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Encyclopedia > Autism
Autism
Classification & external resources
Obsessively stacking or lining up objects may indicate autism.
ICD-10 F84.0
ICD-9 299.0
OMIM 209850
DiseasesDB 1142
MedlinePlus 001526
eMedicine med/3202  ped/180
MeSH D001321

Autism is a brain development disorder characterized by impairments in social interaction and communication, and restricted and repetitive behavior, all exhibited before a child is three years old. These characteristics distinguish autism from milder autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Image File history File links Metadata No higher resolution available. ... The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (most commonly known by the abbreviation ICD) provides codes to classify diseases and a wide variety of signs, symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances and external causes of injury or disease. ... The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision (ICD-10) is a coding of diseases and signs, symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances and external causes of injury or diseases, as classified by the World Health Organization (WHO). ... // F00-F99 - Mental and behavioural disorders (F00-F09) Organic, including symptomatic, mental disorders (F00) Dementia in Alzheimers disease (F01) Vascular dementia (F011) Multi-infarct dementia (F02) Dementia in other diseases classified elsewhere (F020) Dementia in Picks disease (F021) Dementia in Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (F022) Dementia in Huntingtons... The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (most commonly known by the abbreviation ICD) provides codes to classify diseases and a wide variety of signs, symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances and external causes of injury or disease. ... The following is a list of codes for International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems. ... The Mendelian Inheritance in Man project is a database that catalogues all the known diseases with a genetic component, and - when possible - links them to the relevant genes in the human genome. ... The Disease Bold textDatabase is a free website that provides information about the relationships between medical conditions, symptoms, and medications. ... MedlinePlus (medlineplus. ... eMedicine is an online clinical medical knowledge base that was founded in 1996. ... Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) is a huge controlled vocabulary (or metadata system) for the purpose of indexing journal articles and books in the life sciences. ... Neurodevelopmental disorders such as fragile X syndrome and autism, are severe disabling conditions often associated with life-long impairment. ... The autistic spectrum (sometimes referred to as the autism spectrum) is a developmental and behavioral syndrome that results from certain combinations of characteristically autistic traits. ...


Heritability contributes a large fraction of the risk of a child's developing the disorder, although the genetics of autism are complex, and it is generally unclear which genes are responsible.[1] In rare cases, autism is strongly associated with agents that cause birth defects.[2] Other proposed causes, such as the exposure of children to vaccines, are controversial and the vaccine hypotheses are unsupported by convincing scientific evidence.[3] Most recent reviews estimate a prevalence of one to two cases per 1,000 people for autism, and about six per 1,000 for ASD, with ASD averaging a 4.3:1 male-to-female ratio. The number of people known to have autism has increased dramatically since the 1980s, at least partly due to changes in diagnostic practice; the question of whether prevalence has increased is unresolved.[4] In genetics, heritability is the proportion of phenotypic variation in a population that is attributable to genetic variation among individuals. ... The heritability of autism is debated by psychology researchers, parents of children diagnosed with autism, and members of the autistic community. ... Teratology (from the Greek teras (genitive teratos), meaning monster, and logos meaning study) is the medical study of teratogenesis or grossly deformed individuals. ... There is considerable disagreement over the exact nature of autism, however it is generally considered to be a neurodevelopmental condition which manifests itself in markedly abnormal social interaction, communication ability, patterns of interests, and patterns of behavior. ... Evidence-based medicine (EBM) or scientific medicine is an attempt to apply more uniformly the standards of evidence gained from the scientific method to certain aspects of medical practice. ... In epidemiology, the prevalence of a disease in a statistical population is defined as the total number of cases of the disease in the population at a given time, or the total number of cases in the population, divided by the number of individuals in the population. ...


Autism affects many parts of the brain; how this occurs is poorly understood. Parents usually notice signs in the first year or two of their child's life. Early intervention may help children gain self-care and social skills, although few of these interventions are supported by scientific studies; there is no cure.[5] With severe autism, independent living is unlikely; with milder autism, there are some success stories for adults,[6] and an autistic culture has developed, with some seeking a cure and others believing that autism is a condition rather than a disorder.[7] Autism (also called autistic disorder, infantile autism, Kanners syndrome or Kanner syndrome) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that manifests itself before the age of three years. ...

Contents

Classification

Hans Asperger described a form of ASD in the 1940s that later became known as Asperger's syndrome.

Autism is a developmental disorder of the human brain that first shows signs during infancy or childhood and follows a steady course without remission or relapse.[8] Impairments result from maturation-related changes in various systems of the brain.[9] Autism is one of the five pervasive developmental disorders (PDD) or autism spectrum disorders (ASD), which are characterized by widespread abnormalities of social interactions and communication, and severely restricted interests and highly repetitive behavior.[8] Image File history File links hans asperger This file has been listed on Wikipedia:Images and media for deletion. ... Image File history File links hans asperger This file has been listed on Wikipedia:Images and media for deletion. ... Hans Asperger, who discovered Asperger syndrome, described his patients as little professors. Hans Asperger (b. ... Asperger described his patients as little professors. Aspergers syndrome (AS, or the more common shorthand Aspergers), is characterized as one of the five pervasive developmental disorders, and is commonly referred to as a form of high functioning autism. ... Developmental disorders are disorders that occur at some stage in a childs development, often retarding the development. ... The human brain controls the central nervous system (CNS), by way of the cranial nerves and spinal cord, the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and regulates virtually all human activity. ... Remission is the state of absence of disease activity in patients with known chronic illness. ... A relapse (etymologically, who falls again) occurs when a person is affected again by a condition that affected them in the past. ... A boy with autism and his mother Autism refers to a spectrum of disorders, and lies somewhere under the umbrella of a greater encompassing spectrum, that of pervasive developmental disorders that involve the functioning of the brain. ...


Of the other four autism spectrum disorders, Asperger's syndrome is closest to autism in signs and likely causes; Rett syndrome and childhood disintegrative disorder share several signs with autism, but may have unrelated causes; pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) is diagnosed when the criteria are not met for a more specific disorder.[10] Unlike autism, Asperger's has no substantial delay in language development.[11] The terminology of autism can be bewildering, with autism, Asperger's and PDD-NOS sometimes called the autistic disorders,[1] whereas autism itself is often called autistic disorder, childhood autism, or infantile autism. In this article, autism refers to the classic autistic disorder, while other sources sometimes use autism to refer to autistic disorders or even ASD. ASD, in turn, is a subset of the broader autism phenotype (BAP), which describes individuals who may not have ASD but do have autistic-like traits, such as avoiding eye contact.[12] Asperger described his patients as little professors. Aspergers syndrome (AS, or the more common shorthand Aspergers), is characterized as one of the five pervasive developmental disorders, and is commonly referred to as a form of high functioning autism. ... A woman with Retts Syndrome Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is classified as a pervasive developmental disorder by the DSM-IV. Many [1] argue that this is a mis-classification just as it would be to include such disorders as fragile X syndrome, tuberous sclerosis, or Down... Childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD), also known as Hellers syndrome and disintegrative psychosis, is a rare condition characterized by late onset (>3 years of age) of developmental delays in language, social function, and motor skills. ... PDD not otherwise specified or PDD-NOS is a pervasive developmental disorder. ... Childrens language development moves from simplicity to complexity. ... Individuals in the mollusk species Donax variabilis show diverse coloration and patterning in their phenotypes. ... In biology, a trait or character is a feature of an organism. ...


