Developmental Evaluation And Testing
During this evaluation, the physician takes into account the parents reports, the developmental screening, psychological testing, and speech and language testing. Sometimes neurological and genetic testing can help rule out other disorders.
Getting a medical diagnosis is the first step to accessing services and support for your child through health insurance.
Emergence Of Behavioral Therapy For Treating Autism
In 1980, infantile autism for the first time was listed in the in DSM-III, separated from childhood schizophrenia. In 1987, infantile autism in the DSM is replaced by a more expansive definition of autism that includes diagnostic criteria.
The Individuals with Disability Act was originally passed by congress in 1975 to ensure all children receive free and public education regardless of any disability. In 1997, an amendment was passed requiring special education for individuals with disabilities that allows students to access the general education curriculum that other students have. For the first time, this allowed children with autism spectrum disorders access to the same level of education as other children.
Special education for children with autism allows children to succeed in an education setting amongst their peers. Children with autism require comprehensive and intensive services, often combining special education, speech and language pathologists, occupational and physical therapy and others, all to work together to plan, problem-solve, and administer a childs individualized educational program . These special education programs have been shown to greatly improve quality of life and allow children to succeed.
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Autism As A Social And Emotional Disorder
Autism was first characterized as a social and emotional disorder in 1943 by Dr. Leo Kanner, a child psychiatrist in the United States. In a paper published in the journal Nervous Child titled Autistic Disturbances of Affective Contact, Kanner describes a distinct syndrome characterized by children who are highly intelligent but have tendencies towards social withdrawal with emotional limitations.
Meanwhile, across the Atlantic in Germany, Hans Asperger was defining a different form of autism. Asperger published his autism psychopathology article in 1944, describing autism as a disorder of normal intelligence children who have difficulties with social and communication skills. Later thought of as a milder form of autism and now commonly known as Aspergers disorder, children with Aspergers tend to suffer similar challenges with social interactions but do not have the same language development challenges often found in Kanners disorder.
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Social Communication And Interaction Skills
Social communication and interaction skills can be challenging for people with ASD.
Examples of social communication and social interaction characteristics related to ASD can include:
- Avoids or does not keep eye contact
- Does not respond to name by 9 months of age
- Does not show facial expressions like happy, sad, angry, and surprised by 9 months of age
- Does not play simple interactive games like pat-a-cake by 12 months of age
- Uses few or no gestures by 12 months of age
- Does not share interests with others
- Does not point or look at what you point to by 18 months of age
- Does not notice when others are hurt or sad by 24 months of age
- Does not pretend in play
- Shows little interest in peers
- Has trouble understanding other peoples feelings or talking about own feelings at 36 months of age or older
- Does not play games with turn taking by 60 months of age
Autism Spectrum Disorders Defined
Autism spectrum disorder refers to a range of disorders of brain development. Commonly known as autism, these conditions are characterized by difficulties in social skills, both verbal and nonverbal communication, repetitious movements, delayed child development and other unique strengths and challenges. In the phrase autism spectrum disorder, spectrum refers to the variation in presentation of symptoms and assets of each individual with autism.
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The notion that autism is a spectrum of disorders is a relatively new phenomenon. Before 2013, autism spectrum disorders, such as Aspergers syndrome and Kanners syndrome, were thought of as distinct disorder classes with independent treatments. In the latest revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 2013, the American Psychiatric Association combined subcategories of autism and related conditions into one unified category with different characteristics and severity. Autism is now understood to be on a continuum with overlapping symptomology, caused by a multitude of complex genetic and environmental factors. This progression of the classification and etiology mirrors that of evolving treatment approaches for individuals with autism. Treatments have changed in the last century due to changing theoretical conceptions, new philosophies, and research advances in the field, ranging from biochemical to social and behavioral methods.
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What Is The Difference Between Autism And Autism Spectrum Disorder
The term autism was changed to autism spectrum disorder in 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association. ASD is now an umbrella term that covers the following conditions:
- Autistic disorder.
- Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified .
- Asperger syndrome.
People with ASD have trouble with social interactions and with interpreting and using non-verbal and verbal communication in social contexts. Individuals with ASD may also have the following difficulties:
- Inflexible interests.
- Insistence on sameness in environment or routine.
- Repetitive motor and sensory behaviors, like flapping arms or rocking.
- Increased or decreased reactions to sensory stimuli.
How well someone with ASD can function in day-to-day life depends on the severity of their symptoms. Given that autism varies widely in severity and everyday impairment, the symptoms of some people arent always easily recognized.
