Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Is Circumcision a Cause of Autism?

Lots of things are blamed for Autism, or the umbrella of symptoms all ambiguously gathered under the term.

Have you stopped to think about routine infant circumcision and the role it might be playing? Think, for example, of two damaging results of circumcision surgery: oxygen deprivation due to blood loss from cutting the body and oxygen deprivation due to shock or cardiac complications following the procedure. Although most babies do not receive analgesic, there are still some babies who are sedated in various ways and this also might lead to an oxygen deprived state. 

Finally, parents are advised to give their newborn pain medication following this surgery in an attempt to manage post-operative pain. This is almost always Tylenol, which contains acetaminophen. Acetaminophen has been connected to several troubling issues including mitochondrial damage, asthma and autism. So if circumcision itself does not directly cause brain damage, several days of exposure to acetaminophen might be the underlying cause.

Looking at the country-level rates of circumcision and the country-level rates of autism, you can definitely see points of concern.


Take Spain as an example. Researchers in Spain looked at autism rates, circumcision rates and acetaminophen rates. They discovered that autism prevalence 
was lower than expected and this seemed connected to circumcision prevalence and the use of pain medication after circumcision surgeries. And then they were confounded to learn that male to female ratio of autism was not only equal, but leaning towards females at 6:5 female to male, the complete opposite of what we expect in the U.S. 

Infant circumcision rates in Spain are very low, 2%, compared to a 33% rate in the U.S. But we can look closely in the U.S. to find a similar situation. For example, Hispanics in the U.S. also show autism rates that are lower than expected and they also have very low circumcision rates. 

I ask parents: if a doctor or nurse solicited circumcision surgery and asked you to sign a form consenting to surgery on your baby, were you fully informed of this? Did anyone walk through the list of complications from circumcision, how the surgery damages various systems such as the brain, endocrine system, cardiac system etc? Were you warned about oxygen deprivation? Did anyone even whisper the word autism?

Medical authorities soliciting parents to consent to non-medical surgery on infants should at the very least be obligated to discuss any potential complications resulting from the surgery. Additionally researchers have an obligation to provide transparent medical literature for the progression of understanding and informed consent.

What about Alexithymia? Did anyone tell you about that before wanting to circumcise your baby? Alexithymia is a personality trait disorder acquired through trauma that results in difficulty identifying and expressing emotions. (Yep, it isn't called being a man, it's called being traumatized, and most of the Western men we know were traumatized with infant circumcision.)

Anyways, Alexithymia is associated with circumcision trauma. But those in the ASD community might also see the point here. Alexithymia is a comorbid (co-occurring) condition with Autism. In fact, Alexithymia associated so closely with Autism that only very recent research has been able to finely divide the two to correctly identify that Alexithymia is responsible for poor facial recognition and not the co-occurring Autism. 

Look. I can hear the eyebrows being raised. Stay with me here. It's important to remember that critically investigating this topic isn't exclusively concluding one sole reason. I'm not sharing this information to claim that infant circumcision is absolutely and always the sole cause of autistic symptoms. That would be akin to claiming that the symptom of a fever is only and always caused by, say, influenza and nothing else. The point is to explore the many potentially causes and become aware of what is harming our children.

Seen in the context of all the other assaults our children experience such as multiple ultrasound exposure, pitocin exposure, premature cord clamping, vaccination during pregnancy and at birth, etc, it becomes clear that circumcision surgery is yet another routine assault we need to analyze carefully.

Take that overall picture of prenatal and neonatal assaults and then combine it with the knowledge of potential male vulnerabilities and things get even more concerning. For example, researchers suspect that testosterone levels and a sensitivity to DNA damage make males more susceptible to autism. Those vulnerabilities might also make them more susceptible to injury from routine interventions. (Add in MTHFR and it's a perfect storm.)

In light of the medical literature, circumcision is clearly an ethical violation on this topic alone, regardless of the many other points of controversy surrounding it. Parents have a right to know about this data so that they can take the steps necessary to protect their boys. 


What are we missing, or rather, what has been taken away from our boys?

6 comments:

  1. U.S. hospitals must stop cutting baby boys' healthy genitals. It only harms. The extent of the harm is as yet unknown.

    Another hypothesis for increased autism in the U.S., also stemming from another non-evidence-based U.S. hospital birth ritual is immediate clamping of the umbilical cord at birth. I quote from Mr. Rich Winkel:

    "I've been horrified to discover a pattern of wholesale institutionalized medical malpractice and quackery surrounding the business of birth and child health. I can't account for how this could have come to pass, but the science is difficult to ignore.

