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Friday, 17 June 2011

Autism Spectrum

The autism spectrum, also called autism spectrum disorders (ASD) or autism spectrum conditions (ASC), with the adjective autistic sometimes replacing the noun autism, is a spectrum of psychological conditions characterized by widespread abnormalities of social interactions and communication, as well as restricted interests and repetitive behaviour.

The terminology of autism can be bewildering. Autism, Asperger syndrome, and PDD-NOS are sometimes called the autistic disorders instead of ASD.Whereas autism itself is often called autistic disorder, childhood autism, or infantile autism. Although the older term pervasive developmental disorder and the newer term autism spectrum disorder largely or entirely overlap,  the former was intended to describe a specific set of diagnostic labels, whereas the latter refers to a postulated spectrum disorder linking various conditions. ASD, in turn, is a subset of the broader autism phenotype (BAP), which describes individuals who may not have ASD but do have autistic-like traits, such as avoiding eye contact. Some autism are severe or moderate or light.

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