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Autism at Highest Rate Among Wealthy, White, College Educated?

By January 6, 2010

Researchers at the MIND Institute in San Francisco went looking for autism clusters in California.  Their hope was to find an environmental factor that might warrant special study.  What they found, instead, was that wealthy, white, college educated parents seem to have more children diagnosed with autism.

This finding raises some interesting questions - though it almost certainly says nothing about environmental factors related to autism.

One question, of course, is - "is there a genetic factor here?  are we looking, perhaps, at the outcome of the .com revolution of the 90's, during which time many highly technical, somewhat introverted (perhaps mildly autistic) individuals migrated to California, met one another, and married?"

The second and equally interesting question is - "Are wealthy, white, college educated people more likely to seek out diagnoses and services for their children whose social/communications skills don't fit their expectations?"  Connected to this question is the reality that these folks are far more likely than most other groups to have access to high end health care - and often can afford more private services.

If this is the case, we are looking at a cultural and economic trend that, in my opinion, is having a significant impact on our understanding of autism spectrum disorders.

According to an article on the ABC News site:

The researchers looked at about 2.5 million births recorded in California from 1996 through 2000. About 10,000 of those children were later diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, according to the state's department of developmental services.

Using data from birth records, the team found a strong link between parental education and the high rates of autism.

"In this particular case, we found 10 clusters of autism across the state of California. When we looked further, we discovered virtually all of them were areas where there was a higher level of education among the parents who were giving birth in those years," Hertz-Picciotto said.

"We already know that people with a higher education in the United States are more likely to get a diagnosis of autism for their child. It doesn't necessarily mean that autism occurs more frequently in those families," she said.

The study itself will be released today in the journal Autism Research.


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Comments
January 6, 2010 at 8:25 am
(1) AnneS says:

Or are wealthy white college-educated whites more likely to vaccinate?

April 20, 2011 at 8:09 pm
(2) Renee says:

I agree, AnneS.
Middle-class, and wealthier folks, do vaccinate more – they go to doctors more (they have health insurance). Also, wealthier and better educated women are postponing pregnancy and so their eggs are older (possible risk). Recently, study showing 12% of invitro fertilization (artificial insemination) cases are diagnosed with autism a few years after birth. Again, older women getting medical intervention and probably causing issues.
I still believe, as with all the dogs I used to have that passed on early due to too many vet trips (vaccinations and general anaesthesia for dental cleanings) is what KILLS dogs and people alike; with autism, going to the doctor too much may be causing this brain disturbance. Vaccines, especially with Thimerosol (10x the FDA safety level of mercury) is repeatedly injected into young, brain growing children, Thimerosol helps vaccine break through the brain’s barrier –like a toxin, this is BAD STUFF! And hormon-wise, boys may be more susceptible – testosterone brains more sensitive? who knows. But our parents in the 1930s and 40s never got these vaccines and there wasn’t any autism, only profoundly retarded kids who were delivered by forceps, etc.

January 6, 2010 at 8:48 am
(3) autism says:

I don’t have stats to back this up, but it’s my impression that wealthy whites are LESS likely to vaccinate.

I say this on the basis that (1) wealthy whites are most likely to be on the blogosphere, reading articles, and otherwise learning about anti-vaccine theories; (2) wealthy whites are more able financially to send their kids to private schools and homeschool, and can thus avoid the requirements for vaccinations that are a part of public school.

Lisa

January 6, 2010 at 9:25 am
(4) Estee Klar says:

I think you just said it: the study makes no reference or points to any environmental cause of autism — just that there might be a tendency for well-educated, wealthy white people to get a diagnosis. In Canada, we are likely to get diagnostics earlier when we are prepared to pay. I assume it is the same in the U.S.

As for genetic factors, I think that looking for one needle in a haystack is a waste of time and money. There are likely many reasons why a person is born autistic and it is this holistic view that might be more helpful and of course how autistic people perceive, learn, view the world — this is extremely important research.

Studies like this gives us information with little use — a sign of the times, perhaps. To me it’s like someone who wants to keep re dx-ing their autistic child. Once we know the child is autistic — which is measured by observation of behaviour — not a bloodtest — then it’s rather pointless to subject the child to more tests. Okay, so maybe more wealthy white kids get a diagnosis (maybe earlier rather than later). It’s not unlike Hans Asperger’s study of the children who visited him — children from wealthy homes who had the time and money to visit his clinic.

I am not certain about the vaccination hypothesis here. Us “white folks” in Canada certainly seem to be vaccinating.

January 6, 2010 at 10:04 am
(5) Elle says:

Your second question, “Are wealthy, white, college educated people more likely to seek out diagnoses and services for their children whose social/communications skills don’t fit their expectations?” rubbed me the wrong way.

I think the better question is at least “Are wealthy, white, college educated people more likely to seek out diagnoses and services for their children – whose social/communication/emotional skills are lagging to a mild or severe extent from their peers – because they aren’t afraid of a label? Is it because they know they can afford to do something to help the child find a way to learn skills that will help them live a stronger life later on?

I don’t think wealthy, educated white people are all walking around irritated by their child that isn’t measuring up to their dream. My child screamed her head off 15 hours a day, refused to eat a thing, threw up at the slightest change in her routine and was just miserable. I didn’t care what you called it, I knew something was wrong. She was not a happy or healthy child. Now, five years later, with an ASD diagnosis and loads of education, resources and some therapy, she’s sitting in the kitchen playing with a Barbie doll, giving it a bath as she sings to it. I never had any expectations for my daughter other than to see her be happy and healthy. She certainly still has some ASD characteristics but as long as she’s happy and healthy, functioning well in life to whatever extent she’s capable and desires, then I’m a happy mom. But I could afford emotionally, educationally and financially the implication of a diagnosis – no matter what label it was.

I have a friend who is a special education teacher. She works in California with a large percentage of immigrant families from a wide variety of countries – but most of them have economic class in common. They are not close to being considered wealthy, let alone college educated. These parents tend to RUN from the idea that their child might need additional help in school/life. Their cultures/families don’t readily or easily accept differences and it’s better to just leave things as they are. The child will do well or they won’t but let’s not go putting a spotlight on anything – or they are afraid of what extra services might mean as far as putting a spotlight on their immigration status – or they’re afraid they can’t afford emotionally, financially and educationally the implication of a diagnosis.

January 6, 2010 at 10:17 am
(6) increase_or_not says:

It has been known since Autism was first documented that parents of autistic kids are analytical, educated, and “cold as refrigerators”. I suppose it is nice that there is a documented article stating this nugget of wisdom, but their interpretation of this information is weak, just like so many conclusions drawn by shrinks in the past.

