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J Autism Dev Disord. 2008 Apr;38(4):606-15. Epub 2007 Oct 9.

Diagnostic stability in very young children with autism spectrum disorders.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Connecticut, 406 Babbidge Rd., Storrs, CT 06269-1020, USA. jamie_kleinman@yahoo.com

Abstract

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) diagnosis in very young children may be delayed due to doubts about validity. In this study, 77 children received a diagnostic and developmental evaluation between 16 and 35 months and also between 42 and 82 months. Diagnoses based on clinical judgment, Childhood Autism Rating Scale, and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule were stable over time. Diagnoses made using the Autism Diagnostic Interview were slightly less stable. According to clinical judgment, 15 children (19%) moved off the autism spectrum by the second evaluation; none moved onto the spectrum. Results indicate diagnostic stability at acceptable levels for diagnoses made at age 2. Movement off the spectrum may reflect true improvement based on maturation, intervention, or over-diagnosis at age 2.

PMID:
17924183
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3625643
Free PMC Article

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