SEBASTOPOL, CA -- Increasingly, the public is aware of autism.
Autism is a condition that profoundly affects the lives of
families. There are difficulties in getting a precise diagnosis,
particularly since autism is a range of disorders and since other
conditions may accompany it. There are difficulties in
treatment--getting insurance coverage, deciding among the range of
therapies touted as beneficial, figuring out if dietary changes
might help, getting a child into the right classroom environment.
And there are difficulties in coping-trying to understand what is
going on, finding the time and strength to be an effective
advocate, getting rest and support, and coping with stresses
on the parents' marriage and on other children in the family.
- The number of children diagnosed with autism is rising
significantly; that rise is increasingly noted and reported on.
- Speculation about causes range from genetic to
environmental--and combinations of the two.
- Parents argue with public health experts over whether
childhood immunizations have a role in the sudden onset of autism
in their toddlers.
- Persons on the high-functioning end of the autistic
spectrum occupy prominent, well-paid, and respected technical
positions and "geek culture" is accepted as part of American
- President Bush calls for parity in insurance coverage for
mental disorders, reflecting the political reality of successful
lobbying for help by the public for help with their families.
- Congressmen (such as Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind, whose
grandson, Christopher, is autistic) call for more money for
"Autistic Spectrum Disorders" interview with Mitzi
Waltz", author-advocate Waltz answers questions about autism
that are currently in the news.
About the author
Mitzi Waltz has been a professional author, journalist, and
editor for over a decade, covering topics ranging from computers
to health care. She is the author of six books for people with
brain disorders. Her latest book, Autistic Spectrum Disorders, is
an updated and expanded edition of the earlier title, Pervasive
Developmental Disorders. Other titles include Adult Bipolar
Disorders, Bipolar Disorders (childhood and adolescent
disorders), Tourette's Syndrome, Partial Seizure Disorders, and
After working as an advocate for people with brain disorders for
a number of years, Ms. Waltz is pursuing a doctorate in order to
teach and conduct academic research. She is currently with the
Autism Research Unit at the University of Sunderland in England.
The ARU is well-known internationally for its work on the
relationship between autism and metabolic disorders. Waltz's
doctoral research is focused on the medical history of autism,
and she has presented to audiences in the UK and Europe on this
topic and others related to autism.
About the book
Autistic Spectrum Disorders is written for parents (or newly
diagnosed adults) who struggle with these neurological conditions
that profoundly impact the life of child and family. Author and
patient advocate Mitzi Waltz incorporates the latest medical
findings on possible causes for ASDs and on treatments.
A complementary review copy is available for the media.
Getting a diagnosis, including preparing for a diagnostic
interview in a medical, psychiatric, or school setting
Treatment options, including pharmaceutical medications,
vitamins and supplements, sensory integration, occupational
therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, behavior modification,
floor time play therapy, talk therapy, and others
Coping with diagnosis and treatment, including emotions
and support systems, insurance system, and educational plans
Stories from dozens of families living with autistic
Autistic Spectrum Disorders: Finding a Diagnosis & Getting Help
By Mitzi Waltz
$29.95, 504 pages, 7" x 9", trade paperback
PUBLICATION DATE: July 15, 2002
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