Here is a press release as published in a local rag.

http://www.mercurynews.com/sunnyvale/ci_14126944?source=rss

The same researcher (Irva Hertz-Picciotto) puts out two papers within a few months that say opposite things about whether there is a true increase or not. Something is fishy here, so either the press releases is overly slanted to pushing the “everything is ok, don’t worry about the environmental factors”, or maybe the shrinks working for MIND are just continuing their sorry record for understanding autism.

So, let’s say smart folks are just better at figuring out how to get services, that would imply that no-so-smart folks are having autistic kids at the same rate but are somehow hiding them, or maybe just dropping them off at school and letting them be classifed as mentally retarded? So, adding up all of the disabled kids (including both autism and mental retardation) between income brackets should result in an equal distribution. Is that happening? Did they even look at this angle for this paper? I thought that the MIND folks examined this years ago and came to the conclusion that the increase was real and not diagnostic substitution, so there would clearly be an unequal number of diabled kids across income brackets (and no, labeling kids who can’t speak or write english as diabled does not count).

Come on now, we are at the point where the true increase in kids with autism is becoming clear to everyone, even people in government. One would hope the actual published paper has some mention of this is the discussion section, and the slant taken in the press release is just on overstatement.

January 6, 2010 at 10:26 am
(7) autism says:

I suspect there are other confounding issues, with culture being a huge one.

Other issues could include multiple language use (parents may not pick up on language issues as quickly because a child is learning multiple languages at once); school issues (inner city teachers may be overwhelmed by so many issues that a moderate delay may not pop for them); etc.

Lisa

January 6, 2010 at 10:27 am
(8) increase or not says:

“I don’t have stats to back this up, but it’s my impression that wealthy whites are LESS likely to vaccinate.”

Maybe right now, but not for the last 20 year that this study examined. If insurance is not covering a visit, there is no reason to go an get all the extra vaccinations on the CDC schedule.

still, this is all just a waste of time unless it addresses the only two questions that matter.

1. is there an increase in kids with classic autism?
2. is there a biological cause that can be treated?

Beyone those two, who really cares what a bunch of shrinks say about what makes rich, old, white folks to have autistic kids.

January 6, 2010 at 10:42 am
(9) increase or not says:

“Studies like this gives us information with little use — a sign of the times, perhaps. ”

I would agree there and go a step further. This paper and the slant from the Mercury News article are less than useless, and are a huge step backwards.

http://www.mercurynews.com/sunnyvale/ci_14126944?source=rss

They manage to dismiss environmental effects, vaccine effects, and the gene-only hypothesis, all of which, for all their flaws, have something useful for thinking about the autism. With this paper (or just the press interpretation), we are back to blaming the parents, now not for being cold, but for being quick to get a diagnosis for all these “wonderful” services for our kids. I’m sure the CDC loves this though.

January 6, 2010 at 11:13 am
(10) Leila says:

Lisa, the MIND Institute is located in Sacramento, not San Francisco.

January 6, 2010 at 11:24 am
(11) autism says:

Thanks, Leila.

January 6, 2010 at 6:48 pm
(12) ACarroll says:

It is very frustrating that none of these studies looks at the conditions surrounding the manner of birth (common medical practices in the US) as the independent variable; for example, induction of labor, widespread use of pitocin at much higher levels than recommended to induce labor, use of Cytotec to induce labor (expressly non-indicated for use in pregnant women in its black-box warning), induced labor and delivery before 40 weeks, non-medical c-sections. In today’s press, Dr. Hertz-Picciotto claims that there is a possible correlation between parental education level and the incidence of autism (which may just be an artifact). Research studies show that non-medical c-sections increase with parental educational level and access to health insurance. Ob/gyn’s at hospitals serving affluent communities claim that “this is what our patients ask for, and so we provide it.”(!) (Surgery is also a great source of revenue!). It’s a well-known fact that the US rate of c-sections of 30% is way above the WHO evidence-based recommendation of 15%-20% (in countries with better maternal and infant outcomes).

I don’t care if they call these “environmental variables” or not. If it helps to get research funded to study the effect of the manner of birth (medical practices) on autism, then let them be “environmental variables.”

January 7, 2010 at 4:50 am
(13) Steven Michaelis says:

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January 7, 2010 at 5:21 am
(14) HH says:

Or are wealthy white college-educated whites more likely to vaccinate?

absolutely!!! They are not easily swayed by scare tactics by the media. They do what is expected of them socially more so than any other group. I would prefer there be a study of Autistic Children who have never been vaccinated. Are there?

January 7, 2010 at 6:59 am
(15) autism says:

HH – one of the biggest issues out there is the lack of a really large, well-funded vaccinated/not-vaccinated study. from what I’ve been told, one major reason why this has not been undertaken is lack of a large enough number of kids (in the US) who have not been vaccinated…

Given that the VAST majority of Americans have been been vaccinated, and anyone who attends public school or camp has been vaccinated, that seems possible.

And if you compare, say, rates of autism among vaccinated Americans to rates of autism among unvaccinated Indonesians or Sudanese, you’re comparing people with so many differences in lifestyle, nutrition, diagnostic procedure, access to medical care, etc. that I’d think such a study would be close to useless.

Lisa

January 7, 2010 at 8:07 am
(16) AutismNewsBeat says:

“Or are wealthy white college-educated whites more likely to vaccinate?”

Vaccine rejectionism is more widespread among the white, educated, upper income demographic.

January 7, 2010 at 8:31 am
(17) AutismNewsBeat says:

“I thought that the MIND folks examined this years ago and came to the conclusion that the increase was real and not diagnostic substitution…”

It sounds like you’re talking about the Hertz-Picciotto paper from Jan., 2009. The study’s conclusions are much more cautious than you imagine. Nobody seriously suggests that the increase in diagnoses is due solely to diagnostic substitution or “better diagnosis”. There are at least five factors I can think of that contribute to the increase.

You deserve props for asking the right question: “Is there an increase in kids with classic autism?” Too many people, when advocating for an autism epidemic, conflate all five ASDs into the one size fits all label of “autism”.

The earliest autism population study (Lotter, 1966), showed a prevalance of classic (Kanner) autism of 4.5:10,000. Subsequent studies showed similar rates. When the diagnostic criteria for autistic disorder was expanded in the DSM III-R, the rate for AS climbed to 20:10,000, and there it has stayed for the last 20 years.

