About Manuel

Dr. Manuel Casanova made his residency training in neurology and then spent 3 years doing a fellowship in neuropathology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. During his stay at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, Dr. Casanova was in-charge of Pediatric Neuropathology, a fact which kindled his interest in developmental disorders of the brain. His clinical experience was enhanced by appointments as either a consultant or staff neuropathologist at Sinai Hospital (Maryland), the North Charles Hospital and the D.C. General Hospital. He spent several years as Deputy Medical Examiner for Washington, D.C., where he gained valuable experience in the post-mortem examination of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and child abuse. His expertise in the field was recognized by honorary appointments as a Scientific Expert for the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) and as a Professorial Lecturer for the Department of Forensic Science at George Washington University. Dr. Casanova spent 8 years helping to establish 2 of the most successful brain banks in this country: The Johns Hopkins Brain Resource Center (3 years) and the Brain Bank Unit of the Clinical Brains Disorders Branch at the National Institutes of Mental Health (5 years). Dr. Casanova did training in psychiatry at the National Institutes of Mental Health under the tutelage of Drs. Richard Wyatt, Danny Weinberger, and Joel Kleinman. He retired as a Major in the US Army Reserves and later on as a Lt. Commander in the Public Health Service. He joined the Medical College of Georgia as a full Professor in 1991 and came to the University of Louisville in 2003 as the Gottfried and Gisela Kolb Endowed Chair in Psychiatry.

24 responses to “About Manuel

  1. Hello Dr. Casanova, I just read through your assessment of spine?brain irregularities. As the author of “Recovering Autism, ADHD, & Special Needs,” I would like you to consider that ALL Autism (Minus some Asperger’s) symptoms are Physical, not mental or psychiatric. Half the book goes over remedies, tools and options to get these children out of Physical Pain which will stop or reduce the unusual behaviors. http://www.amazon.com/Recovering-Autism-ADHD-Special-Needs/dp/0988853108/ref=sr_1_1_title_1_pap?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1381146175&sr=1-1&keywords=recovering+autism+adhd+%26+special+needs

    I can be reached at stzorfas@gmail.com.
    I appreciate your finding. Thanks, Shelley

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    • Thank you for the comment. I certainly agree with your opinion and consider autism a brain disorder. I am hoping for my latest article to appear in print. In the same we described multiple foci of malformed cerebral cortex. We believe the same are due to defects of neuronal migration.

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  2. Pingback: Rubella, the MMR Vaccination, and Autism | 'Enjoying the Hi-5s of Autism'·

  3. Estimado Doctor:
    No soy doctor ni tampoco entiendo mucho sobre el tema biológico, sin embargo soy una persona creativa y muy curioso por entender ciertos fenómenos, al menos para mi.
    Tengo un hijo diagnosticado como asperguer. He leído acerca de la influencia de los metales en este tipo de conducta y ya que usted está en la punta de la investigación me gustaría compartir esta apreciación que a lo mejor puede despejar algunas dudas o estimular una perspectiva dentro de sus investigaciones.
    Me refiero a que estas personas tienen respuestas tardías respecto de los tiempos que nosotros esperamos como respuesta, muchas veces sus actos corresponden a códigos propios que ellos van desencadenando y aplicando a cada problemática y pensando .. me atrevo a decir que esto es lo más parecido a escuchar un vinio en otra velocidad, es decir, siento que ellos requieren de un transformador que altere la frecuencia de los datos de información que procesan. Entiendo que en las dendritas se produce comunicación la cual transfiere código electroquímicos los cuales después se transforman en códigos con simbologias comprensibles.
    Si se pudiera manejar, electrónicamente o magnéticamente esa comunicación a lo mejor se podría encontrar un lenguaje para traducir y poder comunicarse con ellos…
    Disculpe si esto fue una molestia, pero es algo que me da vuelta hace muchos años y necesitaba entregar esta información.
    Gracias.

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    • Estimado Enrique,

      Gracias por enviar tu comentario. Yo tengo un nietecito con autismo. La observacion de que ellos tienen un tiempo de respuesta aumentado es uno que ha sido corroborado en el laboratorio. Este y otros deficits creo que se derivan de un problema de como la corteza cerebral se ha formado. He escrito varios blogs en este respecto. Tambien he escrito acerca del uso beneficioso de la estimulacion transcraneal magnetica. En este sentido pensamos en acuerdo.

