Brief Report: Prevalence of Self-injurious Behaviors among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder—A Population-Based Study

Abstract

Self-injurious behaviors (SIB) have been reported in more than 30 % of children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in clinic-based studies. This study estimated the prevalence of SIB in a large population-based sample of children with ASD in the United States. A total of 8065 children who met the surveillance case definition for ASD in the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network during the 2000, 2006, and 2008 surveillance years were included. The presence of SIB was reported from available health and/or educational records by an expert clinician in ADDM Network. SIB prevalence averaged 27.7 % across all sites and surveillance years, with some variation between sites. Clinicians should inquire about SIB during assessments of children with ASD.

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Acknowledgments

We acknowledge CDC ADDM project personnel, ADDM projects coordinators, clinician reviewers, abstractors, data managers, and ADDM investigators at each site who contributed to the ADDM surveillance project and data collection.

Authors Contribution

Dr. Soke developed the initial proposal of the study, analyzed the data, and wrote the first manuscript. Drs. DiGuiseppi, Rosenberg, Robinson, Hamman, and Fingerlin participated in developing the initial proposal of the study and reviewed the manuscript. Drs. Lee, Carpenter, Durkin, and Wiggins reviewed the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Gnakub N. Soke.

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Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. This study is a secondary data analysis of unidentified data previously collected in a surveillance system. Therefore, formal consent is not required.

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All authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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Disclaimer The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Soke, G.N., Rosenberg, S.A., Hamman, R.F. et al. Brief Report: Prevalence of Self-injurious Behaviors among Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder—A Population-Based Study. J Autism Dev Disord 46, 3607–3614 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-016-2879-1

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Keywords

  • Self-injurious behaviors
  • Autism
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Prevalence
  • Challenging behaviors