How prevalent is autism spectrum disorder? The Centers for Disease Control says estimates of the number of cases of the disorder, now at 1 in 88 children, may drop.
The diagnostic criteria used to identify autism spectrum disorder were revised last year by the American Psychiatric Association.
A recent study by Matthew J. Maenner, Ph.D., of the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities at the CDC, found that 81-percent of kids previously diagnosed with ASD met the new critera.
The new criteria in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition" (DSM-5) don't distinguish subtypes of ASD such as autistic and Asperger disorders. They recognize only two areas of impairment: social communication and restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior interests or activities. All three items in the social communication domain are required.