January 7, 2010 at 11:14 am
(18) hera says:

Hi ANB, think your linked studies were interesting; thank you. And agree that following classic autism is very important, and useful.I do suspect that some high functioning aspergers was not diagnosed in the past.

Not so sure about your rate of ASD disorders currently though.You state that the autism spectrum disorders currently have a rate of 20 in 10000. That works out as 1 in 500.
Given that even CDC rates are much higher than that, I’m not sure what you are basing the 1 in 500 no change figure on?
Thanks again for the studies link though;read it briefly but am going to do a more indepth re-read later.

January 7, 2010 at 11:32 am
(19) autism says:

Hera – I believe ANB is referring only to “autistic disorder” (aka “classic” or “kanner” autism) stats.

But, ANB, where do you find stats that separate out the different autism spectrum disorders? So far as I can tell, outside of the controversial study in CA, there are no solid stats that tell us what percentage of people are dx with Autistic Disorder v. PDD-NOS v. Asperger Syndrome.

Lisa

January 7, 2010 at 1:19 pm
(20) AutismNewsBeat says:

It’s from Fombonne’s 2008 meta-analysis of 43 epi studies. He gives estimated rates for autistic disorder (20.6:10,000), Asperger’s (6:10,000), PDD-NOS (30:10,000), Retts (1:10,000) and CID (1.5:100,000).

Asperger’s is difficult to count. There are only two studies that looked at AS rates, and both found less than 5 cases. Fombonne estimates there are 3-4 more cases of autistic disorder than Asperger’s, but cautions the figure is still speculative.

I sent a copy of the study PDF file to Lisa. It was published in Pediatric Research.

January 7, 2010 at 1:39 pm
(21) autism says:

thanks, ANB. I think Fonbonne’s stats are useful but not definitive… especially since we are now seeing so many adults dxed with Aspergers.

If there are so many more cases of Autistic Disorder than of Aspergers, how do we then explain the huge increase in numbers?

Lisa

January 7, 2010 at 3:13 pm
(22) AutismNewsBeat says:

Which numbers?

January 7, 2010 at 3:23 pm
(23) autism says:

Well, ANB, here’s the thing…

Let’s say for the sake of this conversation that the huge increase in ASD diagnoses is largely an artifact of various issues ranging from vastly broader diagnostic criteria to greater awareness to diagnostic substitution, etc.

To make that claim, we’d need to assume that a big part of the increase in diagnoses is caused by the addition of diagnoses such as Aspergers and PDD-NOS (AKA high functioning autism). In fact, I suspect this is actually the case.

But if, according to Fonbonne, only a small percentage of people with ASD diagnoses have aspergers/hfa, then most of the people with ASD diagnoses have more profound forms of autism. If THAT is the case, then even increased awareness or diagnostic substition seems inadequate to explain the increase.

In fact, if Fonbonne is correct, is there an explanation beyond the possibility that there is, in fact, a huge increase in the number of people diagnosable with profound autism?

Your confused friend,

Lisa

January 7, 2010 at 4:59 pm
(24) AutismNewsBeat says:

I think you’re right that most of the increase is in the less severe ASDs. Fombonne’s estimate for Asperger’s is probably low. See page six of the paper where he talks about study designs and their limitations. Short version: most of these studies depend on other health and education professionals to identify and refer children who either have a diagnosis, or are suspected of qualifying for one. Despite what David Kirby and other anti-vaccine activists tell us, ASDs are not always obvious, and many kids fly under the screening radar. In the most recent CDC count, about 1/3 of the kids with autism were undiagnosed prior to being screened and counted by the study researchers.

January 7, 2010 at 5:23 pm
(25) autism says:

Well that’s the point, ANB: if adults and teens who are presently diagnosable with ASD’s have been “under the radar” for most of the 20th century (since autism was “invented” as a diagnostic category), then they are either mildly autistic or have symptoms that are literally interchangeable with other disorders or developmental differences.

That would imply that they would be diagnosable today with some variant of Aspergers or PDD – because anyone who is truly diagnosable with Autism Disorder (“classic” autism) is very distinctive in his/her symptoms.

So, logically, if there is zero to very little “absolute” rise in autism, the “apparent” rise would need to include mostly people (including undiagnosed adults) with Aspergers/PDD.

Lisa

January 7, 2010 at 5:46 pm
(26) AutismNewsBeat says:

I’m not sure that “anyone who is truly diagnosable with Autism Disorder is very distinctive in his/her symptoms.” These kids used to be called schizophrenic and mentally retarded, even after the DSM-III. There’s good evidence that MR diagnoses declined through the 90s at a rate very close to the rise in autism diagnosis. You’re also assuming that the school administrators that are asked to participate in these studies can easily spot classic autism.

And I’m wondering about this:
But if, according to Fonbonne, only a small percentage of people with ASD diagnoses have aspergers/hfa, then most of the people with ASD diagnoses have more profound forms of autism.”

Fombonne estimated that the rate of Autistic Disorder is 3-4 times higher than Asperger’s, not “high functioning autism”.

January 7, 2010 at 6:48 pm
(27) barbaraj says:
January 7, 2010 at 7:50 pm
(28) Sullivan says:

I’m not sure that “anyone who is truly diagnosable with Autism Disorder is very distinctive in his/her symptoms.”

The fact of the matter is that a large number of autistics have been mislabled during the 20th centrury. It isn’t even speculation.

King and Bearman showed that there was a large group of autistics–those disabled enough to be served by the same CDDS system in the paper above–who were mislabeled as having only intellectual disability.

The same author of the study above, Dr. Hertz-Picciotto, showed a year ago that a large fraction of the increase in autism (at least in the CDDS data) can be explained by changes in the diagnostic criteria, age of diagnosis and the inclusion of “milder” cases.

Lisa, the statement below isn’t really accurate.

Well that’s the point, ANB: if adults and teens who are presently diagnosable with ASD’s have been “under the radar” for most of the 20th century (since autism was “invented” as a diagnostic category), then they are either mildly autistic or have symptoms that are literally interchangeable with other disorders or developmental differences.

That would imply that they would be diagnosable today with some variant of Aspergers or PDD – because anyone who is truly diagnosable with Autism Disorder (”classic” autism) is very distinctive in his/her symptoms.

It isn’t a question that autistics have been mislabled. The only question is how many.

January 7, 2010 at 8:02 pm
(29) autism says:

Sullivan – I do know that some people with autism have been mislabeled as “MR” or “schizophrenic,” but have no idea what the stats are.

Since I know very little about childhood schizophrenia, I don’t know what it looks like from the outside.

