Navigation Links
Autism Tough to Spot Before 6 Months of Age, Study Suggests
Date:10/30/2012

By Maureen Salamon
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) -- The development of 6-month-old babies who are diagnosed with autism in toddlerhood is very similar to that of children without autism, a new study suggests.

"We always thought that if a child had autism, we would be able to tell during infancy . . . but we were wrong," said study author Rebecca Landa, director of the Center for Autism and Related Disorders at Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore. "At 6 months of age, babies who end up with autism by age 3 are scoring similarly on tests to children who didn't have autism."

The study also sheds doubt on the notion that cases of autism that are spotted early are necessarily more severe. The researchers report that youngsters with early-identified autism (spotted at or before 14 months of age) did initially perform less well than a group whose autism was identified later. However, by the time children from both of these groups reached 3 years of age the gap narrowed so that they showed very similar levels of function.

The study is published Oct. 30 in the journal Child Development.

Affecting about one in 88 American children, conditions on the autism spectrum are developmental disorders that cause difficulties in social skills, language and communication. They can range from mild to severe, and are typically identified by the age of 3.

In the new study, researchers analyzed 235 children with and without an older sibling with autism (since genetics influence risk for the disorder), testing them six times between 6 months and 36 months of age.

Among the skills tested were fine motor skills, speaking skills, understanding of spoken language and how often the children shared emotions and initiated communications with others.

Children with autism typically developed noticeable symptoms either around their first birthday or later in toddlerhood but still prior to their third birthday. The study authors said that this is the largest longitudinal study to date that compares children with early/later diagnoses of autism against children without autism.

"Autism has historically not been recognized in infancy, under 12 months, and becomes more evident in the second or third year," explained Dr. Andrew Adesman, chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York in New Hyde Park. "The piece [of the study] that's surprising is that the typical presumption is that kids who present earlier are likely to have a more severe form of autism -- but that's not what they found."

Landa, who has done extensive research on autism, said that "it's never too early" for pediatricians and parents to be alert to potential signs of autism in infants, which don't always center on language and social delays. For example, she said, some babies who go on to develop autism exhibit poor "postural control" at age 4 months and cannot control their neck muscles when pulled up to a sitting position.

"We really should be screening for general developmental delays at the first birthday," Landa said. "We shouldn't lock ourselves into screening for autism specifically . . . what we want to do now is help parents and pediatricians start looking for some of these more qualitative markers."

"We need to heighten parents' awareness of the fact that, when they start to see their child might not be showing steady gains in development, to have someone keep an eye out because there are so many wonderful things we can do while the brain is young and malleable," she added.

More information

There's more on diagnosing an autism spectrum disorder at Autism Speaks.

SOURCES: Rebecca Landa, Ph.D., director, Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Kennedy Krieger Institute, and professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore; Andrew Adesman, M.D., chief, developmental and behavioral pediatrics, Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York, New Hyde Park, N.Y.; Oct. 30, 2012, Child Development


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. An Early Start for Your Child with Autism
2. IntegraGen launches ARISk test, a genetic screening tool for autism in high-risk children
3. Researchers Find Gene Mutations That May Be a Key to Autism
4. Pregnancy Length May Influence Severity of Autism
5. Children Born to Obese Moms May Face Higher Autism Risk: Study
6. Online Tool Could Diagnose Autism Quickly, Developers Say
7. Autism by the numbers: Yale researchers examine impact of new diagnostic criteria
8. In Mice, Drug Reverses Symptoms of Condition Linked to Autism
9. Study of half siblings provides genetic clues to autism
10. Genes Associated With Autism Also Related to Schizophrenia
11. Publication Bias Casts Doubt on Value of Antidepressants for Autism
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Autism Tough to Spot Before 6 Months of Age, Study Suggests
(Date:2/27/2017)... NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. (PRWEB) , ... February 27, 2017 , ... ... substance use disorder, but concern for women who become dependent on opioid painkillers has ... 400% among female patients, compared to a 237% increase in fatal overdoses in male ...
(Date:2/27/2017)... ... February 27, 2017 , ... This webinar ... analysis as a tool to characterize particle size distributions in the field of ... results and novel scientific findings. It describes methods of optimized and standardized sample ...
(Date:2/27/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... February 27, 2017 , ... ... rehabilitation and alcohol treatment programs in British Columbia, Canada, at https://www.sunshinecoasthealthcentre.ca/ , ... its team. The new hire, Mackenzie Alsager, showcases the Centre's commitment to innovation ...
(Date:2/26/2017)... MICHIGAN (PRWEB) , ... February 25, 2017 , ... The ... Kim Jong-un, heightened awareness and concern over nerve agents and the deadly use of ... the human nervous system and how even small doses can be lethal. , Jay ...
(Date:2/26/2017)... York (PRWEB) , ... February 26, 2017 , ... ... products for wholesale distribution in North America, today announced it would be offering ... The company, which prides itself on crafting quality and unique baby clothing/feeding products, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/27/2017)... , Feb 27, 2017 Period October – December ... Operating result amounted to SEK -16.4 (-6.4) million ... per share (-0.22) before and after dilution Cash flow from ... ... to SEK 0.4 (0.4) million Operating result amounted to SEK ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... , Feb. 24, 2017  Today, exocad America ... labs have a new path to produce 510(K) ... Biodenta implant library integrated into exocad DentalCAD software. ... FDA compliant Good Manufacturing Processes (GMP,s) into their ... Biodenta, and complete an audit process. Then, dental labs ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Global ... report to their offering. ... The Global Wireless Health Market is poised to ... to reach approximately $330.5 billion by 2025. This industry ... segments on global as well as regional levels presented in the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: