4 Promising Autism Treatments, From Vitamin B12 to Alzheimer’s Drug Namenda
And 4 "treatments" that are untested and unproven. Plus, how to spot a bogus autism therapy.
But while more treatments are being given rigorous testing, many others remain on the market untested and unproven. They include:High doses of vitamin B6 and magnesium.Intravenous immune globulin therapy.Casein-free and gluten-free diets. There is no rigorous evidence that they improve symptoms, and researchers at the University ofRochester have found that many children on the restricted diets become nutritionally deprived.Chelation therapy, intended to remove toxic metals including mercury from the body. Last fall, the National Institute of Mental Health canceled plans to run a clinical trial of chelation therapy, saying it posed too high a risk to the children who would be involved.
Here’s a checklist to help figure out if an autism treatment, or indeed any medical treatment, is probably too good to be true:It treats more than one condition.It provides dramatic, miraculous results.Anecdotes are offered as proof of its effectiveness, rather than scientific results in large, peer-reviewed journals.Specific treatment goals are not identified.The treatment said to have no risks or side effects. (All treatments do.)