AS or OCD??

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-16-1998
AS or OCD??
Sun, 06-22-2003 - 3:01am
DS (8½) has a Dx of both AS & OCD also TS. I am wondering about the OCd tho'. I have recently been really looking into the AS and can put all his OCD type behaviours down to the AS. Here are what have lead to the OCD Dx.

*Things have to be done in a certain way/order

*Things done differently trigger anxiety ie. breakfast in the wrong bowl can't be eaten

*Anything seen on the ground has to be picked up and hoarded eg bolts, springs, washers etc

*String, string & more string every piece accounted for and usually tied to something

*Rubber Bands, the same as string!!

*Nothing is to be seen to be thrown away

WHat do you think??

I am not happy with DS having so many labels and think just the AS is enough, I also think the TS may just be an extension of the AS and have been told they often go together.



Avatar for maresgood
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
In reply to: cartesia
Sun, 06-22-2003 - 4:06pm
Hi, I think the obsessions are just part & parcel of the AS. Is the OCD affect his life in such a way that he cannot function without doing these things? I'm like you with hating all the labels! My dd has certain obsessions though, for ex. with coins & spare change which she looks for everywhere. Not so much like your ds with "things", but I have read where that is very common. She rides her scooter EVERY day by herself and does the same routine, back & forth, back & forth in the driveway. She has memorized several school directories. She reads & re-reads Harry Potter and has seen the movies MANY times as I mentioned in another post. She cannot go shopping without doing the Claw where you try & win stuffed animals. She was into the DRAGONBALL Z cartoon for many years & wouldn't miss the show when it came on or else have a meltdown. These really annoy me after awhile, but we all have come to accept them as part of her AS personality. Other than medicating for OCD what can you do? I try to redirect her behavior. Sometimes it works & sometimes it doesn't. She knows she has AS & we just tell her to quit obsessing & have her focus on something else. I can relate to your son's behavior.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: cartesia
Tue, 06-24-2003 - 3:58pm
AS can often have "comorbid conditions" including OCD, ADHD, TS, anxiety disorder and others. Although some of these "comorbid conditions" may be part of the their expression of there main diagnosis (AS in our case) they can also sometimes have the full set of symptoms of other disorders. Although the AS may be the main diagnosis, it may be helpful to have these other "labels" to help us address all the needs. Sometimes I find these labels helpful and sometimes not.

For instance, Many folks have tried to label Cait with ADD. While it is true that Cait has some ADD symptoms, by looking closer it is almost always auditory attention that is the problem and her attending issues have more to do with processing, language and sensory integration problems than ADD. The ADD label has been nothing but a pain in the tush because it is not accurate per se and typical ADD treatment doesn't help. ADD doesn't really expain why she has attending difficulties and professionals have a habit of over simplifing her attending needs becuase of an ADD diagnosis that is 5 years old (first diagnosis prior to PDD and incorrect.) Same with Mike. He had a diagnosis of ADHD for 2 years and we tried all teh medications and treatments for ADHD with minimal success. ADHD didn't treat his real problem, AS.

On the other hand, Cait does have tics (mild TS) and partial seizures. THese are comorbid conditions that need different treatment than just the usual AS treatments that are beneficial to her, so I keep these on her records. (in the way you treat these episodes as well as medication). I would also like if they would finally admit that she has auditory processing problems as I think treating that would help her as well.

Also, Mike has a strong OCD component as well. Although much of the rigidity is caused by the AS symptoms, I don't think AS really discribes his little compulsions like cleaning and washing his hands and anxietal obssession with bugs. I think that I need to be sure to address his OCD symptoms as well so I would keep that. On the other hand I never mention his oppostional defiant tendancies because I don't think that is a comorbid diagnosis that would be helpful to him. I think he is oppositional secondary to AS. He brain is just not flexible so when you ask him to do something the first answer is always "NO" because he needs time to transition. Even if I give him the transitional warning that something is coming he will usually react negatively at first, but then be much more responsive. He just needs to finish what ever he is doing first and get his brain ready for the change.

So I guess my point is, that it depends on the co-morbid condition, how much it is affecting the child and how you can use that knowledge to better treat your child if it is a label worth dealing with.