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United Against Neurelitism
The Autism Spectrum and Related Differences
An Extensive Compilation
Compiled by Mark A. Foster, Ph.D.
compilation.neurelitism.com
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This ebook provides quotations for using Structurization Theory in relation to the autism spectrum. While certain of the extracts are empirical, others are more phenomenological or subjective. My objective is to challenge the ideology of neurelitism, the oppression of persons on the autism spectrum and those with related neurodiversities, such as OCD, ADHD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, and dyscalculia. Hopefully, some portion of this effort may be of assistance to my students and to others.

  • The neurodiversity movement is based on the belief that there is no such thing as "normal" when it comes to the human mental landscape. The neurotypical [NT] ... person simply does not exist. Together we display a wide variety of neurological behaviors and abilities, and most of us exhibit some form of mental "disorder" from time to time, albeit in non-debilitating — or "subclinical" — form: mild depression, temporary anxiety, and so on. We accept that the world is populated with people who are tall and small; who are big-boned and bird-boned; who are ecto-, meso-, and endomorphic. So, as the theory goes, doesn't it make sense to also accept that the world is populated with people who exhibit at least as wide a variety of neurological traits?
    ~ Neurodiversity, from Word Spy [Retrieved August 22, 2007]
  • For me the significance of the "Autistic Spectrum" lies in its call for and anticipation of a "Politics of Neurodiversity". The "Neurologically Different" represent a new addition to the familiar political categories of class/ gender/ race and will augment the insights of the Social Model of Disability.
    The rise of Neurodiversity takes postmodern fragmentation one step further. Just as the postmodern era sees every once too solid belief melt into air, even our most taken-for granted assumptions: that we all more or less see, feel, touch, hear, smell, and sort information, in more or less the same way, (unless visibly disabled) are being dissolved.
    [Citation: Singer, J (1997) “Why can’t you be normal for once in your life? From a problem with no name to a new category of disabiity” in Corker, M and French, S (eds) (1998) Disability Discourse Open University Press, UK (from Singer's 1998 honor's thesis, "Odd People In: A Personal Exploration of a New Social Movement based on Neurological Diversity)]
    ~ Judy Singer [who apparently coined the term "neurodiversity" here], Odd People In: A Personal Exploration of a New Social Movement based on Neurological Diversity [honor's thesis, 1998] [Retrieved April 21, 2009]
  • Neurodiversity is both a concept and a civil rights movement. In its broadest usage, it is a philosophy of social acceptance and equal opportunity for all individuals whose neurology differs from the general, or neurotypical, population. The term is more commonly used, however, to refer to an ongoing campaign to end prejudice and discrimination against autistic people, a group numbering at least 20 million worldwide. (Some estimates of the global autistic population are as high as 60 million.) Although some autistics develop speech at a later age than other children, this is not a result of lower intelligence but reflects a visually oriented mode of language processing, which may include advanced written language abilities.
    ~ Ventura33's Neurodiversity Page [Retrieved September 10, 2007]
  • The common assumption in cognitive studies these days is that the human brain is the most complicated two-and-a-half pounds of matter in the known universe. With so much going on in a brain, the argument goes, the occasional bug is inevitable: hence autism and other departures from the neurological norm.... Neurodiversity may be every bit as crucial for the human race as biodiversity is for life in general. Who can say what form of wiring will prove best at any given moment? Cybernetics and computer culture, for example, may favor a somewhat autistic cast of mind.
    ~ Harvey Blume, "Neurodiversity," The Atlantic Monthly, September 1, 1998, and found on Word Spy [Retrieved September 21, 2007]
  • Neurodiversity is a word that has been around since autistic people started putting sites on the internet.
    It has since been expanded to include not just people who are known as "autistics and cousins", but to express the idea that a diversity of ways of human thinking is a good thing, and dyslexic, autistic, ADHD, dyspraxic and tourettes people to name but a few all have some element in common not being neurotypical in the way our brains work.
