Characteristics and anxiety symptom presentation associated with autism spectrum traits in youth with anxiety disorders.
ABSTRACT There is limited information about the nature of anxiety among youth with symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The present study examined (a) differences in the clinical characteristics of anxious youth with and without symptoms of ASD and (b) the symptoms of anxiety that best distinguish between these groups. Results indicated that anxious youth with elevated ASD symptoms had significantly more diagnoses (e.g., specific phobias), and were more likely to meet diagnostic criteria for social phobia (and list social concerns among their top fears) than youth without elevated ASD symptoms. At the symptom level, severity of interpersonal worry based on parent report and severity of fear of medical (doctor/dentist) visits based on youth report best differentiated ASD status. The findings inform diagnostic evaluations, case conceptualization, and treatment planning for youth with anxiety disorders and ASD symptoms.
Article: Comorbidity of generalized social anxiety disorder and depression in a pediatric primary care sample.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Comorbidity between adult social anxiety disorder and major depression is extensive. Considerably less information about this relationship is available among youth. A randomly selected (from enrollees in a pediatric primary care clinic) sample of 190 families with children between the ages of 8 and 17 responded by mail to questionnaires assessing social anxiety, depression, and social functioning. Parents also completed a semi-structured telephone diagnostic interview about their child. The generalized type of social anxiety disorder was highly comorbid with major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, specific phobias, and ADHD, while little comorbidity was present for the nongeneralized subtype of social anxiety disorder. Logistic regression analyses indicated that generalized social anxiety disorder was the only anxiety disorder associated with an increased likelihood of major depression (OR=5.1). In all cases, social anxiety disorder had a significantly earlier age of onset than major depression. This study relies on cross-sectional data and diagnoses are based on parent reporting of child behavior. Generalized social anxiety disorder is strongly associated with depressive illness in youth. Screening and treatment approaches that consider both social anxiety and depressive symptoms are necessary. Early intervention to treat social anxiety disorder may prevent later depressive disorders.Journal of Affective Disorders 07/2004; 80(2-3):163-71. · 3.52 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Recent theory and research suggests that weak central coherence, a specific perceptual-cognitive style, underlies the central disturbance in autism. This study sought to provide a test of the weak central coherence hypothesis. In addition, this study explored the relations between the weak central coherence hypothesis, theory of mind skills, and social-emotional functioning in a group of high functioning children with autism. Results revealed equivocal support for the weak central coherence hypothesis, but found moderate correlations between verbal weak central coherence and theory of mind measures. No significant findings were observed between weak central coherence measures and social-emotional functioning.Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 03/2005; 35(1):63-73. · 3.34 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The Children's Global Assessment Scale (CGAS), a measure of overall severity of disturbance, is an adaptation of the Global Assessment Scale for adults. Data obtained on the CGAS during a pilot study in Puerto Rico demonstrate high interrater reliability and both concurrent and discriminant validity. A discriminant function was generated that highly correlates with other measures of impairment. Use of the CGAS can be of heuristic value to complement other methods of diagnostic categorization.Archives of General Psychiatry 10/1987; 44(9):821-4. · 12.02 Impact Factor