A mother by the name of Jenny McCarthy has practically made the phrase “DAN doctor” a household word. Because of her son’s story and her book this well-known author has raised the awareness of mothers and educators so that more children will be diagnosed and recovered earlier rather than later or not at all.
As a DAN!™ doctor, I treat all forms of the spectrum disorders and have done so since 1983, twelve years before I became a founding member of DAN!™ My first study in 1992 which connected allergies and digestive disorders to autism came about because I was practicing otolaryngology and allergy. My allergy patients had digestive problems which, if left unattended would keep them from getting control of their allergies. So when a patient was not responding to their allergy shots, the American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy suggested digestive and allergy testing for IgG mediated food allergy.
My son was five years old at the time. He had all the same allergy and digestive issues and he also had hyperacusis (overly sensitive hearing). As an ear, nose and throat doctor, when I heard that there was a treatment for hyperacusis (auditory integration training) I bought the equipment for use on my son. The treatment was being used mainly for autistics and that intrigued me. My son had symptoms of autism that were mild compared to most of the children I considered autistic, but he was in fact on the spectrum.
My nutritionist and I designed the 1992 autism study to include recording dietary habits so we could measure nutritional intake. We did comprehensive
allergy testing, a comprehensive digestive stool analysis (including parasitology), amino acid and fatty acid testing, immune system panels, and neurotransmitter studies.
In 92% of the cases there were problems with digestion, and in 100% of the cases there were problems with allergies. Based on each child’s test results we treated with antifungals, antiparasitics, antibacterials, probiotics and digestive enzymes. All patients diagnosed with leaky gut syndrome received a preparation combining an amino acid, fatty acid, complex carbohydrate, antioxidant and vitamin E.
Biomedical treatments for autism spectrum disorders include healing the digestive tract using antifungals and nutrients, eliminating gluten, casein and allergic foods, treating allergies and feeding a nutrient-dense diet. Chelation and other forms of detoxification such as far-infrared saunas are also often necessary. These are the foundation of what has become known as the Defeat Autism Now or DAN Protocol.
Additional elements may be added in depending on what progress is made after the basics have been tried. These may include methyl B-12 injections, auditory training, anti-inflammatory treatments and hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT), craniosacral therapy and prism lenses.
The key to getting good results from the biomedical treatments is to do them sequentially in the right order, to do them aggressively, to start as early as possible and to be consistent. Mothers are the real heroes in this story. In 99% of the families that I have seen, the mother leads the charge in controlling the child’s environment and diet as well as championing the cause with school personnel, family and pediatricians.
Most of the change that has been brought about regarding the acceptance of these treatments by a larger number of people has been accomplished by mothers who have educated themselves on biomedical treatments and formed support groups and professional organizations to get the word out.
Autism and the disorders that fall somewhere on this diagnostic band are known as ASD or Autism Spectrum Disorders. This spectrum includes ADD, ADHD, Asperger’s, PDD and Tourette’s syndrome. Autism is on the severe end of this range while attention deficit, hyperactivity, dyslexia and others are on the milder end. All categories of ASD have increased markedly in the past 20 years with estimates of the number affected ranging from one in 91 to one in 48 boys and growing in numbers every day.