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Autism

Also known as Autistic Disorder

Autism is a disorder of neural development characterized by impaired social interaction and verbal and non-verbal communication, and by restricted, repetitive or stereotyped behavior. The diagnostic criteria require that symptoms become apparent before a child is three years old. Autism affects information processing in the brain by altering how nerve cells and their synapses connect and organize; how this occurs is not well understood. It is one of three recognized disorders in the autism spectrum (ASDs), the other two being Asperger syndrome, which lacks delays in cognitive development and language, and pervasive developmental disorder, not otherwise specified (commonly abbreviated as PDD-NOS), which is diagnosed when the full set of criteria for autism or Asperger syndrome are not met.

Source: Wikipedia

What are the symptoms?

Within all the people who go to their doctor with autism, 41% report having seizures, 29% report having depressive or psychotic symptoms, and 24% report having hostile behavior. The symptoms that are highly suggestive of autism are hostile behavior, lack of growth, antisocial behavior, and eyelid retracted, although you may still have autism without those symptoms.


What might my doctor prescribe?

Common Tests and Procedures

Patients with autism often receive mental health counseling, psychotherapy, occupational therapy assessment, other diagnostic procedures (interview; evaluation; consultation), magnetic resonance imaging, psychological and psychiatric evaluation and therapy, electroencephalogram (eeg) and injections and aspirations of muscles; tendons; bursa; joints and soft tissue .

Common Medications

The most commonly prescribed drugs for patients with autism include risperidone, clonidine, methylphenidate, adderall, aripiprazole (abilify), divalproex sodium (depakote), oxcarbazepine (trileptal), guanfacine (intuniv), benztropine, dexmethylphenidate (focalin), melatonin, lisdexamfetamine (vyvanse) and chlorpromazine (thorazine) .

Who is at risk?

Groups of people at highest risk for autism include sex == male, age 5-14 years and age 1-4 years. On the other hand, age 75+ years, age 60-74 years, and age 45-59 years almost never get autism.

Age

< 1 years
0.1x
1-4 years
3.9x
5-14 years
5.6x
15-29 years
1.1x
30-44 years
0.2x
45-59 years
0.0x
60-74 years
0.0x
75+ years
0.0x

Sex

Male
1.9x
Female
0.3x

Race/Ethnicity

Black
0.9x
Hispanic
0.9x
White
1.0x
Other
1.2x
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