AS/Autism, Prosopagnosia (face blindness), and Epilepsy

Page 1 of 2 [ 25 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

Inuit
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 6 Nov 2009
Gender: Male
Posts: 49
Location: England

11 Jun 2010, 7:47 am

Hi,

I'm wondering if anyone know's of a link between Aspergers (Autism), Prosopagnosia (face blindness) and Epilepsy?

- I believe I have AS (my GP also thinks this) though I'm unable to attain a diagnosis due to lack of diagnostic funding for adults (in my area).

- I am however currently being assessed for Temporal Lobe Epilepsy. I've had symptoms of complex partial seizure all my life but never new what they were - never bothered to see about it until a month ago when a 'grand mal' seizure landed me in hospital.

- Prosopagnosia (face blindness) I have never been able to recognise faces. I have even failed to recognise my own mother! I constantly fail to recognise friends/family/collegues when they are out of there usual context (e.g. work collegues in the supermarket etc). I tend to use hairstyle's, glasses, facial hair, commonly worn clothing, gait etc as a means to recognise people - should any of these change however - I'm scuppered.

*I'm also Dyslexic - this is the least of my problems though!

Could any of the above be linked? all due to one origin as opposed to 3 separate conditions that I have? I have read somewhere that face blindness is prevalent is AS/Autism - but is there a common neurological/origin?

As for Temporal Lobe Epilepsy - TLE is can be caused by a problem/defect/trauma in the Temporal lobe - interesting though Prosopagnosia is also commonly caused by damage/defects in the temporal lobe - this would indicate a possible link but I have failed to find any papers/articles about the two (together) via google.

I mentioned the Prosopagnosia to my Neurologist - never asked whether there is a link though - I won't se e him again until after my tests (EEG, MRI) which will be in a month or two (the NHS (UK health provider) - whilst free - is so slow)

Anyone else have Prosopagnosia, TLE aswell as AS/Autism?

all thoughts welcome



LancetChick
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 15 May 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 109
Location: San Francisco Bay

11 Jun 2010, 8:24 am

I'm face blind as well, but no epilepsy. And there is a strong connection between autism and face blindness, although it isn't a diagnostic criterion. I first recognized that something was amiss when I was away from home at age 16 and realized I didn't know what my mother looked like. I do recognize faces when I've seen them very, very, very often, but I can't bring a picture of a face into my mind without actually looking at it. People assume they're beneath my notice when I don't know who they are, and I find myself waving at people who may or may not be neighbors I've met on several occasions. I, too, have all sorts of tricks I use to identify people, but I still mess up. It's a big relief, though, to have a name for it because I can just explain it to people now instead of just assuming I don't pay enough attention, which is a hard thing to explain to someone you saw 30 seconds ago and who is a complete stranger now.

By the way, I'm VERY good at reading facial expressions, and have no trouble mimicking faces or picking up vocal tones, so I can pass myself off as NT easily... that is, until I'm exhausted a short time later. I really wish I understood the mechanics of my brain... all I have now are little hints here and there.



Inuit
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 6 Nov 2009
Gender: Male
Posts: 49
Location: England

11 Jun 2010, 8:38 am

Hi LancetChick,

thanks for the reply. Facial blindness has bugged my my whole life. It's a nightmare at work - I work in a biggish office where with a low staff retention rate - so many people coming and going. I'm constantly having to apologise for getting people mixed up, failing to recognise people.

Often on the bus on my way home, I realise too late that one of my neighbours was sitting near me - I don't realise until, after getting off - they walk the same way I do the continue up my street. So embarrassing.



aspergerfamily3
Emu Egg
Emu Egg

User avatar

Joined: 6 Jun 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 4

11 Jun 2010, 9:49 am

My son and husband have Asperger's Syndrome. The former struggled with recognizing people - even relatives - for years.

I have temporal lobe epilepsy.

It's so much easier to talk about AS, since I think of it as healthy, but different. Epilepsy, however, means that there is something malfunctioning within the brain.

Never have I had an issue with face blindness. Ever.

Seizures involving everything looking slightly purple, strong emotions (fear, especially), weird tastes in the mouth, yes. The list goes on, but most would find it boring. For me, it's terrifying and horrible when it happens.

The key thing with seizures is that they end. It is an event. Which is not the case with face blindness.

Good luck to you.