Origin And Diagnosis Of Autism
According to Martin Luther, A 12-year-old boy was affected by autism. Luther thought this boy was possessed by a devil. The earliest case of autism is of Hugh Blair of Borgue in 1747 which is registered as a court case in which his brother requests to annul Blairs marriage to get Blairs inheritance. In 1798, A feral child has some signs of autism who are treated by a medical student Jean Itard with a behavioral program.
In the 1940s, researchers within the United States began to use autism to explain kids with emotional or social issues. A doctor from Johns Hopkins University, Leo Kanner used it to elucidate the behavior of many kids he studied United Nations agency acted withdrawn. Simultaneously, Hans Asperger discovered Aspergers syndrome.
Donald Gray Triplett, born in 1933 in a rural town known as Forest, Mississippi. He is the one whom psychiatrist Dr. Leo Kanner in 1938 has first at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Dr. Kanner was puzzled after seeing his symptom and was initially unable to diagnose him. However, in Dr. Kanners 1943 paper, Autistic Disturbances of Affective Contact, Donald Triplett was registered as Case 1, Donald T.
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Postwar Conceptualizations Of Autism And Infant Psychopathology
After the war, the controversies over how to describe infantile thought continued. The diagnoses of schizophrenia, psychosis and autism in children were largely interchangeable during the 1940s and 1950s. In the USA, Bender and others employed a Kleinian model to understand infant and child psychopathology and focused on schizophrenia as the central psychopathological problem of childhood. Bender was an important figure in the development of perceptual tests for children. In 1947, she published a study on one hundred schizophrenics who had attended the Childrens Department at Bellevue during the period 193747. She defined childhood schizophrenia as
pathology in behavior at every level and in every area of integration or patterning within the functioning of the central nervous system, be it vegetative, motor, perceptual, intellectual, emotional or social.
History Of Autism: When Was Autism First Diagnosed
For many conditions and disorders, it is easy to find the first point where they were initially described to this day. Their diagnostics criteria are clear. However, this has not been the case for autism. There have been several diagnoses in the past five decades, and they were less direct with several branching out.
In this article, we will talk about how autism diagnosis came to be, who contributed to what, and where we are today.
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The History Of Autism
It has been more than 50 years since Leo Kanner first described his classic autistic syndrome. Since then, the results of research and clinical work have helped us learn more about autism. More and more people are being diagnosed as autistic, although we still have a long way to go in creating a world that works for autistic people.
Read our charity’s timeline below to explore the history of autism, meet some of our ‘autism pioneers’ and find out more about the incredible work they’ve done.
Terminology And Distinction From Schizophrenia
As late as the mid-1970s there was little evidence of a genetic role in autism while in 2007 it was believed to be one of the most heritable psychiatric conditions. Although the rise of parent organizations and the destigmatization of childhood ASD have affected how ASD is viewed, parents continue to feel social stigma in situations where their child’s autistic behavior is perceived negatively, and many primary care physicians and medical specialists express some beliefs consistent with outdated autism research.
It took until 1980 for the DSM-III to differentiate autism from childhood schizophrenia. In 1987, the DSM-III-R provided a checklist for diagnosing autism. In May 2013, the DSM-5 was released, updating the classification for pervasive developmental disorders. The grouping of disorders, including PDD-NOS, autism, Asperger syndrome, Rett syndrome, and CDD, has been removed and replaced with the general term of Autism Spectrum Disorders. The two categories that exist are impaired social communication and/or interaction, and restricted and/or repetitive behaviors.
The Internet has helped autistic individuals bypass nonverbal cues and emotional sharing that they find difficult to deal with, and has given them a way to form online communities and work remotely.Societal and cultural aspects of autism have developed: some in the community seek a cure, while others believe that autism is simply another way of being.
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Who Was The First Person To Be Diagnosed With Autism
Note: This article is part of a series on thehistory of autism treatment.
Origin of the term Autism
The first use of the word autistic was in the early 20th century, as a descriptor of symptoms. In 1912, Eugen Blueler used the term to define symptoms associated with schizophrenia. It wasnt until 1943 that autism was used as a diagnostic term. In the first case of autism, Dr. Leo Kanner used the term to diagnose a social and emotional disorder. Previous observations of patients with symptoms of autism had led psychiatrists to a diagnosis of schizophrenia. The diagnosis of autism was used with eleven patients that Dr. Kanner was studying at the time, but the story began with one patient, Donald Triplett.
Donald Triplett, First Case of Autism
In Search of Help for Donald
Dr. Kanners Observations
A Better Understanding of Autism
In the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association , autism is included in a wide category of pervasive developmental disorders. Autism continues to be an area of ongoing research, discussion, and debate.
