Jose y Abril 2, 2011

Maria y su hijo Jose…and the entire family came to the house.

They needed me to translate their Dr.'s notes.

The diagnosis for little Jose was that his testing at Children's Hospital

diagnosed him with Sylvan Seizures better known as Rolandic Epilepsy.

This type of epilepsy the letter stated was diagnosed after exhaustive

EEG testing and where they had found repetitive spike activity in the right

parietal area of the brain.

This benign rolandic epilepsy is so named because it is near the motor

or rolandic strip.

Sadly his diagnosis had been relatively difficult because his seizures had

been occurring nocturnally.

The one almost nightly finding was that his pillows had a lot of moisture -

now explained by his excessive salivation that occurs with type of epilepsy,

along with speech arrest.

Jose never lost consciousness, never complained and the pediatric neurologist,

and autism expert believed that he has had it for several years.

The good news if there was to the diagnosis was that Jose's condition was benign,

and that most children frequently outgrow this terrible condition by adolescence.

The second part of the letter was even more distressing to his Mother and Father.

Little Jose now eight years of age, a precocious, brown eyed handsome

little boy has autism.

A disorder that I recently read is more common than previously thought.

Jose is now 1 in about 88 children in the United States that have an

autism spectrum disorder.

He is a highly functional little boy with a type of autistic spectrum disorder

that is commonly associated with an impaired social communication,

and fixated interests.

Maria, has two other beautiful little girls both a little older than Jose.

She said that the Dr. was very frank with her and told her that most medications

don't help, but that although there was no cure, Jose with extensive behavioral

therapy could see some improvements.

Next Monday is World Autism Awareness Day, it's fifth anniversary and a day

when organizations will hold fundraising and awareness events around

the world to give a voice to people with autism.

Jose over heard me speaking with his Mother and Father, he said

"Señor Tomas  when I get big I am going to help other Mama's and Papa's

with boys like me.

I am going to get a good job at a hospital, and make sure that I tell Mamas,

and Papas only things about their kids that doesn't make them get sad."

We all smiled at Jose, who we thought had been busy digging up the acorns

around the yard. He said he was helping the squirrels.

Little Jose may not be good at expressing emotions, but he sure is great

at perceiving them.

His big brown eyes don't ever look in at you but for a fleeting glance.

Still you know that somehow he knows to make eye contact when he does

speak even though it has never come naturally.

Here's some facts I found on autism:

1 in 110 kids have autism.

They estimate that there are a million children with autism.

1 in every 54 boys have autism.

For girls the number is 1 in 252.

Non-Hispanic white children: 1 in 83; up 70% from 2002

Non-Hispanic black children: 1 in 98; up 91% from 2002

Hispanic children: 1 in 127; up 110% from 2002

Most symptoms typically become apparent before the age of three.

 A child or adult with an autistic spectrum disorder might have

the following symptoms:

They may tend to repeat actions over and over.

They tend not to look at objects when another person points to them.

Most avoid direct eye contact and would rather be left alone.

They prefer not to be held or cuddled or might cuddle only when they seek it out.

Most appear to be unaware of other people even if being spoke to but will

respond to other sounds.

The CDC estimates that one in every 110 children is diagnosed with autism,

1.5 million in the US and 67 million around the world.

This make autism more common than childhood cancer, juvenile diabetes,

and pediatric AIDS combined.

It's is now the fastest-growing developmental disability in the world.

Today I pray that Jose achieves his dream.

I know he will make a difference.

Make it a hopeful kind of día!

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