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Dachel Media Update: MRI Might Be Able to Diagnose Autism

Online newsBy Anne Dachel OurKids ad 2013

Read Anne's commentary and view the links after the jump.   The Dachel Media Update is sponsored by Lee Silsby Compounding Pharmacy and OurKidsASD, an online supplement retailer for patients with special needs.

Dec 2, 2014, TIME: MRI Brain Scans Can Predict Autism With 97% Accuracy
 

Right now, diagnosing disorders like autism relies heavily on interviews and behavioral observations. But new research published in PLoS One shows that a much more objective measure-reading a person's thoughts through an fMRI brain scan-might be able to diagnose autism with close to perfect accuracy.

WHAT? "Close to perfect accuracy"?  Then I guess we've done all we can.

Good news, America!  Better diagnosing is now PERFECT! 

We may not know anything for sure or do anything about autism, but we're going great guns diagnosing it.

Of course the scientific/medical community has to do this. Experts with MD or PhD after their names have to be doing something about a disorder no one can explain that affects two percent of children.  That's why we have the endless studies showing all kinds of stuff (linked to the parents) that could be causing autism.  It's also helpful to label autism as a "psychiatric illness" because we've all known mentally ill people, right?

(Parents then feel like it's all their fault and they should quietly crawl away in a corner somewhere.) 

Here's a PhD person from a prestigious university (aren't they all?) telling us that they're moving beyond better diagnosing to "perfect" diagnosing. (It kind of takes my breath away just to think about it.)

And won't this come in really handy by 2025, when MIT professor Stephanie Seneff forecasts that the US autism rate will be one in every two children!                          

TIME Magazine, doesn't give us the current rate or even note that there is no known cause or cure for this disorder that affects one in every 68 kids (according to outdated statistics from the CDC).

They'd rather pretend that autism is just this interesting "psychiatric illness" we have all the time in the world to figure out.

(Time Magazine has done everything to cover up the autism epidemic.  They are mentioned numerous times in my book.)

Lee Silsby logo 09 The Dachel Media Update is sponsored by Lee Silsby Compounding Pharmacy and OurKidsASD.  Lee Silsby is one of the most respected compounding pharmacies in the country and is committed to serving the needs of the Autism community. OurkidsASD is an online retailer for nutritional supplements for patients with special needs. OurkidsASD carries thousands of products from more than 60 brands and offers free ground shipping on all orders.

Anne Dachel Book CoverAnne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism and author of  The Big Autism Cover-Up: How and Why the Media Is Lying to the American Public, which is on sale this Fall from Skyhorse Publishing.

 

Comments

Jenny

What would be interesting would be research using fMRI to do a before and after shot of the brain, before and after the shots. The same parents who are more than willing to have their kids fully vaccinated would probably be fine also having fMRIs done, even if anesthesia and some kind of contrast agent are used, despite kidney and liver issues that should be considered.
Then we could document the physical changes that occur in the brain as a result of vaccinations.
8 years from now we could look at that cohort of kids and see which ones had been diagnosed w/autism.

Barry

"An MRI may require anesthesia to ensure the patient remains still."
This paper is freely available. What it presents is results from a cognitive task, so sedation was not involved.

Under "Study limitations," the authors note that "the current paradigm, requiring significant cooperation during thoughts about social interactions, would be difficult to apply to participants with lower-functioning autism."

The result is somewhat interesting, but it is in support of an hypothesis about cognitive processing. The media reports were greatly overblown.

**********

Not sure why you felt the need to point out, we get how the media operates.

All I can say from our experience, is that our child's "post diagnosis" MRI definitely required anaesthesia. It provided no useful information whatsoever. And it didn't help him one single bit.

But hey, I'm sure someone made money off that useless ordeal.

Godfrey Wyl
"An MRI may require anesthesia to ensure the patient remains still."

This paper is freely available. What it presents is results from a cognitive task, so sedation was not involved.

Under "Study limitations," the authors note that "the current paradigm, requiring significant cooperation during thoughts about social interactions, would be difficult to apply to participants with lower-functioning autism."

The result is somewhat interesting, but it is in support of an hypothesis about cognitive processing. The media reports were greatly overblown.

Benedetta

Oh, my guess is that it will show two white spots on the front of the brain about the size of a quarter or dime -from ischemia probably.

Big deal. This was being done as far back as 1998 or something.

Rosycurler


An MRI may require anesthesia to ensure the patient remains still. Anesthesia in children is linked to learning disabilities. Why add to cognitive problems just so the doctor can have a complete file? Is the treatment modified as a result of MRI documentation?

That anesthesia harms young brains has been well known for years and the topic may be ripe for a blitz of confusionist science.
http://news.sciencemag.org/health/2014/12/researchers-struggle-gauge-risks-childhood-anesthesia

Eileen Nicole Simon

Anne, thank you for pointing out this research. This is from the first group who reported “under-connectivity” in the brains of high-functioning people with autism.

Maturation of the cerebral cortex continues during early childhood. Maturation occurs in stages that are quite well known, and depends upon intactness of earlier developing centers of the brain.

I will continue to try to point out that nuclei in the auditory pathway are susceptible to damage from asphyxia at birth or pre- or postnatal exposures (e.g. valproic acid, alcohol, mercury, etc.), and that injury to these subcortical sites will prevent normal postnatal maturation of the cerebral cortex, especially the circuits of the language areas.

The inferior colliculi show up as bright spots on fMRI pictures that focus on this area of the brain as the primary region of interest (ROI). See the paper by Budd TW et al. Binaural specialisation in human auditory cortex: an fMRI investigation of interaural correlation sensitivity. Neuroimage 2003 Nov;20(3):1783-94. I have posted this image online, for example at
inferiorcolliculus.org/pr04.html

The inferior colliculi should be investigated as the ROI in autistic subjects, especially nonverbal subjects.

Birgit Calhoun

The reason why I love to read Age of Autism is that there is so much good writing and so much logic in what I read. I can sense the sadness underneath, but I can also tell that the articles come from intelligent people. Anne, I love it how you address the arrogance of those who think they have been spoon-fed with wisdom and can now produce the "perfect" answer. Let's hope someone will emerge who can produce a cure for autism. The use of fMRIs is the new thing right now. But it will not solve the underlying problem. I hope someone on that end listens and starts looking in the right direction.

Pam

A few years ago, I spoke to a researcher at Duquesne University who studies language processing in individuals with autism, by studying their brains using fmri imaging. She mentioned that the brains of people with autism are unique in their structure and processing ("Damaged" is the word that came to my mind)
I always hoped after hearing that, that diagnosis would someday be done by fmri, so it could stop being looked at as a mental/behavioral illness, and more for what it truly is - a complex medical condition which includes, among other things, encephalopathy and resulting disfunction.
I'm still holding out hope that this change could lead us in that direction. At the very least, if there were an "objective" way to diagnose autism, people would have to stop saying that it is "overdiagnosed", and the stupid ploy of changing the criteria for diagnosis to lower the numbers wouldn't work anymore.


Barry

What they are really "diagnosing", is an incredibly repeatable form of vaccine induced brain damage. That they would MUCH rather we all just call autism.

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