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Medical Is Autism an Epidemic or Are We Just Noticing More People Who Have It?

  1. Jul 12, 2012 #1

    BWV

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    Is Autism an “Epidemic” or Are We Just Noticing More People Who Have It?

    Good article on the Discover blog:

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/c...are-we-just-noticing-more-people-who-have-it/

     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 12, 2012 #2
    Re: Is Autism an “Epidemic” or Are We Just Noticing More People Who Have It?

    When the alarming rise in autism was first noticed it was vehemently denied in the articles I read that it had anything to do with changed criteria or greater awareness of the disorder. These possibilities were specifically addressed and it was asserted the rise was clear on top of taking those things into account. In other words, they had factored those things ( changed criteria, better screening) in and found an alarming increase in excess of the increase caused by those things. The whole reason the rise was considered alarming, in fact, was because they couldn't account for it this way.

    This current revisionist assertion (in your link), that it was just changed criteria and better screening all along, requires some backing up in the face of the earlier claims this had been thoroughly discounted.
     
  4. Jul 12, 2012 #3

    BWV

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    Re: Is Autism an “Epidemic” or Are We Just Noticing More People Who Have It?

    I disagree that the earlier studies ever addressed or adequately counted the change in criteria. I don't know who "they" are or how "they" were supposed to accurately reflect changes in screening for a diagnosis that is a subjective description of behavior. Indeed, I do not know how one can ever accurately measure autism prevalence 30 or 40 years ago. The wild "epidemic" claims have been largely confined to the popular press and there has been a persistent controversy in medical circles whether absolute rates have increased
     
  5. Jul 12, 2012 #4
    Re: Is Autism an “Epidemic” or Are We Just Noticing More People Who Have It?

    I didn't say "studies" I said "articles", by which I meant news articles, like this one I found from 2002:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2002/10/18/u...baffles-scientists.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm

    Now, that particular article has a correction, added later, which states that increasing public awareness was not actually ruled out. Obviously I'm remembering the original newpaper articles I read at the time. Whatever corrections were printed the next day, if any, escaped me.
     
  6. Jul 12, 2012 #5

    BWV

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    Re: Is Autism an “Epidemic” or Are We Just Noticing More People Who Have It?

    would also point out this recent UK NHS study

    http://www.ic.nhs.uk/news-and-events/press-office/press-releases/one-in-a-hundred-adults-have-an-autism-spectrum-disorder-says-pioneering-new-study [Broken]

     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
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