    ~ Coventry Neurodiversity Group [Retrieved September 21, 2007]
  • neurodiversity n. the whole of human mental or psychological neurological structures or behaviors, seen as not necessarily problematic, but as alternate, acceptable forms of human biology.
    ~ Double-Tongued Dictionary [Retrieved September 12, 2007]
  • Neurotypical syndrome is a neurobiological disorder characterized by preoccupation with social concerns, delusions of superiority, and obsession with conformity.
    ~ Institute for the Study of the Neurologically Typical [a parody site] [Retrieved September 21, 2007]
  • What we [high- and low-functioning autistic women] are is the first of a new wave of consciousness in a planet coming to awareness of its extraordinary diversity. We are the first wave of a new liberation movement, a very late wave, and a big one, just when you thought the storm of identity politics, with its different minorities jockeying for recognition, was surely over. We are part of the ground swell of what I want to call *Neurological Liberation.* It is my hope that this book will begin the task of adding a further intersection to the current framework of gender, class, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, age, and disability. I hope it will add *neurological difference* to the existing set of social variables....
    ~ From the promotional website for Jean Kearns Miller (ed.), Women From Another Planet?: Our Lives in the Universe of Autism [Retrieved September 8, 2007]
  • ... UCSF [University of California at San Francisco] neurologist Kirk Wilhelmsen ... describes himself and his son as being "somewhere on that grand [autistic] spectrum" .... It may be that autistic people are essentially different from "normal" people, he says, and that it is precisely those differences that make them invaluable to the ongoing evolution of the human race.
    "If we could eliminate the genes for things like autism, I think it would be disastrous," says Wilhelmsen. "The healthiest state for a gene pool is maximum diversity of things that might be good."
    One of the first people to intuit the significance of this was Asperger himself - weaving his continuum like a protective blanket over the young patients in his clinic as the Nazis shipped so-called mental defectives to the camps. "It seems that for success in science and art," he wrote, "a dash of autism is essential."
    ~ Steve Silberman, The Geek Syndrome [Wired, issue 9.2, December 2001] [Retrieved September 8, 2007]
  • ... I have "whistle-blowed" and opened up a "pandora's box" about the "institutionalised-disablism" and especially "neurotypicalism" against "Neurodiverse" and other disabled people ....
    ~ Colin Revell, "In response to the recent 'injunction' forced upon me by the 'Disablist' Courts in the East Riding and Hull Locality by the claimant East Riding of Yorkshire Council, who the Judge (HHJ Grenfell), at Kingston Upon Hull Combined Courts totally abused my basic human rights and 'ignored' all submissions within my case." [Retrieved October 27, 2007]
  • Asperger's syndrome (AS) is one of subcategories [sic] of pervasive developmental disorder [PDD] defined by behavioral symptoms. These symptoms include repetitive and stereotyped patterns similar to the behavior of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). These are included by a broader concept newly named as obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders. While there may be biological bases common to the repetitive behaviors of PDD and OCD, differential diagnosis is important from the clinical point of view. Most of the obsession-like and compulsion-like behaviors of the former lack ego-dystonic features. Moreover, AS has no clinically significant delay in language in definition, but has pragmatic disorder, which should not be seen in OCD.
    ~ Hashimoto O. [Department of Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Nursing and Rehabilitation, Aino University], "Similarities and differences between the behavior of Asperger's syndrome and obsessive-compulsive disorder." Nippon Rinsho. 2007 Mar;65(3):506-11. [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • The pathophysiology of childhood disintegrative disorder and Asperger disorder is unknown, although Asperger disorder appears to follow a familial transmission pattern. Associated disorders like seizures are less common in Asperger disorder than in autism.
    ~ Autistic Spectrum Disorders [Retrieved August 23, 2007]
  • The concept of a disorder spectrum may seem stretched beyond the bounds of clinical utility when it encompasses such seemingly disparate disorders as autism, body dysmorphic disorder, and pathological gambling. But many experts believe that each of these diagnoses merits a place in the obsessive-compulsive spectrum, not only because all of the disorders involve repetitive thoughts and behaviors but also because recent evidence suggests that they share neurobiologic origins.
