Now we know.
Now we know that Alex Spourdalakis, whose short life ended so tragically, was afflicted with the kind of GI damage characteristic of so many other children with autism.
We know because finally, after getting out of the Loyola Hospital hellhole, he was scoped by Dr. Krigsman.
We know because images from the scoping were shown yesterday on CBS. (See screen grab above of what Krigsman called "too many" tiny ulcers to count.)
The one thing we don't know is when the medical world will be held to account for this catastrophe -- not just the effects, but the cause.
Because, of course, the deepest issue is causation. I've been told that Alex's mother specifically described a reaction to the MMR shot as the cause of her son's regressive autism. To cause autism and unbearable gut damage, deny it, and fail to treat it -- well, that is quite some record for a "helping" profession. A broken record, sadly.
As much as I like Sharyl Attkisson and am glad to see this story -- first exposed by AOA Contributing Editor Lisa Goes months ago -- gain national attention, the segment devolved into a bit of a mess. Ari Ne'eman, really? He gave his usual spiel about how some people think autism is so bad its sufferers might as well be dead. So what, Ari, since you don't believe in treatment? Many people who are in agony wish they and/or someone else they believe to be in agony were dead. Some act on that wish. That's bad. Very bad. Tell us something we don't know.
Tell us how to stop it. Tell us how to treat it.
Those of us in the autism biomed community know that won't happen anytime soon, because this goes to the heart of Andy Wakefield's research, the supposedly discredited and fraudulent Lancet case study from 1998 that reported just this syndrome -- MMR, regression, gut pathology -- in 12 children. Hundreds of thousands more children have suffered the same fate since then; many, many more are destined to if things don't change.
And that's something we know for sure.
Dan Olmsted is Editor of Age of Autism.