An Introduction to Possible Biomedical Causes and Treatments for Autism Spectrum Disorders Contributed by Marci Wheeler, continued
Some Potential Biomedical Treatments
There continues to be disagreements about biomedical treatment options. This is due the limited published research. And, for various reasons, there is also controversy as to the significance of the research that has been published. This disagreement and controversy then carries over to discussion of biomedical related interventions. There are a limited number of professionals in Indiana as well as elsewhere who are informed about biomedical theories and treatments. Some may be willing and interested to learn more. Even among those professionals that are using biomedical treatments with patients, there seems to be many differences in knowledge and approaches used. There is disagreement for example as to which area to begin addressing first; the gastrointestinal issues, the immune dysfunction, the detoxification needs, or the nutritional imbalances. There are different testing protocol used among professionals and also disagreement about how to interpret the testing results.
There is a network of doctors that families often access called DAN! practitioners. DAN! is an acronym for Defeat Autism Now! DAN! practitioners may include other medical personal such as nurses, nurse practitioners and homeopaths as well as physicians. The Autism Research Institute (ARI) offers a registry of DAN! practitioners who provide biomedical treatments for children and adults with autism spectrum disorders. ARI does not endorse, “certify” or guarantee the knowledge or skills of any individual listed. These practitioners are not screened or held to any standard of knowledge or experience. As of January 2008, there are two lists, one for licensed healthcare providers and one for others such as naturopaths and homeopaths that are not required by the laws of their state to have a license. For an individual to be listed they must attend a DAN! Clinician Seminar at least once every two years and sign a statement that he or she conducts their practice following the DAN! philosophy. Further information about the Defeat Autism Now! philosophy and practitioners is available at: http://www.autism.com/dan/index.htm. Many families and practitioners who are successfully pursuing biomedical treatments do belong to a network such as DAN!, an internet Listserv or other informal group interested in biomedical approaches for the treatment of individuals with autism spectrum disorders.