    "The idea is that the same genetic mechanisms or circuits that drive the repetitive behaviors in one disorder also play a role in the other disorders," explained Eric Hollander, MD, at the annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association. "We can think about these disorders as being different phenotypic expressions of the same underlying genotypic difficulties." The result, he noted, is that "this symptom dimension cuts across traditional diagnostic boundaries."
    Reviewing the clinical features and neurobiology of the obsessive-compulsive spectrum, Dr. Hollander, who is Professor of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, classified the disorders into three subgroups:
    • Those involving excessive preoccupation with body appearance or sensation, such as body dysmorphic disorder or anorexia nervosa.
    • Neurologic disorders that present with repetitive behaviors, such as Tourette syndrome, Sydenham's chorea, and autism.
    • Repetitive behaviors driven by pleasure or arousal, such as sexual compulsions, kleptomania, trichotillomania, and pathological gambling.
    ... Individuals with a disorder from the first subgroup "are obsessed and preoccupied with imagined defects in their appearance," Dr. Hollander said. "They often have cosmetic surgery or perform other rituals to try to change their appearance."
    ... The second subgroup of OC spectrum disorders, those involving neurologic diagnoses, is represented by autism, which is characterized by striking social deficits, speech and language problems, and—of relevance here—repetitive behaviors and a narrow range of interests. "We think of this disorder as having multiple, different genetic components, each coding for a different symptom dimension," Dr. Hollander said.
    ... The third cluster of disorders in the OCD spectrum includes pathological gambling and other impulsive disorders, which are driven by pleasure, arousal, and gratification. "These patients have a hard time putting the brake on their impulses, and all kinds of functional impairment result," Dr. Hollander explained.
    ~ Peter Doskoch, The OCD Spectrum: From Autism to Problem Gambling [Retrieved August 4, 2007]
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorder comprises a hypothesized grouping of psychiatric and medical disorders thought to be related to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Many of these disorders overlap with OCD in symptomatic profile, demographics, family history, neurobiology, comorbidity, clinical course and response to various pharmacotherapies.
    Proposed OCD spectrum disorders

    Eating Disorder
      • Bulimia Nervosa
      • Binge Eating Disorder
    Pathological Gambling
    Body Dysmorphic Disorder
    Autistic Disorder
    Trichotillomania
    Dermatillomania
    Compulsive Buying
    Kleptomania
    Hypochondriasis
    Depersonalisation
    Sydenham's chorea
    Torticollis
    Tourette syndrome
    Sexual compulsions
    Self injurious behaviour
    ~ Wikipedia, Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorder [Retrieved August 4, 2007]
  • There are many other disorders that have qualities involving repetitive thoughts and behaviors, akin to Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). These disorders are sometimes called as [sic] Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorders (OC Spectrum Disorders) because of the similarities. Not only that, but some experts believe that these disorders may all have similar underlying neurobiological causes as OCD. Neuroimaging studies taken of the brain show similar activity between OCD and certain OC spectrum disorders. As well as having similarities to OCD, OC Spectrum Disorders are also very comorbid with OCD and vice versa. Many spectrum disorders are classified as impulse control disorders -- where impulsivity can be thought of as seeking a small, short term gain at the expense of a large, long term loss.
    ~ BrainPhysics: Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorders [Retrieved August 23, 2007]
  • Paraphilias are socially deviant, persistent, highly arousing, sexual fantasies and urges that cause personal distress and/or social difficulties. A paraphilia can revolve around a particular object (e.g., children, animals, feet, rubber) or around a particular act (e.g., exposing oneself, being physically injured). A peron with a paraphilia is preoccupied with the object or behavior and requires it for sexual gratification. These "fantasies and urges" are not part of normal arousal patterns and are often described as "compulsions" by therapists, patients, and legal sources. In most cases, sexual activities outside the boundaries of the paraphilia are not arousing unless the person fantasizes about the paraphilia at the same time. Paraphilias are generally more common in men than in women. Paraphilias are not the same as unwanted sexual obsessions, which cause anxiety rather than arousal.