How similar are the two in appearance? From what I’ve read, schizophrenics are likely to have typical language development, and to develop hallucinations… and the “stereotyped movements” typical of autism don’t seem to be typical of schizophrenia.

Lisa

January 7, 2010 at 9:31 pm
(30) Sullivan says:

Lisa,

I am not sure why you ask me about childhood schizophrenia since I didn’t mention it. I can’t really address how similar they are in presentation. But, it is worth noting that autism was called “childhood schizophrenia” and autism articles were published in schizophrenia journals as late as the early 1980′s.

Keep in mind, King and Bearman showed that there wasn’t a mislabel of Intellectual Disability (MR in those days). Rather it was a mislabel as *only* Intellectual Disability. In other words, the autistics didn’t lose their ID diagnoses, they gained autism on top of the ID diagnoses.

January 8, 2010 at 4:04 pm
(31) Linda Tanaka says:

Vaccinations probably have nothing to do with it. Children enrolled in the medi-cal program receive ALL vaccines as per the current recommended schedule. Perhaps more educated parents are more likely to be gun shy with the current schedule b/c they are doing the research, i.e. they may skip Hep B vaccine for their day one infant until it’s older.

January 8, 2010 at 5:55 pm
(32) barbaraj says:

It would make sense, jmo, that the groups some feel are under reported do to lack of adequate care would be the same groups that are undervaccinated. It would seem logical, jmo, that the vaccine schedules would be far more hit or miss among the poorer groups. I believe my oldest son’s illnesses may have saved him from the rigid schedule that could have brought about autism. I’m patiently waiting to “see” what happened to the 1999 babies that were NOT given hepb at birth, that one little time slot may be very telling.

January 8, 2010 at 10:43 pm
(33) AutismNewsBeat says:

I’m patiently waiting to “see” what happened to the 1999 babies that were NOT given hep b at birth, that one little time slot may be very telling.

You bet it’s telling! About three million newborns were unnecessarily put at risk for a deadly disease. Is that what you meant?

January 9, 2010 at 1:43 am
(34) Dedj says:

It’s a logical error to assert that “not previously diagnosed with autism” is equatable with “not previously diagnosed”.

As Sullivan has pointed out, people have been autistic and intellectually disabled, yet have not been diagnosed ‘low functioning’ autistic, even though autism with intellectual disability is pretty much the working definition of ‘profound’ autism.

Also, there is some overlap between autism and other conditions. This in no way delegitimatises the diagnosis of people who are ‘re-assigned’ as autistic, and is in no way a rational or reasonable arguement.

People should be more careful of repeating the nonsense mantra of ‘you can’t miss autism’, especially if they’re in positions of some responsibility.

January 9, 2010 at 6:54 am
(35) autism says:

Dedj, I have never been in a position to diagnose, so of course don’t have the experience to say “you can’t miss autism.”

And I am quite sure that many people were and are diagnosed with a wide range of disorders who “could” also be diagnosable with autism.

But I would assume that if the numbers “appear” to be rising like a rocket, it’s not because practitioners suddenly, during the late 1980′s, become so much better at distinguishing classic autism from anything else.

Thus I make the educated guess that the meteoric rise of diagnoses is closely related to the instantaneous and huge change in diagnostic criteria, which allowed/allows individuals with a huge range of symptoms to be diagnosed on the autism spectrum. And since the 1980′s, of course, “autism awareness” and diagnostic trends have had a very big impact.

Based on what I’ve read, interviews I’ve conducted, etc., it seems to me that huge numbers of people are being diagnosed on the autism spectrum who might (or might not) have received an incredible range of diagnoses, from “social anxiety” and OCD to schizophrenia, MR, ADHD, etc.

Even now, I hear of kids with three or four similar diagnoses: Aspergers AND NVLD AND ADHD AND anxiety disorder. I would make the guess that, back in the early 80′s, the child would have been labeled ADHD with anxiety disorder.

Lisa

January 9, 2010 at 6:56 am
(36) margie.b.ct says:

Are white, educated parents more likely to have decent heath insurance, and Doc’s that give a damn about their children and get them dignosed in a timely fashion???
I know of low income, single mom’s, that didn’t know what Autism was and abused their children for “beig bad”

January 9, 2010 at 7:02 am
(37) autism says:

Margie: yes.

Lisa

January 9, 2010 at 7:24 am
(38) margie.b.ct says:

With the ever inceasing incidence of Autism, education is needed for every pregnant or soon to be pregnant, parent.

January 9, 2010 at 10:27 am
(39) Autismnewsbeat says:

“With the ever increasing incidence prevalence of autism, education is needed for every pregnant, or soon to be pregnant, parent.”

January 9, 2010 at 5:54 pm
(40) Dedj says:

Then Lisa, I’m not sure what your point is, or if you even have one.

“People recently diagnosed with autism didn’t have a diagnosis of autism until recently” isn’t a very contentious view.

The range of symptoms on the autism spectrum is quite small compared to what it’s possible to have, although the range of presentations is broad.

Even so, it should be of no surprise to find that there is some overlap (or misidentification which is what even Wing and Gould found in their early studies even using stricter criteria) between conditions which can have similar presentations and may even share similar pathways.

This is no way means that people diagnosed today aren’t any less autistic than they were in the 70′s-80′s. I’m not sure why this is where the conversation appears to be going.

January 9, 2010 at 6:10 pm
(41) barbaraj says:

ANB the risks were near zero. Mothers positive for hepb were identified and their children received the necessary vaccine and ig shot. There is no risk for a newborn to wait until he’s two months old to receive that shot, there is no risk for anyone who is not active sexually or an iv drug abuser to warrant that shot. That shot’s marketing was “almost evil”. I do wonder why the children were studied for 1998 birthdays but not 1999, and the eight year olds are really 12? Am I misunderstanding the birth year for that latest cdc release?

January 9, 2010 at 11:50 pm
(42) barbaraj says:

A sampling in CA.

Abstract
PURPOSE: To assess the immunization status of young children in a predominantly Hispanic region in and around downtown Los Angeles, and factors associated with complete immunization by age 24 months.

METHODS: The information was gathered in a two-stage cluster survey with probability proportionate to estimated size (PPS) sampling of 30 clusters at the first stage, and simple random sampling of a constant number of children at the second stage. Vaccination coverage was determined by a review of the home immunization (HI) card, or of clinic records.

