Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 38, Issue 4, pp 606–615

Diagnostic Stability in Very Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

  • Jamie M. Kleinman
  • Pamela E. Ventola
  • Juhi Pandey
  • Alyssa D. Verbalis
  • Marianne Barton
  • Sarah Hodgson
  • James Green
  • Thyde Dumont-Mathieu
  • Diana L. Robins
  • Deborah Fein
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10803-007-0427-8

Cite this article as:
Kleinman, J.M., Ventola, P.E., Pandey, J. et al. J Autism Dev Disord (2008) 38: 606. doi:10.1007/s10803-007-0427-8

Abstract

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) diagnosis in very young children may be delayed due to doubts about validity. In this study, 77 children received a diagnostic and developmental evaluation between 16 and 35 months and also between 42 and 82 months. Diagnoses based on clinical judgment, Childhood Autism Rating Scale, and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule were stable over time. Diagnoses made using the Autism Diagnostic Interview were slightly less stable. According to clinical judgment, 15 children (19%) moved off the autism spectrum by the second evaluation; none moved onto the spectrum. Results indicate diagnostic stability at acceptable levels for diagnoses made at age 2. Movement off the spectrum may reflect true improvement based on maturation, intervention, or over-diagnosis at age 2.

Keywords

Autism PDD-NOS Diagnostic stability Early detection 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jamie M. Kleinman
    • 1
  • Pamela E. Ventola
    • 1
  • Juhi Pandey
    • 1
  • Alyssa D. Verbalis
    • 1
  • Marianne Barton
    • 1
  • Sarah Hodgson
    • 1
  • James Green
    • 1
  • Thyde Dumont-Mathieu
    • 1
  • Diana L. Robins
    • 1
    • 2
  • Deborah Fein
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ConnecticutStorrsUSA
  2. 2.Georgia State UniversityAtlantaUSA