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nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 8:07 pm

My own EEGs indicate atypical activity in my left frontal lobes. Here is an interesting finding:

Since autism spectrum disorders always involve social deficits and repetitive behaviors, the areas of the brain that control these functions have been a focus of neuroimaging studies. In the late 1970s, two American neurologists, Drs. Antonio Damasio and Ralph Maurer, published a paper that pointed out behavioral similarities between people with autism and patients with damage to their frontal lobes .... Both groups had difficulty controlling their emotions, would get very upset by small changes, were compulsive (wanting things "just so"), and were rigid in their solutions to problems, seeing things in a concrete, black-in-white manner. This led to a theory, still influential today, that if the frontal lobes did not develop correctly, this could cause autism.

~ Sally Ozonoff, Ph.D., Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D., and James McPartland, Ph.D. A Parent's Guide to Asperger Syndrome & High-Functioning Autism: How to Meet the Challenges and Help Your Child Thrive. New York: Guilford Press. 2002. Pages 60-61.

Does anyone else have this same issue?


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asperity
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11 Dec 2007, 8:23 pm

That kind of startled me to read that because most of my quirks seem to be located in the frontal lobe area.



nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 8:48 pm

asperity wrote:
That kind of startled me to read that because most of my quirks seem to be located in the frontal lobe area.


Are you referring to EEGs? MRIs?

Anway, it is interesting. My EEGs supposedly indicate a seizure disorder focused in the left-frontal lobes. I have only had two tonic clonic seizures. However, as a child, I used to have repeated simple partial seizures.


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Belle77
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11 Dec 2007, 8:49 pm

I've never had any EEGs done, but these things describe me quite well:

nominalist wrote:
had difficulty controlling their emotions, would get very upset by small changes, were compulsive (wanting things "just so"), and were rigid in their solutions to problems, seeing things in a concrete, black-in-white manner



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11 Dec 2007, 9:19 pm

The frontal lobes don't mature until around age 25-30, and I've noticed I don't have as much of a problem with these symptoms as I used to. If other research is correct in suggesting malformed or malfunctioning neural connections in autistic brains, it would explain how even the mature frontal lobes would show the symptoms described.


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nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 9:48 pm

MysteryFan3 wrote:
The frontal lobes don't mature until around age 25-30, and I've noticed I don't have as much of a problem with these symptoms as I used to. If other research is correct in suggesting malformed or malfunctioning neural connections in autistic brains, it would explain how even the mature frontal lobes would show the symptoms described.


Apparently, at least in my case, the left frontal lobes showed atypical electrical activity even when I was around 7 years old.


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2ukenkerl
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11 Dec 2007, 9:54 pm

Well, Alex, on the front page, describes a theory that seems to fit me, and most here. BASICALLY, it says that autistic brains grow FASTER early on, and heads swell a bit, noticably larger than normal. THE brain tends to mature from the rear to the front. THEN, there is a slowdown, and some parts degrade somewhat, and the head ends up being perhaps less than 1% above average.

Anyway, the frontal lobes ARE in the front, so it agrees with this.



nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 10:09 pm

I just tried to get a hold of the original article through my employer's online database. I found it referenced, but none of the providers carried it.

I assume it hasn't been scanned (PDFed).

Edit: Here is a good source:

http://psych.rice.edu/mmtbn/autism/autismTheory.html#part2


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11 Dec 2007, 10:35 pm

MysteryFan3 wrote:
The frontal lobes don't mature until around age 25-30, and I've noticed I don't have as much of a problem with these symptoms as I used to. If other research is correct in suggesting malformed or malfunctioning neural connections in autistic brains, it would explain how even the mature frontal lobes would show the symptoms described.


Is it that late? I thought it was earlier than that. I guess that gives me some hope that I still have some time to work on my organizational skills before my frontal lobe finishes developing.



Danielismyname
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11 Dec 2007, 10:51 pm

Autism is brain damage after all.



nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 10:55 pm

Here is the relevant quotation (re: the Rice University link I posted above):

There are two theories of autism which are supported by evidence for the involvement of the frontal lobes in autism. The executive dysfunction theory posits that the base deficit in autism is a deficit in the ability to control one’s own thought, attention, and behavior. The theory of mind posits that the base deficit in autism is difficulty with "mind-reading:" forming theories about what other people know and think. (A third major theory, the limbic system theory, posits that damage to both the amygdala and the frontal cortex is at the heart of autism ....)


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nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 10:58 pm

Here is another one:

What I typically find in the EEG of those with the symptoms of Autism and Asperger's are problems in the right hemisphere of the brain combined with frontal lobe dysfunction. If there are language issues (Autism), the left side of the brain shows neurological issues as well. In both cases, there are also problems in the "mirror neuron" system.

http://www.thesamscenter.com/thesamscenter_012.htm


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Danielismyname
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11 Dec 2007, 11:01 pm

The first two are easily products of the third; the third being the current clinical picture of autism. The current theory states that autism is an umbrella term used to describe non-specific damage to the brain that shows varying symptoms in morphology, existence and severity.

Non-specific as there's many causes for the damage done to the brain that creates autism, and there's no set pattern that defines all the brain imaging studies [yet].



nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 11:06 pm

Danielismyname wrote:
Autism is brain damage after all.


IMO, objectively, it is brain difference. Whether that difference is defined as brain damage vs. neurological variation is a value judgement.

As a child, I certainly felt damaged. However, I don't think I would have framed it specifically as "brain damage."

Now, I just see it as difference, but I can understand why others might have their own views of the subject.


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nominalist
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11 Dec 2007, 11:13 pm

Danielismyname wrote:
The first two are easily products of the third; the third being the current clinical picture of autism. The current theory states that autism is an umbrella term used to describe non-specific damage to the brain that shows varying symptoms in morphology, existence and severity.


Interesting. Have you come across any studies which point to frontal lobe EEG variations?


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