RESULTS: Of the 270 sampled children, 91.5% were Hispanic and 6.7% were Black. Home telephone numbers were not available in 24.8% of the homes, and 34.1% reported having no health insurance. Vaccination coverage was over 90% for the first three doses of Diphtheria, tetanus toxoids and pertussis/diphtheria, tetanus toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccine (DTP/DTaP)/Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids vaccine (DT), first two doses of poliovirus (Polio) vaccine, first dose of measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, and first two doses of hepatitis B (Hep B) vaccine. Yet, by age 24 months, only 72.2% of the children had received the combined series of 4:3:1 (i.e., four DTP/DTaP/DT, three Polio, one MMR). This was further reduced to 64.4% for the combined series of 4:3:1:3:3 (i.e., four DTP/DTaP/DT, three Polio, one MMR, three Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), three Hep B). Factors associated with completed on-time vaccination were having an HI card available during the interview and being enrolled in Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC).

CONCLUSIONS: While vaccination levels for individual antigens were found to be high, more emphasis needs to be placed on getting preschool children vaccinated on-time according to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule.

January 9, 2010 at 11:52 pm
(43) barbaraj says:

A small sampling in CA.
Abstract
PURPOSE: To assess the immunization status of young children in a predominantly Hispanic region in and around downtown Los Angeles, and factors associated with complete immunization by age 24 months.

METHODS: The information was gathered in a two-stage cluster survey with probability proportionate to estimated size (PPS) sampling of 30 clusters at the first stage, and simple random sampling of a constant number of children at the second stage. Vaccination coverage was determined by a review of the home immunization (HI) card, or of clinic records.

RESULTS: Of the 270 sampled children, 91.5% were Hispanic and 6.7% were Black. Home telephone numbers were not available in 24.8% of the homes, and 34.1% reported having no health insurance. Vaccination coverage was over 90% for the first three doses of Diphtheria, tetanus toxoids and pertussis/diphtheria, tetanus toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccine (DTP/DTaP)/Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids vaccine (DT), first two doses of poliovirus (Polio) vaccine, first dose of measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, and first two doses of hepatitis B (Hep B) vaccine. Yet, by age 24 months, only 72.2% of the children had received the combined series of 4:3:1 (i.e., four DTP/DTaP/DT, three Polio, one MMR). This was further reduced to 64.4% for the combined series of 4:3:1:3:3 (i.e., four DTP/DTaP/DT, three Polio, one MMR, three Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), three Hep B). Factors associated with completed on-time vaccination were having an HI card available during the interview and being enrolled in Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC).

CONCLUSIONS: While vaccination levels for individual antigens were found to be high, more emphasis needs to be placed on getting preschool children vaccinated on-time according to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule.

January 10, 2010 at 1:31 am
(44) AutismNewsBeat says:

bj, there are entire books filled with things you misunderstand about the hepatitis B vaccine. That is apparent when you repeat the canard that “there is no risk for anyone who is not active sexually or an iv drug abuser to warrant that shot.”

I wrote a lengthier reply about four hours ago, but it was blocked, probably due to the two URLs I included.

January 10, 2010 at 2:20 am
(45) Twyla says:

From the Hepatits B Foundation web site:
h t t p : / / w w w .hepb.org/hepb/transmission.htm

Transmission

Hepatitis B is transmitted through blood and infected bodily fluids. This can occur through:

direct blood-to-blood contact
unprotected sex
unsterile needles
from an infected woman to her newborn during the delivery process.

Other possible routes of infection include sharing sharp instruments such as razors, toothbrushes or earrings. Body piercing, tattooing and acupuncture are also possible routes of infection unless sterile needles are used.

Hepatitis B is NOT transmitted casually. It cannot be spread through sneezing, coughing, hugging or eating food prepared by someone who is infected with hepatitis B. Everyone is at some risk for a hepatitis B infection, but some groups are at higher risk because of their occupation or life choices.

High Risk Groups

Health care workers and emergency personnel
Infants born to mothers who are infected at the time of delivery
Partners or individuals living in close household contact with an infected person
Individuals with multiple sex partners, past or present
Individuals who have been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease
Illicit drug users (injecting, inhaling, snorting, popping pills)
Men who have sex with men
Individuals who received a blood transfusion prior to 1992
Individuals who get tattoos or body piercing
Individuals who travel to countries where hepatitis B is common (Asia, Africa, South America, the Pacific Islands, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East)
Individuals emigrating from countries where hepatitis B is common, or born to parents who emigrated from these countries (see above)
Families adopting children from countries where hepatitis B is common (see above)
Individuals with early kidney disease or undergoing kidney dialysis
Individuals who use blood products for medical conditions (i.e.hemophilia)
Residents and staff of correctional facilities and group homes

January 10, 2010 at 2:30 am
(46) Twyla says:

Regarding the Hepatitis B vaccine, see
h t t p : / / w w w .ageofautism.com/2009/10/hepatitis-b-vaccine-an-unmitigated-disaster-.html

To me, giving the Hepatitis B on the day of birth for all newborns is one of the most insane vaccine-related decisions made by our health authorities.

ANB, maybe you can direct us to a study proving that babies can be safely vaccinated on the day of birth?

January 10, 2010 at 6:46 am
(47) mike says:

maybe it has something to do with the age of the birth mother. seems to me that these women wait to have children until after college and career.

January 10, 2010 at 1:02 pm
(48) barbaraj says:

Thanks Twyla for that link. What “WILL” it take to fix this? Certainly this one factual comment from that link should make everyone go ..hmmm

Hepatitis B is a rare, mainly blood-transmitted disease. In 1996, only 54 cases of the disease were reported to the CDC in the 0-1 age group. There were 3.9 million births that year, so the observed incidence of hepatitis B in the 0-1 age group was just 0.001%. In the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), there were 1,080 total reports of adverse reactions from Hepatitis B vaccine in 1996 in the 0-1 age group, with 47 deaths reported. Total VAERS Hepatitis B reports for the 0-1 age group outnumber reported cases of the disease 20 to 1.

January 10, 2010 at 2:01 pm
(49) Twyla says:

Thanks, Barbaraj. That really gets to the heart of it — risk/benefit analysis.

January 10, 2010 at 2:26 pm
(50) AutismNewsBeat says:

In 1996, only 54 cases of the disease were reported to the CDC in the 0-1 age group.

That’s hardly surprising given that the disease is usually asymptomatic in infants and young children, and blood tests for hep B are not usually given. Once again you conflate diagnosis with prevalence.

Teens or adults who are infected with HBV from sex or IV drug use become chronically infected only 4% of the time. An infant will become chronically infected at a much higher rate – as much as 90% of the time, depending on the mother’s status.