Autism's manifestations cover a wide spectrum, ranging from individuals with severe impairments—who may be silent, mentally disabled, and locked into hand flapping and rocking—to less impaired individuals who may have active but distinctly odd social approaches, narrowly focused interests, and verbose, pedantic communication.[13] Sometimes the syndrome is divided into low-, medium- and high-functioning autism (LFA, MFA, and HFA), based on IQ thresholds,[14] or on how much support the individual requires in daily life; these subdivisions are not standardized and are controversial. Autism can also be divided into syndromal and non-syndromal autism, where the former is associated with severe or profound mental retardation or a congenital syndrome with physical symptoms, such as tuberous sclerosis.[15] Although individuals with Asperger's tend to perform better cognitively than those with autism, the extent of the overlap between Asperger's, HFA, and non-syndromal autism is unclear.[16] Developmental disability is a term used to describe life-long disabilities attributable to mental and/or physical or combination of mental and physical impairments, manifested prior to age twenty-two. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... IQ redirects here; for other uses of that term, see IQ (disambiguation). ... There are many controversies about functioning labels in the autism spectrum. ... In medicine, the term syndrome is the association of several clinically recognizable features, signs, symptoms, phenomena or characteristics which often occur together, so that the presence of one feature alerts the physician to the presence of the others. ... Mental retardation is a term for a pattern of persistently slow learning of basic motor and language skills (milestones) during childhood, and a significantly below-normal global intellectual capacity as an adult. ... Tuberous sclerosis is a rare genetic disorder characterized by a triad of signs: seizures, mental retardation, and small benign facial skin tumors (angiofibromas). ...


Some studies have reported diagnoses of autism in children due to a loss of language or social skills, as opposed to a failure to make progress. Several terms are used for this phenomenon, including regressive autism, setback autism, and developmental stagnation. The validity of this distinction remains controversial; it is possible that regressive autism is a specific subtype.[17][18] Regressive autism is a manner of the neurological development of an autistic child in which they first develop some non-autistic skills, such as speech, and then start to lose those skills at about the age of 18 months, thereafter following the standard pattern of autistic neurological development. ...


Characteristics

Autism is distinguished by a pattern of symptoms rather than one single symptom. The main characteristics are impairments in social interaction, impairments in communication, restricted interests and repetitive behavior. Other aspects, such as atypical eating, are also common but are not essential for diagnosis.[19]


Social development

Autistic people have social impairments and often lack the intuition about others that many people take for granted. Noted autistic Temple Grandin described her inability to understand the social communication of neurotypicals as leaving her feeling "like an anthropologist on Mars".[20] Dr. Temple Grandin, one of the more successful adults with autism. ... Neurotypical (or NT) is a neologism used to describe people whose neurological development and state are consistent with what most people would perceive as normal in their ability to process linguistic information and social cues. ...


Social impairments become apparent early in childhood and continue through adulthood. Autistic infants show less attention to social stimuli, smile and look at others less often, and respond less to their own name. Autistic toddlers have more striking social deviance; for example, they have less eye contact and anticipatory postures and are less likely to use another person's hand or body as a tool.[18] Three- to five-year-old autistic children are less likely to exhibit social understanding, approach others spontaneously, imitate and respond to emotions, communicate nonverbally, and take turns with others. However, they do form attachments to their primary caregivers.[21] They display moderately less attachment security than usual, although this feature disappears in children with higher mental development or less severe ASD.[22] Older children and adults with ASD perform worse on tests of face and emotion recognition.[23] It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Gaze aversion. ... In attachment theory psychology, attachment is a product of the activity of a number of behavioral systems that have proximity to a person, e. ... Attachment in children deals with the theory of attachment between children and their caregivers. ...


Contrary to common belief, autistic children do not prefer to be alone. Making and maintaining friendships often proves to be difficult for those with autism. For them, the quality of friendships, not the number of friends, predicts how lonely they are.[24]


There are many anecdotal reports, but few systematic studies, of aggression and violence in individuals with ASD. The limited data suggest that in children with mental retardation, autism is associated with aggression, destruction of property, and tantrums. Dominick et al. interviewed the parents of 67 children with ASD and reported that about two-thirds of the children had periods of severe tantrums and about one third had a history of aggression, with tantrums significantly more common than in children with a history of language impairment.[25]


Communication

About a third to a half of individuals with autism do not develop enough natural speech to meet their daily communication needs.[26] Differences in communication may be present from the first year of life, and may include delayed onset of babbling, unusual gestures, diminished responsiveness, and the desynchronization of vocal patterns with the caregiver. In the second and third years, autistic children have less frequent and less diverse babbling, consonants, words, and word combinations; their gestures are less often integrated with words. Autistic children are less likely to make requests or share experiences, and are more likely to simply repeat others' words (echolalia)[17][27] or reverse pronouns.[28] Autistic children may have difficulty with imaginative play and with developing symbols into language.[17][27] They are more likely to have problems understanding pointing; for example, they may look at a pointing hand instead of the pointed-at object.[18][27] Babbling is a stage in child language acquisition, during which an infant appears to be experimenting with making the sounds of language, but not yet producing any recognizable words. ... Echolalia is the repetition or echoing of verbal utterances made by another person. ... A language abnormality common in the speech of autistic children is pronoun reversal. ...


In a pair of studies, high-functioning autistic children aged 8–15 performed equally well, and adults better than individually matched controls at basic language tasks involving vocabulary and spelling. Both autistic groups performed worse than controls at complex language tasks such as figurative language, comprehension and inference. As people are often sized up initially from their basic language skills, these studies suggest that people speaking to autistic individuals are more likely to overestimate what their audience comprehends.[29]


Repetitive behavior

A young boy with autism, and the precise line of toys he made

Autistic individuals display many forms of repetitive or restricted behavior, which the Repetitive Behavior Scale-Revised (RBS-R) categorizes as follows. Image File history File links Autistic-sweetiepie-boy-with-ducksinarow. ... Image File history File links Autistic-sweetiepie-boy-with-ducksinarow. ...

  • Stereotypy is apparently purposeless movement, such as hand flapping, head rolling, body rocking, or spinning a plate.
  • Compulsive behavior is intended and appears to follow rules, such as arranging objects in a certain way.
  • Sameness is resistance to change; for example, insisting that the furniture not be moved or refusing to be interrupted.
  • Ritualistic behavior involves the performance of daily activities the same way each time, such as an unvarying menu or dressing ritual.
  • Restricted behavior is limited in focus, interest, or activity, such as preoccupation with a single television program.
  • Self-injury includes movements that injure or can injure the person, such as biting oneself. Dominick et al. reported that self-injury at some point affected about 30% of children with ASD.[25]

No single repetitive behavior is associated with autism, but only autism appears to have an elevated pattern of occurrence and severity of these behaviors.[30] Stimming is a jargon term for stereotypy, a repetitive body movement that self-stimulates one or more senses in a regulated manner. ... For other things named OCD, see OCD (disambiguation). ... A ritual is a set of actions, performed mainly for their symbolic value, which is prescribed by a religion or by the traditions of a community. ... Self-harm (SH) is deliberate injury to ones own body. ...


