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9.What is the prognosis of children with autism?

autism

Autism is a life-long disorder. Predicting an autistic child’s future, in regards to social abilities, scholastic achievement, and vocational potential, is difficult even for experts without a full neurological assessment and several months or years of observations. Experts look for certain predictors of future abilities, such as intelligence, verbal ability, and socialization.

The most important prognostic factor is the IQ of the child. In addition, the degree of social interaction impairment and lack of appropriate communication early on correlates with the severity of the outcome. The most accurate predictor of outcome, however, is the progression over a period of about 1 year from early diagnosis.

Those with mild behavioral symptoms and few autistic features may do remarkably well. Once established, the neurologic deficits of autism neither improve nor worsen during a child’s life. However, with treatment, the disabilities of autism, such as speech impairment and social interaction, can be improved in many children. This is especially true when the child is diagnosed early and treated early.

Early intervention that includes behavioral modification  and speech therapy has been shown to improve outcomes in autistic children. In fact, some children with autism who receive proper treatment and social support grow up to lead normal or near-normal lives.

The Autism Society of America reports that many people with autism enjoy their lives and contribute to their communities.

The majority of children, unfortunately, will require supervision and support of various amounts throughout their lives. The amount of supervision and social support required depends on the extent of their disabilities. Epilepsy is a problem with up to one third of children with autism. Children whose language skills regress early in life, usually before the age of 3, appear to be at higher risk of developing epilepsy or seizure-like brain activity.

The most important prognostic factor is the IQ of the child. In addition, the degree of social interaction impairment and lack of appropriate communication early on correlates with the severity of the outcome. The most accurate predictor of outcome, however, is the progression over a period of about 1 year from early diagnosis. Those with mild behavioral symptoms and few autistic features may do remarkably well.

Once established, the neurologic deficits of autism neither improve nor worsen during a child’s life. However, with treatment, the disabilities of autism, such as speech impairment and social interaction, can be improved in many children. This is especially true when the child is diagnosed early and treated early.

Early intervention that includes behavioral modification and speech therapy has been shown to improve outcomes in autistic children. In fact, some children with autism who receive proper treatment and social support grow up to lead normal or near-normal lives.

The Autism Society of America reports that many people with autism enjoy their lives and contribute to their communities. The majority of children, unfortunately, will require supervision and support of various amounts throughout their lives.

The amount of supervision and social support required depends on the extent of their disabilities. Epilepsy is a problem with up to one third of children with autism. Children whose language skills regress early in life, usually before the age of 3, appear to be at higher risk of developing epilepsy or seizure-like brain activity.

Terms:

 Epilepsy - A neurological disorder that can lead to convulsions, partial and full loss of consciousness, and absences. It occurs more frequently in autistic people and their families than in the general population.

National Institutes of Health (NIH) - Located in Bethesda, Maryland, it is the largest governmental medical research center. It is part of the U.S.Department of Health and Human Services. It is composed of 27 separate institutes and is charged with the mission to improve the health of the people of the United States.

Self-stimulatory behaviors (stims) - This is the name given to the purposeless repetitive actions that some autistic people feel compelled to do. Examples are hand flapping, spinning, toe walking, and so forth.

 

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