_________________
Visit Our Asperger Family at: http://aspergerfamily3.wordpress.com


Inuit
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 6 Nov 2009
Gender: Male
Posts: 49
Location: England

11 Jun 2010, 4:53 pm

Hi asperger family mum

I won't find hearing about your epilepsy boring. It's more of a concern for me than aspergers at the moment. I'd be interested to talk to somebody about this.

After years of what I now know are probably complex partial seizures I have had two 'generalised seizures/grand mals' the first of which landed me in hospital with multiple facial fractures and lots of friction burns to my face (for some reason). The second I was half on my bed so no injury. My wife has witnessed many of the complex partial ones neither of us knew what they were but I was too stubborn to go to the doctors. She only saw the result of the grand mal after I came round and cried for help after I worked out where I was (I was very confused). Anyway after this I had no choice but to go to hospital! So it's now being looked at.

The below is an account of a typical (for me) complex partial seizure:

This one happened like this: I was nearly home after work, listening to music on my iPhone. Just walked in my garden gate as the Track 'Rhodes' by portishead came on. I remember this much: The first chord of Rhodes seemed to ring out with perclulier hightend clarity, the chord seemed to effect everything, the surrounding environment took on a hyper clarity of it's own, everything had super saturated colour, my vision seemed to go hi-def, time seemed to slow down and I felt an unusual sence of belonging to that very moment as if I had a shared understanding that had always been there, like I had been there (in that moment) many times before. It felt very nice to be honest. Next thing I somehow managed to get through the door and had a bit of missed time. My wife said I was unresponsive, kept closing my eyes and leaning on things. Then I went 'giggly' still not responding (in the past she would have put this down to me being annoying) I sat down and was drumming my fingers on the arm of the chair and had my right leg bounding up and down. This lasted several mins. I the suddenly said 'right, let's get up' at which I got out of the chair. I then went to pick up my 3 year old (which I do remember doing. I basically recall the bit about the amazing clarity and the sureal sence of belonging to that moment (which somehow had an almost religeous like promise of somthing significant) and the greating my 3 year old but don't really recall much of the in between.

I also have versions of this during the night, I wake up with an exeroence a little like this, only in reverse, rather than feeling some huge connection to the moment, like I have lived it many times before it's the opposite. I wake up and don't recognise my room, my wife or even myself. I then get the same kind of pseudo religious feeling that something profound is about to happen. With these nighttime ones I get an imense electrical feeling all over, like I'm buzzing, I also get a weird smell of methane gas mixed with urine (horrible) I octet get out if bed and find myself raking through draws on a desperate attempt to realise work something out. It was one of these episodes that lead to me waking in a pool of blood and erm... Other bodily fluids.

I have thought for years (before the grand mals) that I had dome kind of scitzophrina (the wierd relegious feelings of somthing amazing about to happen - not something I felt I could talk to a doctor about). I'm relived to now know that these experiences are common with TLE

thanks for listening.



kia_williams
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 19 Mar 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 124

11 Jun 2010, 9:15 pm

Face blindness is a trait with me too, though i cover it well, for me it works that i can "see" once "piece" of the face at a time, the rest are visible but not.. focused on at all, infact pretty much blocked (explaining poorly) i got round this by learning "facial speed reading", essentially constantly and habitually flicking my focus from one "face piece" to the next, over and over, extremely fast, which lets me build up an image of the whole persons face.

I think our face blindness comes from the whole Singular intense point of focus (NT seems to be multiple none-intense points of focus) thing.

of course if im too tired then it all goes, squish.. so i ignore the face and focus on the voice to identify.


_________________
crime drama webnovel: AS and NT Officers, please read and review!: http://scribblesnwriting.webs.com
Waiting for the 'scientists' to realise thinking a 240volt dc fridge not working in a home with 240 volt ac mains mean


SoSayWeAll
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 29 May 2010
Age: 37
Gender: Female
Posts: 623

11 Jun 2010, 9:20 pm

Not AS but ADHD--however, kia, what you said about how you read a face and remember one is VERY true to what I have to do to remember a face! I think that the very trait that helps me when I draw people (being able to break the face down into its component parts) makes it difficult for me to remember a person's face until I've seen them several times. I took a face recognition test at the Harvard University site and it made it quite clear that while most people look at a WHOLE face, and perform better when presented with the entire face in making distinctions, that I do better with parts of the face. (I believe that the stats were that there is an 8% advantage, on average, for most people, when presented a whole face. My stats were -2.8%, meaning that I have the advantage when I see parts rather than the whole.)

