Article

Epidemiology of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Adults in the Community in England

Department of Health Sciences, University of Leicester, Leicester, England.
Archives of general psychiatry (Impact Factor: 13.75). 05/2011; 68(5):459-65. DOI: 10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2011.38
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To our knowledge, there is no published information on the epidemiology of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) in adults. If the prevalence of autism is increasing, rates in older adults would be expected to be lower than rates among younger adults.
To estimate the prevalence and characteristics of adults with ASD living in the community in England.
A stratified, multiphase random sample was used in the third national survey of psychiatric morbidity in adults in England in 2007. Survey data were weighted to take account of study design and nonresponse so that the results were representative of the household population.
General community (ie, private households) in England.
Adults (people 16 years or older).
Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, Module 4 in phase 2 validated against the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised and Diagnostic Interview for Social and Communication Disorders in phase 3. A 20-item subset of the Autism-Spectrum Quotient self-completion questionnaire was used in phase 1 to select respondents for phase 2. Respondents also provided information on sociodemographics and their use of mental health services.
Of 7461 adult participants who provided a complete phase 1 interview, 618 completed phase 2 diagnostic assessments. The weighted prevalence of ASD in adults was estimated to be 9.8 per 1000 (95% confidence interval, 3.0-16.5). Prevalence was not related to the respondent's age. Rates were higher in men, those without educational qualifications, and those living in rented social (government-financed) housing. There was no evidence of increased use of services for mental health problems.
Conducting epidemiologic research on ASD in adults is feasible. The prevalence of ASD in this population is similar to that found in children. The lack of an association with age is consistent with there having been no increase in prevalence and with its causes being temporally constant. Adults with ASD living in the community are socially disadvantaged and tend to be unrecognized.

0 Followers
 · 
129 Views
    • "There is a lack of diagnostic standards assessing ASD in adults with IDD, especially in those with limited language skills (Bö lte & Poustka, 2005, 2005; Matson & Shoemaker, 2009). Generally ASD seems to be under-diagnosed in adulthood (Brugha et al., 2011): reasons for this may be the change of diagnostic criteria over the decades, increasing sensitivity to ASD in children or individual adaptation to social demands. In adults with IDD, diagnostics are further complicated by, for example, limited self-report and a lack of information about early child development due to loss of contact with families. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The MUSAD was developed as a diagnostic observational instrument in an interactional music framework. It is based on the ICD-10/DSM-5 criteria for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and was designed to assess adults on a lower level of functioning, including individuals with severe language impairments. This study aimed to evaluate the psychometric properties of the newly developed instrument. Calculations were based on a consecutive clinical sample of N=76 adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) suspected of ASD. Objectivity, test-retest reliability, and construct validity were calculated and a confirmatory factor analysis was applied to verify a reduced and optimized test version. The structural model showed a good fit, while internal consistency of the subscales was excellent (ω>.92). Item difficulties ranged between .04≤pi≤.82 and item-total correlation from .21 to .85. Objectivity was assessed by comparing the scorings of two external raters based on a subsample of n=12; interrater agreement was .71 (ICC 2, 1). Reliability was calculated for four test repetitions: the average ICC (3, 1) was .69. Convergent ASD measures correlated significantly with the MUSAD, while the discriminant Modified Overt Aggression Scale (MOAS) showed no significant overlap. Confirmation of factorial structure and acceptable psychometric properties suggest that the MUSAD is a promising new instrument for diagnosing ASD in adults with IDD. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Research in developmental disabilities 07/2015; 43-44:123-135. DOI:10.1016/j.ridd.2015.05.011 · 4.41 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "ing social interaction and less apt to function well in group settings . Individuals with ASD differed from those without ASD on almost all demographic variables , which is consistent with previous research . That is , there were more males in the ASD group , they were younger , and had greater severity of ID compared with those without ASD ( cf . Brugha et al . , 2011 ; Fombonne , 2005 ) . This bias in demography represented possible confounders to the influence of ASD on social dysfunctions , which was considered in the multiple mediation modeling analyses . Ability to communicate verbally was found to mediate social dysfunction , consistent with findings that individuals with ASD rarely initiate ap"
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study investigated whether hyper-responsiveness to touch serves as a mediating variable that predicts social dysfunction in adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Data were obtained from all adults with administratively defined intellectual disability in a region in Sweden (n = 915, where 143 had ASD). A multiple mediation modeling analysis revealed a well-fitted model (Satorra–Bentler scaled chi-square = 10.91, df = 7, p = 0.14, CFI = 0.99, RMSEA = 0.025), demonstrating that social dysfunction among adults with ASD was completely mediated by hyper-responsiveness to touch followed by impairment of speech and aggressive/destructive behavior. The results demonstrated that in adulthood, the tactile sensory system is foundational for social functioning in people with ASD, with diagnosis and intervention implications.
    Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders 01/2015; 9:13-20. DOI:10.1016/j.rasd.2014.09.012 · 2.96 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "Including less severe forms of autism, the prevalence now is estimated to vary between 0.5% and 2.5% depending on the populations studied (Brugha et al., 2011; Kim et al., 2011). The latest figures provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Contents lists available at ScienceDirect journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/psychresns "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is increasingly being recognized as an important issue in adult psychiatry and psychotherapy. High intelligence indicates overall good brain functioning and might thus present a particularly good opportunity to study possible cerebral correlates of core autistic features in terms of impaired social cognition, communication skills, the need for routines, and circumscribed interests. Anatomical MRI data sets for 30 highly intelligent patients with high-functioning autism and 30 pairwise-matched control subjects were acquired and analyzed with voxel-based morphometry. The grey matter volume of the pairwise-matched patients and the controls did not differ significantly. When correcting for total brain volume influences, the patients with ASD exhibited smaller left superior frontal volumes on a trend level. Heterogeneous volumetric findings in earlier studies might partly be explained by study samples biased by a high inclusion rate of secondary forms of ASD, which often go along with neuronal abnormalities. Including only patients with high IQ scores might have decreased the influence of secondary forms of ASD and might explain the absence of significant volumetric differences between the patients and the controls in this study.
    Psychiatry Research Neuroimaging 08/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.pscychresns.2014.05.013 · 2.83 Impact Factor
Show more