Other symptoms

Autistic individuals may have symptoms that are independent of the diagnosis, but that can affect the individual or the family.[19] As many as 10% of individuals with ASD show unusual abilities, ranging from splinter skills such as the memorization of trivia to the extraordinarily rare talents of prodigious autistic savants.[31] An autistic savant (historically described as idiot savant) is a person with both autism and Savant Syndrome. ...


Unusual responses to sensory stimuli are more common and prominent in autistic children, although there is no good evidence that sensory symptoms differentiate autism from other developmental disorders.[32] The responses may be more common in children: a pair of studies found that autistic children had impaired tactile perception while autistic adults did not. The same two studies also found that autistic individuals had more problems with complex memory and reasoning tasks such as Twenty Questions; these problems were somewhat more marked among adults.[29] Several studies have reported associated motor problems that include poor muscle tone, poor motor planning, and toe walking; ASD is not associated with severe motor disturbances.[33] In physiology, a stimulus is a detectable change in the internal or external environment. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Twenty Questions was a popular radio and television quiz series based on the spoken parlor game which encourages deductive reasoning and creativity. ... Hypotonia is a serious medical condition that entails abnormally-decreased muscle tone, and is almost always found as early as infancy. ... Apraxia is a neurological disorder characterized by loss of the ability to execute or carry out learned (familiar) movements, despite having the desire and the physical ability to perform the movements. ... Toe walking refers to a condition where a person walks on his or her toes without putting much weight on the heel or any other part of the foot. ...


Atypical eating behavior occurs in about three-quarters of children with ASD, to the extent that it was formerly a diagnostic indicator. Selectivity is the most common problem, although eating rituals and food refusal also occur;[25] this does not appear to result in malnutrition. Some children with autism also have gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms, but there is a lack of published rigorous data to support the theory that autistic children have more or different GI symptoms than usual.[34] Percentage of population affected by malnutrition by country, according to United Nations statistics. ... For the Physics term GUT, please refer to Grand unification theory The gastrointestinal or digestive tract, also referred to as the GI tract or the alimentary canal or the gut, is the system of organs within multicellular animals which takes in food, digests it to extract energy and nutrients, and...


Sleep problems are known to be more common in children with developmental disabilities, and there is some evidence that children with ASD are more likely to have even more sleep problems than those with other developmental disabilities; autistic children may experience problems including difficulty in falling asleep, frequent nocturnal awakenings, and early morning awakenings. Dominick et al. found that about two-thirds of children with ASD had a history of sleep problems.[25] For other uses, see Sleep (disambiguation). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Causes

Main article: Causes of autism

Although many genetic and environmental causes of autism have been proposed, its theory of causation is still incomplete.[35] Some researchers argue this is because autism is not a single disorder, but rather a triad of core aspects (social impairment, communication difficulties, and repetitive behaviors) that have distinct causes but often co-occur.[36] This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... This article is about the medical term. ...


Genetic factors are the most significant cause for autism spectrum disorders. Early studies of twins estimated heritability to be more than 90%; in other words, that genetics explains more than 90% of autism cases.[1] This may be an overestimate; new twin data and models with structural genetic variation are needed.[37] When only one identical twin is autistic, the other often has learning or social disabilities. For adult siblings, the risk of having one or more features of the broader autism phenotype might be as high as 30%,[38] much higher than the risk in controls.[39] In genetics, heritability is the proportion of phenotypic variation in a population that is attributable to genetic variation among individuals. ...


The genetics of autism is complex.[1] Linkage analysis has been inconclusive; many association analyses have had inadequate power.[37] For each autistic individual, mutations in more than one gene may be implicated. Mutations in different sets of genes may be involved in different autistic individuals. There may be significant interactions among mutations in several genes, or between the environment and mutated genes. By identifying genetic markers inherited with autism in family studies, numerous candidate genes have been located, most of which encode proteins involved in neural development and function.[40] However, for most of the candidate genes, the actual mutations that increase the risk for autism have not been identified. Typically, autism cannot be traced to a Mendelian (single-gene) mutation or to a single chromosome abnormality such as fragile X syndrome or 22q13 deletion syndrome.[15][41] The heritability of autism is debated by psychology researchers, parents of children diagnosed with autism, and members of the autistic community. ... Genetic linkage occurs when particular alleles are inherited together. ... This article may be too technical for most readers to understand. ... It has been suggested that mutant be merged into this article or section. ... The study of neural development draws on both neuroscience and developmental biology to describe the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which complex nervous systems emerge during embryonic development and throughout life. ... Mendelian inheritance (or Mendelian genetics or Mendelism) is a set of primary tenets that underlie much of genetics developed by Gregor Mendel in the latter part of the 19th century. ... The three major single chromosome mutations; deletion (1), duplication (2) and inversion (3). ... Fragile X syndrome, also known as the MikyD syndrome, is a syndrome of X-linked mental retardation. ... The deletion of the tip of the chromosome 22 is related to autistic behaviour, moderate to severe developmental delay and mental retardation. ...

Deletion (1), duplication (2) and inversion (3) are all chromosome abnormalities that have been implicated in autism.[42]

The large number of autistic individuals with unaffected family members may result from copy number variations (CNVs)—spontaneous alterations in the genetic material during meiosis that delete or duplicate genetic material. Sporadic (non-inherited) cases have been examined to identify candidate genetic loci involved in autism. Using array comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH), a technique for detecting CNVs, one study found them in 10% of families with one affected child.[43] Some of the altered loci had been identified in previous studies of inherited autism; many were unique to the sporadic cases examined in this study. Hence, a substantial fraction of autism may be highly heritable but not inherited: that is, the mutation that causes the autism is not present in the parental genome. The fraction of autism traceable to a genetic cause may grow to 30–40% as the resolution of array CGH improves.[42] The Autism Genome Project database contains genetic linkage and CNV data that connect autism to genetic loci and suggest that every human chromosome may be involved.[44] Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... A chromosome abnormality reflects an abnormality of chromosome number or structure. ... The gene copy number (also copy number variants or CNVs) is the amount of copies of a particular gene in the genotype of an individual. ... Not to be confused with miosis. ... Deletion on a chromosome In genetics, a deletion (also called gene deletion, deficiency, or deletion mutation) is a mutation (a genetic aberration) in which a part of a chromosome or a sequence of DNA is missing. ... Schematic of a region of a chromosome before and after a duplication event Gene duplication occurs when an error in homologous recombination, a retrotransposition event, or duplication of an entire chromosome leads to the duplication of a region of DNA containing a gene [1]. The significance of this process for... Short and long arms Chromosome. ... This article may be too technical for most readers to understand. ... Genetic linkage occurs when particular alleles are inherited jointly. ... The word locus (plural loci) is Latin for place. In biology, a locus is the position of a gene (or other significant sequence) on a chromosome. ... Figure 1: A representation of a condensed eukaryotic chromosome, as seen during cell division. ...


