Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 43, Issue 4, pp 973–977 | Cite as

Brief Report: Asperger’s Syndrome and Sibling Birth Order

  • Karmen Schmidt
  • Andrew Zimmerman
  • Margaret Bauman
  • Christine Ferrone
  • Jacob Venter
  • Jessaca Spybrook
  • Charles HenryEmail author
Brief Report


Prior investigations suggest that birth order position may be associated with the risk for developing a pervasive developmental disorder. This retrospective chart review examined the birth order status of 29 psychiatrically-referred patients with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS). Eighty-six percent of the subjects were first born. The finding was statistically significant when compared to an expected random distribution of AS subjects χ2 (1, N = 29) = 9.18, p < 0.01. The reasons for such an association are unclear though birth stoppage, obstetric complications, and immunological mechanisms may play a role.


Asperger’s syndrome Pervasive developmental disorders Birth order Epidemiology 


Conflict of interest

This project was funded under partial support from the Casa Colina Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karmen Schmidt
    • 1
  • Andrew Zimmerman
    • 1
  • Margaret Bauman
    • 1
  • Christine Ferrone
    • 1
  • Jacob Venter
    • 2
    • 4
  • Jessaca Spybrook
    • 3
  • Charles Henry
    • 4
    • 5
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of PediatricsMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryCambridge Health AllianceCambridgeUSA
  3. 3.Evaluation, Measurement, and Research DepartmentWestern Michigan UniversityKalamazooUSA
  4. 4.Department of PsychiatryMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  5. 5.LexingtonUSA

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