The association of autism diagnosis with socioeconomic status.

Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, USA.
Autism (Impact Factor: 2.27). 08/2011; 16(2):201-13. DOI: 10.1177/1362361311413397
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT 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.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Identification of early signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) could lead to earlier diagnosis and intervention. This cross-sectional study used the Parent Observation of Early Markers Scale (POEMS, Feldman et al. in J Autism Dev Disord 42:13-12, 2012) to identify early signs of ASD in 69 ASD high-risk (older sibling diagnosed with ASD) and 69 sex and aged-matched ASD low-risk second-born or later infants (no family history of ASD) between 6 and 36 months of age. Family sociodemographic comparisons were also made between the risk groups. The high-risk children had significantly more elevated POEMS items than the low-risk children at 12, 18, 24, 30 and 36 months of age, even when the children subsequently diagnosed with ASD were removed from the analyses. Families of the high-risk group had older parents, lower family income and fewer mothers working out of the home than the low-risk group. These sociodemographic variables were not significantly correlated with POEMS scores. The results suggest that high-risk infants may show signs of the broader ASD phenotype as early as 12 months of age that may be unrelated to observed sociodemographic family differences.
    Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 10/2014; DOI:10.1007/s10803-014-2277-5 · 3.34 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Latino children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are under-identified and under-diagnosed. Children suspected of ASD (28 Anglo and 55 Latino) were assessed via the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) and the mother Intake Form. A sub-sample of 40 children were assessed with the Autism Disagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R). The primary objective was to determine whether Anglo and Latino mothers differed in their symptom reports, and whether their children differed in the professional classifications. Anglo mothers reported significantly more developmental concerns and ASD symptoms than Latino mothers, yet Latino children meeting diagnostic criteria for autism on the ADOS obtained higher ASD severity scores than Anglo children. The authors set forth three possible explanations for such discrepancies between parents and professionals in perceptions and reporting of autism symptoms: (1) Latino mothers are not as aware of the symptoms, and thus do not report them; and (2) Latino mothers are aware of general developmental delay but not as concerned as Anglo mothers until social communication deficits become more apparent. (3) Latino mothers’ parenting practices and cultural beliefs about child-rearing might mask both the ASD symptomatology exhibited by their children and their recognition of it.
    Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders 12/2014; 8(12):1648–1656. DOI:10.1016/j.rasd.2014.08.017 · 2.96 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Research into the genomics of schizophrenia promises much, but so far is resplendent with failures to replicate, and has yielded little of therapeutic potential. Within our bodies resides a dynamic population of gut microbes forming a symbiotic superorganism comprising a myriad of bacteria of approximately 10(14) cells, containing 100 times the number of genes of the human genome and weighing approximately the same as the human brain. Recent preclinical investigations indicate that these microbes majorly impact on cognitive function and fundamental behavior patterns, such as social interaction and stress management. We are pivotally dependent on the neuroactive substances produced by such bacteria. The biological diversity of this ecosystem is established in the initial months of life and is highly impacted upon by environmental factors. To date, this vast quantity of DNA has been largely ignored in schizophrenia research. Perhaps it is time to reconsider this omission.Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication, 7 October 2014; doi:10.1038/mp.2014.93.
    Molecular Psychiatry 10/2014; 19(12). DOI:10.1038/mp.2014.93 · 15.15 Impact Factor

Michael Bruce Brimacombe