Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 38, Issue 4, pp 644–656 | Cite as

Gross Motor Development, Movement Abnormalities, and Early Identification of Autism

  • Sally Ozonoff
  • Gregory S. Young
  • Stacy Goldring
  • Laura Greiss-Hess
  • Adriana M. Herrera
  • Joel Steele
  • Suzanne Macari
  • Susan Hepburn
  • Sally J. Rogers
Original Paper


Gross motor development (supine, prone, rolling, sitting, crawling, walking) and movement abnormalities were examined in the home videos of infants later diagnosed with autism (regression and no regression subgroups), developmental delays (DD), or typical development. Group differences in maturity were found for walking, prone, and supine, with the DD and Autism-No Regression groups both showing later developing motor maturity than typical children. The only statistically significant differences in movement abnormalities were in the DD group; the two autism groups did not differ from the typical group in rates of movement abnormalities or lack of protective responses. These findings do not replicate previous investigations suggesting that early motor abnormalities seen on home video can assist in early identification of autism.


Autism Motor Early identification 



The work in this manuscript was supported by grant U19 HD35468 from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. The authors would like to acknowledge Karim Bayanzay, Corinna Conway, Jackelynn Dao, Naomi Ekas, Jason Gray, Elizabeth Loomer, Matthew Ong, Angela Shih, and Christina Siller who coded the many hours of video presented here, as well as Diane Larzelere who prepared the manuscript. We are very grateful to Grace Baranek for sharing her content coding system with us. We are also greatly indebted to the many families who shared their home videotapes and the lives of their families with us.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sally Ozonoff
    • 1
  • Gregory S. Young
    • 1
  • Stacy Goldring
    • 1
  • Laura Greiss-Hess
    • 1
  • Adriana M. Herrera
    • 2
  • Joel Steele
    • 1
  • Suzanne Macari
    • 3
  • Susan Hepburn
    • 4
  • Sally J. Rogers
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of California – Davis Health System, M.I.N.D. InstituteSacramentoUSA
  2. 2.Institute of Child DevelopmentUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA
  3. 3.Child Study CenterYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  4. 4.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Colorado Health Sciences CenterDenverUSA

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