What’s also missing from the AoA narrative is the possibility of medical errors that can lead to an infected mother passing the virus to her newborn. Tests are not 100% accurate. The mother may not be aware she is a carrier, or does but won’t talk about it. Lab transcription errors occur.

Just saying it’s insane to vaccinate a newborn doesn’t make it so. A newborn is subjected to thousands of new antigens the moment she enters the world. Is that also insane?

January 10, 2010 at 3:40 pm
(51) Lisa Jo says:

It seems that almost every time I post on this site, no matter what the topic, the conversation winds with “dueling studies” related to vaccines.

I honestly don’t believe that a higher prevalence of autism spectrum diagnoses among white, wealthy families in California has any relationship whatever to vaccines.

One can speculate on vaccine compliance — but really and truly, there are so many far, far more likely reasons for the prevalence.

IMO, using Occam’s Razor and seeking the simplest explanation makes the most sense here: wealth, access to health care, time and tools for research — don’t these reasons seem to make more sense than a possibly higher (or possibly lower?!) rate of vaccine compliance??

Lisa

January 10, 2010 at 5:21 pm
(52) Twyla says:

Yes. ANB, there are a very small number of mothers who do not know that they are Hep B positive and who give Hep B to their newborn babies. This is a very rare occurrence — too rare to make up for the adverse events reported for the Hep B vaccine, and the inadequate safety studies.

Newborns encounter germs from inhalation, digestion, and exposure via the skin, but injection is an unnatural means of exposure bipassing the body’s normal defenses. And, the vaccine contains more than just microbes.

I do not know why researchers at the MIND Institute in found that wealthy, white, college educated parents seem to have more children diagnosed with autism. There are many possible factors, including vaccine rates and access to healthcare.

But when ANB starts saying that “About three million newborns were unnecessarily put at risk for a deadly disease” if they did not receive the Hep B vaccine, I feel the need to respond.

January 11, 2010 at 1:32 pm
(53) barbaraj says:

We’ve been told we can no longer ignore the facts pointing toward an environmental cause. This should , jmo, stear us away from thinking that better diagnosis in any group accounts for statistical differences in the count of Autistic children. So, yep, I want to know about the environmental differences..vaccine compliance…lawn care..bottled water…flooring and furnishing …electro/magnetic fields…and on.

January 11, 2010 at 1:55 pm
(54) autism says:

BarbaraJ, not sure how hearing about ALL the environmental differences could possibly be helpful relative to making real-world choices.

There are, as you’ve noted, an incredible range of new, increased or decreased exposures in mainstream American towns and cities since the 1980′s. How would it help to know that, for example, the rate of breast feeding has increased along with the availability and prevalence of organic foods, cell phones, cork flooring and K’nex toys?

Knowing every environmental change in our world won’t lead us to prevent or cure autism, but it can certainly lead us to become anxious about almost everything! Is it ok to make this call on my cell phone? drink from a water fountain? eat peanut butter? choose non-organic lettuce?

Of course, if we actually know of a causal link between an environmental substance and a physical or mental problem, that’s another story. And obviously we stay away from Deet, charred barbecue and other toxins.

But there’s got to be a limit – otherwise we’d all have to live in bubbles!

Lisa

January 11, 2010 at 5:39 pm
(55) autismnewsbeat says:

“This is a very rare occurrence — too rare to make up for the adverse events reported for the Hep B vaccine, and the inadequate safety studies.”

Twyla, how do you know this? Most persons with chronic Hep B are asymptomatic for decades.

Are you referencing VAERS data?

January 11, 2010 at 6:07 pm
(56) barbaraj says:

I’m not sure I’m understanding. If there “is” a list of possible suspected environmental exposures, and something as informal as a questionaire were sent to households of ASD children, could we not possibly see a “trend”? Wouldn’t this be a good start in an epidemiological study?

January 11, 2010 at 6:27 pm
(57) hera says:

Agree with Twyla about the fact that hep b would best be given only to those babies who have a pregnant mother who is Hep B postive.
I think Twyla is refering to the fact that inaccurate lab results for Hep B testing are rare.( I realize a very new infection may not be picked up on a test.)
Do you have any figures that indicate differently?
A very quick look on google scholar seemed to show more of an issue with occasional false positive results, than with false negatives, but am willing to be corrected if you have other figures?

Re your comment about babies and antigens; it is generally acknowledged that infants are more vulnerable than adults to a wide range of things.

Toxins ( lead for example) have a much more severe effect on babies versus say an adult.

We are extremely careful about what foods we allow a baby to partake of, due to this fact. (For example, many parents use sterilized water for formula,and physicians recommend no honey until 2 years old.)

We even know that in the seventies,10 babies in a toronto hospital were killed after their umbilical cord was cleansed with a disinfectant containing thimerosal.

We also know that the blood brain barrier is not fully developed at birth, and that in tests on primates, our closest animal match, effects of Hepatitis B vaccine ( can’t remember if it was with or without thimerosal) may have a negative effect on things such as the ability to suckle.

And we know that, very rarely, there have been reactions to the Hep B vaccine that have resulted in the babies’ death.
Given that, it would seem that a risk versus benefit analysis would be appropriate in terms of vaccinating with Hep B.

January 11, 2010 at 6:41 pm
(58) lisa B says:

Acarrol, asked about birth practices. I had my son at 33 years old. He was delivered totally natural at 38 weeks. The only thing I did in the delivery room was yoga poses. ( boy did I get tons of looks) I guess I was even afraid back then of conventional medical wisdom. I think it must be environmental factors that play into a child’s development of autism. And yes with age, wisdom and social status action gets taken by a parent. We ( college educated, older women ) might have the leisure time to look up concerns of our children instead of focusing on survival .( blooms taxonomy right? basic needs met?)

January 11, 2010 at 7:32 pm
(59) Lisa Jo says:

BarbaraJ, the list of “possible environmental exposures,” as you suggested in your prior comment, includes an extraordinary number of items, most of which are prevalent across first world countries. The differences will relate far more to income and access than to anything else.

For example…

It’s hard for me to envision a meaningful survey that asks parents of kids with ASD’s questions like… “do you have wall to wall carpeting? have you ever shampooed your pet? do you own and use a cell phone?” Obviously, the answers are more likely to be “yes, yes, yes” to these questions in more affluent areas. And they will be prevalent across the board, in families with and without children with autism.

Meanwhile, positive answers to things like “do you live near high tension wires? have you ever been told to avoid drinking tap water? do you live within a mile of a coal mine? etc.” will be more likely in a less affluent area. And, again, they will be prevalent for families with and without autism.

