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homocysteine levels and aggression

(7 Posts)
jmb1964 Wed 22-Jun-05 11:47:40

Does anyone know anything about this? We have had a few alarming aggressive outbursts from ds1 in the last few months (despite him generally being very much calmer and integrating better at school), one resulted in the resignation of our nanny. Our psychologist has suggested testing homocysteine levels, but the local lab won't do it so it looks as if we may have to get it done privately. I have googled looking for more info, but nothing seems very clearcut (so what else is new?)
I'm a bit worried about embarking on the whole nutritional path - last summer we tried GF diet but after 4 months it had not made much difference so we abandoned it. Ds1's diet is pretty good really, I don't see why he would be low in folate or B12, but who knows?
Dh very sceptical about it all - already calls his fish oil and epo capsules a 'cocktail' so he wouldn't be mad keen on adding in another load of supplements, but we can't have ds1 beating up his teachers, and he's getting bigger and stronger all the time

Davros Wed 22-Jun-05 16:27:06

I've never heard of homocysteine.... what's new? I'm sure someone like Jimjams will know about it (no pressure hee hee). Have you tried to analyse the behaviour rather than try managing another supplement-based thing? Could it be the managing at school and bursting on arriving home thing? Sorry if this doesn't help.

jmb1964 Wed 22-Jun-05 16:53:25

Thanks Davros - no I had only heard of it as a possible factor in heart disease in adults. But apparently if you get high levels of it building up it can make the sensory stuff worse. The metabolism is to methionine (I think) and to deal with it properly you need enough folate and B12. Seems to feature in DAN dietary intervention stuff for autism, but I don't know anything about that either [puzzled emoticon]
Ds1's most recent disasters - hitting/punching/breaking necklace of our soon to be ex-nanny, and puching and slapping his classroom assistant at school - both seem to have been triggered by an extreme over-reaction to being firmly held and taken away from a situation. I think this may just be his literal-ness - if he can't hold other children tight, why should adults be allowed to hold him the same way?, but the psych seems to think homocysteine may have something to do with it.
He and dd1 are starting a collaborative star chart thing as well though, so perhaps that will help.. 6.5 week school holiday starts next Friday - don't know whether to laugh or cry!

tamum Wed 22-Jun-05 17:22:44

Blimey jmb, I'm really sorry about the nanny. How stressful. The only thing I can find in Pubmed is this , which is reputable but doesn't mention behavioural modification. It does say this in the discussion: "Although clinical improvements in speech and cognition were noted by the attending physician (PC), they were not measured in a quantifiable manner and are therefore not reported here". I can email you the whole thing if you like, but it's also worth noting that 19/20 subjects had regressive autism and didn't really sound terrible much like your ds1.

My personal feeling would be scepticism but worth a try if it's not too much hassle, maybe?

Davros Wed 22-Jun-05 20:41:39

I'm not keen on the whole DAN thing tbh. Many of the issues that people try to deal with in "alternative" ways are simply typically autistic. That doesn't mean you have to give up but its better to try to deal with the behaviour imo rather than look for some outside agent. Mind you, what do I know, look at my recent thread!

monica2 Wed 22-Jun-05 23:29:00

Hi Jmb1964 good to hear from you don't know anything about it unfortunately but think it would be well working on the literal-ness problem too, hope things improve soon.

jmb1964 Wed 22-Jun-05 23:35:46

Thanks everyone for backing up my gut feeling which is to leave this stuff alone. Thanks Tamum too for the link - it isn't a very big study is it? I think we will work on the collaborative stuff with his sister, and hope that the break from the stresses of school will do us all good..

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