Risk factors, types and diagnosis of Autism—

                                              There is no main reason for autism, but still research is going on . Some of the risk factors that may increase the
chances of autism. Some of the important risk factors are as follows–
1) Dietary factors
2) mercury poisoning
3) Inability of body to make proper use of vitamins and muscles.
4) Vaccine sensitivity owing to thimerosal
5) Breech position of baby
6) Low apgar score( Apgar score is an index which is mainly used to assess the condition of newborn at birth and five minutes after birth)
7) Birth before 35 weeks of pregnancy
8) Parental history of schizophrenia or psychosis, depression and bipolar disorder.

Types of Autism—


Autism classified as Pervasive development disorder which is category of disorders that are interchangeably with broad spectrum of
disorders mainly affecting young , children and adults called as ” Autism spectrum disorders(ASD).
Autism can be associated with other disorders like mental retardation and other medical conditions. Autism
ranges from mild to severe.

Diagnosis of Autism—


Diagnosis of autism is important because if autism is diagnosed early, more will be the chances of improvement. When there is
developmental delay in a child,further testing can help doctor whether problem is related to autism or other developmental disorder.
Therefore certain assessment has to be followed. Assessment include–
1) Behavioral assessment
2) Developmental or intelligence tests
3) Physical assessments or lab tests

Behavioral assessment include —
a) Medical history— During this part, doctor generally ask questions about child’s development.
b) Observation— Doctor want to observe the child in different situations.

Developmental or intelligence tests–
Certain tests should be done in order to check where developmental delay affects the thinking ability of the patients.

Physical assessments or Lab tests–
Physical examination can be done which include the measurement of weight, height or circumference of head in order to check the normal
growth. Hearing tests should be done especially related to social skills. Other tests like testing for lead poisoning also known as
PICA ( in which person crave for substances other than food like flecks of old paint etc). Children having delayed milestones
usually continue put items in their mouth even after this stage has passed in normally developing children.
Lab tests like chromosomal analysis may be done if there is history of intellectual disability.
Electroencephalograph is done, if there are symptoms of seizures. MRI may be done, if there are signs of difference in structure of
brain.

Early detection should be helpful. If certain signs should be discovered–
__ No babbling, pointing by 12 months.
__ No single words by 16 months.
__ Loss of language or social skills at any age.

Article publié pour la première fois le 20/03/2013

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