Autism 'can be detected earlier using parent questionnaires'
17 July 2012 16:38 in Scientific Developments/Breakthroughs
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) can be diagnosed earlier and more reliably through the use of questionnaires given to parents of at-risk infants.
This is the conclusion of a new study from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, which presented the parents of 699 children with a 63-item survey when their child was 12 months old, followed by an additional questionnaire at age three.
It was found that 31 percent of kids identified as at risk for ASD at one year old received a confirmed diagnosis at age three, while 85 percent of at-risk patients had some form of developmental disability or concern.
Lead author Dr Lauren Turner-Brown said: "These findings are encouraging and suggest promise in the approach of using parent reports of infant behaviours as a tool for identifying 12-month-olds who are at risk for an eventual diagnosis of ASD."
Last month, a study from the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital at McGill University revealed that assessing white matter tract development among infants can also help to give an early indicator of autism.
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