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J Autism Dev Disord. 2019 Mar 9. doi: 10.1007/s10803-019-03977-3. [Epub ahead of print]

Relationship Between Early Social-Emotional Behavior and Autism Spectrum Disorder: A High-Risk Sibling Study.

Author information

1
Department of Pediatrics, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada. sraza@ualberta.ca.
2
Autism Research Centre (E209), Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, 10230 - 111 Avenue, Edmonton, AB, T5G 0B7, Canada. sraza@ualberta.ca.
3
Department of Pediatrics, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada.
4
Autism Research Centre (E209), Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, 10230 - 111 Avenue, Edmonton, AB, T5G 0B7, Canada.
5
Dalhousie University/IWK Health Centre, Halifax, NS, Canada.
6
Bloorview Research Institute, Toronto, ON, Canada.
7
University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.
8
ISAND, Toronto, ON, Canada.
9
The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON, Canada.
10
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, ON, Canada.
11
University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada.
12
McMaster Children's Hospital - Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, ON, Canada.
13
Mount Allison University, Sackville, NB, Canada.

Abstract

Social-emotional behavior in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) was examined among high-risk (HR; siblings of children diagnosed with ASD) and low-risk (LR; no family history of ASD) toddlers. Caregivers completed the Infant-Toddler Social Emotional Assessment (ITSEA) at 18 months, and blind diagnostic assessment for ASD was conducted at 36 months. Results indicated impairment in social-emotional functioning among HR toddlers subsequently diagnosed with ASD compared to other HR and LR toddlers, such that ITSEA domains (Internalizing, Dysregulation, Competence) and subdomains predicted later ASD symptoms and diagnosis. Receiver operating curves of optimal ITSEA cutoffs ranged from 0.23 to 0.44 for sensitivity, and 0.74 to 0.89 for specificity. Although classification accuracy for ASD was limited, group differences highlight the importance of considering social-emotional development when assessing ASD risk.

KEYWORDS:

Autism; Autism spectrum disorder; Early detection; High-risk infant siblings; Social-emotional behavior

PMID:
30852785
DOI:
10.1007/s10803-019-03977-3

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