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Autism. 2012 Jan;16(1):5-14. doi: 10.1177/1362361311407091. Epub 2011 May 24.

A national study of the prevalence of autism among five-year-old children in Iran.

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Institute of Nursing Research, University of Ulster, Newtownabbey, Northern Ireland, UK.


In Iran, more than 1.3 million five-year olds have been screened for autism over three academic years, with the Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ). The Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R) is used to confirm a diagnosis of typical autism. The resulting prevalence of 6.26 per 10,000 for typical autism is in line with rates for certain countries but is lower than those reported recently for some Western nations. This may be due to the younger age range assessed but the suitability of the tools and aspects of Iranian culture could be other reasons for the lower prevalence. International comparisons of prevalence rates is fraught with difficulties, but it is a valuable endeavour as it can identify issues around cultural and societal perceptions of children's development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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