    Paraphilia-related disorders (PRD), also referred to as non-paraphiliac sexual addiction or sexual compulsivity, are not well represented in the conventional diagnostic naming systems, though PRDs have been documented for some time. These disorders include socially accepted forms of sexual expression that become intrusive and excessive, accompanied by personal distress and significant impairment. Common PRDs include compulsive masturbation, extended promiscuity, pornography dependence, dependence on anonymous sexual outlets such as phone sex or Internet "cybersex," and severe sexual desire incompatibility. PRDs often meet psychiatric criteria for an impulse-control disorder, as these behaviors represent a failure to resist an impulse, drive, or temptation to perform an act that is harmful to the person or others....
    Paraphilias and PRDs are complex psychiatric disorders therefore exact causes are not known, although many theories. Whether they represent an addiction, obsessive-compulsive disorder, impulse control disorder, or a pattern of hypersexualism is still a matter of controversy. Some have argued that since these disorders represent an ongoing pattern of uncontrolled sexual behavior, they should be viewed as an addiction, because like substance abuse, these consist of a pathological relationship with a mood-altering experience. Others have argued against this idea, instead describing paraphilias and PDRs as symptoms of an underlying obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
    ~ BrainPhysics: Sexual Compulsivity [Retrieved August 23, 2007]
  • Clinically recognized paraphilias ....
    • Exhibitionism: the recurrent urge or behavior to expose one's genitals to an unsuspecting person.
    • Fetishism: the use of non-sexual or nonliving objects or part of a person's body to gain sexual excitement. Partialism refers to fetishes specifically involving nonsexual parts of the body.
    • Frotteurism: the recurrent urges or behavior of touching or rubbing against a nonconsenting person.
    • Pedophilia: the sexual attraction to prepubescent or peripubescent children.
    • Sexual Masochism: the recurrent urge or behavior of wanting to be humiliated, beaten, bound, or otherwise made to suffer.
    • Sexual Sadism: the recurrent urge or behavior involving acts in which the pain or humiliation of the victim is sexually exciting.
    • Transvestic fetishism: a sexual attraction towards the clothing of the opposite gender.
    • Voyeurism: the recurrent urge or behavior to observe an unsuspecting person who is naked, disrobing or engaging in sexual activities, or may not be sexual in nature at all.
    • Vincilagnia: Being sexually aroused by bondage
    • Other rarer paraphilias are grouped together under Other paraphilias not otherwise specified (ICD-9-CM equivalent of "Sexual Disorder NOS") and include telephone scatalogia (obscene phone calls), necrophilia (corpses), partialism (exclusive focus on one part of the body), zoophilia (animals), coprophilia (feces), klismaphilia (enemas), urophilia (urine), emetophilia (vomit).
    ~ "Clinically recognized paraphilias" in Wikipedia article on Paraphilia [Retrieved August 23, 2007]
  • Researchers are paying more attention to the fact that out of control sexual behavior can be reduced with mood elevating drugs such as the SSRIs. As yet, we do not know the extent to which such pharmacological benefits, when they occur, result from improvement in mood or specific inhibition of sexual response or both.
