, was establishing what appeared to be a facility to bring developmentally-disordered children from all over America, and possibly the world, to the lone star state's capital, for the purpose of undergoing endoscopy. This looked like good business, but recent developments suggest that something in Austin has changed. In late August 2005, the Thoughtful House website underwent dramatic reconfiguration. The "Mount Rushmore" line-up of Wakefield, Krigsman, Jepson and Granpeesheh, seen above, vanished from the welcome page. And previously extensive details of the Wakefield operation's clinical services were replaced with: "This page is under construction."
Brian Deer
Leaky gut or LGS is a poorly recognised but extremely common problem. Essentially, it represents a hyperpermeable intestinal lining. In other words, large spaces develop between the cells of the gut wall, and bacteria, toxins and food leak in.
Autism Research Unit, University of Sunderland

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