Teratogens (agents that cause birth defects) related to the risk of autism include exposure of the embryo to thalidomide, valproic acid, or misoprostol, or to rubella infection in the mother. These cases are rare.[45] All known teratogens appear to act during the first eight weeks from conception, and though this does not exclude the possibility that autism can be initiated or affected later, it is strong evidence that autism arises very early in development.[2] Other possible contributors to autism include gastrointestinal or immune system abnormalities, allergies, and the exposure of children to drugs, vaccines, infection, certain foods,[46] or heavy metals; the evidence for these risk factors is anecdotal and has not been confirmed by reliable studies,[3] and extensive further searches are underway.[45] Parents may first become aware of autistic symptoms in their child around the time of a routine vaccination. Although there is overwhelming scientific evidence showing no causal association between the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine and autism, and there is no convincing evidence that the vaccine preservative thiomersal helps cause autism, parental concern has led to a decreasing uptake of childhood immunizations and the increasing likelihood of measles outbreaks[47][48] such as the measles cases in Britain during summer 2007.[49] Teratogenesis is a medical term from the Greek, literally meaning monster making. ... A congenital disorder is a medical condition or defect that is present at or before birth (for example, congenital heart disease). ... This article is about the drug. ... Valproic acid is a chemical compound that has found clinical use as an anticonvulsant and mood-stabilizing drug, primarily in the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder. ... Misoprostol is a drug that is United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved for the treatment and prevention of stomach ulcers. ... Rubella, commonly known as German measles, is a disease caused by the rubella virus. ... [[Image:Acrosome re Category: ... The MMR vaccine controversy refers to extensive controversy that has arisen regarding the safety of the MMR vaccine. ... Following US government action to evaluate levels of environmental toxins, including mercury, it has been claimed, particularly in the context of lawsuits, that thimerosal in childhood vaccines could contribute to, or cause, a range of neurodevelopmental disorders in children, most notably autism and related Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDDs), or other... A vaccination schedule is a recommended series of vaccinations including the suggested timing of all doses. ... Measles, also known as rubeola, is a disease caused by a virus , specifically a paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus. ...


Mechanism

Despite extensive investigation, how autism occurs is not well understood. Its mechanism can be divided into two areas: the pathophysiology of brain structures and processes associated with autism, and the neuropsychological linkages between brain structures and behaviors.[9] Pathophysiology is the study of the disturbance of normal mechanical, physical, and biochemical functions, either caused by a disease, or resulting from a disease or abnormal syndrome or condition that may not qualify to be called a disease. ... Neuropsychology is a branch of psychology and neurology that aims to understand how the structure and function of the brain relate to specific psychological processes. ...


Pathophysiology

Autism affects many parts of the brain.
Autism affects many parts of the brain.

Autism appears to result from developmental factors that affect many or all functional brain systems, as opposed to localized physical damage.[41] Neuroanatomical studies and the associations with teratogens strongly suggest that autism's mechanism includes alteration of brain development soon after conception.[2] Many major structures of the human brain have been implicated. Consistent abnormalities have been found in the development of the cerebral cortex; and in the cerebellum and related inferior olive, which have a significant decrease in the number of Purkinje cells. Brain weight and volume and head circumference tend to be greater in autistic children; the effects of these are unknown.[50] It may be due to poorly regulated growth of neurons.[9] Download high resolution version (400x602, 153 KB) This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Download high resolution version (400x602, 153 KB) This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Neuroanatomy is the anatomy of the nervous system. ... The human brain controls the central nervous system (CNS), by way of the cranial nerves and spinal cord, the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and regulates virtually all human activity. ... Location of the cerebral cortex Slice of the cerebral cortex, ca. ... The cerebellum (Latin: little brain) is a region of the brain that plays an important role in the integration of sensory perception and motor output. ... In anatomy, the olivary bodies or simply olives (Latin oliva and olivae, singular and plural, respectively) are a pair of prominent oval structures in the medulla oblongata, the lower portion of the brainstem. ... Drawing of pigeon Purkinje cells (A) by Santiago Ramon y Cajal Purkinje cells are a class of GABAergic neuron located in the cerebellar cortex. ...


Interactions between the immune system and the nervous system begin early during embryogenesis, and successful neurodevelopment depends on a balanced immune response. Several symptoms consistent with a poorly regulated immune response have been reported in autistic children. It is possible that aberrant immune activity during critical periods of neurodevelopment is part of the mechanism of some forms of ASD.[51] Given the lack of data in this area, it is still hard to draw conclusions about the role of immune factors in autism.[52] A scanning electron microscope image of a single neutrophil (yellow), engulfing anthrax bacteria (orange). ... Embryogenesis is the process by which the embryo is formed and develops. ...


Several neurotransmitter abnormalities have been detected in autism, notably increased blood levels of serotonin. Whether these lead to structural or behavioral abnormalities is unclear.[9] Chemical structure of D-aspartic acid, a common amino acid neurotransmitter. ... Serotonin (pronounced ) (5-hydroxytryptamine, or 5-HT) is a monoamine neurotransmitter synthesized in serotonergic neurons in the central nervous system (CNS) and enterochromaffin cells in the gastrointestinal tract of animals including humans. ...


The mirror neuron system (MNS) theory of autism hypothesizes that distortion in the development of the MNS interferes with imitation and leads to autism's core features of social impairment and communication difficulties. The MNS operates when an animal performs an action or observes another animal of the same species perform the same action. The MNS may contribute to an individual's understanding of other people by enabling the modeling of their behavior via embodied simulation of their actions, intentions, and emotions.[53] Several studies have tested this hypothesis by demonstrating structural abnormalities in MNS regions of individuals with ASD, delay in the activation in the core circuit for imitation in individuals with Asperger's, and a correlation between reduced MNS activity and severity of the syndrome in children with ASD.[54] Locations of mirror neurons A mirror neuron is a neuron which fires both when an animal performs an action and when the animal observes the same action performed by another (especially conspecific) animal. ...

Functional magnetic resonance imaging provides some evidence for the underconnectivity theory of autism.
Functional magnetic resonance imaging provides some evidence for the underconnectivity theory of autism.

The underconnectivity theory of autism hypothesizes that autism is marked by underfunctioning high-level neural connections and synchronization, along with an excess of low-level processes.[55] Evidence for this theory has been found in functional neuroimaging studies on autistic individuals[29] and by a brain wave study that suggested that adults with ASD have local overconnectivity in the cortex and weak functional connections between the frontal lobe and the rest of the cortex.[56] Other evidence suggests the underconnectivity is mainly within each hemisphere of the cortex and that autism is a disorder of the association cortex.[57] Sample fMRI data This example of fMRI data shows regions of activation including primary visual cortex (V1, BA17), extrastriate visual cortex and lateral geniculate body in a comparison between a task involving a complex moving visual stimulus and rest condition (viewing a black screen). ... Sample fMRI data This example of fMRI data shows regions of activation including primary visual cortex (V1, BA17), extrastriate visual cortex and lateral geniculate body in a comparison between a task involving a complex moving visual stimulus and rest condition (viewing a black screen). ... Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is the use of MRI to measure the haemodynamic response related to neural activity in the brain or spinal cord of humans or other animals. ... Functional neuroimaging is the use of neuroimaging technology to measure an aspect of brain function, often with a view to understanding the relationship between activity in certain brain areas and specific mental functions. ... Electroencephalography is the neurophysiologic exploration of the electrical activity of the brain by the application of electrodes to the scalp. ... Location of the cerebral cortex Slice of the cerebral cortex, ca. ... The frontal lobe is an area in the brain of vertebrates. ... The human brain as viewed from above, showing the cerebral hemispheres. ... Location of the cerebral cortex Slice of the cerebral cortex, ca. ...


