Since the late 80's, Ultrasounds and Autism have both been on the rise. I personally had early ultrasounds this pregnancy (my second child, now at 17wks) and have been very concerned about the harm that it might have had on my developing baby (unfortunately my ob/gyn didn't warn me of the potential risks). I have since done tons of research, much of which has scared me senseless. I was just wondering how many of the families that post here had first trimester or multiple ultrasounds during their pregnancies? The article below is an interesting recap of possible u/s and autism links that some might find interesting.
WASHINGTON - Exposure to ultrasound can affect fetal brain development, a new study suggests.... When pregnant mice were exposed to ultrasound, a small number of nerve cells in the developing brains of their fetuses failed to extend correctly in the cerebral cortex....Rakic's paper said that while the effects of ultrasound in human brain development are not yet known, there are disorders thought to be the result of misplacement of brain cells during their development.
"These disorders range from mental retardation and childhood epilepsy to developmental dyslexia, autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia," the researchers said....Our study in mice does not mean that use of ultrasound on human fetuses for appropriate diagnostic and medical purposes should be abandoned," said lead researcher Pasko Rakic, chairman of the neurobiology department at Yale University School of Medicine.
However, he added in a telephone interview, women should avoid unnecessary ultrasound scans until more research has been done. If exposure to ultrasound causes death of cells, then the practice of ultrasonic imaging at 16 to 18 weeks will cause loss of neurons [brain cells] with little prospect of replacement of lost cells…The vulnerability is not for malformation but for maldevelopment leading to mental impairment caused by overall reduction in the number of functioning neurons in the future cerebral hemispheres.
Part of the scientific method is to seperate corelation from causation. Example:
I get intoxicated on whisky and water, vodka and water, gin and water, Southern Comfort and water, coniac and water.... Is it the water? Or is it something else? Initial tests may indicate it's the water, further research many indicate it's something else.
I read a research paper indicating differnces in cerebelllum archetecture of autistic children.
I can also remember the saccarin study with mice and cancer. The results were not duplicated in rats nor any other animals. I think humans are not as geneticly close to mice as other lab animals.
I do agree with his advice "women should avoid unnecessary ultrasound scans until more research has been done." IMO, any unnecessary medical procedure should be avoided.
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