1: World J Biol Psychiatry. 2002 Jul;3(3):162-6.

Treatment of late onset autism as a consequence of probable autommune processes related to chronic infection

Matarazzo EB.

Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Two cases are described of children who at first developed normally, but before the age of three developed autistic symptoms following the reactivation of a chronic oto-rhinolaryngologic infection. The clinical and laboratory data of the cases support the aetiological hypothesis of an autoimmune process. Adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH), prescribed in the first months of the disease, cured one case. The other patient, who was two years old when autistic symptoms appeared and was treated only six years later, showed a partial but definitive improvement with the immunosuppressive treatment. This report proposes that reactivation of a chronic bacterial infection be included among the aetiologies of Late Onset Autism, and demonstrates that, when the aetiological hypothesis of an autoimmune process based on clinical and laboratory data is considered, an immunosuppressive treatment, particularly with ACTH, can be very effective and also safe.