In South Africa, we have sufficient facilities to test for underlying pathology in the Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Medical pathology laboratories can do a range of blood tests. These laboratories are available at all hospitals and clinics and operate on referral from a Medical Practitioner. Conventional blood tests that may be indicated include a full blood count, kidney functions, liver functions, thyroid functions, immune markers, iron studies, virus studies, amino acid assays, allergy tests, and others.
Metabolic screening for inborn errors of metabolism may be indicated for several metabolic diseases or disturbances of the amino acids, organic acids, and Fat-, Urea- cycle metabolism pathways. The incidence of inborn errors of metabolism is 1:1500.
An Organic Acids (OAT) test has markers to evaluate the following:
• Intestinal Microbial Overgrowth
• Oxalate metabolites
• Glycolytic cycle metabolites
• Mitochondrial markers – Kreb cycle metabolites
• Mitochondrial markers – amino acid metabolites
• Neurotransmitter metabolites
• Pyrimidine metabolites
• Ketone and fatty acid metabolites
• Nutritional markers
• Indicators of detoxification
Genetic screening can be done at certain laboratories to establish genetic vulnerability.
Comprehensive stool analysis are done at Synexa Life Sciences Biomarker laboratories specifically, while medical pathology laboratories can do parasite and acute infection testing, as well as calprotectin measurements.
A more comprehensive stool test, such as the GI map can measure biomarkers of gastrointestinal function, providing valuable clinical insight into digestive performance, gut inflammation, and the gut microbiome — areas affecting not only GI health, but overall health as well.
Urine tests for heavy metal toxicity and efficacy of chelating agents are done at biochemical laboratories.
Electro-dermal screening, hair mineral analysis and other diagnostic modalities are sometimes used.