Now I'm really curious, about the NTs and other ADHD types and I'd like to throw out some questions.

Do ADHD'ers have problems with face recognition as well? Or am I just an odd one? ;)

Also, to NTs AND everyone on the spectrum, when you dream, do you find that unless you've dreamed of a person you know well, you are also "blind" in your memories to the faces that you yourself have dreamed? I know I am!

Finally, when you read a book, are you unable to picture the faces of the characters, even when described (or get appearances that fly in the face of the description in the book), unless they look like a person you know, such as someone in your life, or a celebrity?



SoSayWeAll
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 29 May 2010
Age: 37
Gender: Female
Posts: 623

11 Jun 2010, 9:43 pm

(Sorry for the double post)

This is the other face recognition test that I took, with the whole vs. part component.

https://www.testmybrain.org/consent_all.php?exp=203



kia_williams
Raven
Raven

User avatar

Joined: 19 Mar 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 124

11 Jun 2010, 9:46 pm

(AS diagnosed few years ago)

Dreams: dont have them often at all that i recall, but thinking about it no, i dont think i recall faces unless they've been friends of mine for AGES, its always voices and just i "know" that X manifestation, that to me 'reads' as the person but isnt like an image of them, hard to say 100% sure, hazy memory sometimes ;)

Reading: kinda the same, i dont visualise a person or people in a setting doing what is said in the book im reading, i just "remeber" none visually that they we're there in the story and did this and that.

e.g, im writing this atm (failed link in my sig)

Quote:
He hated boats and questioned for the dozenth time what the hells he was doing, the wooden deck swayed slightly adding to the sensation of nausea swirling around in the bottom of his stomach, former LAPD detective Jaffes stood gripping the railing of the passenger ferry 'Ellipsis' as it drew closer to his potential future.(*) 'Los Puerto' the worlds first and only man-made iceberg island, seven thousand tons of thermally conductive, high-tensile alloy pipes keeping over half a million tons of water frozen into a diamond shaped iceberg for the sole purpose of human habitation, a family of tourists, male three females passed by behind him jabbering and chatting away about the island, its casinos, its idyllic wondrous setting "..They say it aint cold..".


I remember what it would be like for someone, a man close to middle age to hate boats, feel anxiety about being on one at sea, also "hear" his doubts in his mental voice, but even past (*) this marker, i do not mentally "see" Jaffes there's an image of a close up camera shot of, just a indistinct but not fuzzy/blurred man with his back to the camera lent on the railings of a ship with wooden decks no more detail than that, like a cruise liner, that's it, no more physical detail than that. and that detail is very fast in fading as i read, the 'voices' of people talking "..they say it aint cold.." however i can put in instantly and fairly accurately, accents etc.

Later on Jaffes face is described somewhat as he looks in his cabins mirror, and THAT i can see, but that's like, the camera shot they did in Underworld when the vampiress steams up the bathroom mirror, writes Victor in it and then wipes the mirror so she can see herself give Victor the message, slightly blurry surreal.

Authors Rely on the readers imagination, the descriptive word choices are often carefully made, it makes it easier for the reader to relate to the characters because with

Quote:
he crossed to the small wash closet and immediately splashed handfuls of cold water over his face, a deep breath looking into the mirror, ignoring the rivulets of water that looked like sweat running down his street tanned face, defined cheekbones and slight "captain America" chin. Looking into his reflections brown green eyes he asked again what the hells he was doing,


what each reader imagines, WILL differ, but will be based usually on their own experience people they know, if i went and painstakingly described my image of Jaffes, it would look like a certain detective form an American movie i saw (cant remember the actor). some however would read this and see, Russel crowe,etc.

Oakley is the same, for me Oakley is a slightly more bulky version of Keppler from CSI. however different people might see Oakley another way. So, book descriptions of characters.. mmm. not exactly a reliable litmus test.


