It is now possible that within five minutes Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) can be identified with just completing checklist filled by parents, which will help the pediatrician to diagnose autism sooner. This study is funded by The National Institute of Health (NIH) published in the Journal of Pediatrics on May 5, 2011.
Autism identified in an early age makes children to have treatment much earlier which will boost their development in other studies on this subject. It is found notable delay between the first identification of autism symptoms by the parents and the Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis, even in some cases children not received the proper diagnosis and their schools have started.
“Beyond this exciting proof of concept, such a screening program would answer parents’ concerns about their child’s possible ASD symptoms earlier and with more confidence than has ever been done before,” said Thomas R. Insel, M.D., director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), part of NIH.
For improving the recognition of early Autism Spectrum Disorder, Karen Pierce, Ph.D from the University of California, San Diego with his colleagues develop a program for 137 pediatricians across the county. In this program the pediatricians was also conducted in which they screened the infants of at most one year of age through Communication and Symbolic Behavior Scales Development Profile Infant Toddler Checklist. It is a brief questioner which diagnosis the Autism Spectrum Disorder, Developmental delay and language delay. It is questioner also deals in account of child’s care provider for his status about the use of sounds, body gestures, eye gaze, object, words and other forms of communications by the child. Children who failed in this screening were referred for comprehensive testing and marked for re-evaluating for every six months till child aged three years.
Total of 10,479 infant children were screened in which 32 children were diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. This screening provides the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and in which 89 percent of the infants are with language delay, these infants we recommend for the treatment around age of 17 months.
“In the context of a virtual lack of universal screening at 12 months, this program is one that could be adopted by any pediatric office, at virtually no cost, and can aid in the identification of children with true developmental delays,” said Dr. Pierce.
The researchers also analyzed the infant’s outcomes of the participating pediatricians, they also found that 96 percent of the pediatricians rated this program positively and all of the pediatricians have continued using this screening took of Communication and Symbolic Behavior Scales Development Profile Infant Toddler Checklist. Researchers marked this screening tool for further validating and refinement for better tracking of children’s Autism Spectrum Disorder in older ages and assessment of obstacles for follow ups and treatment.