Signs And Symptoms Of Autism Spectrum Disorders
Autism spectrum disorder is a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain. Some people with ASD have a known difference, such as a genetic condition. Other causes are not yet known. Scientists believe there are multiple causes of ASD that act together to change the most common ways people develop. We still have much to learn about these causes and how they impact people with ASD.
There is often nothing about how people with ASD look that sets them apart from other people. They may behave, communicate, interact, and learn in ways that are different from most other people. The abilities of people with ASD can vary significantly. For example, some people with ASD may have advanced conversation skills whereas others may be nonverbal. Some people with ASD need a lot of help in their daily lives others can work and live with little to no support.
ASD begins before the age of 3 years and can last throughout a persons life, although symptoms may improve over time. Some children show ASD symptoms within the first 12 months of life. In others, symptoms may not show up until 24 months or later. Some children with ASD gain new skills and meet developmental milestones, until around 18 to 24 months of age and then they stop gaining new skills, or they lose the skills they once had.
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A History And Timeline Of Autism
The history of autism begins in 1911, when Swiss psychiatrist Paul Eugen Bleuler coined the term, using it to describe what he believed to be the childhood version of schizophrenia.Since then, our understanding of autism has evolved, culminating in the current diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder and informed by many notable events impacting autism clinical research, education, and support.
Introduction To Asperger Syndrome
In 1944, Hans Asperger in Vienna had published an account of children with many similarities to Kanner autism but who had abilities, including grammatical language, in the average or superior range. There are continuing arguments concerning the exact relationship between Asperger and Kanner syndromes but it is beyond dispute that they have in common the triad of impairments of social interaction, communication and imagination and a narrow, repetitive pattern of activities .
- Stephan Ehlers and Christopher Gillberg published the results of a further study carried out in Gothenburg. This study examined children in mainstream schools. The aim was to find the prevalence of Asperger syndrome and other autism profiles in children with IQ of 70 or above.
- From the numbers of children they identified, they calculated a rate of 36 per 10,000 for those who definitely had Asperger syndrome and another 35 per 10,000 for those with social difficulties. Some of these children may have fitted Asperger description if more information had been available, but they were certainly on the autism spectrum. Teachers of these children had previously recognised social and/or educational differences, but had not been able to find a reason for these differences.
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Differences Between Mild And Severe Symptoms
Autism disorders fall along a spectrum of mild to severe. Some children with ASD have advanced learning and problem-solving skills, while others require daily living assistance.
According to the American Psychiatric Associations diagnostic criteria, there are three levels of autism that are defined by how much support a person requires.
Some Children Dont Show Signs Until After Age 5
Studies show that some children exhibit few or no signs of autism as toddlers. Without apparent signs by 24 months, the typical age for autism screening, your childs condition may not be diagnosed until later. Also, people tend to think that if you werent diagnosed as a child, your autism symptoms are probably due to another health issue.
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Modern Therapies For Autism Start
It wasnt until the 1980s and 90s that we start to see more modern therapies for children with autism, such as behavioral therapy focusing on positive rewards and controlled learning environments.
In 1987, infantile autism was expanded into autism disorder and finally had a specified list of diagnostic criteria to help standardize the diagnosing. In this same year, Ivar Lovaas published the first study showing that intensive behavior therapy can help children improve their autistic symptoms.
In 1991, the U.S. Government made autism a special education category, which helped public schools to offer special services to children on the spectrum.
However, the 1980s and 1990s werent all positive movements. In 1998, a study was published that the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine causes autism. The study was later debunked but got enough attention to still cause confusion to this day.
This brings us to today, which includes the merging of the five different disorders all under the Autism Spectrum Disorder title.
Getting To The Causes Of Autism
Getting to the cause — or, more accurately, causes — of autism will be more difficult than unraveling the causes of cancer, says Gary Goldstein, MD, president and CEO of Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, a facility that helps children with autism and other developmental disorders.
“There won’t be one single explanation,” says Marvin Natowicz, MD, PhD, a medical geneticist and vice chairman of the Genomic Medicine Institute at the Cleveland Clinic.
“There’s been a lot of progress in the last few years in terms of understanding the causes of autism,” Natowicz says. “We know a lot more than we did.” Still, he says, research has a long way to go. “One number you see often is that about 10% of those with autism have a definitive diagnosis, a causative condition.” The other 90% of cases are still a puzzle to the experts.
Often, a child with autism will have a co-existing problem, such as a seizure disorder, depression, anxiety, or gastrointestinal or other health problems. At least 60 different disorders — genetic, metabolic, and neurologic — have been associated with autism, according to a report published in The New EnglandJournal of Medicine.
On one point most agree: A combination of genetics and environmental factors may play a role. Scientists are looking at both areas.
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