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Thursday, November 03, 2005

New treatment for Autism

Source: WFSB.com News

Some parents in Connecticut say there is new hope for children with Autism. Autism is the most common developmental disorder in America. These mothers and fathers say their children have been transformed.

But Channel 3 Eyewitness News reporter Steve Bunnell tells us that researchers in our state insist there is still no quick fix or cure.

BUNNELL: Paul Avram, has Autism. He is energetic like most second graders, but he is not like most 7-year-olds who have Autism.

"I had autism when I was a kid," he said. "It felt really uncomfortable."

Paul says he had autism because he is essentially a different boy now.

Just before his first birthday, Paul appeared to be developing normally in this home video, but just nine months later his mother says Paul was "drifting away."

He wasn't interactive with the toys, he couldn't say mama anymore," said Lynn Avram, "He lost 'mama' for two years."

Being a registered nurse, Paul's mom noticed that his symptoms were more than mental.

"He had chronic loose stools, he was pale, black circles under his eyes, systemic eczema," she said

Blood tests showed high levels of lead, mercury and other heavy metals.

So Lynn turned to "Chelation Therapy" -- the process clinics use to "pull" metals out of the bloodstream. And Paul experienced a transformation -- both medically and mentally.

"We need to get the word out that there is something that we can do to help our children," Lynne says.

And now Lynne Avram's support group of a half-dozen Connecticut moms is joining a nationwide chorus of parents who believe getting toxins out can bring their children back.

There's a lot of smoke, but not necessarily much fire," said Dr. Fred Volkmar, a Yale Child Study Center psychiatrist:

Volkmar says there's little evidence supporting Chelation therapy and it carries risks.

"Some of the medications that are used have not been FDA approved," he said. "There's the potential for adverse reactions to Chelation."

Researchers at Yale see hundreds of children every year and they say there's evidence that other therapies do work.

Having a child get speech therapy, having a child get behavioral therapy...educational, special educational interventions -- makes a big difference for kids with autism," Volkmar says.

"You can cut years of therapy with these children if you just heal their physical problems," Lynn Avram counters.

Avram says Chelation is supported by science and by the evidence of her son's amazing turn-around.

"He's becoming the person he was always meant to be, and that's a gift," she says.

Posted by Becca

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