My point is that, unless and until there is some very compelling evidence that particular environmental factors play a causative role in autism, I am not in favor of just looking around for any possible environmental association.

The only exception I make is for vaccines, and that’s because I consider the level of anxiety over vaccines to be a potentially deadly problem. In that case, yes, I’d like to see the CDC conduct a very full and complete study, with attention to as many factors as possible.

Lisa

January 11, 2010 at 11:28 pm
(60) AutismNewsBeat says:

What is causing the anxiety over vaccines? Could misinformation, spread both deliberately and unknowingly, play a part?

January 12, 2010 at 2:20 am
(61) barbaraj says:

Or perhaps it could be the supporting evidence?
I can’t help but notice that the title of this particular entry matches the earliest studies of parents affected by autism. Those that had the most shots, dating back more than fifty years, those more affluent members of society, had the few children diagnosed with autism. However, then the mainstream doctors and society as a whole, looked at the mothers as rich ,cold and responsible for their children’s affliction.

January 12, 2010 at 10:12 am
(62) AutismNewsBeat says:

Yes, that’s a problem. Unfiltered, anecdotal evidence can be very misleading.

January 12, 2010 at 11:51 am
(63) barbaraj says:

Anecdotal evidence brought about a universal medical opinion in the fifties, we must watch out for that, I agree. Let’s not fear evidence, let’s not think of science as being fact, it isn’t, and has never been, it’s ongoing and changing on all fronts daily. What are facts ,” someones perception?” someone’s conclusion? What is scientific conclusion, is it not repetitive results after several experiments. Among the few scientific studies I’ve seen is the one where the hepb was injected into the infant monkeys and the autopsy results showing inflammation similar to what’s found in hiv dementia.We can’t experiment on children, yet for some reason, in the case of autism , we won’t allow in animal models as proof of anything,and there seems to be a refusal to compare unvaccinated children against vaccinated. Why is that? Anecdotal evidence has led to great strides in medicine, beginning before Lyster in modern medicine and Hippocrates/lithium for the ancients.

January 12, 2010 at 12:38 pm
(64) barbaraj says:

oops..I made it appear it was one study, it was not.

January 12, 2010 at 1:37 pm
(65) Autismnewsbeat says:

So I take it you believe that unfiltered, anecdotal evidence is never misleading? Or are you just avoiding the point?

January 12, 2010 at 9:53 pm
(66) barbaraj says:

ANB I do believe filtering and censorship are sounding very similar here. Yes, it’s a fact that the pharms often limit the amount of information we are allowed to receive via the media, money buys media. Is this proper filtering?

January 13, 2010 at 2:47 pm
(67) ANB says:

Sounds like you’re fresh out of evidence.

January 13, 2010 at 11:20 pm
(68) barbaraj says:

There is evidence..it’s too often countered by those that have literal stock in doing so.
http://www.ncims.com/articles/ThirmerosalandDevelopmentalDisability.pdf

January 14, 2010 at 8:32 am
(69) ANB says:

That’s how the scientific method works. Just because it isn’t giving the results you hope for doesn’t make it obsolete. The Gallagher paper has flaws – every study does. Those flaws need to be exposed and discussed. It’s a time consuming process, but it beats pseudoscience and sorcery.

January 14, 2010 at 10:35 pm
(70) barbaraj says:

But do you see, ANB, that there is little “scientific method” applied to the study of autism? In this respect ,yes, we are picking and choosing who we believe,and when an odd actual study is completed, as the one with the hepb monkeys, it weighs in among the rest when it should be considered as much more solid evidence than say, out of 100 mmr kids in a study somewhere, less had autism than those without mmr. Who do you think puts that kind of garbage “pseudo-science” out there? Track back to the money and every time you will see pharmaceuticals behind them. This is what I find disturbing.
I want to know, did hepb do this to so many? It isn’t what happened to mine, mine would have had his dpt reaction as he did, without hepb, however, this new “explosion” has to point to a common cause. Of course it’s not the only cause of autism, but it sure appears a major suspect in the rise during the 90′s.

January 15, 2010 at 11:48 am
(71) barbaraj says:

this theme has been looked at off and on for years…

http://autismresearchcentre.com/docs/papers/1998_BCetal_Maths.pdf

January 15, 2010 at 12:03 pm
(72) barbaraj says:

In some way the study makes sense, if a child who already is a bit genetically pre determined to lack social skills is damaged in his weakest area….??? Are girls normally more social ..is this protective?…of course in this age of computers those with high tech skills may be over represented in the upper middle class group because of the employment opportunities..this of course has something to say for “nerds marrying nerds” as someone suggested..given this info perhaps we can one day find out which “toxin” damages an already weaker social part of the brain

January 15, 2010 at 5:50 pm
(73) Rich says:

Let’s think about this. White, Wealthy, and educated. Not much genetically to work on there. Educated and have money, this means they have good jobs, probably live in the suburbs, and commute. This leaves very little time for thing like cooking. Are these kids more likely to be eating take-out and packaged, processed, ready to eat food?
Probably a good chance.

January 15, 2010 at 6:58 pm
(74) barbaraj says:

Rich I will go along with you only because of “chicken nuggets” being the mainstay of many of the autistic children I know, however, before they regressed most were well nourished and had tastes for wholesome foods. If the parents were “busy”, perhaps the moms’ diets were more restaurant based than at home moms, but who is an at home mom anymore in any economic bracket? It’s been studied, fairly recently , and concluded that many autistic children have older fathers. Is this because as, in the risk of downs with older mothers, the father carries a chromosone risk, or that socially backward men tend to marry later? I do think it’s so complicated that it needs to be studied on many different levels, one being the brain of families with engineering skills , the siblings of autistic children in these families, possibly uncover the genetic difference in these families, then move on to the possible toxin that the autistic child had that differed from his sibs. That could bring about so many variables, did mom give child A tylenol after a shot, and not child B, did one child receive a shot supplied by a manufacturer that used twice as much thimerosal than another, should birthweights be a consideration?? and on ..and on..There are so many clues, and no one seems to be putting it all together. Again, if this “nerd” theory were to hold up, what percentage of autistic children would be in this class, a very small number ?, giving those involved in the autism explosion yet another more serious set of factors to consider?
My son was talking about cloning people the other night and considering the intelligence outcome of clones, and he said, “if I hadn’t banged my head would I be so smart in math”…I told him I really didn’t know..there may be many factors that make us what we are, most of which we will never know.

