Autism hits Somali kids harder, University of Minnesota study finds

  • Article by: Jeremy Olson , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 16, 2013 - 10:04 PM

Study: Autism not more common among Somalis than whites, but is more severe.

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tmauelDec. 16, 1312:13 PM

Why would the study not address whether these children were born in the U.S. or Somalia? Why would the study not try and determine if childhood vaccines were a factor? Every effort appears to be underway to keep the truth about this insidious disease from being isolated and dealt with in a sensible manner. So much for our universities and entire medical system that refuses to face the obvious facts about this problem.

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ladyjane65Dec. 16, 1312:19 PM

Thankful to the University of Minnesota for beginning the research on this important community health issue. More needs to be done, but this is an important start.

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haiwyweedDec. 16, 1312:56 PM

Maybe we should be providing a health screening before we import more 3rd world refugees and assess the total costs to the US social structure.

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EleanoreDec. 16, 1312:57 PM

Please define "harder" as used in this study.

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zygmuntwilfDec. 16, 13 1:01 PM

Maybe these U of M researchers could continue their study by going to Somalia, and finding out why these children have treatable learning disabilities.

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braxozDec. 16, 13 1:05 PM

Why would the study not address whether these children were born in the U.S. or Somalia? Why would the study not try and determine if childhood vaccines were a factor? Every effort appears to be underway to keep the truth about this insidious disease from being isolated and dealt with in a sensible manner. So much for our universities and entire medical system that refuses to face the obvious facts about this problem_________ From the article: "Hewitt said that wasn’t addressed by this study, but they have birth record data to address that question next. The current report also didn’t address fears that pediatric vaccines were somehow to blame." This is the first stage of an investigation - defining the question. The vaccine question has been studied and all reputable research does not indicate a link.

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tmauelDec. 16, 13 1:07 PM

This could be a very important study. Comparing the background rate of Somalian children and their rate of autism, (or autism like symptoms), with those children born raised and vaccinated here in the U.S. Evidence to environmental factors as a cause could be studied and a probable cause determined and isolated. That unfortunately has not been the case. The creators of these vaccines were allowed to investigate themselves. The doctor who invented Thimersol and made millions on the patent for the drug was on the investigative panel. Their study, documented on ABC, found nervous ticks among a large percentage of the male study group. The panel of medical company insiders said more study was needed. The entire issue then disappeared from the corporate media. So no one does anything but skirt around the issue with "safe" studies that prove nothing. And the media are dutifully silent.

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minn12Dec. 16, 13 1:11 PM

This smacks of junk science. Notice that the 'researchers' ignored the actual number of Somalis who were diagnosed with the disorder. Instead, they chose to do a subjective determination on their own and 'diagnose' those based on subjective criteria. Let's not forget that autism is a controversial disorder, with no definitive diagnosis. And is it not to be expected that a minority group that does not have English as its first language, may have struggles with communication and language concepts? Yet those criteria are used to label Somalis 'autistic'. This is just a further example of the current trend to jump on the autism 'bandwagon', since this disorder is now being diagnosed at a rate that is likely far higher than it is in reality. I would guess these researchers will now be given millions in federal and state grant money to pursue this 'groundbreaking' discovery. And that's how it works.

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braxozDec. 16, 13 1:15 PM

Eleanore Dec. 16, 1312:57 PM Please define "harder" as used in this study. __________"the severity of the developmental disorder appears harsher in this minority group...But all of the Somali children with autism also had related intellectual disorders, compared to only a third of autistic children in the study overall." Seems to be a pretty good definition of harder to me.

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Fair ViewDec. 16, 13 1:18 PM

It seems like a narrowly focused study on such a big problem. Can you report out on the cost of this type of study?

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