_________________
crime drama webnovel: AS and NT Officers, please read and review!: http://scribblesnwriting.webs.com
Waiting for the 'scientists' to realise thinking a 240volt dc fridge not working in a home with 240 volt ac mains mean


SoSayWeAll
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 29 May 2010
Age: 37
Gender: Female
Posts: 623

11 Jun 2010, 10:07 pm

I write fanfic, and I know when I do, I have to force myself to put in details about how my original characters look. I actually didn't bother describing my main original character in one of my stories until I finally made him look in a mirror in Chapter 15! And THAT was after I finally picked out an actor to use as a basic reference. :lol: It wasn't all that important to me but I figured I'd better get around to it eventually. I can FEEL my characters, walk inside their heads with ease, but seeing them...it takes time in many cases, maybe even years of working with them before I have that clear sense of how they look.



ninszot
Toucan
Toucan

User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2010
Age: 42
Gender: Female
Posts: 253

05 Sep 2010, 10:17 am

Julian Asher's research with oxford University has traced Temporal Lobe Epilepsy, Autism, and Synaesthesia to the same chromosomes showning a genetic origin to Temporal Lobe Epilepsy.

His research indicates that TLE is an aspect of PDD

It is very new and uncomfortable for proffessionals who have come to regard autism and synaesthesia as "difference" and to regard Epilepsy as "dysfunction".

I have felt all my life that my brain and my bod simply worked differently - was hard wired differently. I have had doctors imply that the autism was caused by a seizure

My siezures never responded to medications (suximides and benzodiazapines)
Perhaps because the medications encourage a "normal" function in the brain - what if the brain grew differently? functions differently? . . . grew in a way that was not designed to function the way these medications are designed - Is this why the medications may work on someone who had a head injury (started with a normal brain) but often prove TLE to be "intractable". WOW news wave people - Is it the way my brain was ment to work?! Maybe running this or that anticonvulsant medication through me is like trying to decide weather to run deasil or gas through your solar powered car - was never intended to run that way! (in the case of the solar car you just have to wait till it is ready to run again and accept that is the way it was designed and these are the limitations it has)

Seizures are difficult and disruptive but usually only happen if I am running the machine too hard, then it breaks down, has to "Reboot" - my analogy for a generalized seizure hahaha

Sleep, diet, excercise all seem to have better affect than meds.
Supports the "genetic" explanation - I don't need to be medicated into holding a factory job, I need to take care of myself and live well, respect my body etc.

I hope with this research Epileptics will get some of the allowance and understanding that Autism has achieved. There is a proffessional culture of "drug 'em at any cost" which Epileptics seem to be bombarded with... I hope this will begin to change.



pgd
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 16 Jul 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,624

05 Sep 2010, 10:32 am

Re: AS/Autism, Prosopagnosia (face blindness), and Epilepsy
----
Possible way of conceptualizing topic = associated conditions.

AS/Autism
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prosopagnosia
http://www.associatedconditionsofcerebr ... ision.html
http://www.associatedconditionsofcerebr ... izure.html
http://www.associatedconditionsofcerebralpalsy.com/

Everyone is different.

Sometimes Venn diagrams (overlapping pies) are used to try to sort it out a little.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venn_diagram



pgd
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 16 Jul 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,624

05 Sep 2010, 11:02 am

SoSayWeAll wrote (in part):...Now I'm really curious, about the NTs and other ADHD types and I'd like to throw out some questions. Do ADHD'ers have problems with face recognition as well? Or am I just an odd one? Also...when you read a book, are you unable to picture the faces of the characters, even when described (or get appearances that fly in the face of the description in the book), unless they look like a person you know, such as someone in your life, or a celebrity?
---

http://www.associatedconditionsofcerebr ... /adhd.html
http://www.ericdigests.org/2003-5/auditory.htm
http://www.associatedconditionsofcerebralpalsy.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venn_diagram

Am ADHD Inattentive, central auditory processing disorder (CAPD), and mild dyspraxia. Had a subtle difficulty (not a large difficulty but a subtle one) with faces. My conclusion was that my right eye worked 100%, my left eye about 85% so visual fusion for me is imperfect. For some reason, for me, the right medicine for ADHD Inattentive for me literally temporarily relaxes (not a cure) some of the cranial nerves needed to lock in a visual image; the med for ADHD Inattentive also allows the visual image to be in my brain for a second or so longer (aka temporarily improved working memory - not a cure). The following hints at my personal experience (not exactly identical):

http://www.rsna.org/rsna/media/pr2005/Coffee.cfm (Short term memory)(not a cure)
http://www.coffeescience.org/alert (Mental alertness)(not a cure)

ADHD is not epilepsy. Epilepsy is not ADHD. They are two different kinds of neurological challenges which are treated by medicines (stimulants/alerting agent meds vs anti-seizure meds) which act very differently from one another.

Usually when I read a book, I cannot picture/retrieve the faces later in that much detail but for some reason I tend to (subconsciously/automatically/whatever) recognize them (in a way) and know instantly whether I've seen them before.

Words

Recognition

vs

Retrieval

Paying Attention
Working Memory - Memory - Short term, Medium term, Long term memory

Aphasia
Constructional Aphasia

Eye Tracking - Smooth movements vs Jerky movements (Reading words on a page, reading music on a song sheet, tracking a baseball, and so on)



pgd
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 16 Jul 2010
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,624

05 Sep 2010, 11:21 am

ninszot wrote:
Julian Asher's research with oxford University has traced Temporal Lobe Epilepsy, Autism, and Synaesthesia to the same chromosomes showning a genetic origin to Temporal Lobe Epilepsy.

His research indicates that TLE is an aspect of PDD

It is very new and uncomfortable for proffessionals who have come to regard autism and synaesthesia as "difference" and to regard Epilepsy as "dysfunction".

I have felt all my life that my brain and my bod simply worked differently - was hard wired differently. I have had doctors imply that the autism was caused by a seizure

My siezures never responded to medications (suximides and benzodiazapines)
Perhaps because the medications encourage a "normal" function in the brain - what if the brain grew differently? functions differently? . . . grew in a way that was not designed to function the way these medications are designed - Is this why the medications may work on someone who had a head injury (started with a normal brain) but often prove TLE to be "intractable". WOW news wave people - Is it the way my brain was ment to work?! Maybe running this or that anticonvulsant medication through me is like trying to decide weather to run deasil or gas through your solar powered car - was never intended to run that way! (in the case of the solar car you just have to wait till it is ready to run again and accept that is the way it was designed and these are the limitations it has)

Seizures are difficult and disruptive but usually only happen if I am running the machine too hard, then it breaks down, has to "Reboot" - my analogy for a generalized seizure hahaha

Sleep, diet, excercise all seem to have better affect than meds.
Supports the "genetic" explanation - I don't need to be medicated into holding a factory job, I need to take care of myself and live well, respect my body etc.

I hope with this research Epileptics will get some of the allowance and understanding that Autism has achieved. There is a proffessional culture of "drug 'em at any cost" which Epileptics seem to be bombarded with... I hope this will begin to change.


---

It's my understanding that TLE is perhaps the most difficult type of epilepsy to treat.

My personal view is a medicine is good when it works but bad if it fails to work. There is no advantage to taking a medicine which fails to work. Meds are not for everyone (because they simply do not work for everyone).

In terms of the topic of TLE, recall reading two books which addressed aspects of TLE: Nerves In Collision by Walter C. Alvarez, M.D. and Remarkable Medicine by Jack Dreyfus. Both books can provide insights (not cures) into aspects of the topic (my view).

At the same time, I am aware that meds for epilepsy do work for some and some persons have been using a med for epilepsy for literally decades with satisfactory results.

Sometimes TLE is a side-effect of brain injuries (car crashes)/concussions. That's my understanding.

http://www.sportsconcussions.org/

http://www.associatedconditionsofcerebr ... izure.html

http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/auti ... autism.htm



capriwim
Velociraptor
Velociraptor

User avatar

Joined: 2 Dec 2008
Gender: Female
Posts: 433
Location: England

05 Sep 2010, 5:23 pm

My understanding is that epilepsy and autism are linked, as they commonly co-occur. I don't have epilepsy myself, although I do zone out, and experience difficulty with flashing lights, which could potentially be epilepsy according to my doctor.

I do have prosopagnosia though, and this does seem to often co-occur with autism, although not all people on the spectrum have it, and there are plenty of prosopagnosics who aren't on the spectrum. To me, though, my own prosopagnosia seems related to my Aspergers, because it's about seeing all the tiny details of a face, but not seeing or recognising the face as a whole. Seeing the details but not the big picture seems to be an ASD trait, and it certainly applies in all kinds of other areas of my life as well as faces.


_________________
'If the shoe doesn't fit, must we change the foot?' Gloria Steinem


Inuit
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 6 Nov 2009
Gender: Male
Posts: 49
Location: England

06 Sep 2010, 3:57 am

Thanks for the replies everyone. Had the results of my last EEG and MRI - both show nothing - so I'm not sure what this means (whether or not I have or have not got Epilepsy? somthing is clearly wrong though).

Good to see I'm not the only one with this facial blindness thing.