Screening for Autism
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The purpose of screening is early diagnosis and treatment. Screening tests are usually administered to people without current symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain diseases or conditions.
Screening Guidelines or Tests
There are no screening guidelines or screening tests for autism. There is no way to anticipate which child will develop autism. There are no known lifestyle habits that increase your child's risk of developing autism. If your child has one of the associated rare genetic disorders, your doctor will watch carefully for early signs of autism. The regular "well baby" and “well child” visits that are scheduled throughout a child’s first three years of life are used to monitor and assess growth and development. When concerns are raised, further testing can be done.
Autism spectrum disorders (pervasive developmental disorders). National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) website. Available at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/autism-spectrum-disorders-pervasive-developmental-disorders/index.shtml . Updated April 2008. Accessed June 23, 2008.
Behrman RE, et al. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia: Saunders, 2007.
Goetz, CG. Goetz’s Textbook of Clinical Neurology. 3rd ed. Philadelphia: Saunders, 2007.
National Center on Birth Defects and Environmental Disabilities. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/ . Accessed June 23, 2008.
Stern TA, et al. Massachusetts General Hospital Comprehensive Clinical Psychiatry. 1st ed. Philadelphia: Mosby Elsevier, 2008.
Last reviewed December 2009 by ]]>Rosalyn Carson-DeWitt, MD ]]>
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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