Navigation Links
Autism affects motor skills, study indicates
Date:2/15/2012

Children with autism often have problems developing motor skills, such as running, throwing a ball or even learning how to write. But scientists have not known whether those difficulties run in families or are linked to autism. New research at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis points to autism as the culprit.

Their findings were reported in the journal Autism.

"From our results, it looks like motor impairments may be part of the autism diagnosis, rather than a trait genetically carried in the family," says lead author Claudia List Hilton, PhD, assistant professor in occupational therapy and an instructor in psychiatry. "That suggests that motor impairments are a core characteristic of the diagnosis."

The researchers studied 144 children from 67 families in which at least one child had a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder as well as at least one biological sibling in the same age group. Of the children families, there were 29 in which two had an autism spectrum disorder, including six identical twins; and 48 in which only one child had an autism spectrum disorder.

The children were observed performing a range of motor skills, including placing pegs in a pegboard, cutting with scissors, copying forms, imitating movements, running, throwing a ball and doing push-ups. Researchers used a standardized measure of motor proficiency widely used in children with disabilities that measures fine manual control, manual coordination, body coordination and strength and agility.

The Washington University study is the first to evaluate motor impairments in children with autism spectrum disorder and their siblings who don't have the disorder.

Hilton, along with co-author John Constantino, MD, and their team also studied the link between motor impairment and the severity of the autism spectrum disorder.

Testing showed that 83 percent of children with autism spectrum disorder were below average in motor skills. Their siblings without an autism spectrum disorder generally scored in the normal range, with only 6 percent below average.

In addition, identical twin pairs had very similar scores. Non-twin siblings who each had autism spectrum disorder also had similar scores. And siblings in which one child had an autism spectrum disorder and one didn't had very different scores.

"The data suggests that genes play a role in the motor impairments observed in those with autism spectrum disorder," Hilton says. "This is further evidence that autism spectrum disorder is a largely genetic disorder."

"It's possible that developmental processes in the brain which give rise to motor coordination and social responsiveness are shared by both systems," says co-investigator Constantino, the Blanche F. Ittleson Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics and director of the William Greenleaf Eliot Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Washington University. "This could explain their association in autism and provide new ideas about intervention strategies to help affected children, such as innovative methods for promoting motor development."

In addition, the study showed that the lower motor proficiency score in children with an autism spectrum disorder, the greater the degree of social impairment and severity of the disorder.

"Kids who have difficulty with motor skills might have trouble with what we think are simple things like brushing their teeth, buttoning, snapping or starting a zipper things that are so basic to being independent, but would cause other problems at school," Hilton says. "They would need to have an aide or someone helping them, and that would set them off as different from the other kids."

These impairments can lead to bigger problems later on, Hilton says.

"Some kids aren't socially aware enough that it bothers them, but others are aware, and they feel bad about themselves," she says. "They may have low self-esteem, so even if they have delays only in the motor skills, there is a lot of impact on their well being into adulthood."


'/>"/>
Contact: Beth Miller
millerbe@wustl.edu
314-286-0119
Washington University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Teens With Autism Preoccupied With TV, Video Games: Study
2. Mutations in 2 Genes Linked to Rare Autism-Related Disorder
3. Brain Activity May Help Predict Autism Before Age 1: Study
4. Autism Speaks first Philip and Faith Geier Autism Environmental Sciences Research grant
5. Adolescents with autism spend free time using solitary, screen-based media
6. Inner Dialogue Might Aid People With Autism
7. Can Low Birth Weight Raise Autism Risk?
8. Co-Occurring Disorders May Explain Change in Autism Diagnosis
9. Experts Weigh Changes to Definition of Autism
10. Smoking During Pregnancy Not Linked to Autism
11. Autism redefined: Yale researchers study impact of proposed diagnostic criteria
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/12/2016)... , ... February 12, 2016 , ... A lot has ... 35 years. A president has access to health and wellness resources most Americans could ... world, no single individual has a schedule as frenetic as the U.S. President. ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... ... growth in the field of long term care. With that, says Patrick Loughney, ... healthcare professionals in administrative roles in long term care environments. His company, which ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... Aliso Viejo, CA (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... ... by Pixel Film Studios. The new cartoon style themes are great for showcasing pictures, ... with completely customized scene generators, titles like introductions, lower thirds, transitions and a beautiful ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... Fitbody Personal Training offers outdoor training classes ... way to get fit and healthy. Located in Phoenixville, PA, the classes are structured ... designed for horseback riders who want to lose weight and tone up. This class ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 11, 2016 , ... ... (DMPG) will use the action analytics leader’s population health solutions, MDinsight® and ... clinical support to the Atlanta-area healthcare system. Details of the contract were not ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/12/2016)... SEOUL, South Korea , Feb. 12, 2016 ... today announced they will form a partnership to ... medicine in cancer. The goal of the collaboration ... with Macrogen,s high-throughput Next Generation Sequencing capabilities toward ... Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) of 1988 by the ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... Feb. 12 2016  OMS Supply, a large provider ... practitioners, announced today the recent launching of their new ... variety of features that enhance the user experience and ... --> --> ... new company that started in early 2016, they have ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... BUDAPEST , Ungarn, February 12, 2016 ... ein Medizintechnikunternehmen, das sich auf den ungedeckten ... gab heute positive Ergebnisse seines klinischen Forschungsprogramms ... und Asthma-Patienten beschäftigt, ergab Verbesserungen ihrer respiratorischen ... Indiso ltd , ein Medizintechnikunternehmen, das ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: