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[Profile of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders in an institution in Bogota, Colombia].

Research paper by C C Talero-Gutiérrez, M M Rodríguez, D D De La Rosa, G G Morales, A A Vélez-Van-Meerbeke

Indexed on: 20 May '11Published on: 20 May '11Published in: Neurología



Abstract

To determine the profile of children and adolescents diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in a comprehensive care centre in Bogota, Colombia.A descriptive-correlational study with a sample of patients who had attended the institution from 2003 to 2009. Demographic and clinical aspects were evaluated and a correlation between the diagnosis and severity being analysed in search for risk factors.A total of 138 patients were studied. The average age of onset was 21 months, and diagnosis had been made at 45 months. There was a male predominance (6.15:1). The predominant diagnosis was autistic syndrome (83%), followed by pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (17%). There was no pathological background in the family history, during pregnancy or during the neonatal period. Motor development during the first year was normal but acquisition of language skills was compromised. The specific signs of ASD as regards the disorder in itself, communication skills, spontaneous speech, verbal comprehension, attention, imitation, use of objects, self-care and symbolic play were significantly related to the severity of the disease.Diagnosis of ASD is still delayed in our population and usually after referral from someone other than a health professional. The most important problems were found in communication skills and relationships with peers. The study did not show significant associated risk factors.

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