Neuropsychology

Two major categories of cognitive theories have been proposed about the links between autistic brains and behavior. Cognitive The scientific study of how people obtain, retrieve, store and manipulate information. ...


The first category focuses on deficits in social cognition. Hyper-systemizing hypothesizes that autistic individuals can systematize—that is, they can develop internal rules of operation to handle internal events—but are less effective at empathizing by handling events generated by other agents.[14] It extends the extreme male brain theory, which hypothesizes that autism is an extreme case of the male brain, defined psychometrically as individuals in whom systemizing is better than empathizing.[58] This in turn is related to the earlier theory of mind, which hypothesizes that autistic behavior arises from an inability to ascribe mental states to oneself and others. The theory of mind is supported by autistic children's atypical responses to the Sally-Anne test for reasoning about others' motivations,[59] and is mapped well from the mirror neuron system theory of autism.[54] Not to be confused with Pity, Sympathy, or Compassion. ... // EQ SQ Theory Simon Baron-Cohen, in his book, The Essential Difference: The Truth about the Male and Female Brain, hypothesizes that the female brain is predominantly hard-wired for empathy. ... The phrase theory of mind (often abbreviated as ToM) is used in several related ways: general categories of theories of mind - theories about the nature of mind, and its structure and processes; theories of mind related to individual minds; in recent years, the phrase theory of mind has more commonly... The Sally-Anne test is a psychological test, used in developmental psychology to measure a persons social cognitive ability to attribute false beliefs to others (Wimmer & Perner, 1983). ...


The second category focuses on nonsocial or general processing. Executive dysfunction hypothesizes that autistic behavior results in part from deficits in flexibility, planning, and other forms of executive function. A strength of the theory is predicting stereotyped behavior and narrow interests;[60] a weakness is that executive function deficits are not found in young autistic children.[23] Weak central coherence theory hypothesizes that a limited ability to see the big picture underlies the central disturbance in autism. One strength of this theory is predicting special talents and peaks in performance in autistic people.[61] A related theory—enhanced perceptual functioning—focuses more on the superiority of locally oriented and perceptual operations in autistic individuals.[62] The latter two theories map well from the underconnectivity theory of autism. The executive system is a theorised cognitive system in psychology that controls and manages other cognitive processes. ... The executive system is a theorised cognitive system in psychology that controls and manages other cognitive processes. ... The weak central coherence theory (WCC) suggests that a specific perceptual-cognitive style, loosely described as a limited ability to understand context or to see the big picture, underlies the central disturbance in autism and related autistic spectrum disorders. ... In psychology and the cognitive sciences, perception is the process of acquiring, interpreting, selecting, and organizing sensory information. ...


Neither category is satisfactory on its own; social cognition theories poorly address autism's rigid and repetitive behaviors, while the nonsocial theories have difficulty explaining social impairment and communication difficulties.[36] A combined theory based on multiple deficits may prove to be more useful.[7]


Screening

Parents are usually the first to notice unusual behaviors in their child.[63] As postponing treatment may affect long-term outcome, any of the following signs is reason to have a child evaluated by a specialist without delay:

  • No babbling by 12 months.
  • No gesturing (pointing, waving goodbye, etc.) by 12 months.
  • No single words by 16 months.
  • No two-word spontaneous phrases (not including echolalia) by 24 months.
  • Any loss of any language or social skills, at any age.[19]

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all children be screened for ASD at the 9-, 18-, and 30-month well-child doctor visits, using autism-specific formal screening tests.[64] In contrast, the UK National Screening Committee recommends against screening for ASD in the general population, because screening tools have not been fully validated and interventions lack sufficient evidence for effectiveness.[65] Babbling is a stage in child language acquisition, during which an infant appears to be experimenting with making the sounds of language, but not yet producing any recognizable words. ... This article includes a list of works cited or a list of external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks in-text citations. ... Echolalia is the repetition or echoing of verbal utterances made by another person. ... The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is an organization of pediatricians, physicians trained to deal with the medical care of infants, children, and adolescents. ... Screening, in medicine, is a strategy used to identify disease in an unsuspecting population. ...


Genetic screening for autism is generally still impractical. As genetic tests are developed several ethical, legal, and social issues will emerge. Commercial availability of tests may precede adequate understanding of how to use test results, given the complexity of autism's genetics.[66]


Diagnosis

Autism is defined in the DSM-IV-TR as exhibiting at least six symptoms total, including at least two symptoms of qualitative impairment in social interaction, at least one symptom of qualitative impairment in communication, and at least one symptom of restricted and repetitive behavior. Sample symptoms include lack of social or emotional reciprocity, stereotyped and repetitive use of language or idiosyncratic language, and persistent preoccupation with parts of objects. Onset must be prior to age three years, with delays or abnormal functioning in either social interaction, language as used in social communication, or symbolic or imaginative play. The disturbance must not be better accounted for by Rett syndrome or childhood disintegrative disorder.[67] ICD-10 uses essentially the same definition.[8] The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, published by the American Psychiatric Association, is the handbook used most often in diagnosing mental disorders in the United States and other countries. ... A woman with Retts Syndrome Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is classified as a pervasive developmental disorder by the DSM-IV. Many [1] argue that this is a mis-classification just as it would be to include such disorders as fragile X syndrome, tuberous sclerosis, or Down... Childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD), also known as Hellers syndrome and disintegrative psychosis, is a rare condition characterized by late onset (>3 years of age) of developmental delays in language, social function, and motor skills. ... The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (commonly known by the abbreviation ICD) is a detailed description of known diseases and injuries. ...


Several diagnostic instruments are available. Two are commonly used in autism research: the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R) is a semistructured parent interview, and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) uses observation and interaction with the child. The Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS) is used widely in clinical environments to assess severity of autism based on observation of children.[18] The Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R) is structured interview conducted with the parents of individuals who have been referred for the evaluation of possible autism or autism spectrum disorders. ... The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) is a standardized protocol created in 1989 for assessing social and communicative behavior associated with autism. ...


A pediatrician commonly performs a preliminary investigation by taking developmental history and physically examining the child. If warranted, diagnosis and evaluations are conducted with help from ASD specialists, observing and assessing cognitive, communication, family, and other factors using standardized tools, and taking into account any associated medical conditions. A differential diagnosis for ASD at this stage might also consider mental retardation, hearing impairment, and a specific language disorder[68] such as Landau-Kleffner syndrome.[69] In the UK the National Autism Plan for Children recommends at most 30 weeks from first concern to completed diagnosis and assessment, though few cases are handled that quickly in practice.[68] ASD can sometimes be diagnosed by age 14 months,[70] but a 2006 U.S. study found the average age of first evaluation by a qualified professional was 48 months and of formal ASD diagnosis was 61 months, reflecting an average 13-month delay, all far above recommendations.[71] Pediatrics (also spelled paediatrics or pædiatrics) is the branch of medicine that deals with the medical care of infants and children. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Mental retardation is a term for a pattern of persistently slow learning of basic motor and language skills (milestones) during childhood, and a significantly below-normal global intellectual capacity as an adult. ... A hearing impairment or hearing loss is a full or partial decrease in the ability to detect or understand sounds. ... Specific language impairment (SLI) is a developmental language disorder that can affect both expressive and receptive language. ... Landau-Kleffner syndrome (LKS), also called progressive epileptic aphasia, is a rare, childhood neurological syndrome characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electroencephalogram (EEG). ...


