Study: Changes In Diagnostic Rules May Be Behind Rise In Autism Cases

TIME (1/6, Sifferlin) reports that research “published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics suggests the primary cause of the increase of autism spectrum disorder is actually due to changes in how the disease is diagnosed.” The study, which involved 677,915 Danes born between the years 1980 and 1991, revealed that “significantly more children were diagnosed with autism in 1995 and on, and the team was able to determine that 60% of the increase could be attributed to” broadened changes in diagnostic criteria that took place in 1994 in Denmark. Time also points out that “in May 2013, the American Psychiatric Association published new guidelines for diagnosing autism spectrum disorders in” the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

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— “This May Explain the Rise in Autism Diagnoses,” Alexandra Sifferlin, Time, January , 2015.5

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