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Will I Have a Second Child with Autism? A Third? Kim Stagliano on Huffington Post

Els Family Hi, friends. I have a new post up at HuffPo - a different take on the Pedatrics study on siblings. As always, I'd appreciate if you'd pop over to HuffPo and and leave a comment. Then FB share and Tweet the post. Here's the start of the post: Thanks. KS

A new study in Pediatrics says the recurrence risk of autism in younger siblings is higher than previously thought. Hardly comforting to autism families who want a second or third child and not surprising to me, mom of three daughters with autism.

In 1999, my husband and I were considering having a third child. Mia and Gianna (4 and 3 years old at the time) had just been diagnosed with autism. Mark and I wanted answers. At the advice of our pediatrician, we sought genetic counseling. The geneticist at a top children's hospital said the chance of a third child with autism was perhaps 25 percent. He told us it was, at best, a guess. New Year's Eve 1999 arrived, we partied per the Prince song, and nine months later Bella arrived with a birth history that may have lead to her autism diagnosis.

The previously estimated risk was 3 to 10 percent. The new study shows a 26 percent recurrence for males and 32 percent for infants with more than one older sibling with autism. In short, nothing practical has changed in 11 years. I'm all about the practical, so what to do in 2011?

Answers could stem from the recent California Autism Twins Study (CATS), the largest ever study of twins with autism, which questions the scientific assumption that autism is genetic, instead pointing the finger at environmental causes. If autism is environmental, not purely genetic, we should be able to prevent and treat autism if we can determine the triggers. That's good news. Read the full post at Huffington Post/Kim Stagliano.

Comments

Carol

Tanisha,

This is a story I hear over and over on ageofautism. You are wise not to vaccinate your second son.

Tanisha jimenez

I have a 7yr old son who is perfect at birth 7 pounds 9 ounces healthy baby boy where is perfect on schedule for everything got his MMR vaccine and tetanus shot at 1 years old had a unfamiliar outbreak I have bumps all over his body and then all of the sudden he totally went backwards stopped trying to walk stopped trying to talk he would bang his head and scream he was diagnosed with autism at 3 years old I just had my second son he's four and a half months old and we have not given him one set of shots at all we need to know what causes autism and if by the age of 2 he shows no signs of autism then we know that item is due to shop for our family I believe there's many causes autism and I don't believe that were ever going to really be able we just have to hope and pray that we find cure and make sure we spread the word to pinpoint the actual cause

John Stone

Star

Fragile X is a marker for autism susceptibility but not everyone with fragile X is autistic. The rate of Fragile X related autistic cases has apparently remained fairly static as general rate has sky-rocketed.

star

actually there are autism genes.. one being fragile x

Benedetta

I do not know if this has anything to do with what happened to my kids but;
I had a tetanus shot at age 21. All in a couple of months, I got married, graduated from college and got a new job with the forest service. The new job required a tetanus shot.
I came down with the worse yeast infection. I had never had one before, I did not know what it was. I thought it was from being a newly wed, but now I am thinking could the tetanus shot caused my blood sugar to go hay wire and upset my immune system?

I had my first child at age 25 and she was perfect but she had very high temp with the DPT shot and at 18 months came down with Kawasakis.

We could be setting our kids up with something as simple as a tetanus shot. Most tetanus shots are required at age 14 but a kid working at odd jobs to get through college like my husband had four tetanus shots in those short teen years.

I heard two nurses at our church talking a couple of years back and one was telling the other that the tetanus shot use to be recommended every six years but there was some report of people getting tetanus with the recommended six years so they were now being told to tell the patients they need to get them every three years.
Still if I had paid attention to the high temperatures my kids were having with their DPT shots,skipped them they would have turned out fine.

But now a days they have a vaccine for everything, I don't think a parent has a chance.

Have the next child and got into hiding, home school it - this is about how it is.

I had my two kids, my sister-in-law (husband's sister) had her four boys (pretty bad problems and can't leave home hardly and the boys are grown).

But I see there will be no next generation - no grandchildren and I am sad but relieved because I doubt we could get pass the vaccines and have any sanity left in this family.

paul

The Role of Sport in the Therapy of Autistic Children

MARIANA SANDRU and IULIA BOGDAN – the therapists of the twins Andrei and Mihai
Albu, diagnosed with infantile autism and ADHD