      Gracias de nuevo por el comentario,

      Manuel

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  4. Hoy tengo 52 años,hace 32 sufri un TEC fronto-temporal(lado derecho) muy grave,estuve en insconciencia total casi 20 dias en un coma agudo,desperte casi amnesico y con todo lado derecho paralizado despues de un tiempo me restableci pero con una altisima inteligencia ,elevada percepcion extrasensorial y otras cualidades mentales pero con problemas para interrelacionarme con mis congeneres principalmente por observarlos con muy bajo intelecto para mi.Despues de mi TEC siempre escribi textos premonitorios (que despues se cumplen al pie de la letra) pero es el caso que desde hace tal vez 10 años aparecieron en mi algunas tremendas facultades paranormales como telepatia,telequinesia,captacion energetica,premoniciones etc. y esto se incrementa dia a dia.Mi propio psiquiatra dice que el ya no puede ayudarme pues lo que tengo es inexplicable con nuestra psiquiatria convencional y que tengo que emplear estos dones solo para el bien.
    En varias oportunidades he proyectado mala energia a alguien y le he provocado graves daños.
    ¿Tal vez usted pueda ayudarme?

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    • En realidad es dificil tratar de lejos a un paciente. En este sentido si todavia piensas que necesitas ayuda deberias de conseguir una segunda opinion a nivel local.
      Actualmente me encuentro en camino a Burgos y no voy a poder contestar mi correspondencia rapidamente.

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  5. What about Lyme and other infections? I’ve noticed behavior changes not only on my child after infections..what about PANDAS? My son developed regressive autism, we did not know he was immune compromised and that lyme was an issue in the family. Treating the lyme and chasing the infections has shown the best response, even time response to auditory stimuli. We are in rehabilitation process now, because after 7 years of illness the poor boy brain structure has changed/developed so differently. Extremely smart in Math, but still severely speech /social delayed.

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    • There is mounting evidence that the immune system may be involved in autism. We are doing work primarily from the genetic and postmortem perspective on this issue. I may be able to expand on this in a future blog. Thank you for your comment.

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  6. Hola soy florencia de Montevideo uruguay, mi hijo tiene 10 años tea severo y quiero saber si la est mag transcr lo puede ayudar,venden en México un equipo doméstico a 2500 dólares pero necesito saber si puede ser útil. gracias saludos

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    • Tan solo hay unas cuatro companias que hacen el equipo y el mismo es bastante caro. Lo mas barato esta en los $20,000 dolares. Tambien se requiere adiestramiento para poder aplicar el mismo. No aconsejaria a nadie comparar su propio equipo para utilizarlo en la casa.

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  7. Dr Casanova, I am interested to see you have experience in offering professional opinion on child abuse. Are you aware of the tide of false accusations against innocent parents of children with conditions such as autism and Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, ME/CFS? Please see my blog post about this: http://planetautismblog.wordpress.com/2014/10/03/the-injustice-of-state-abuse/ There are many pressure groups and organisations being set up by people who have either suffered this travesty or are advocating for those who have. Please see Professor Vivienne Cree’s series on “moral panics”. Families are being destroyed through the ignorance, lies, assumptions and pride of professionals. You might be interested in this video by a pediatrician supporting families where the parents are falsely accused: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XcRZo1vO53c As a doctor, you are in a privileged position, your opinion will automatically be believed by other professionals and courts. The onus is on doctors to get it right, to investigate all possible options, to not take the word of the paymaster (social services et al) purely because they are paying for the opinion and to ensure a completely balanced opinion is given. The very harm some of these professionals are causing by their actions is ironically what they have falsely accused parents of. Damage is being done to your profession by those who get it wrong in this way.

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    • Thank you for the information. I have experience testifying in court, although last time I did so was many many years ago. I have a special interest in these cases both from a professional ahd a personal standpoint. My grandson is autistic.
      I think the accusations come and go as tides. The last wave before this one, was in regards to facilitated communication and parental abuse. As more often than not the accusations were proven to be unfounded. Sorry state that of medical profession.

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  8. Hola. He posteado anteriormente un par de comentarios en su blog, lo encuentro muy interesante. Tengo algunas inquietudes y observaciones personales acerca de défict de atención, bipolaridad, asperger, etc.. Yo intuyo que están relacionados con la propiocepción.. Me he construido un concepto personal de la propiocepción, sobre todo propiocepción inconsciente, porq no encuentro mucha información al respecto.. No sé si tendrá interés en que le haga llegar algunas de estas ideas..
    Gracias..

