In 2007 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported a higher prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in New Jersey, one of the wealthiest states in the United States, than in other surveillance regions.
To examine the association of socioeconomic status (SES) with ASD prevalence.
Information on eight-year-olds with ASD from four counties was abstracted from school and medical records. US Census 2000 provided population and median household income data.
586 children with ASD were identified: autism prevalence was 10.2/1000, higher in boys than girls (16 vs. 4/1000); higher in white and Asian non-Hispanics than in black non-Hispanics and Hispanics (12.5, 14.0, 9.0, and 8.5/1000, respectively); and higher (17.2/1000 (95% CI 14.0-21.1)) in tracts with median income >US$90,000 than in tracts with median income ≤US$30,000 (7.1 (95% CI 5.7-8.9)). Number of professional evaluations was higher, and age at diagnosis younger, in higher income tracts (p < .001), but both measures spanned a wide overlapping range in all SES levels. In multivariable models race/ethnicity did not predict ASD, but the prevalence ratio was 2.2 (95% CI 1.5-3.1) when comparing highest with lowest income tracts.
In the US state of New Jersey, ASD prevalence is higher in wealthier census tracts, perhaps due to differential access to pediatric and developmental services.
"Two studies citing institutional barriers were adjusted for family income and found African American families remained more dissatisfied with the quality of their child's health care than Caucasian families of children with ASD (Liptak et al. 2008; Sansosti et al. 2012). Studies that examined socioeconomic status (SES) and ASD diagnosis reported African American children from low income families were consistently associated with delayed diagnoses , but when controlled for SES African American children with ASD were less likely to have adequate access to health care across incomes (Bhasin and Schendel 2007; Fountain et al. 2011; Jarquin et al. 2011; Liptak et al. 2008; Magana et al. 2012; Mandell et al. 2010a, b; Rosenberg et al. 2011; Thomas et al. 2012; Valicenti-McDermott et al. 2012). "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cultural factors such as health care access and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) symptom interpretations have been proposed as impacting delayed diagnosis and treatment for African American children with ASD. A qualitative study of urban African American families caring for their child with autism was conducted with 24 family members and 28 ASD professionals. Cultural caring meant families protected their child from harm including potential or actual distrustful encounters, and took action for their child and community to optimize their child's health and address the knowledge deficits of ASD within their community. Families and professionals believed cultural influences delayed families' receiving and seeking appropriate health care for the African American child with ASD affecting timely autism diagnosis and treatment.
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 06/2015; 45(10). DOI:10.1007/s10803-015-2482-x · 3.06 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study aims to characterize the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) in Taiwan while examining the effects of age, gender, and urbanization on ASD occurrence. A cross-sectional study was conducted to analyze data from 895,639 random health insurance claimants who claimed medical services in the year 2007. Autism was defined using the ICD-9-CM Diagnosis Code 299.0 (autism, current or active). The prevalence of autistic cases was found to be 12.3‰ (10,868/884,771) in the general population, with the prevalence among males (19.2‰) significantly higher than that among females (6‰). With regards to age distribution, we found that the autistic group (mean age=16.0years) was significantly younger than the general population (mean age=37.2years). A logistic regression analysis found that age, gender, residence urbanization level and Bureau of National Health Insurance regional division all constituted influence factors for autistic occurrence. The results demonstrate the importance of taking into account age, gender, and geographical disparities in autistic prevalence in order to implement appropriate public health policies for the ASD population.
Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders 04/2012; 6(2). DOI:10.1016/j.rasd.2011.09.006 · 2.96 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: GABA (gamma-amino-butyric-acid) is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter in the human brain. It has been proposed that the symptoms of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are the result of deficient GABA neurotransmission, possibly including reduced expression of GABA(A) receptors. However, this hypothesis has not been directly tested in living adults with ASD. In this preliminary investigation, we used Positron Emission Tomography (PET) with the benzodiazepine receptor PET ligand [(11)C]Ro15-4513 to measure α1 and α5 subtypes of the GABA(A) receptor levels in the brain of three adult males with well-characterized high-functioning ASD compared with three healthy matched volunteers. We found significantly lower [(11)C]Ro15-4513 binding throughout the brain of participants with ASD (p < 0.0001) compared with controls. Planned region of interest analyses also revealed significant reductions in two limbic brain regions, namely the amygdala and nucleus accumbens bilaterally. Further analysis suggested that these results were driven by lower levels of the GABA(A) α5 subtype. These results provide initial evidence of a GABA(A) α5 deficit in ASD and support further investigations of the GABA system in this disorder. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Neurodevelopment Disorder'.
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