Autism Facts | CNN



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Here is a look at autism.

Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) comprises a group of neurodevelopmental disorders resulting in impaired communication skills and social skills. ASDs typically begin before age three and last a lifetime, but early intervention plays a role in treatment and progress.

ASD is about four times more common in boys than girls, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

ASDs can be found among all races, ethnicities, and socioeconomic groups.

The prevalence of ASD in the United States is about one in 44 children, according to a 2021 CDC report.

According to a study published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, healthcare costs for children with autism are four to six times higher than medical costs for children without autism.

April 2 is World Autism Day.

There is no definitive medical test to diagnose autism. Instead, the disorder is diagnosed by observing a child’s development.

According to the CDC, signs of autism can include deficits in social communication and interaction in a variety of settings, difficulty engaging in back-and-forth conversations, and a lack of interest in forming friendships with others. peers.

The debate over whether autism spectrum disorders are caused by vaccines began in 1998 when the medical journal The Lancet published a now retracted study by researcher Andrew Wakefield linking the MMR vaccine to autism.

Most of Wakefield’s co-authors removed their names from the study when they learned he had been compensated by a law firm intending to sue the makers of the vaccine in question. In 2010, Wakefield lost his medical license. In 2011, the Lancet retracted the study after an investigation found that Wakefield had altered or misrepresented information about the 12 children that formed the basis of the study’s conclusion.

Other researchers have been unable to replicate Wakefield’s findings. Several subsequent studies trying to replicate the results found no link between vaccines and autism, including several reviews from the Institute of Medicine.

Early 1900s – Autistic features are studied as symptoms of schizophrenia.

1938 – Donald Gray Triplett of Mississippi is first examined by child psychiatrist Leo Kanner at Johns Hopkins Hospital and later becomes the first person diagnosed with symptoms of autism.

1943 – Triplett is identified as “Donald T.” in Kanner’s article “Autistic Disturbances of Affective Contact”. The article develops the idea that autism is linked to the lack of parental warmth; this is later dubbed the “mother of the refrigerator” theory.

1944 – Hans Asperger, Austrian doctor, publishes an article on the autistic syndrome. The document gained notoriety when it was translated into English in the early 1990s.

1964 – Bernard Rimland, a psychology researcher, publishes “Infantile Autism: The Syndrome and Its Implications for a Neural Theory of Behavior”, which contradicts the “freezing mother” hypothesis. Kanner is the author of the foreword.

1965 – Rimland founds the National Society for Autistic Children (now Autism Society of America). He later founded the Autism Research Institute.

1980 – Autism is classified separately from schizophrenia in the third edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-III).

December 18, 2007 – The United Nations adopts a resolution proclaiming April 2 World Autism Awareness Day.

October 29, 2014 – The medical journal Nature reports that scientists have identified 60 genes with more than a 90% chance of increasing the risk of autism in children.

December 17, 2015 – Scientists from Harvard and MIT announce that they have found, for the first time, a link between autistic behavior and reduced activity of a key neurotransmitter, a type of brain chemical that allows signals to be transmitted to through neurons, allowing the brain to communicate with other organs.

April 21, 2016 – The Simons Foundation announces that it is launching an autism research project called SPARK. The study, which involves scientists from 21 university hospitals and clinics, will focus on the possible link between genetics and autism. Parents of children with autism are invited to register online and participate in the study. The group also works with Autism Speaks and the Autism Science Foundation to run the Autism BrainNet, which is an autism brain bank that collects post-mortem donations.

February 2017 – According to a study published in the journal Nature, researchers find that monitoring infants’ brain MRIs can help predict whether they will develop autism. Researchers have found a possible link between brain enlargement in the first year of life and an autism diagnosis at age 2. This builds on previous similar research.

March 19, 2017 – CBS News’ “60 Minutes” profiles the new “Sesame Street” Muppet character, a girl named Julia who has autism.

April 11, 2017 – A study published in the American Journal of Public Health finds people with autism are three times more likely than the general population to die from preventable injuries, and children and young adolescents with autism are 40 times more likely to die from preventable injuries than the general population of children. Suffocation, asphyxiation and drowning are the leading causes of fatal injuries in people with autism.

March 26, 2018 – According to a study published in JAMA Pediatrics, children with autism spectrum disorders and their younger siblings are less likely to be fully vaccinated than children without autism.

March 4, 2019 – A study of more than 650,000 children published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine shows that the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine does not increase the risk of autism and does not trigger autism in children at risk .

April 29, 2019 – A study published in JAMA Pediatrics suggests that children can be screened for autism spectrum disorders at 14 months with high accuracy (instead of 18 to 24 months, as is currently recommended).

January 23, 2020 – A study in the journal Cell identifies 102 genes associated with autism risk. Previously, researchers only knew of 65.

May 10, 2020 – In a report published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, the CDC estimates that 2.2% of American adults have autism spectrum disorders. The report, which is the first US study of autism in adults, says as many as 5.4 million people aged 18 and older, or about 1 in 45 people, have an autism spectrum condition.

February 14, 2022 – A meta-analysis published in JAMA Pediatrics reveals that early mortality, due to natural or unnatural causes, is more than twice as likely in people with autism spectrum disorders as in the general population.

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