Underdiagnosis and overdiagnosis are problems in marginal cases, and much of the recent increase in the number of reported ASD cases is likely due to changes in diagnostic practices. The increasing popularity of drug treatment options and the expansion of benefits has given providers incentives to diagnose ASD, resulting in some overdiagnosis of children with uncertain symptoms. Conversely, the cost of screening and diagnosis and the challenge of obtaining payment can inhibit or delay diagnosis.[72] It is particularly hard to diagnose autism among the visually impaired, partly because some of its diagnostic criteria depend on vision, and partly because autistic symptoms overlap with those of common blindness syndromes.[73] Blindness can be defined physiologically as the condition of lacking sight. ...


The symptoms of autism and ASD begin early in childhood but are occasionally missed. Adults may seek retrospective diagnoses to help them or their friends and family understand themselves, to help their employers make adjustments, or in some locations to claim disability living allowances or other benefits.[74]


Treatment

Main article: Autism therapies

The goal of treatment is to manage and improve symptoms and functioning. No single treatment is best and treatment is typically tailored to the child's needs. Intensive, sustained special education programs and behavior therapy early in life can help children acquire self-care, social, and job skills.[75][76] Among the available approaches, applied behavior analysis (ABA) has demonstrated efficacy in promoting social and language development and in reducing behaviors that interfere with learning and cognitive functioning;[76] ABA focuses on teaching tasks one-on-one using the behaviorist principles of stimulus, response and reward.[77] Several programs are based on ABA. Some focus on discrete trial teaching; more-comprehensive ones use multiple assessment and intervention methods individually and dynamically.[78] Cognitive therapies based on comprehensive programs in treatment centers are a common alternative: for example, TEACCH focuses on structuring the physical environment and using visual supports for language development tasks.[76] A 2005 California study found that early intensive behavior analytic treatment, a form of ABA, was substantially more effective for preschool children with autism than the mixture of methods provided in many programs,[77], but a 2007 British study found that home-based early intensive behavioral interventions, another ABA form, was no more effective than nursery-based eclectic programs.[79] The limited research on the effectiveness of adult residential programs shows mixed results.[80] It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Biomedical intervention for autism. ... Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a systematic process of studying and modifying observable behavior through a manipulation of the environment. ... Efficacy is the ability to produce a desired amount of a desired effect. ... Behaviorism (or behaviourism) is an approach to psychology based on the proposition that behavior is interesting and worthy of scientific research. ... Treatment and education of autistic and related communication handicapped children, (TEACCH), is an evidence-based service, training, and research program for individuals of all ages and skill levels with autism spectrum disorders. ...


Medications are often used to treat problems associated with ASD. More than half of U.S. children diagnosed with ASD are prescribed psychoactive drugs or anticonvulsants, with the most common drug classes being antidepressants, stimulants, and antipsychotics.[81] In the United States, the antipsychotic risperidone is approved for treating symptomatic irritability in autistic children and adolescents.[82] Other drugs are prescribed off-label, which means they have not been approved for treating ASD. For example, serotonin reuptake inhibitors and dopamine blockers can sometimes reduce some symptoms.[9] However, there is scant reliable research about the effectiveness or safety of drug treatments for adolescents and adults with ASD.[83] A person with ASD may respond atypically to medications, the medications can have adverse side effects, and no known medication relieves autism's core symptoms of social and communication impairments.[63] An assortment of psychoactive drugs A psychoactive drug or psychotropic substance is a chemical substance that acts primarily upon the central nervous system where it alters brain function, resulting in temporary changes in perception, mood, consciousness and behavior. ... The anticonvulsants, sometimes also called antiepileptics, belong to a diverse group of pharmaceuticals used in prevention of the occurrence of epileptic seizures. ... A recent form of antidepressant medication - Prozac Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor, Venlafaxine An antidepressant, in the most common usage, is a psychiatric medication taken to alleviate clinical depression or dysthymia (milder depression). ... Stimulants are drugs that temporarily increase alertness and wakefulness. ... The term antipsychotic is applied to a group of drugs used to treat psychosis. ... Risperdal tablets Risperidone (pronounced Ris-PER-ǐ-dōn and sold under the trade name Risperdal in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and several other countries, Risperdal or Ridal in New Zealand, Rispolept in Eastern Europe, and Belivon, or Rispen elsewhere) is an atypical antipsychotic medication developed by Janssen... The term off-label refers to the use of a drug for a medical condition other than for which it was officially approved and marketed. ... Serotonin Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a class of antidepressants used in the treatment of depression, anxiety disorders and some personality disorders. ... Dopamine is a phenethylamine naturally produced by the human body. ...


Many other therapies and interventions are available. Few are supported by scientific studies.[5][23][84][85] Treatment approaches lack empirical support in quality-of-life contexts, and many programs focus on success measures that lack predictive validity and real-world relevance.[24] Scientific evidence appears to matter less to service providers than program marketing, training availability, and parent requests.[86] Even if they do not help, conservative treatments such as changes in diet are probably harmless aside from their bother and cost.[46] Dubious invasive treatments are a much more serious matter: for example, in 2005, botched chelation therapy killed a 5-year-old autistic boy.[47] The well-being or quality of life of a population is an important concern in economics and political science. ... Chelation therapy is a process involving the use of chelating agents to remove heavy metals from the body. ...


Treatment is expensive;[87] indirect costs are more so. A U.S. study estimated the average additional lifetime cost due exclusively to autism to be $3.2 million in 2003 U.S. dollars for an autistic individual born in 2000, with about 10% medical care, 30% nonmedical care such as child care and education, and 60% the lost economic productivity of individuals and their parents.[88] A British study estimated an average lifetime cost of ₤2.4 million in 1997–1998 British pounds.[89] Legal rights to treatment are complex, vary with location and age, and require advocacy by caregivers.[85] Publicly supported programs are often inadequate or inappropriate for a given child, and unreimbursed out-of-pocket medical or therapy expenses are associated with likelihood of family financial problems.[90] After childhood, key treatment issues include residential care, job training and placement, sexuality, social skills, and estate planning.[85]


Prognosis

There is no cure. Most children with autism lack social support, meaningful relationships, future employment opportunities or self-determination.[24] Although core difficulties remain, the severity of symptoms often becomes less marked in later childhood.[91] Few high-quality studies address long-term prognosis. Some adults show modest improvement in some symptoms, but some decline; no study has focused on autism after midlife.[92] Acquiring language before age 6, having IQ above 50, and having a marketable skill all predict better outcomes; independent living is unlikely with severe autism.[93] A 2004 British study of 68 adults who were diagnosed before 1980 as autistic children with IQ above 50 found that 12% achieved a high level of independence as adults, 10% had some friends and were generally in work but required some support, 19% had some independence but were generally living at home and needed considerable support and supervision in daily living, 46% needed specialist residential provision from facilities specializing in ASD with a high level of support and very limited autonomy, and 12% needed high-level hospital care.[6] A 2005 Swedish study of 78 adults that did not exclude low IQ found worse prognosis; for example, only 4% achieved independence.[94] Changes in diagnostic practice and increased availability of effective early intervention make it unclear whether these findings can be generalized to recently diagnosed children.[4] Self-determination theory (SDT) is a general theory of human motivation concerned with the development and functioning of personality within social contexts. ... Prognosis (older Greek πρόγνωσις, modern Greek πρόγνωση - literally fore-knowing, foreseeing) is a medical term denoting the doctors prediction of how a patients disease will progress, and whether there is chance of recovery. ... IQ redirects here; for other uses of that term, see IQ (disambiguation). ...


