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For many years, a myth was being sent around the USA and in other countries that autism was a disease.  Yet, there were some people who chose to believe that.

 

The popular TV series, Myth Busters, went around to debunk myths on a number of things. In the spirit of Myth Busters, GCA is here to debunk the myth that autism is a disease.

 

In late 2017, Scott (GCA's founder) was diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer.  Colon cancer is one of the second most common type of cancer within the cancer family.  Also, colon cancer is one of the most curable.    Survival rates with colon cancer after being cancer free for three years is approximately 75%.  Thus, a disease can be seen as something that can could result in death or in a cure.  Thus, cancer is a disease.

 

What about autism?   What we know about autism for a very long period of time is is that no one has been known to die from any level of autism, whatsoever.   No research or medical studies have proven to show that anyone dies of autism.  Likewise, no research or medical studies have proven to show that a cure for autism exists.  What does that make autism?  A neurological disorder that affects the inside of a person's brain and involves communication and social challenges, as well as developmental delays.  Think of an autistic individual whose "wiring" within the brain is scrambled, compared to the person who is not on the autism spectrum and who is able to pick up on subtle clues on knowing when to automatic do something. 

 

A disorder is something someone could live with for a very long period of time but does not result in death.  A disorder like autism does not go away at all.  It is not like an autistic individual (individual on the autism spectrum) graduates from high school at the age of 18, then autism disappears from a person's life.  If that was true, I wouldn't be 50 years old and autistic. 

 

Thus, where a disease can involve either a cure and/or death, a disorder involves neither.    Myth busted!

 

 

 

 

GCA Office: 423-531-6961 x7   

CAC Phone: 423-531-6961

GCA Email:  scott.kramer@chattanoogaautismcenter.org

 

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Chattanooga, TN  37404

 

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