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  • Asperger's question...NOT a S_V thread.

    This really isn't PB related(sorry), but people here seem to know what the hell they are talking about most of the time. My wife has always felt like something was different about her, but never knew what. She grew up in a very small town where you just did not take kids to get checked for things like this. So lately with all the talk of Asperger's on here I started looking into more. Today she took an on-line self diagnostic test, it was like 150 to 200 questions long. At the end it stated that it is very likely she has Asperger's. So here is my question. Just how accurate are this self diagnostic tests, and if they are credible, now what? Should we seek a professional diagnosis?

    The funny thing is when the results came up I thought she might be upset, but she seemed happy and relieved. It was like after all these years of not knowing things finally made sense to her.

    And, sorry, but S_V, please don't respond. I'm not interested in your in-put.

    Thanks to anyone who can shed some light on this for me.
    My blog: My Primal Adventure

    "I've come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass...and I'm all out of bubble gum."

  • #2
    This is not an easily diagnosed disorder in adults, even by a neurologist. Major cities may have specialists (usually PhDs, not MDs) who do neuro-psychological testing of adults. Typically unreimbursed by any insurance; stand by for a big bill.

    Probably the most helpful thing is her self identification as being 'like an aspie'. I have an adult patient with AS and for him it was a relief to finally put a name on his experience and realize he was not alone. It is a spectrum experience so people vary. I think joining a meetup or support group for aspie adults would be a great start. No need to have an 'approved' diagnosis of AS from the medical powers that be. She is not a child on an IEP in school. It is not a legal status she is seeking, it is the interaction with others who experience the world in the same way.
    Never eat anything bigger than your own head.

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    • #3
      Something to find out: If she does get a professional diagnosis, what then? Are there any treatments available?

      If so, what are the risks and benefits (and costs) of the treatment?

      If there isn't any treatment readily available, then there doesn't seem to be much point in getting the diagnosis. The self diagnostic tests are accurate enough to give the "aha!" moment to people who need it, and it sounds like she's already got that.

      Good luck.

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      • #4
        I agree with Joe. What will she benefit from a formal diagnosis? Not much. But, even just knowing she is somewhere 'on the spectrum' will help her emotionally. She doesn't need a formal diagnosis to find support and read about it.

        My son is most likely on the spectrum. Some people think we should have him labeled, but he already has an extensive IEP that wouldn't really change with that diagnosis. We decided to interact with him understanding his differences, but not to have him formally diagnosed. His school, teacher and special eds folks agree getting the diagnosis has no long term benefit.
        Meghan

        My MDA journal

        Primal Ponderings- my blog- finally added some food pron :P

        And best of all my Body Fat Makeover!!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by skink531 View Post
          This really isn't PB related(sorry), but people here seem to know what the hell they are talking about most of the time. My wife has always felt like something was different about her, but never knew what. She grew up in a very small town where you just did not take kids to get checked for things like this. So lately with all the talk of Asperger's on here I started looking into more. Today she took an on-line self diagnostic test, it was like 150 to 200 questions long. At the end it stated that it is very likely she has Asperger's. So here is my question. Just how accurate are this self diagnostic tests, and if they are credible, now what? Should we seek a professional diagnosis?

          The funny thing is when the results came up I thought she might be upset, but she seemed happy and relieved. It was like after all these years of not knowing things finally made sense to her.

          And, sorry, but S_V, please don't respond. I'm not interested in your in-put.

          Thanks to anyone who can shed some light on this for me.
          I guess it really depends on how accurate the test was? Many online tests are junk.

          Also, what do you hope to gain from a professional diagnosis? Medication? Professional advice? Relief that now you 'know'?

          Given how bad CW advice is for everything else (not to mention how wrong they are), do you really want to rely on a CW diagnosis and definition of something that may not really exist? All too often it seems that human nature, individualness, and the inability to adapt to an unnatural society is characterised as a disease or disorder. If there is a disorder/disease it could be with society, not with your wife.
          Modern society is so focused on being social, on lots of false interactions over one genuine one, of noise and distraction and inane babbling that is it any wonder that naturally shy or introved or deep thinking or highly individualistic or those whose minds don't think of everything in terms of social interaction feel they have a problem.

          I've meant a guy with genuine Aspergers and most people who consider themselves to have Aspergers probably don't. They wish they would because then they would know what was 'wrong' with them. But there is nothing wrong with them, they are just not neurotic enough to feel fulfilled in modern society.

          Some things she can change:
          1. Eat PB.
          2. Vit D.
          3. Get enough sleep.
          4. Find ways to take a break from 'society'. It seems to be an overabundance of input that many asperger types can't handle.

          EDIT: Actually, ADD and ADHD and many other so called disorders can be explained the same way.
          Last edited by Bushrat; 11-17-2010, 07:46 PM.
          A steak a day keeps the doctor away

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          • #6
            Joe:
            I've got a question about Asperger's as well. I've never had occasion to be around an Aspie, so I don't know. Can they tell when they are about to "cycle" through a bad spell? (Or is there even anything cyclical or pattern-like to their outbursts? The one person I've noted seemed quite cyclical to me.)