Epidemiology

Further information: Conditions comorbid to autism spectrum disorders

Estimates of the prevalence of autism vary widely depending on diagnostic criteria, age of children screened, and geographical location.[95] Most recent reviews tend to estimate a prevalence of 1–2 per 1,000 for autism and close to 6 per 1,000 for ASD;[4] PDD-NOS is the vast majority of ASD, Asperger's is about 0.3 per 1,000 and the atypical forms childhood disintegrative disorder and Rett syndrome are much rarer.[96] A 2006 study of nearly 57,000 British nine- and ten-year-olds reported a prevalence of 3.89 per 1,000 for autism and 11.61 per 1,000 for ASD; these higher figures could be associated with broadening diagnostic criteria.[97] There are many comorbid disorders associated with autism spectrum disorders and Aspergers Syndrome. ... In epidemiology, the prevalence of a disease in a statistical population is defined as the total number of cases of the disease in the population at a given time, or the total number of cases in the population, divided by the number of individuals in the population. ... Look up Review in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... PDD not otherwise specified or PDD-NOS is a pervasive developmental disorder. ... Asperger described his patients as little professors. Aspergers syndrome (AS), is a pervasive developmental disorder commonly referred to as a form of high-functioning autism. ... Childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD), also known as Hellers syndrome and disintegrative psychosis, is a rare condition characterized by late onset (>3 years of age) of developmental delays in language, social function, and motor skills. ... A woman with Retts Syndrome Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is classified as a pervasive developmental disorder by the DSM-IV. Many [1] argue that this is a mis-classification just as it would be to include such disorders as fragile X syndrome, tuberous sclerosis, or Down...


The risk of autism is associated with several prenatal and perinatal risk factors. A 2007 review of risk factors found associated parental characteristics that included advanced maternal age, advanced paternal age, and maternal place of birth outside Europe or North America, and also found associated obstetric conditions that included low birth weight and gestation duration, and hypoxia during childbirth.[98] Prenatal means before birth (is widely used in biology). ... Perinatal defines the period occurring around the time of birth (5 months before and 1 month after). ... A risk factor is a concept in finance theory such as the CAPM, APT and other theories that use pricing kernels. ... This article needs cleanup. ... Low birth weight is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a fetus who is delivered to a reproductive female at the end of a pregnancy at a weight of < 2500 grams (WHO, 1969). ... Gestation is the carrying of an embryo or fetus inside a female viviparous animal. ... Hypoxia is a pathological condition in which the body as a whole (generalised hypoxia) or region of the body (tissue hypoxia) is deprived of adequate oxygen supply. ... Parturition redirects here. ...


About 10–15% of autism cases have an identifiable Mendelian (single-gene) condition, chromosome abnormality, or other genetic syndrome,[38] and ASD is associated with several genetic disorders.[99] Autism is associated with mental retardation: a 2001 British study of 26 autistic children found about 30% with intelligence in the normal range (IQ above 70), 50% with mild to moderate retardation, and about 20% with severe to profound retardation (IQ below 35). For ASD other than autism the association is much weaker: the same study reported about 94% of 65 children with PDD-NOS or Asperger's had normal intelligence.[100] ASD is also associated with epilepsy, with variations in risk of epilepsy due to age, cognitive level, and type of language disorder.[101] Boys are at higher risk for autism than girls. The ASD sex ratio averages 4.3:1 and is greatly modified by cognitive impairment: it may be close to 2:1 with mental retardation and more than 5.5:1 without. Recent studies have found no association with socioeconomic status, and have reported inconsistent results about associations with race or ethnicity.[4] Phobias, depression and other psychopathological disorders have often been described along with ASD but this has not been assessed systematically.[102] Mendelian inheritance (or Mendelian genetics or Mendelism) is a set of primary tenets that underlie much of genetics developed by Gregor Mendel in the latter part of the 19th century. ... The three major single chromosome mutations; deletion (1), duplication (2) and inversion (3). ... A genetic disorder is a disease caused by abnormalities in genes or chromosomes. ... Mental retardation is a term for a pattern of persistently slow learning of basic motor and language skills (milestones) during childhood, and a significantly below-normal global intellectual capacity as an adult. ... IQ redirects here; for other uses of that term, see IQ (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Phobia (disambiguation). ... Clinical depression (also called major depressive disorder, or unipolar depression when compared to bipolar disorder) is a state of intense sadness, melancholia or despair that has advanced to the point of being disruptive to an individuals social functioning and/or activities of daily living. ... Psychopathology is a term which refers to either the study of mental illness or mental distress, or the manifestation of behaviors and experiences which may be indicative of mental illness or psychological impairment. ...


Autism's incidence, despite its advantages for assessing risk, is less useful in autism epidemiology, as the disorder starts long before it is diagnosed, and the gap between initiation and diagnosis is influenced by many factors unrelated to risk. Attention is focused mostly on whether prevalence is increasing with time. Earlier prevalence estimates were lower, centering at about 0.5 per 1,000 for autism during the 1960s and 1970s and about 1 per 1,000 in the 1980s, as opposed to today's 1–2 per 1,000.[4] The reported incidence of autism varies considerably among countries and is complicated by varying criteria for diagnosing autism, different standards for reporting public health problems, and other possible variations. ...

Reports of autism cases grew dramatically in the U.S. in 1996–2005. It is unknown how much, if any, growth came from changes in autism's prevalence.
Reports of autism cases grew dramatically in the U.S. in 1996–2005. It is unknown how much, if any, growth came from changes in autism's prevalence.

The number of reported cases of autism increased dramatically in the 1990s and early 2000s. This increase is largely attributable to changes in diagnostic practices, referral patterns, availability of services, age at diagnosis, and public awareness,[103] though as-yet-unidentified contributing environmental risk factors cannot be ruled out.[3] A widely cited 2002 pilot study concluded that the observed increase in autism in California cannot be explained by changes in diagnostic criteria,[104] but a 2006 analysis found that special education data poorly measured prevalence because so many cases were undiagnosed, and that the 1994–2003 U.S. increase was associated with declines in other diagnostic categories, indicating that diagnostic substitution had occurred.[105] It is unknown whether autism's prevalence increased during the same period. An increase in prevalence would suggest directing more attention and funding toward changing environmental factors instead of continuing to focus on genetics.[45] Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... In epidemiology, the prevalence of a disease in a statistical population is defined as the total number of cases of the disease in the population at a given time, or the total number of cases in the population, divided by the number of individuals in the population. ...


