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 If Lanza couldn't feel pain...

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PostSubject: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeTue Oct 31, 2017 5:08 am

Why didn't he make headlines before Ashlyn Blocker? The 12-year-old girl who made international news in 2012 for that rare disorder (congenital insensitivity to pain with anhidrosis). Surely Adam was diagnosed with that in middle school or something or at least a year before Ashlyn became famous...


Last edited by scibblewop on Tue Oct 31, 2017 7:55 am; edited 1 time in total
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TheSpiral

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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeTue Oct 31, 2017 6:57 am

He was?

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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeTue Oct 31, 2017 7:56 am

TheSpiral wrote:
He was?

You betcha
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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeTue Oct 31, 2017 10:13 am

Adam didn't have any rare disorder. Many children with autism seem to have abnormally low pain sensitivity. It's likely that he could feel pain to some degree but wouldn't necessarily know if he injured himself severely because it wouldn't hurt as much as it would with a neurotypical child. Coupled with his lack of communication, this could have been dangerous because he could seriously hurt himself and might not have been able to tell anyone when he was younger.

Coincidentally, I was recently reading something about this in Temple Grandin's book Animals in Translation where she mentions the relationship between pain sensitivity, natural opioid levels and sociability in autism. It made me think of Adam.

Apparently, one part of the brain involved in distress related to social attachment is the same primitive part of the brain related to processing physical pain. This is why we might describe how much it "hurts" when we lose someone we love.

Social interaction can boost endorphins, which are natural opioids, and they also act as painkillers. Some scientists think social dependence or attachment mimics the process of chemical dependence on opioids like heroin or morphine. This is why some people might feel like they are "addicted" to being with someone they love. They are, in a way.

Doctors use naltrexone to treat heroin addicts because it blocks the processing of opioids in the brain. A researcher decided to experiment with naltrexone in animals to see if it would affect social behavior with the hypothesis that if you block the opioids in the brain, the animal feels bad and will seek out social contact in an attempt to boost their levels and feel good. It turned out that the hypothesis was correct and the animals were more sociable when they were given naltrexone. Because of this research, a new hypothesis was formed, that autistic people's levels of opioids are naturally higher than normal. This would explain why they don't often seek social contact naturally (because they don't need the endorphin boost) and why many people with autism don't feel as much pain (because there is an abnormally high level of natural painkiller in their nervous system affecting their sensitivity to pain when compared to the average person). According to the book, a researcher who treated autistic children with low doses of naltrexone found that about half of them became more sociable, which lends credence to the theory.
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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeWed Nov 01, 2017 2:32 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] Interesting. So not only were my thoughts matched up with the fact that Adam had a substantially high amount of pain killers than average but his social isolation may have possibly made him more comfortable. Although one of his internet companions (I think it was SixteenBitElder) said that he either hated his miserable and lonely life or he liked to dwell in his miserable and lonely life. Either way, he knew and accepted that his life was isolated whether it was at home or at school and either way he chose it to be like that because he is more immune to loneliness.
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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeWed Nov 01, 2017 5:30 pm

.


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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeWed Nov 01, 2017 10:47 pm

sscc wrote:
Many children with autism seem to have abnormally low pain sensitivity.

Adam was schizophrenic, not autistic.

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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeWed Nov 01, 2017 11:12 pm

QuestionMark wrote:
sscc wrote:
Many children with autism seem to have abnormally low pain sensitivity.

Adam was schizophrenic, not autistic.
That's a possibility but it's still speculation and it's not something that I personally agree with. What makes you believe that a diagnosis of schizophrenia is more appropriate than autism? If you're going by Langman's analysis, you should keep in mind that he conveniently dismisses Adam's childhood developmental issues and any behavioral or personality traits which may have been indications that Adam may have actually had autism instead of schizophrenia.

And it is true that a decreased sensitivity to pain can be found among schizophrenics but in my estimation, while there are several symptoms that could be indications of both possibilities, the independent indications of autism outweigh the independent indications of schizophrenia.

Edit: I also want to add that schizophrenia and autism are not mutually exclusive.
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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeThu Nov 02, 2017 12:59 am

sscc wrote:
What makes you believe that a diagnosis of schizophrenia is more appropriate than autism?

He plainly admitted to having psychotic episodes and delusions about people watching him. Last I checked, autistic people don't lose touch with reality in that way.

Having both schizophrenia and autism is definitely possible, but we can say for sure Adam had schizophrenia.

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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeThu Nov 02, 2017 4:40 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] Someone on this forum had posted an interview with SixteenBitElder and she stated just that. You have a better chance of finding it on the internet than scouting through this forum, though.
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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeThu Nov 02, 2017 8:22 am

QuestionMark wrote:
sscc wrote:
What makes you believe that a diagnosis of schizophrenia is more appropriate than autism?

He plainly admitted to having psychotic episodes and delusions about people watching him. Last I checked, autistic people don't lose touch with reality in that way.

Having both schizophrenia and autism is definitely possible, but we can say for sure Adam had schizophrenia.
You are incorrect in equating psychosis with schizophrenia so it's possible that he did not have schizophrenia, and I recently posted about that in another thread.

