March 3, 2015 - Several factors are associated with the severity of psychiatric symptoms in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). These include the child’s age and season of birth, the mother’s education level, the child’s other medical conditions and complications during pregnancy, among others. In a recently published article, Kenneth Gadow, PhD and colleagues examined the relations between these factors and parents' and teachers' perceptions of impairment caused by psychiatric symptoms in children with ASD. They found several correlations between factors (which they called clinical correlates) and impairments associated with a variety of psychiatric disorders. The most noteworthy clinical correlate was season of birth (specifically, autumnal births) in terms of number and types of disorder as well as magnitude of the association, in teacher (but not in parent) ratings. The article, titled Clinical Correlates of Co-occurring Psychiatric and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Symptom-Induced Impairment in Children with ASD, was published in the February 3 issue of the Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology.
Kenneth Gadow, PhD