Autism Information

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fever May Temporarily Alleviate the Symptoms of Autism

In a first-of-it's-kind study, it has been noted that the behavior of autistic children improve during a fever. It has been hypothesized by researchers that a fever may possibly restore nerve cell communication in regions of an autistic brain. This restoration may help improve the child's socialization skill during a fever.

The study was based on 30 autistic children between ages 2 and 18 who were observed during and after a fever of at least 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit. More than 80 percent of the children showed some improvement in behavior during a fever and 30 percent showed significant improvement, researchers said. Behavior changes included longer concentration span, increased amount of talking and improved eye contact.

Although data suggests that behavior changes may not solely be the byproduct of sickness and, consequently, could be the byproduct of a biologic response to fever. More research, however, is needed to prove fever-specific effects, researchers say.

Even if this is not yet a proven case, any leads that suggest new biologic mechanisms that could be acted on through treatment are welcomed and this has been a very positive addition in the quest to cure the autistic mind.


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