Conceptual problem-solving in highly verbal, nonretarded autistic men

  • Judith M. Rumsey

Abstract

Nine highly verbal, nonretarded men, ages 18 to 39, with clearly documented childhood diagnoses of infantle autism were studied with the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, a measure of conceptual problem solving sensitive to frontal system dysfunction, and with a measure of socialadaptive functioning. Their performances were compared with 10 controls matched for age, sex, education, and IQ, as well as with published norms for various groups of braindamaged patients. Significant deficits in the formulation of rules and significant perseverative tendencies were documented in the autistic sample. No significant correlation between these deficits and socialadaptive deficits was seen. These findings were discussed with respect to the heterogeneity of the autistic disorder and Damasio's hypothesis concerning frontalsubcortical dysfunction in autism.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Judith M. Rumsey
    • 1
  1. 1.Section on Child PsychiatryNational Institute of Mental HealthBethesda

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