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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Assuaging DSM-5 Concerns

Will DSM-5 cause some people on the spectrum to lose their diagnosis -- and their services? The Wall Street Journal reports on preliminary data presented at the American Psychiatric Association annual meeting:
On Sunday, the committee overseeing the changes to the autism criteria announced data from so-called "field trials" conducted by several academic centers showing that children diagnosed with autism or related disorders using the current criteria almost always received a diagnosis using the proposed new criteria as well.
The prevalence of autism using both criteria was essentially unchanged, though there were a few cases where children were diagnosed by one set of criteria and not the other, according to Susan Swedo, head of the work group and a senior researcher at the National Institute of Mental Health. Over 600 children were tested as part of these trials.
The concern that children who need services for autism-related symptoms will be denied them because of proposed changes to the autism diagnostic criteria is "not true," said Dr. Swedo.