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  9. 親愛的Dr. Manuel Casanova:

    我考慮寫這封信給您已經長達三年,我住在台灣。我認為應該把我所經歷的事情傳達給您,印證您對於「胎兒產前超音波氾濫和自閉症盛行之間存在關連性」(Ultrasound Exposure and Autism: Dr. Manuel F. Casanova, M.D., Cautions Against the Overuse of Ultrasounds
    http://jennifermargulis.net/blog/2013/04/ultrasound-exposure-and-autism-dr-manuel-f-casanova-m-d-cautions-against-the-overuse-of-ultrasounds/)的憂慮以及假設。

    因為我的英文不好,所以我決定以繁體中文寫這封信給您,請您原諒。我在上帝面前禱告,如果上帝允許,相信這封信就會變成您能理解的文字,把我要告訴您的事實,詳實地讓您知道。

    我是一個曾經在日本東芝超音波設備(http://www.toshiba-medical.co.jp/tmd/)台灣地區代理商工作的女性,我沒有任何醫學知識的背景,只是一個日文系的畢業生。2006年當我懷孕30週時,在沒有被告知任何有關超音波曝露會引起生物效應、超音波可能會影響胎兒大腦發育的狀況下,被老闆要求在一個教育訓練展示會上,擔任人體試驗模型,接受超音波製造商,也就是日本東芝醫療公司,派到台灣的技術人員,施行4D超音波檢查,時間前後長達3小時多。檢查期間胎兒曾經一度在我體內劇烈翻轉,冷氣溫度調整到攝氏18度我才感覺舒適,幾乎睡著。我記得結束3小時的超音波檢查後,我看見我的腹部通紅。我的兒子是典型自閉症,1歲4個月就已確診,今年10月他即將滿9歲。

    我在2010年在PubMed網站上查到您發表的這篇論文「Potential teratogenic effects of ultrasound on corticogenesis: Implications for autism」(http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20149552),啟發我開始了解國際醫界對胎兒超音波對胎兒大腦發育不利影響的探討,這方面的討論在台灣,完全沒有被揭露。後來我向台灣最高衛生單位陳情,抗議當局並未向孕婦警示超音波的不利影響,也沒有約束醫師禁止施行沒有醫療必要和益處的「娛樂4D超音波」,同時,我決定以訴訟途徑向超音波代理商以及日本東芝製造商抗議,起訴他們對我施行毫無醫療必須的長時間商業展示檢查,造成我兒子的大腦在子宮內即受到損傷。

    由於訴訟中,台灣的醫用超音波醫學會以及婦產科醫學會曾經向法院作證,他們的專家意見完全與超音波ALARA原則違背(一個不知道MI、TI數值有使用上限,一個說使用時間沒有上限),讓我更加確認台灣產科的醫師,他們在胎兒超音波的安全知識是大有問題的。台灣是一個施行全民健保的國家,胎兒頻繁曝露在非醫療必須的「常規」超音波掃描的情況十分嚴重,這15年來兒童自閉症確診病例不斷飆升,自閉症在台灣已經成為年增率最高的殘疾項目。

    在訴訟中,日本東芝超音波設備的台灣地區代理商,甚至製造廠律師不斷向法官說謊、辯解,主張超音波機器輸出功率極低、螢幕上不用顯示警示超音波生物效應的機械指數MI、溫度指數TI值(後來被原廠的使用手冊內容推翻,該超音波機器是Track 3機器),甚至主張超音波檢查時間長短,對胎兒組織不會有特別不良影響等等,讓我更加相信,製造廠對客戶的超音波安全教育完全失敗!很顯然,日本東芝超音波製造商並沒有依美國FDA的超音波及探頭製造指導規範「Guidance for Industry and FDA Staff – Information for Manufacturers Seeking Marketing Clearance of Diagnostic Ultrasound Systems and Transducers」中的規定要求,去對臨床最終使用者負起教育的責任「3.4 TRACK 3 – EDUCATION PROGRAM FOR THE CLINICAL END USER.」(http://www.fda.gov/RegulatoryInformation/Guidances/ucm070856.htm)。

    目前這場訴訟經法官裁示,要求雙方試著和解。我向日本東芝超音波製造商和代理商提出要求,除了向我個人致歉之外,必須積極負起教育責任,教導最終使用者超音波對胎兒具有潛在危害的生物效應知識,另外也請求日本東芝將我當年全程3小時的4D超音波檢查的影像,交出來給醫學界研究,因為螢幕上必然記錄著許多超音波功率的數值,可以用來分析超音波能量對胎兒組織損害的關連性,目前仍在艱困的談判中。另一方面,台灣的衛生福利部在去年已給予我善意回應,在新出版的孕婦健康手冊中加入不贊成孕婦施做4D超音波檢查的警語。