January 16, 2010 at 8:58 am
(75) Lisa b says:

Rich personally I ate incredibly healthy food through my pregnancy, and nursed my son for a year. Then I made him home made baby food. I took two years off for maternity leave for both my children so my older child with autism had mommy at home for four out of his five first years. No chicken nuggets and proceed food here.(again I am the natural birth mom who practices yoga)
He did receive all his shots, until the age of three. Then he stopped.(due to religious practices in my state.) I don’t know the answers. but I think it’s got to be age of parents, genes, and environment. Temple Grandin in one of her books, said all the parents she meets are either mathematically inclined, dyslexic or artists. My husband and I are all three. Again I feel as a parent I would rather spend my time looking into solutions to problems that arise then speculate on what caused this “problem” I am an advocate for action and research, but as a parent I can spend my time on things that I can change, and not obsess about things that I can not change.

February 18, 2010 at 12:36 am
(76) Shayne says:

To me the answer to this is obvious, I don’t know how the researches don’t see this. College educated people are statistically more likely to get married and have kids later in life. If you have kids later in life it increases the chances that your child will suffer from autism.

June 6, 2010 at 9:09 am
(77) Greg says:

Has anybody ever considered Perfumes? While safe nearly all the time, my theory It’s more likely a woman who absorbs perfume through her skin barrier at the correct time during pregnancy, fires bad genetic triggers in the fetus DNA. Mothers of autistic children could answer this question, but not while they blame doctors for vaccines that protect the herd health.

A simple survey needs to be done on behaviors of the mothers. I’m not blaming the mothers for children’s autism. I think the key is something considered “safe” that is done even by the healthiest life style, wealthy, educated, mothers. The more wealth, the more concentrated the perfumes and the more frequent the events where it is worn.

June 6, 2010 at 9:32 am
(78) autism says:

Greg, you are making an awful lot of assumptions! Why do you think wealthy white women wear more perfume? Do you think all wealthy white women wear the same perfume? Do you think perfume, which is worn on the skin, has an impact on the DNA of an unborn child? How do you explain the fact that autism runs in families – including families of non-wealthy, non-white children?

Lisa

August 10, 2010 at 6:25 pm
(79) Russell B. Olinsky, M.S. says:

There is no one cause of autism or other related diagnoses. Heredity and environmental exposures seems to be two of the major factors. Based upon the work of Dr. Fry and others the definition of autism must include brain inflammation. The triggers are numerous and apparently include blood borne pathogens and chemical incitants such as protozoa, fungi, viruses, bacteria (such as Borrelia-Lyme disease, Babesia microti, and Bartonella parasites), heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides, termiticides and other environmental loads. Eliminate the source or sources of the inflammation and the symptoms abate. Until a proper definition of autism is established that is not just symptom based but goes beyond behavior into causation with valid and accurate testing, how can we draw proper conclusions from this limited study without accurate environmental loads? Russell B. Olinsky, M.S. Environmental Specialist.

November 28, 2010 at 10:24 am
(80) Dennis`` says:

Back in the 40′s and 50′s only the wealthy got autism because they could afford the newest vaccines and that is such a big clue but the cdc and fda will ignore the truth because of the lawsuits that would follow.

November 30, 2010 at 3:47 pm
(81) Health Care Advocate says:

Last week I spoke to a doctor who specializes in screening for Aspergers. She informed me that without 5,000 dollars paid out-of-pocket I would not find a doctor, hospital, or clinician willing to do this type of screening for an adult with no health insurance. I have spent the last several weeks making direct calls to doctors and clinics who do various types of autism screening (primarily for children) and the average cost for this type of screening has been approximately 4,000 dollars. Quality doctors and clinicians who are legitimately trained and experienced to screen and treat autism (like any other health issue-a common cause of bankruptcy in America is the cost of treatment for a medical illness) are usually accessible almost exclusively to the wealthy. I think this shows why autism is considered a disease of the wealthy in the popular media. Screening, diagnosis, and treatment are cost prohibitive for anyone without disposable income, social resources, health insurance and a lot of free time. Last I checked disposable income, social resources, health insurance and free time were all things that increased exponentially in direct correlation to annual income.

June 6, 2011 at 9:21 am
(82) sarah phillips says:

I don’t agree with those who said wealthy were not vaccinated .Wealthy and upper middleclass wealth are clean or vaccinated.Higher wealth and wealth i find are very clean and thoughtful in their personnal hygenes.They are very structure despite rebel approaches to their personnal life and home life. They seem all the time to ME most loving and compassionate peoples as well.ALWAYS HUMOURISTLLY FUNNY AND JOYOUS,MIDDLECLASS WEALTH STRIVE MORE WITH WORKINGCLASS CONSERVATIVE VALUE OF LOVE ,MONEY AND FAMILY,YET THEY HAVE PUCHASE POWER TO DO WHAT THEY WANT AS LONG AS THEY LIVE THE RIGHT LIFE.Middleclass constantly work and look fr a better chance to improve and save to have little pleasures of relief from their daily life. Middleclass poor depending on the person education or culture look at life different from what it is,work when they want to or have to when needed if they are a married couple trying to achieve a better life. Poorer than poor look at it as a chance ,depeneding on the culture, doing the best and hope for the best for them to come.

July 22, 2011 at 4:06 pm
(83) Jim says:

Guess what one thing white college-educated people are more like to do, since the late 80s/early 1990s? >> Take antidepressants.

Prozac made the seen in the US in late 80s. And SSRI type drugs have been overprescribed since, as going to a doctor and telling them you’re tired will get you put on the conscience altering psychotropic drugs.

It’s possibly only a coincidence that when autism diagnosis reached insane numbers, was the same time when prescriptions to these new antidepressants were off the charts.

July 28, 2011 at 8:02 pm
(84) TH says:

Interesting study, but the dot com therory does not work for me because in Arizona, my compnay worked with the Dept of Economic Security, Division of developmental Divisions as a therpay provider for 3 years. Consistantly, 75% or more of the patients were White and 98% of the Patients were of diverse income brackets yet most often many all used “the Govt assistance program” because the STATE of AZ was willing to pay for their services. Within our therapy clinic, we observed and identified that some patient histories were linked to relatives who were known for very regimented behaviors in their personalities and had unique employment histories. Some diet changes were key in modifying behavior, in order to properly engage Physical and Occupational therapy. Some parents have taken gluten out of the diet of the children. Very few African American children had autism in comparison to Whites, yet both had access to lower incoe state help. This was our observation both in AZ and TN, even though the demographics are very different. We have been looking to find similarities in an effort to find some common denominator!

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