Dr. Kurt Woeller asked:

A Biomedical Autism Doctor Explains The Difference Between Being “Cured” From Autism And “Recovering” From Autism.

“Is Autism curable?” This is a question that is has been asked for years in the medical community as well as the autism community. The question of ‘cure’ is a good one, but needs a deeper explanation. To fully understand this concept of cure more clearly we need to make a distinction between what would commonly be called ‘cured’ (which indicates to return to a previous state of health before a change had occurred) and ‘recovery’ (which indicates the act of regaining health that was previously lost).

Traditional medicine, and even those in the biomedical community realize that there is no known cure for autism, although there are many different types of treatments, including biomedical autism interventions, that can help tremendously. Treatments include, diet (including the gluten-free and casein-free diet, and the specific carbohydrate diet), nutritional support (including multivitamin/minerals), Methyl-B12, hyperbaric oxygen, detoxification, anti-fungal therapy, and more, as well as non-biomedical intervention such as applied behavior analysis (ABA), speech and occupational therapy. Even traditional medicine has treatments which are mostly drug oriented such as Risperidal to suppress aberrant behavior. However, none of these treatments are curative.

Personally, I do not use the word ‘cure’ in my writings, lectures, consultations, or internet postings when discussing the various biomedical treatments available for autism spectrum disorders. Instead, the more appropriate word to use is ‘recover.’

The simple analogy is this: If you had an accident and fractured your arm or leg, and over time your limb fracture healed to the point that movement in your arm or leg was restored and appeared indistinguishable from before the accident, this would indicate a recovery from your injury. However, your bones would still have suffered the injury and therefore an absolute cure from the accident is not possible. You still had the fracture. However, normal function in your arm or leg has been regained.

A similar concept can apply to autism. Children are not cured from their autism. Instead some children can recover, losing their diagnosis, and appear indistinguishable from their peers. In these cases their autism was reversed, most or all symptoms of their disorder have disappeared, and they now function typical of other children, but they will always have had what is classified as autism.
 
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Filed under: Autism

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