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Autism. 2013 Jan;17(1):103-16. doi: 10.1177/1362361312441266. Epub 2012 Aug 21.

Outcomes in adults with autism spectrum disorders: a historical perspective.

Author information

1
Vanderbilt University and Vanderbilt Kennedy Center, Nashville, Tennessee 37203, USA.

Abstract

In this review, we examine the ways in which researchers have defined successful adult outcomes for individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) from the first systematic follow-up reports to the present day. The earliest outcome studies used vague and unreliable outcome criteria, and institutionalization was a common marker of poor outcomes. In the past decade, researchers have begun to standardize the measurement of adult outcomes with specific criteria based on friendships, employment, and living arrangements. Although nearly all of these studies have agreed that the majority of adults with ASD have poor outcomes, evolving concepts of what it means to be an adult could have an impact on outcomes measured. For example, some researchers have suggested that taking into account the person-environment fit could reveal a more optimistic picture of outcomes for these adults. Suggestions for future research are discussed.

PMID:
22914775
PMCID:
PMC3769945
DOI:
10.1177/1362361312441266
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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