Thoughts? Chicago doctor: ‘Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder’ linked to violence

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) –

Could some of the gunmen causing so much bloodshed in Chicago be victims themselves? More specifically, victims of brain damage suffered before they were born?

A veteran South Side psychiatrist says, “Yes!” And he’s published a bombshell scientific study.

On Friday afternoon, FOX 32’s Political Editor Mike Flannery was reporting on this story when he found himself dodging gunfire at 75th and Stewart. Englewood residents sought shelter from the gunfire in a liquor store.

Ironically, a new medical study links some of that gunfire to brain damage caused by the beer and booze that liquor stores sell. It’s not because the gunmen drink. It’s because their mothers did while they were still in the womb, leaving them with what Dr. Carl Bell says is ‘Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.’

“Their brains are neurologically damaged. And they don’t have control of their emotions,” Dr. Bell said.

“A lot of these patients are naive. They’re easily frustrated. They, uh, again you see the explosive temper that goes on for maybe an hour,” he added.

Combine that with easily obtained guns, he said, and the tragic result is plain to see.

A longtime psychiatrist at Jackson Park Hospital’s Family Medicine Clinic, Dr. Bell studied 611 poor and black patients living in three South Side zip codes. He found ‘Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder’ in an astounding 38 percent.

“Of course, it makes sense. Because, you know, pregnant women, they shouldn’t indulge in no type drug activity, alcohol activity. So, I do feel it plays a small part in it. Because it’s like you’re giving a child almost a flaw from the beginning,” said Englewood resident Terrance Taft.

“It’s a good theory. It makes a lot of sense, you know. I don’t drink,” said anti-violence worker Ray Givhan.

“When you’re a child and your Mom and Dad been drinking, it does affect you,” he added.

There is hope, though.

Dr. Bell said in some, milder cases, the brain damage can be reversed by taking nutritional supplements, especially Choline.

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