A major depressive episode can cause psychosis in some people, including both hallucinations and delusions. Since we know that Adam was severely and chronically depressed, an alternate hypothesis is that his episodes of psychosis were related to depressive episodes.

Aside from that, even certain vitamin deficiencies can cause symptoms of psychosis (as well as depression) and Adam was vegan as well as anorexic and proven to be chronically malnourished so it would not be unthinkable that he had those vitamin deficiencies. Here is a description of a case where psychotic symptoms were caused by B12 deficiency in a 16 year old male, including delusions and hallucinations along with affective symptoms [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and it's worth noting that the main sources of B12 in the average diet come from animal products so it is a common problem for vegans who are not careful.

Aside from those possibilities, there are other less likely possibilities like bipolar disorder (though episodes of psychosis with accompanying hallucinations are not as common in bipolar disorder and there is very little evidence that he may have had any form of the disorder, aside from his cyclical worsening of depression mixed with short bursts of intense activity, though that is probably better explained in other ways) and other less common psychotic disorders. It is fully possible that Adam had autism and did not have schizophrenia even if he did have a psychotic episode.

I would also like to point out that the professionals who studied his e-mails extensively in his last months stated that Adam was not actively psychotic, despite his bizarre thinking in regard to mass murder and that Adam's issues began as early as before the age of three yet supposedly, he did not have his first psychotic episode until late adolescence. This suggests that a diagnosis of autism is appropriate, as most of the people who evaluated him concluded, even if you want to assume that he had adult onset schizophrenia as well, based on evidence of psychotic episodes (though as I noted, this is jumping to a conclusion anyway because there are other explanations).

Since you are saying that he did not have autism, how do you explain the fact that there is proof that he satisfied all of the criteria for an autism diagnosis? Some of these symptoms cannot explained by schizophrenia.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

A. Persistent deficits in social communication and social interaction across multiple contexts, as manifested by the following, currently or by history (examples are illustrative, not exhaustive, see text):
1. Deficits in social-emotional reciprocity, ranging, for example, from abnormal social approach and failure of normal back-and-forth conversation; to reduced sharing of interests, emotions, or affect; to failure to initiate or respond to social interactions.
2. Deficits in nonverbal communicative behaviors used for social interaction, ranging, for example, from poorly integrated verbal and nonverbal communication; to abnormalities in eye contact and body language or deficits in understanding and use of gestures; to a total lack of facial expressions and nonverbal communication.
3. Deficits in developing, maintaining, and understanding relationships, ranging, for example, from difficulties adjusting behavior to suit various social contexts; to difficulties in sharing imaginative play or in making friends; to absence of interest in peers.

B. Restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities, as manifested by at least two of the following, currently or by history (examples are illustrative, not exhaustive; see text):
1. Stereotyped or repetitive motor movements, use of objects, or speech (e.g., simple motor stereotypies, lining up toys or flipping objects, echolalia, idiosyncratic phrases).
2. Insistence on sameness, inflexible adherence to routines, or ritualized patterns or verbal nonverbal behavior (e.g., extreme distress at small changes, difficulties with transitions, rigid thinking patterns, greeting rituals, need to take same route or eat food every day).
3. Highly restricted, fixated interests that are abnormal in intensity or focus (e.g, strong attachment to or preoccupation with unusual objects, excessively circumscribed or perseverative interest).
4. Hyper- or hyporeactivity to sensory input or unusual interests in sensory aspects of the environment (e.g., apparent indifference to pain/temperature, adverse response to specific sounds or textures, excessive smelling or touching of objects, visual fascination with lights or movement).

C. Symptoms must be present in the early developmental period (but may not become fully manifest until social demands exceed limited capacities, or may be masked by learned strategies in later life).
D. Symptoms cause clinically significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of current functioning.
E. These disturbances are not better explained by intellectual disability (intellectual developmental disorder) or global developmental delay. Intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder frequently co-occur; to make comorbid diagnoses of autism spectrum disorder and intellectual disability, social communication should be below that expected for general developmental level.

In addition to these recognized symptoms of the disorder, Adam also had a severe anxiety disorder, and it's almost certain that he had OCD and anorexia (both anxiety related disorders), which have been recognized as frequently being associated with autism.


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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeThu Nov 02, 2017 7:10 pm

sscc wrote:
snip

Well after reviewing this information, I think I can agree with you that Adam had autism.

But I'm still steadfastly convinced he had co-morbid schizophrenia after reviewing all the information we have available to us. And you're not going to convince me otherwise on that.

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PostSubject: Re: If Lanza couldn't feel pain...   If Lanza couldn't feel pain... Icon_minitimeFri Nov 03, 2017 2:02 pm

QuestionMark wrote:
Well after reviewing this information, I think I can agree with you that Adam had autism.

But I'm still steadfastly convinced he had co-morbid schizophrenia after reviewing all the information we have available to us. And you're not going to convince me otherwise on that.
I do agree that schizophrenia can't be ruled out. It's certainly a possibility but I just don't see enough information to be sure one way or another. It would be helpful if there was more information on his psychotic symptoms, like how frequently he was experiencing these things, under what conditions they manifested and when it all started. I just wanted to point out that schizophrenia is not the only illness that could cause the symptoms Adam reported experiencing. Thank you for reading through my post and taking it into consideration.
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