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ASD Screening with the Child Behavior Checklist/1.5-5 in the Study to Explore Early Development

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Abstract

We analyzed CBCL/1½-5 Pervasive Developmental Problems (DSM-PDP) scores in 3- to 5-year-olds from the Study to Explore Early Development (SEED), a multi-site case control study, with the objective to discriminate children with ASD (N = 656) from children with Developmental Delay (DD) (N = 646), children with Developmental Delay (DD) plus ASD features (DD-AF) (N = 284), and population controls (POP) (N = 827). ASD diagnosis was confirmed with the ADOS and ADI-R. With a cut-point of T ≥ 65, sensitivity was 80% for ASD, with specificity varying across groups: POP (0.93), DD-noAF (0.85), and DD-AF (0.50). One-way ANOVA yielded a large group effect (η2 = 0.50). Our results support the CBCL/1½-5’s as a time-efficient ASD screener for identifying preschoolers needing further evaluation.

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Funding

This project was supported by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Cooperative Agreement Numbers U10DD000180 (Colorado Department of Public Health); U10DD000181 [Kaiser Foundation Research Institute (CA)]; U10DD000182 (University of Pennsylvania); U10DD000183 (Johns Hopkins University); U10DD000184 (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill); and U10DD000498 (Michigan State University).

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Authors

Contributions

SEL, LAR conceived of the study, participated in its design and coordination and drafted the manuscript; JZ participated in the design and interpretaiton of the data; LY participated in the design and coordination of the study; JLC, AT participated in the design of the study and performed the statistical anlaysis; all authors read, edited and approved the final manuscript.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Susan E. Levy.

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Conflict of interest

Dr. Rescorla receives remuneration from the University of Vermont Research Center for Children, Youth, and Families, which publishes the CBCL/1.5-5. The other authors have no financial relationships relevant to this article to disclose.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in this study involving human participants 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. The study protocol was approved by Institutional Review Boards at each site.

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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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Parents provided signed informed consent for their child’s participation.

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Levy, S.E., Rescorla, L.A., Chittams, J.L. et al. ASD Screening with the Child Behavior Checklist/1.5-5 in the Study to Explore Early Development. J Autism Dev Disord 49, 2348–2357 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-019-03895-4

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