The severity of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is often measured by co-occurring conditions, such as intellectual disability or language delay, rather than deficits in social interaction, and restricted interests and repetitive behaviors. The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule calibrated severity score (ADOS CSS) was created to facilitate comparison of the diagnostic features of ASD independent of related conditions over time. We examined the relationship between the ADOS CSS, ADOS total score, and clinician rated degree of impairment (DOI) in the Study to Explore Early Development. Like others, we confirmed that, among the measures we evaluated, the ADOS CSS was least influenced by developmental functioning and demographic factors and is therefore the best measure of core features of ASD in pre-school children.
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This publication was supported by six cooperative agreements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Cooperative Agreement Number U10DD000180, Colorado Department of Public Health; Cooperative Agreement Number U10DD000181, Kaiser Foundation Research Institute (CA); Cooperative Agreement Number U10DD000182, University of Pennsylvania; Cooperative Agreement Number U10DD000183, Johns Hopkins University; Cooperative Agreement Number U10DD000184, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and Cooperative Agreement Number U10DD000498, Michigan State University. The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the CDC or HRSA.
Study concept (Lisa Wiggins), study design and methods (all authors), statistical analysis (Brian Barger), statistical review and interpretation (all authors), manuscript preparation and/or review (all authors).
Conflict of interest
The authors do not have any conflicts of interest to report.
All procedures performed in this study were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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Wiggins, L.D., Barger, B., Moody, E. et al. Brief Report: The ADOS Calibrated Severity Score Best Measures Autism Diagnostic Symptom Severity in Pre-School Children. J Autism Dev Disord 49, 2999–3006 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-017-3072-x
- Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Calibrated severity score
- Symptom severity