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Aggression in children and adolescents with ASD: Prevalence and risk factors. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41, 926-937

Department of Health Psychology and Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, University of Missouri, 205 Portland Street, Suite 110, Columbia, MO 65211, USA.
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders (Impact Factor: 3.06). 10/2010; 41(7):926-37. DOI: 10.1007/s10803-010-1118-4
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The prevalence of and risk factors for aggression were examined in 1,380 children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Prevalence was high, with parents reporting that 68% had demonstrated aggression to a caregiver and 49% to non-caregivers. Overall, aggression was not associated with clinician observed severity of ASD symptoms, intellectual functioning, gender, marital status, parental educational level, or aspects of communication. Individuals who are younger, come from a higher income family, have more parent reported social/communication problems, or engage in repetitive behaviors were more likely to demonstrate aggression. Given the significant impact of aggression on individual and family outcomes, it is hoped that this knowledge will inform more targeted intervention efforts.

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    • "Aggression and irritability are major symptom dimensions in autism spectrum disorder (ASD), with some estimates of prevalence as high as 68 % (Kanne and Mazurek 2011) and greater prevalence in individuals with low-cognitive ability (Hartley et al. 2008). It is argued that the optimal management of these symptoms includes both behavioral and pharmacological interventions (McDougle et al. 2003), with the latter often constituting the only treatment option in settings where there is limited knowledge and capacity for implementing behavioral strategies. "
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    • "Sometimes, children behave cobative due to fear of inability to deal with emotions, especially frustration and are incapable to verbalize the situation efficiently. Other factors including environmental influences, unrelieved stress, lack of appropriate problem solving skills and coping strategies can also result in aggressive behaviors (Kanne & Mazurek, 2011). "
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    • "With regard to language ability, receptive and expressive language levels have been shown to be negatively associated with behavior problems (Dominick et al., 2007; McTiernan, et al., 2011; Park, Yelland, Taffe, & Gray, 2012). However, Kanne and Mazurek (2011) found that level of intellectual functioning and language ability were not predictive of aggressive behaviors in children and adolescents with ASD. Park and colleagues (2012) also found no significant association between structural language skills and behavior problems. Concerning age effects, mixed findings have been reported. "
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