Our Latest Book: Comorbidity and Autism Spectrum Disorder

Our latest book was published electronically and can be downloaded free of charge from Frontiers. The title of the book is Comorbidity and Autism Spectrum Disorder. I edited the same along with my wife, Richard Frye and Christopher Gillberg. The book was based on a special research theme sponsored by Frontiers. It consists of 32 chapters (articles), contributed by 283 authors, focusing on recent understanding regarding the impact and management of comorbidities associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The book sought to answer questions such as: Are standard screening instruments capable of delineating the full range of impairment in ASD without considering comorbidities? Given the difficulties in communication for many ASD patients, what red flags point toward the presence of comorbidities? How do comorbid conditions relate to maladaptive behaviors? How do health care providers grapple with the juxtaposition of intellectual disability (ID), non-verbal clinical care, and comorbidities in ASD? This book attempted to answer these and other questions while raising awareness on how comorbid conditions increase both mortality and morbidity in ASD. You can download the book from the following link: Comorbidity and Autism Spectrum Disorder.

12 Respuestas a “Our Latest Book: Comorbidity and Autism Spectrum Disorder

  1. Thank for sharing this link. I’ve chatted a bit on Twitter with Dr. Emily Casanova about her research on hypermobility syndromes and Autism. I help to coordinate and host synesthesia symposia, and we see plenty of extra bendy synesthetes at our confernces. And, of course, some research notes the high proportion of people with Autism who also have synesthesia. I’m excited to have the opportunity to read Chapter 109, and I do hope we see some future research on synesthesia, hypermobility, and Autism.

    CC Hart

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    • Sounds in-keeping with our own observations. Depressing that the subject is not given more attention. It is a pity that the federal government has not made it a funding initiative. Thank you for your comment.

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  2. A complex subject. I am currently tracing Asperger and Kanner autism back to Bleuler in the 19th century. Definitions tended to come under Schizophrenia or sub types such as hebephrenia. Also looking into genetic studies of families with hereditary Schizoid Disorder, and Schizophrenia. It was agreed some definite link existed. This research goes back to the early 1920s.
    Very many Russian or Ukranian neurologists (and the odd European)still view Kanner autism, for example, as Schizophrenia, or the result of a swing during childhood. Studies also showed adults with Schizophrenia showed themselves as typically autistic children.
    And finally comorbidity. It was suggested you could have Kanner Autism combined with Schizophrenia.
    What I did discover is authors such as Kraepelin, Bleuler and Suhareva or Schneider will describe modern diagnoses as types of Schizophrenia or Verschroben. Under «Verschroben» I found a lot of research.

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  3. On a personal note, I’m exploring the possible option I have comorbid Schizophrenia. At least going by Bleuler’s definition. I did experience the onset of autism and extreme fear during childhood, with sensory hallucination. Not voices, however. After that «swing» my symptoms remain pretty much identical to Asperger Disorder. Bleuler’s explanation of disassociation between will, intellect and emotion as well as loss of «self» or associative self (to others) struck a chord. The subject is beyond fascinating. I highly recommend Grunya Sukareva’s papers posted in 1925 with the six case histories and comments.

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    • Very interesting. As an aside, Kanner provided precedents to several other individuals as to the description of case histories with symptoms similar to what he saw. He did not cite unfortunately Sukareva. Thank you for the very interesting comment- I was always fascinated by the schizophrenia-autism debate. You can possibly get more interesting details from articles by Lauretta Bender and Kanner.I have a few by Kanner that you might find interesting- email me if you want them manuel.casanova@louisville.edu

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      • Another possibility, already suggested by a lot of evidence, would be a deficit of inhibitory cells- primarily those that are parvalbumin (PV) positive. It appears to be present in both schizophrenia and autism. Furthermore, PV cells are responsible for the bunding together of actions from different cortical areas. It may be that synesthesia is regulated by a central deficit.

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  4. This book is so needed! Thank you. As a woman with autism and an autistic daughter, we have eight co-morbidities to cope with. They are treated as separate conditions by separate specialists, but to me they are clearly part of the same overarching condition. They occur together through my extended family. My daughter’s autistic friends tell a similar story, a cluster of co-morbidities which together are very disabling. I would welcome co-morbidities forming part of an autism diagnostic process. Thank you for your very astute blog and work.

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    • Whenever I made a diagnosis of an autism in an individual, I would ask, «What else?» For many years I proposed using standardized review of systems to cover the possibility of comorbidities in every patient. Unfortunately, not many health professionals picked up on it. Thanks for your comment.

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      • Dr Casanova, I am a poet currently working under an Australia Council arts grant to write a book of poetry about autism in girls and women. I am a woman with autism and so is my daughter, and I’m delighted that national arts funding has been given to this area. I greatly admire your work and it fits with my lived experience. I would like to email you asking for any thoughts you would like to contribute on autism in females, as part of my research for my book. Would you email me at estherottaway@gmail.com? Thank you.

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  5. Notable adverse childhood experiences—including immense daily schoolyard stressors like chronic bullying—suffered by adolescents can readily lead to a substance use disorder. This, of course, can also lead to an adulthood of debilitating self-medicating.

    The greater the drug-induced euphoria or escape one attains from its use, the more one wants to repeat the experience; and the more intolerable one finds their sober reality, the more pleasurable that escape should be perceived. By extension, the greater one’s mental pain or trauma while sober, the greater the need for escape from reality, thus the more addictive the euphoric escape-form will likely be.

    If the adolescent is also highly sensitive, both the drug-induced euphoria and, conversely, the come-down effect or return to their burdensome reality will be heightened thus making the substance-use more addicting.

    As a child, teenager and adult with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD)—a condition with which I greatly struggled yet of which I was not even aware until I was a half-century old—I learned this for myself from my own substance abuse experience. The self-medicating method I utilized during most of my pre-teen years, however, was eating.

    Perhaps not surprisingly, I now strongly feel that not only should all school teachers have received ASD training, but that there should further be an inclusion in standard high school curriculum of a child development course which in part would also teach students about the often debilitating condition.

    It would explain to students how, among other aspects of the condition, people with ASD (including those with higher functioning autism) are often deemed willfully ‘difficult’ and socially incongruent, when in fact such behavior is really not a choice.

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