One reader writes on behalf of his friend, a single mother with a 16-year-old son recently diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome (AS). Local social services have closed the case for no known reason and although she belongs to a parents' group, she could really use some other type of help. Does anyone have experience with this condition or advice to offer? Many people feel that there is a strong connection between thimersol (mercury) added as a preservative to childhood vaccines and the onset of autism. A comprehensive search on the Internet will lead to a tremendous amount of information on the condition. In fact, several readers suggested helpful websites, including www.pecanbread.com, www.breakingtheviciouscycle.info and www.AutismMedical.com. The first two sites refer to the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, which is believed to help those suffering from the Autism Spectrum Disorder (which includes AS), as well as various bowel conditions like IBS and Crohn's Disease. The third site refers to the "Allergy-Induced Autism" support group. Many food intolerances (most commonly gluten and dairy) can exacerbate the condition, and dramatic improvements can be made when elimination diets are followed. It seems that one of the best ways to positively affect AS is through diet, detoxification and supplements. For example, one reader says that AS can be treated through high doses of virtually all the vitamins and the elimination of sugar. Again, NDF+ is recommended for detox, as are saunas. One mother suggested Efalex and other fish oil supplements, which you must use for a few weeks before improvements are seen. A naturopath/osteopath suggests combining a nutritional approach with Australian flower essences such as jacaranda and bush fuschia. Regarding social services, one reader's advice is to demand a Care assessment plus a Carer's Assessment (you may have to write letters to local councillors and your MP); also contact the National Autistic Society for help and advice, as they've been fighting this issue for years. And by all means apply for Disability Living Allowance for your son and Carer's Allowance for yourself. Finally, check out ipsea.org.uk for information on educational needs for AS.