Autism Symptoms

You can observe some Autism symptoms in a person as young as two years old and sometimes even younger. Here are the main Autism symptoms that will allow you to identify or wonder if your a member of your family, a friend or anyone else might be affected by this disorder. The severity of these Autism symptoms may vary as each individual is unique. That is why it is evaluated on a spectrum.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

New tool to help detect early Autism Symptoms

Program a breakthrough in autismVerity EdwardsJanuary 25, 2006
AN Adelaide psychologist who has developed a world first early detection tool for autism is receiving international recognition for her work, with interest shown in Mexico, China, Norway, the US and Britain.Local practitioners, however, are not yet using the test.
Flinders University senior lecturer Robyn Young, whose diagnostic tool looks at 16 behavioural symptoms of autism, hopes there will be local interest once she has finalised yet-to-be-published psychometric data.
Autism is a genetically inherited neurological disorder.
Dr Young's unique diagnostic tool screens children aged from 18 months and identifies characteristics that need monitoring, including responding to names, gaze switching, lack of social reciprocity, imitation and play.

"If a child isn't responding as expected they should be referred for a thorough diagnostic assessment," DrYoung said.
But some families with autistic children faced delays of close to a year for diagnoses, with waiting lists blowing out at Adelaide's major hospitals.
"This is unacceptable when we know that early intervention leads to a better prognosis for these children," Dr Young said.
She said the diagnostic tool and her Flinders University early intervention research program helped parents kick-start treatment by recognising the signs of autism; it also trained them in appropriate strategies, to allow them to start home-based programs.
"Although the program is supported by the university, it receives limited external funding and much of our time is spent trying to attract money to support the free program," DrYoung said.
As part of the program, therapists spend 15 hours per week one-on-one with autistic children for two weeks. The program then becomes home-based, with support for a further 18weeks.
The early intervention is already showing results, with 108 children having been through the program since it began in 2003. Although some children have made significant improvements, in other cases the changes have not been as impressive.
"We are currently trying to identify the characteristics of the individuals who have been most responsive to the intervention," Dr Young said.
Annette Totani's son James, 6, was among the first to take part in the program.
She noticed her son had stopped speaking and responding at 18 months, and feared that he had gone deaf. James underwent 18 months of testing, including audiology, ophthalmology and occupational therapy. The Women's and Children's Hospital then diagnosed James with autism.
"James was really bad at the time, there was a lot of screaming, he wasn't responding, it was awful," Mrs Totani said. After she took part in Dr Young's program and learned how to treat James's symptoms at home, his level of autism dropped significantly.
"My son is in a mainstream class now and he can read and write," she said. "At the time I thought we had lost him forever."


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