Andrei and Mihai are 8 and a half years old and they were diagnosed as autistic children when they were 4.The therapy begun when they were 5- an adapted ABA to each level, coordinated by the ABA specialist Ioana Butoi.The programmes we applied to twins were varied, and they responded very well,in fact unexpected well.Now,they are in the first grade of a normal school and they have extraordinary results: write, read, solve math problems, draw.
For a year and a half,they have been attending Quan Ki Do classes taught by Mr .Paul Cojocaru : initially in the kindergarten, then in the autistic child group.The are a lot of effects of practicing sport at different levels of a child's development:
• COORDINATION – They aquired a good eye-to-eye, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination .This kind coordination helped them to write,to draw,to have a correct corporal position;
• BALANCE – Before practicing sport,the twins had an unbalanced way of walking, which was fixed instantly from the beginning of the training;
• ADAPTABILITY – Now,the boys manage easier the new situations and they adapt themselves more easily.At school, they reacted better than we expected:they answer to the teacher’s instructions ,go to the black board, read, write, play with peers during the break, stay calmly in their desk ,protest i less and less.They were remarked (for their skills) by their sport teacher because they had executed the physical exercises without any promt.
• TRUST – The trust,critical at the autistic children, has increased in the case of the twins :now they are being able to ride the bycicle, to go upstairs (always accompanied by protests from Andrei), to walk on a beam, to walk backwards,to walk on inclined surfaces.The physical exercises had an instant impact on the twins’ developement.from the trust point of view.Now,they react faster and more promptly.
• DISCIPLINE – Thanks to the nature of sport, the boys have learned pretty quickly the rules and they respect them.In order to consolidate it, the whole family supports these efforts. They know exactly what they are allowed to do or not at the gym, at school or at home.They accept new rules and respect them all the time. They are very attentive to details, very meticulous.
• AUTHORITY – Their personal trainer is much more than this for the twins.He is an important person in their live-being a male model of authority and apreciation.They need such a model because tneir father has been working in Cyprus for four years.Now they accept authority without any negative reaction.The training became a good motivation .
• RESISTENCE - The twins resist more doing exercises.It can be seen during the therapy which initialy has 50 minutes and now they can concentrate for over 4 hours with little breaks, without losing the attention;
• DETOXIFICATION – The detoxification is one major effect of sport over the twins , their body was relieved of many problems( constipation), strengthen their immune system, high consumption of liquid;
• TONING - After a year and a half of training, the boys are happier, more optimistic, have better muscle tone, have a constructive attitude in therapy;
• OXYGENATION – The sport increases the absorbtion of oxygen essential to the cellulare multiplication. Thou, instead of the expensive ozone therapy , the sport remains a cheaper and effective oxygen ,,therapy’’.
These data are only a few of the benefits given by the sport and ,the most important thing,they are not theoretical,but practical,effective not only in the case of the twins.
Specific therapies, along with medication and sport is a 'receipt’ that could function for many autistic children because it worked for the the twins who recovered a lot from the mental point of view,the mental age being very near to the corporal age .In spite of these,we still have a lot of work to do :in the field of socialization and cultivating the initiative.But ,not only here, we rely on Mr.Paul Cojocaru who understood instantly one important thing: AUTISM IS TREATABLE. They only need us to do it.

Heidi N

I have (all boys) one with Asperger's, two with PDD, NOS. Another with ADHD, anxiety, Mood Dis, NOS, and another who has symptoms but never diagnosed. All are recovered enough to do regular school after treating for pathogens and toxins. It's immune dysfunction in my family. It's not a gene, but surely, some genes make us more vulnerable to pleomorphic pathogens, toxins, and vaccines than others. It's a canary thing. The exposures and medical practices of today are making us ill. Just as the canaries died in the coal mines warning the people the air was bad, so they could get out of the mines before they, themselves, died; we have people that are more likely to get ill before others.

I have heard all kinds of reports from one in the family is ill, to everyone in the family is ill. I think percentages are ok to use, but each family is just too different from the next to apply those percentages across the board. Thus, it's more that the individual person is experiencing enough immune stressors to tip them into autism, than anything else.

Jennifer Shanahan

I have 5 children and my second one is severely autistic, non-verbal and MR to some degree. My oldest son has an LD, OCD and a speech problem. Ironically my three younger children are all perfectly normal and in the gifted programs at their schools. Not many parents go on to have three more children after they already have two with developmental disabilities. Of course we considered the fact that we might have another child with a disability but we went for it (I was actually already pregnant with my third when my 2nd was diagnosed with autism) and we were lucky--extremely lucky!!! Our life is very full and also very demanding. Our younger children are full of love, compassion & strength and they care SO much about their older brothers. I am thankful for all of my children and love them with all my heart!!

Cassandra

@Lisa, Yes, there is a genetic predisposition but there is no such thing as an autism gene or genes. The genetic predisposition means that you or your kids might be more sensitive to toxins, such as mercury in the environment. A new study from Australia shows that the grandchildren of individuals with acrodynia (mercury poisoning) have a 7-fold increased rate of autism compared to the general population. This clearly indicates mercury sensitivity in the development of autism. Autoimmunity in the family is also a risk factor.

Lisa

Is it possible that there is a genetic predisposition? Just because twins have it doesn't mean an environmental factor did not occur, the twins have the same genetic makeup, thus, if they both have predisposed traits, then the trait would be activated by environmental factors. For instance, 2 of my children did not display autistic behavioral traits until they were around a year old. My one son showed traits at birth, with sensitivities to sound, vibration, and touch. I do feel Autism s a combination of factors that are being overlooked.

Lisa

I didn't know that my first child had it until my 4th one came along, that's how long it took for them to diagnose her correctly. Now, I have 3 out of 5 on the spectrum. Crazy!!!!

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