    我上週在Dr. Manuel Casanova您的部落格中,看見一本在2015.4.30.新出版的新書簡介,是有關在中國做的胎兒子宮內超音波曝露的人體試驗結果「50 Human Studies, in Utero, Conducted in Modern China, Indicate Extreme Risk for Prenatal Ultrasound: A New Bibliography」(http://www.amazon.com/Studies-Conducted-Indicate-Prenatal-Ultrasound-ebook/dp/B00X06QDYS/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8),讓我十分震驚!包括:「These provide empirical evidence of ultrasound hazards to humans. The analytic techniques are sophisticated, far exceeding Western studies.」、「Their conclusions are stunning, with recommendations that ultrasound sessions should be completely avoided “for a quality pregnancy”. Only if there are specific medical indications should ultrasound be recommended, and at minimum intensity settings. A session should last no more than 3 minutes, 5 minutes at most. Multiple sessions should be avoided.」、「These guidelines reflect and confirm the U.S. National Institute of Health “Consensus Statement”, published in 1984.」

    親愛的Dr. Manuel Casanova,我不知道該說什麼才好?我禱告問上帝,何時,產科醫界才能謙卑下來,停止繼續用超音波,傷害我們的下一代呢?我唯一能確信的,是你、我、每個在這個議題上付出心力的人的努力,絕不會白費。

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  10. I haven’t read the above link yet, but the first thing that glared out at me from the English text, is that older mothers (who are apparently at higher risk of having babies with autism) are offered more ultrasounds because of their risk. I wonder whether the ultrasounds are the thing making the risk higher in older mothers in the first place!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is interesting that risk factors for autism including older mothers, threatened abortion, prematurity, multiparity and others all share the commonality of an increased number of ultrasounds.

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  11. Hi Dr. Casanova, I just in case you didn’t see this in the newsletter from Spectrum, there is some evidence that cannabidiol may be therapeutic for Dravert Syndrome. I thought this would peak your interest and is a good topic for a future blog discussing the difference between cannabidiol, and the more “intoxicating” cannabinoids like THC. As well as the potential risks for individuals on the spectrum. https://spectrumnews.org/news/marijuana-ingredient-sparks-social-behavior-epilepsy-model/
    I have very mixed feelings about cannabis, especially in ASDs. My nephew who was diagnosed with PDD-NOS in the 1990s developed prodromic schizophrenia, after smoking pot. He had few friends growing up, and one of them went off to college. He went to hang out with this friend over the weekend and they smoked a lot of cannabis. He came home different. He suddenly started experiencing schizophrenia symptoms after that weekend. It was like a light switch for him. It made him strangely aware of his autism in a way he had never vocalized before. He started expressing feelings such as his frustration about not being understand the feelings of others or how to talk to people, but it also brought on hearing voices in his head and delusions of grandeur. He was in that adolescent period of greatest risk for potential harmful side effects of cannabis, and may have genetic factors that make him more vulnerable (for example the documented interaction between the COMT val158met polymorphism and cannabis use increasing schizophrenia risk). Given that ASDs are a group of disorders with similar symptoms, but diverse genetic and environmental origins, we need to fully understand who may be helped, and who may be harmed by cannabinoids, and importantly, which of the 100s of cannabinoids are responsible for the beneficial or harmful effects. For example THC is responsible for the “High”, and cannabidiol does not produce psychoactive effects. Many strains of cannabis have high THC and low amounts of cannabidiol. It seems as though cannabidiol antagonizes some of the effects of THC and may provide the anti anxiety and anticonvulsant effect.
    The mounting evidence that cannabinoids like cannabidiol may help intractable epilepsy, or that cannabis can help with PTSD bears clinical investigation. I have a friend who is a veteran with PTSD. She is now living in Canada and feels that it is the only drug that helps her cope with her PTSD. We need more DEA approved/NIH funded research. We need controlled studies with KNOWN amounts of products, identifying potential side effects and who is most vulnerable to experiencing these side effects, and ultimately peer reviewed publications so that the research quality is assessed before publication. How can we have an informed public that knows the risks and benefits to cannabis products, when most people’s view of cannabidiol is based on dramatic videos seen on social media of oil droplets stopping seizures. I am not saying the videos are not compelling to me, they are, but I worry that they are swaying public opinion about the potential medicinal usage of cannabinoids, but with very few research based studies.
    Given that epilepsy is more common in individuals with ASD’s, I fear that parents may start to medicate their children with cannabis oil before we know whether children with ASD are more vulnerable to potentially harmful side effects.

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  12. Have you had a chance to review the CRISPR Cas9 discoveries as they relate to autism? If so, do you feel it has potential as a treatment or cure for autism? I would like to hear your thoughts. Thank you

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