Betty on the News: New Studies Reveal 1 in 100 Kids Have Autism
The developmental disorder appears to be more common than we thought
Two new studies conducted by the government reveal that roughly 1 in 100 children have autism disorders, which is quite frightening as a previous U.S. estimate put the numbers between 1 in 150.
Health officials are currently trying to figure out what has caused the dramatic increase, and so far they have chalked it up to greater awareness and spotting autism in younger kids.
Dr. Susan E. Levy of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia says discovering just how many children have autism is very challenging since diagnosis is based on an adolescent’s behavior.
“With diabetes you can get a blood test,” she explained. “As of yet, there’s no consistent biologic marker we can use to make the diagnosis of autism.”
One of the studies was based on telephone surveys, with parents reporting about 1 in 91 children, ages 3 to 17, had the disorder, including milder versions like Asperger’s syndrome.
“Autism is a highly prevalent disorder,” Geraldine Dawson, chief science officer of the advocacy group Autism Speaks, stated. “We’re looking at a major public health challenge.” (FOXNews.com)