            I am asking this because I *know* when I'm PMSing that I'm being completely unreasonable, weepy, rage-y and, basically, not making any damned sense at all. I have learned the hard way when it's that time of the month to self-isolate and to stay away from love interests and message boards. Of course, I realize that PMS is *nothing* like what Asperger's must surely be like, but it's the closest thing I can personally relate to.

            Is there able to be any level of self-control or self-awareness to avert a trainwreck of one's own making?
            "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." -- Hippocrates

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            • #7
              Yes there is, it is called behavior modification. The issue with people with AS is they are socially awkward, it doesn't come naturally to them to 'fit in'. But, you can learn read facial expressions and body language to realize you may be upsetting someone, etc. Outbursts aren't always a sign of AS, my son doesn't have them. If you are seeing cyclical outbursts they may have something else going on with them too, such as bi-polar or personality disorder.
              Meghan

              My MDA journal

              Primal Ponderings- my blog- finally added some food pron :P

              And best of all my Body Fat Makeover!!

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              • #8
                Just wanted to agree with Nutmeg.

                There are no "cures" for anything within the autism spectrum. But depending on the seriousness or the issues the individual person has, behavior modification can help. Eating right and exercising also help, just like with most issues. If reading more about it and talking with others who relate to having asperger's symptoms helps her, then she should continue with that. It could just help her feel like there's a "reason" for some of the issues she has and if that helps her deal with them then that's great.

                It sounds like what your wife is experiencing is rather mild (though It may seem less so to her), but Nutmeg is right in that if there are major behavioral swings, then there may be a secondary issue causing those and there are things you can do about that. You'd really need a psychiatrist or psychologist to diagnose, though.
                sigpic "Boy I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

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                • #9
                  There are no "cures" for anything within the autism spectrum.
                  Really? There is a theory that Vitamin D deficiency is a contributing factor and some case evidence (see lower on the same link) that shows positive behavioral change in a child after supplementation with vitamin D. I don't know if sufficient vitamin D supplementation can help an adult on the autism spectrum, but it certainly can't hurt to check levels and supplement to sufficiency.
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                  • #10
                    Thanks everyone...I think I was probably asking more for me than for her. I am clueless when it comes to this and have some studying to do. Like I said, she was actually relieved just to be able to put a name to it and give her an explanation for all things through the years. It's not as though it has stopped her from being an exceptional wife and mother and accomplishing quite a lot. I don't think a doctor putting their stamp on it will do anything one way or the other. She doesn't need to change anything.

                    Thanks again.
                    My blog: My Primal Adventure

                    "I've come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass...and I'm all out of bubble gum."

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                    • #11
                      There are no treatments; if the self diagnostic says she has it, she more than likely does. The relief is VERY common among adult Aspies. I remember that when I finally got diagnosed - "Oh, I finally have an explanation!!" It's wonderful and amazing and a huge relief.
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                      • #12
                        I research AS a LOT when I was learning about it for my son. There are lots of schools of thought on it.

                        One is that there has been a HUGE increase in autism diagnosis, beyond what would be normal for increased awareness. There is a 20% 'no fix' rate for autistic disorders. So the thought process is that any person that has some autistic traits and is 'cured' by changing the way they eat does not have true autism. The 20% 'can't fix' folks are truly autistic and the rest have nutritional deficits caused by a myriad of issues. So really the increase in autism is not quite properly represented. Of course I can't remember where I read this, it was from google in a book. My sons behavior is improved with proper diet from his ADD standpoint, but his AS stuff never changes.
                        Meghan

                        My MDA journal

                        Primal Ponderings- my blog- finally added some food pron :P

                        And best of all my Body Fat Makeover!!

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                        • #13
                          The whole discussion has changed in the official/academic/medical arena. The term Asperger's has been retired. The discussion is now about "autism spectrum disorders". A spectrum like this starts in the normal range as quirks of personality in people who can be highly successful socially and professionally, and goes all the way to profoundly autistic individuals who are unable to speak or care for themselves.

                          So, the upshot is that one can be higher than most people on one of these autism quotient type tests, and still not qualify, diagnostically, as having an autism spectrum disorder.

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                          • #14
                            the family hope center actually does seem to have great success with "improving" or "curing" autism spectrum disorders.

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                            • #15
                              Griff, yes the "finally, an explanation" was her first response. She was in a better mood all day. But then she started to worry about what if it is passed on to our girls. She started to look at all of the personallity traits they share with her and began to wonder. I told her not to get ahead of herself, so far they don't show any sign. She is a very protective mother and a HUGE worrier.
                              My blog: My Primal Adventure

                              "I've come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass...and I'm all out of bubble gum."

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