Saturday, September 21, 2013

50% Some WHO Autism Awareness: Autism and Intellectual Disability 50%

Questions and answers about autism spectrum disorders (ASD)

Online Q&A
September 2013
Q: Do persons with autism always suffer from intellectual disability?
A: The level of intellectual functioning is extremely variable in persons with ASD, ranging from profound impairment to superior non-verbal cognitive skills. It is estimated that around 50% of persons with ASD also suffer from an intellectual disability.
The above information is taken from the World Health Organization website page providing Q and A about autism spectrum disorders.  Some will always choose to believe that autism and intellectual disability are totally unrelated concepts.  It is easier to do when autism studies routinely exclude participants with intellectual disability.  The research exclusion of participants with intellectual disability, as admitted by Catherine Lord,  is nothing more than a convenience for researchers and reflects the researchers own subjective biases about the nature and causes of autism disorders.  The DSM5 committee that excludes persons with global developmental delay from an autism diagnosis have also done so based on their own subjective biases and prejudices, nothing more.  They had no data or evidence or coherent rationale to support their decision.  
Parents with children in the 50% spectrum with autism and intellectual disability can't just walk away from our children.  We must do what we can for them and live in fear of what happens to them when we grow too old to care for them or when we ultimately pass on.  These are not realities faced by the DSM5 team who have now given a green light to early autism intervention providers like the CHEO to exclude children with autism and profound intellectual disability by expressly excluding those with global developmental delay from an autism diagnosis.  
"Autism" research will be easier, autism intervention programs will be less strapped thanks to the DSM5 team that, contrary to their claims, have expressly excluded many with severe autism AND intellectual disability.  The basis for the exclusion is nothing more than their own subjective belief in a "pure autism" as that belief was described by Giacomo Vivanti. 
I recommend that every parent of a child in the 50% of those with autism who also have an intellectual disability speak up and provide the world with some reality based autism awareness, make the world aware of the 50% not favored by network television series, movies, major news publications, autism researchers and the DSM5 committee members who arbitrarily decided to expressly excluded many with intellectual disability from the autism spectrum of disorders.


Peter Lloyd-Thomas said...

I can only agree with you. Help should always go first to those most in need, not to those who it is easier to help. As the American autism definition is widened to include many only slightly affected kids, it is clear that the most affected get left aside. The parents of the slightly affected kids can be among the most brutal. I was rather disgusted by the forward of a book (that I did not buy) written by a parent of a kid with mild regressive autism, who clearly hated his kid being lumped together by society with the severely affected kids with "classic" autism. If one day his kid starts to have seizures, he may rethink his position, but sadly only then.

Ian MacGregor said...

A fantastic interview. I have to say as the father of a child with very severe autism exhibiting itself in profound intellectual disability, I too have trouble with
the lumping. It has been my experience that many people who know children with mild autism cannot grasp how detrimental it is for children who have more severe cases.

Ian MacGregor said...

I'm having trouble proving I am not a robot. My apologies if this is a repeated post.

The interview at the link the best thing I have seen on autism and intellectual disability in a very long time

It will be a big leap forwards if people start to realize how detrimental autism is for so many, and researchers can focus on more effective treatment, prevention and yes even a cure or cures.