COVID-19 hospitalization, death tied to intellectual disability, obesity

Intellectual disability is second only to old age as a risk factor for COVID-19 death, and obesity is linked to coronavirus-related hospitalization and death, two new studies find. Deadlier than heart, kidney, lung disease The first study, led by researchers from Jefferson Health in Philadelphia and published late last week as a commentary in the New England Journal of Medicine Catalyst, involved analyzing the medical records of 558,672 US COVID-19 patients from January 2019 to […]

Advocates Encourage the Autism and I/DD Community to be Prioritized for COVID-19 Vaccination

The Autism Society of America applauds the global scientific and medical community for developing 95% effective COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, where Pfizer/BioNTech has already received approval for emergency use authorization (EUA) by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The Autism Society enlisted the support of other national disability organizations to unite and urge the autism community to be vaccinated as distribution becomes possible. Individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities are at a […]

Managing Epilepsy in Patients With Intellectual Disability

While an estimated 1.8% of US adults have epilepsy, the prevalence is more than 22% among people with intellectual disabilities.1,2 Managing epilepsy in this patient population can be particularly challenging for a variety of reasons. “This group will have a higher likelihood of communication problems and other issues that make it more difficult to be treated than patients with a higher IQ, and they tend to have more behavioral issues,” Scott Hirsch, MD, a neuropsychiatrist […]

Study Advocate New Therapeutic Approach for Autism Spectrum Disorders

The social impairments associated with autism spectrum disorder actually may be driven by sensory neurons found outside the brain, according to new research conducted by Penn Medicine. The loss of a particular protein, neurofibromin 1, disrupts peripheral neurons that control how people perceive the environment around them, including their senses of smell and touch. This finding suggests there may be a more accessible therapeutic approach to treating ASD-related symptoms, researchers said. New therapies could restore social behaviors […]

Studying Baby Steps Could Lead To Better Treatments For Cerebral Palsy

By understanding more about walking and balance, researchers hope to develop new treatments for cerebral palsy. Understanding the progression from the stepping reflex to independent walking could help find new therapies for children with cerebral palsy (CP) – a movement disability caused by brain damage before, during or shortly after birth. A baby’s first steps are a magical moment – an early stepping stone towards independent walking. Children usually begin to walk around the time […]