History

A few examples of autistic symptoms and treatments were described long before autism was named. The Table Talk of Martin Luther contains a story of a 12-year-old boy who may have been severely autistic.[106] According to Luther's notetaker Mathesius, Luther thought the boy was a soulless mass of flesh possessed by the devil, and suggested that he be suffocated.[107] Victor of Aveyron, a feral child caught in 1798, showed several signs of autism; the medical student Jean Itard treated him with a behavioral program designed to help him form social attachments and to induce speech via imitation.[108] This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Martin Luther (November 10, 1483 – February 18, 1546) was a German monk,[1] priest, professor, theologian, and church reformer. ... Johannes Mathesius (1504–1565) Johannes Mathesius (1504-06-24 – 1565-10-07), also called Johann Mathesius or John Mathesius, was a German minister and a Lutheran reformer. ... Demonic possession, in supernatural belief systems, is a form of spiritual possession whereby certain malevolent extra-dimensional entities, demons, gain control over a mortal persons body, which is then used for an evil or destructive purpose. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... A feral child (feral, - wild or undomesticated) is a human child who, from a very young age, has lived in isolation from human contact and has no (or little) experience of human care, loving or social behavior, and, crucially, of human language. ... Jean Marc Gaspard Itard (April 24, 1774 – 1838) was a French physician born in Provence. ...


The New Latin word autismus (English translation autism) was coined by the Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler in 1910 as he was defining symptoms of schizophrenia. He derived it from the Greek word autos (αὐτός, meaning self), and used it to mean morbid self-admiration, referring to "autistic withdrawal of the patient to his fantasies, against which any influence from outside becomes an intolerable disturbance."[109] New Latin (or Neo-Latin) is a post-medieval version of Latin, now used primarily in International Scientific Vocabulary cladistics and systematics. ... Eugene Bleuler (b. ...

Leo Kanner introduced the label early infantile autism in 1943.

The word autism took its modern sense in 1943 when Leo Kanner of the Johns Hopkins Hospital reported 11 children with striking behavioral similarities and introduced the label early infantile autism.[28] He suggested autism to describe the children's lack of interest in other people. Almost all the characteristics described in Kanner's first paper on the subject, notably "autistic aloneness" and "insistence on sameness", are still regarded as typical of the autistic spectrum of disorders.[36] About the same time, the Viennese pediatrician Hans Asperger described a similar form of ASD now known as Asperger's, though for various reasons it was not widely recognized as a separate syndrome until 1981.[108] Image File history File links Leo Kanner File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Image File history File links Leo Kanner File history Legend: (cur) = this is the current file, (del) = delete this old version, (rev) = revert to this old version. ... Dr Leo Kanner MD Leo Kanner (June 13, 1894 - April 4, 1981) was an Austrian-American physician known for his work related to autism. ... Dr Leo Kanner MD Leo Kanner (June 13, 1894 - April 4, 1981) was an Austrian-American physician known for his work related to autism. ... The Johns Hopkins Hospital is a teaching hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. ... “Wien” redirects here. ... Hans Asperger, who discovered Asperger syndrome, described his patients as little professors. Hans Asperger (b. ... Asperger described his patients as little professors. Aspergers syndrome (AS), is a pervasive developmental disorder commonly referred to as a form of high-functioning autism. ...


Kanner's reuse of autism led to decades of confused terminology like "infantile schizophrenia", and child psychiatry's focus on maternal deprivation during the mid-1900s led to misconceptions of autism as an infant's response to "refrigerator mothers". Starting in the late 1960s autism was established as a separate syndrome by demonstrating that it is lifelong, distinguishing it from mental retardation and schizophrenia and from other developmental disorders, and demonstrating the benefits of involving parents in active programs of therapy.[110] As late as the mid-1970s there was little evidence of a genetic role in autism; now it is thought to be one of the most heritable of all psychiatric conditions.[111] The rise of parent organizations and the destigmatization of childhood ASD have deeply affected how we view ASD, its boundaries, and its treatments.[108] The Internet has helped autistic individuals bypass nonverbal cues and emotional sharing that they find so hard to deal with, and has given them a way to form online communities and work remotely.[112] Sociological and cultural aspects of autism have developed: some in the community seek a cure, while others believe that autism is simply another way of being.[7][113] The term refrigerator mother was coined in the 1940s as a label for mothers of autistic children. ... Social stigma is severe social disapproval of personal characteristics or beliefs that are against cultural norms. ... Autism (also called autistic disorder, infantile autism, Kanners syndrome or Kanner syndrome) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that manifests itself before the age of three years. ...


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A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 194th day of the year (195th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 249th day of the year (250th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Dr. Vilayanur Ramachandran on an episode of PBSs NOVA Television program. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 179th day of the year (180th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Uta Frith is a leading developmental psychologist working at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Michelle Dawson is an autistic, autism researcher and autism rights activist who is most well known for writing a paper challenging the ethical and scientific foundations of Applied Behavioral Analysis(ABA)-based autism interventions and challenging ABA in the Supreme Court of Canada. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 178th day of the year (179th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Due to the epidemic of medical errors, readers are cautioned to be aware that the American Psychiatric Association isnt immune to this. ... The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, published by the American Psychiatric Association, is the handbook used most often in diagnosing mental disorders in the United States and other countries. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 180th day of the year (181st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 192nd day of the year (193rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 279th day of the year (280th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A press release (sometimes known as a news release or press statement) is a written or recorded communication directed at members of the news media for the purpose of announcing something claimed as having news value. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 220th day of the year (221st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Eric Fombonne, MD, FRCP, (b. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... The UC Davis M.I.N.D. Institute is a Sacramento, California based research and treatment consortium of scientists, educators, physicians and parents who have joined together to unravel the mysteries of autism spectrum disorders, fragile X syndrome, and other developmental disorders. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 261st day of the year (262nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Dr Lorna Wing (born 7 October 1928) is an English psychiatrist and physician. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 199th day of the year (200th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Peter Szatmari (1950- ) is a Canadian expert on Autism and Asperger syndrome. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 178th day of the year (179th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 179th day of the year (180th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 179th day of the year (180th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ... is the 197th day of the year (198th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

Pervasive Developmental Disorders Portal
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  Results from FactBites:
 
NIMH · Autism · Complete Publication (9447 words)
The autism spectrum disorders can often be reliably detected by the age of 3 years, and in some cases as early as 18 months.
Changes in the criteria used to diagnose autism, along with increased recognition of the disorder by professionals and the public may all be contributing factors.
The modified checklist for autism in toddlers: an initial study investigating the early detection of autism and pervasive developmental disorders.
Autism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (6264 words)
Autism is classified as a neurodevelopmental disorder that manifests itself in markedly abnormal social interaction, communication ability, patterns of interests, and patterns of behavior.
Autism presents in a wide degree, from those who are nearly dysfunctional and apparently mentally handicapped to those whose symptoms are mild or remedied enough to appear unexceptional ("normal") to others.
Autism Awareness Year was led by the British Institute of Brain Injured Children, Disabilities Trust, National Autistic Society, Autism London and 800 organizations in the United Kingdom.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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