UF study focuses on autistic adults

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – University of Florida researchers are launching one of the largest and most comprehensive studies of what happens to autistic adults as they age.

Dr. Brandon Zielinski, chief of pediatric neurology in the UF College of Medicine, said the study aims to better understand the brain and cognitive changes that occur in people with autism.

“So our goal is to really identify and approach individuals who are older in aging cohorts who have been maybe living with autism either diagnosed or undiagnosed so we can determine essentially what factors they have experienced as they have aged,” he said.

Zielinski said that information can be used to develop appropriate interventions for the older Americans with autism.

And medical experts are weighing in on a study released this week suggesting colonoscopies did not improve the risk of death from colon cancer.

“This study was extremely flawed because even patients that were invited to undergo colonoscopy only 42 percent of them actually underwent the procedure so when we look at the final analysis they included everyone not just the people that had the colonoscopy but those that did not have colonoscopy. If you look at the final ‘intention to treat analysis’ colonoscopy does save lives and has a mortality benefit but that was not seen because so many patients didn’t undergo colonoscopy,” said Dr. Adam Lessne with Gastro Health.

For many other reasons, Lessne said the European study does not reflect the benefit seen in the U.S. which is so great that recommended colonoscopy screening guidance has been lowered from starting at age 50 to age 45 and even earlier for people with a family history of colon cancer.

About the Author:

Veteran journalist Kathleen Corso is the special projects producer for Local 10 News.