Epidemiologic Features of Autism Spectrum Disorders

  • Russell S. Kirby
Part of the Contemporary Clinical Neuroscience book series (CCNE)


Since its discovery, there has been much debate regarding both the etiology of autism as well as its prevalence. While initially thought to be rare, autism has a rising prevalence with a most recent estimate of 14.7 per 1000 in eight year olds. A number of potential risk factors have been investigated including maternal age, prenatal and perinatal factors, socioeconomic status, and ethnicity. However, no direct risk factor for autism has been identified. Additionally, over 100 genes have been identified as putative autism risk genes. Taken together, the number of potential environmental, genetic, developmental, and biological risk factors for autism points to a multifactorial etiology.


Epidemiology Prevalence Risk factors Autism spectrum disorders Etiology 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Community and Family Health, College of Public HealthUniversity of South FloridaTampaUSA

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