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Common Diseases > Vitamin B6 Can Help Autistic Children

What is Autism?
Autism is seen as a developmental disorder that generally begins between birth and age two and a half years. It is often difficult to know if a child is autistic as most autistic children are perfectly normal in appearance, but spend their time engaged in puzzling and disturbing behaviors which are markedly different from those of typical children and display social and behavioral problems.

"There is no biological treatment for autism which is more strongly supported in the scientific literature than the use of high dosage vitamin B6 (preferably given along with normal supplements of magnesium)" says Bernard Rimland PhD, editor of the Autism Research Review International

A large scale study undertaken by Rimland has found that between 30 per cent and 40 per cent of autistic children may benefit from large doses of vitamin B6.

200 autistic children were given "Megadose quantities" of vitamin B6, niacinamide, pantothenic acid and vitamin C, along with a multi vitamin tablet.

Four months into the trial it was clear that vitamin B6 was the most important of the vitamins being investigated. In some cases it brought considerable improvement.

Some children experienced side effects to the high dosage levels.
"A few of the children showed minor side effects (irritability, sound sensitivity and bed wetting), but these cleared up when additional magnesium was supplied," says Rimland.

"Another double-blind, placebo controlled study of mine with Professor Enoch Callaway of the University of California Medical Center at San Francisco and Pierre Dreyfus of the University of California Medical center at Davis showed statistically significant results for children taking between 300 and 500 mg of B6 per day, with several hundred milligrams of magnesium and a multiple B tablet given to guard against B6 - induced deficiencies in these nutrients.

"In both studies the children showed better eye contact, less self-stimulatory behaviour, more interest in the world around them, fewer tantrums and more speech. In general the children became more 'normal', although they were not cured."

The new research follows on from decades of research into the effects of B6 on autistic children.
In 1966 two British neurologists, AF Heeley and GE Robert, reported that 11 of 19 children excreted abnormal metabolites in their urine when given tryptophan load tests. B6 helped to normalize these children's urine.

In 1968 a German researcher, VE Bonisch, reported that B6 could improve behaviour when given in high doses (100 mg to 600 mg per day). He found that the vitamin helped 12 out of 15 of the patients he studied.

Three of the patients spoke for the first time after vitamin B6 was administered in his open clinical trial.
Rimland is excited about the results of his research. "Eighteen studies have been published since 1965 showing conclusively that high dose vitamin B6 confers many benefits to about half of all autistic children and adults on whom it has been tried."

"People vary enormously in their need for B6. The children who showed improvement under B6 improved because they needed B6. Autism can be thus regarded as a vitamin B6 depending syndrome.

French researchers have also success in treating autistic with B6, according to He says that they have improves behaviour and Vitamin BC may be the most effective biological treatment for autism, with 30-40 per cent of patients showing improvement. "No drug comes close to these results!" says Rimland.

This information is provided by Open Forum on Health
Bernard Rimland PhD, editor of the Autism Research Review International
Autism and the relationship with Mercury




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