Introduction to Anatomy and Physiology.

Essay by nonamenonameUniversity, Bachelor's October 2005

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Among the hundreds of thousands of disorders that affect Americans, I find that autism is amid the most intriguing. This enigmatic disorder affects between 300,000-400,000 individuals in the U.S. (Autism the Facts, Dr. Simon Baron-Cohen,1999, p.11), and even larger amounts of the population worldwide. Despite the growing numbers of cases of autism, the current knowledge of the disorder remains quite limited. Health care providers, disease specialists, and neurologists have yet to determine the cause or causes of autism, and though research continues, the chances that the prevention or cures of this disorder will be unearthed within this decade remains slim.

My ulterior motive in composing this research paper is to gain a further understanding of this disorder through thorough research on the subject, specifically the potential causes, treatment, and the majority of individuals affected. It is with genuine interest and ardor that I begin the quest to obtain this higher knowledge of this infamous mystery disorder.

What is Autism?

Autism is a disorder commonly referred to as "mind blindness", and although the exact definition of autism remains questionable, it can best be described as a brain abnormality which usually involves irregularities in either the frontal lobe, or the limbic system of the brain. The frontal lobe is responsible for planning and control, while the limbic system regulates emotion (Autism the Facts, Dr. Simon Baron-Cohen,1999, p.35 ). Irregularities in these regions of the brain account for many of the characteristics and qualities consistent with individuals affected with autism.

Autism is believed to occur before or even during birth, but in most cases, is not diagnosed during infancy, but during the first few years of life when it becomes most evident. A child may be born healthy and develop at a normal rate until the toddler stage when normal development often...