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Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Guanajuato, Mexico: The Leon survey

Abstract

There are no epidemiological data on autism for Mexico. This study was conducted to generate a first estimate of ASD prevalence in Mexico. We surveyed children age eight in Leon (Guanajuato). The sample was stratified in two strata: (1) children having special education and medical records (SEMR; N = 432) and (2) children attending regular schools (GSS; N = 11,684). GSS children were screened with the SRS and those with the highest scores were invited to a diagnostic evaluation. The final sample comprised 36 children (80.6 % male) who had confirmed ASD. A third had intellectual disability, 25 % were non-verbal, 69 % had co-occurring behavioral problems. The prevalence overall was 0.87 % (95 % CI 0.62, 1.1 %). This survey provides an estimate for ASD prevalence in Mexico that is consistent with recent studies.

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Acknowledgments

The study has been supported by a grant from Autism Speaks (6424). The authors express their gratitude to Andy Shi and Michael Rosanoff (Autism Speaks) who were instrumental in facilitating the planning and execution of the study. We thank Dr Kuri, Chairman of the Health System Surveillance in Mexico City, the Educational authorities of Guanajuato state and of the city of Leon, the city hall of Leon and the Mayor’s office, the child neurologists, the school teachers, the director and staff at DIF and CLIMA, especially Norma Alicia Manero Tinoco. We express our special gratitude to those families and their children who participated to the study and made it possible. The PI Eric Fombonne was at McGill University when the grant was awarded. Ruth Bruno was funded through the Canada Research Chair in Child Psychiatry awarded to the PI. Katrina Ramsay and Benjamin Nealy were supported by Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute (OCTRI), through a Grant UL1TR000128 from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Author Contributions

Eric Fombonne and Carlos Marcin designed and funded the study, organized the data collection and wrote the manuscript. Eric Fombonne, Ruth Bruno, Katrina Ramsay and Benjamin Nealy performed data and statistical analyses. Ana Cecilia Manero, Christian Diaz and Michele Villalobos collected data. All authors reviewed and approved the manuscript.

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Fombonne, E., Marcin, C., Manero, A.C. et al. Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Guanajuato, Mexico: The Leon survey. J Autism Dev Disord 46, 1669–1685 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-016-2696-6

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-016-2696-6

Keywords

  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Epidemiology
  • Screening
  • Prevalence
  • Cultural