    "First let me mention the epidemiology: a steadily rising rate of symptoms of trauma and brain damage, including ADHD, autism, mental illness and addiction among US-born people, a trend dating back to the post-WWII period when certain obstetrical practices became commonplace.

    "These practices are now thoroughly entrenched and seem to be immune from appeals to science, human rights or common sense. It appears that medicine views the bodies of women and children as some kind of empty wilderness waiting to be conquered and colonized." ~ Rich Winkel
    Source: http://members.tranquility.net/~rwinkel/MGM/birthUSA3.txt

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  2. Blaming anything on autism is insulting. It's simply different wiring, perhaps better than those with are not autistic. It's not a disease, not a damaged person...it simply is.

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    1. This article is not blaming circumcision as the cause of autism. It’s saying there is a correlation between the two. Saying that there are no underlying causes to autism is insulting to any baby/person in the future who will develop it, especially if there are ways to inform parents to reduce the chances. Any form of abuse during a person’s development will re-wire the brain. There are two main paths the brain develops, either (1) positively with the love, care, and protection of others, or (2) negatively with abuse, negligence, and avoidance from others.
      Research has found a specific pattern of the brain in autistic people that is different than the rest. It is probable that a traumatic experiences such a circumcision (which is one of the most painful things a person can experience) triggered a sharp block in neurological development. Studies like these are lacking significant data; they only started brain scans at 6 months old. Why not start at birth before a boy has been circumcised? They would see the shocking truth of how different the brain is after trauma. It would be very interesting to see how the pattern of the brain develops comparing circumcised/cut boys against intact boys. Women have much lower rates of ASD, one study states “females diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) had a greater number of harmful single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) than did males with ASD. These findings suggest that the female brain requires more extreme genetic alterations than does the male brain to produce symptoms of ASD or neurodevelopmental disorders.
      Mmmhh I wonder if it’s taking such an extreme genetic alteration for females then why are boys developing ASD at such high rates especially if the chances of getting a genetic alteration are way lower than the rate of diagnosis. Even if genetics plays a role we would still have to look for other causes to account for the high increase of ASD in males. A possible reason why nobody considers circumcision is because a lot of people carry a bias, especially if they are comfortable with being circumcised and/or haven’t learned anything about its harmful effects. The study also stated “Overall, females function a lot better than males with a similar mutation affecting brain development," Jacquemont says, "Our findings may lead to the development of more sensitive, gender-specific approaches for the diagnostic screening of neurodevelopmental disorders.”
      Mmmhh females don’t have to suppress a traumatic circumcision experience in their brain like males do. It is so horrible it breaks the mother-child bond. The child is hurt very badly by other which triggers a response in the brain that people can’t be trusted. This distrust is instilled right at birth an obvious connection as to why they would isolate themselves from others.
      Autism is a word originally used by doctors to describe someone who is isolated from others and unable to interact with normal emotional communication. So technically there are a lot of autistic kids out there, and it’s really a matter of how autistic are they? It would be interesting to see the how many children are wrongfully diagnosed, simply because they lack the ability to communicate effectively. Boys are 3 times more likely to show symptoms of ADHD than girls. It is not farfetched to suggest that boys have more psychological issues than girls because of the trauma of infant genital mutilation.
      So when it’s comes to neurological disorders we have to start examining all the negative and positive factors that affect brain development. Imagine how better off the world would be if the law that protects females from genital mutilation was simply changed where the word “female” is replaced by “everyone” meaning that everyone should be protected from abuse. When we stop negative influences on our children we will start to see the high rate of this problem go back down. Ending circumcision is starting point, after that it will be much easier to really focus on the genetic part of autism or other foods/medicine that is harmful to brain development.

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  3. Out of my peers, the only kid with severe Autism was mutilated. All the other boys are intact and not on the spectrum. We're all "older" parents, too. Male genital mutilation causes permanent detrimental brain changes, deleterious response to pain (ie: shots) and DISRUPTS the extremely important mother/newborn bond. It interferes with the extremely important breastfeeding, too.

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  4. Circumcision is torture. It began because a religious psychotic heard god tell him to. Do you really need to know anything more?

    You can't cut healthy erogenous tissue off another person's body.

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  5. Beginning in the mid-1990's the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization started recommending 5-7 doses of acetaminophen with the circumcision procedure. Multiple studies have shown that neonates have difficulties metabolizing drugs therefore the acetaminophen could deplete the gluthathione leading to neurotoxicity and autism. Circumcision with acetaminophen may very well explain the 4 times higher rate of autism among boys. http://www.ehjournal.net/content/12/1/41 Two well done cohort studies show prenatal acetaminophen use leads to adverse neurodevelopment in offspring, it is not a huge stretch to think that perinatal exposure could too. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24163279 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24566677

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