    ~ John Bancroft and Zoran Vukadinovic. "Sexual addiction, sexual compulsivity, sexual impulsivity, or what? Toward a theoretical model" Journal of Sex Research. August, 2004. [Retrieved October 9, 2007]
  • There has been increasing recognition in recent years that a number of clinical psychiatric syndromes maybe related to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD); these form a distinct category of inter-related disorders referred to as "obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders. Such disorders and OCD are said to overlap in terms of phenomenologic features, clinical course and treatment response; may share a common pathophysiologic basis and genetic predisposition; and often occur comorbidly. Although opinion differs on the definition of these disorders, they are said to include impulse-control disorders (ICD, e.g., trichotillomania, pathological gambling, compulsive buying, onchophagia and psychogenic excoriation), somatoform disorders (e.g., body dysmorphic disorder and hypochondriasis), eating disorders (e.g., anorexia and binge eating), compulsive sexual disorders, as well as Tourette's syndrome and other movement disorders. Often included are so-called "schizo-obsessive disorders," "delusional and schizotypical OCD" and "obsessional schizophrenia." Inclusion of certain addictive disorders, impulsive personality disorders, and repetitive self-mutilation have also been proposed. Most recently, subsyndromal OCD OCD that does not cause impairment or distress has been added to the list. Since the grouping of these conditions is based largely on clinical observations, the breadth of this spectrum of disorders remains subject to debate, and established operational criteria for inclusion are lacking. However, there is no doubt that these clinical syndromes are common and widespread (affecting as much as 10% of the population'), cause significant distress and functional impairment, and often overlap or coexist with one another. Often concealed or denied, poorly diagnosed and inadequately treated, they appear to be the source of significant morbidity.
    ~ A V Ravindran, MB, BS, PhD [Department of Psychiatry, University of Ottawa, and Institute of Mental Health Research, Royal Ottawa Hospital, Ottawa, Ontario], "Obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorders" [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • There are conflicting views regarding the classification of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in the next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). In an attempt to identify areas of expert consensus/disagreement and thus help steer research efforts toward DSM-V, we conducted a worldwide survey among OCD experts....
    Regarding whether OCD should be removed from the current supraordinate category of anxiety disorders, approximately 60% agreed and 40% disagreed.... The most frequent reason for agreeing was that obsessions and compulsions, rather than anxiety, are the fundamental features of the disorder. The main reasons for disagreeing were that OCD and other anxiety disorders respond to similar treatments and tend to co-occur....
    The survey also revealed that if a new OCD spectrum disorders category is created, the expert consensus is to keep it narrow and only include body dysmorphic disorder (72% agree), trichotillomania (70% agree), and possibly tic disorders (61% agree) and hypochondriasis (57% agree). There was mixed support (45% agree) for the inclusion of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. A majority of experts disagreed with the inclusion of other disorders classified elsewhere in DSM-IV-TR....
    ~ David Mataix-Cols, Ph.D., Alberto Pertusa, M.D. and James F. Leckman, M.D., Issues for DSM-V: How Should Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders Be Classified? [editorial in the September, 2007, issue of The American Journal of Psychiatry] [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • A wide range of psychiatric and medical disorders have been hypothesized to be related to obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and thus, together, to form a family of disorders known as obsessive compulsive (or OCD) spectrum disorder. The grouping of these conditions is based on their phenomenological similarities with OCD (i.e., obsessive thinking and/or compulsive behaviors), as well as their having courses of illness, comorbidity and family history patterns, biological abnormalities, and treatment responses similar to OCD. Proposed OCD spectrum disorders have included body dysmorphic disorder, hypochondriasis, anorexia nervosa, trichotillomania, and some forms of delusional disorder, among others. However, conditions with impulsive features have also been hypothesized to belong to this family, including impulse control disorders in general, paraphilias and nonparaphilic sexual addictions, bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder, and Tourette's disorder. We review the evidence supporting the grouping of these conditions into an OCD spectrum disorder family. We conclude that these disorders are different in some ways from OCD, but that they also have many similarities with OCD, and may therefore be related to one another and to OCD. In addition, we hypothesize that some of the differences among them may be explained in part by variation along a dimension of compulsivity versus impulsivity. Finally, because most of these conditions appear to be related to mood disorder, we hypothesize that the OCD spectrum disorder family may belong to the larger family of affective spectrum disorder.
    ~ McElroy SL, Phillips KA, Keck PE Jr., "Obsessive compulsive spectrum disorder." [abstract] Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. 1994 Oct;55 Suppl:33-51; discussion 52-3. [Retrieved August 24, 2007]
  • An association between epilepsy and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) has been noted. The response of two patients with OCD and comorbid epilepsy to carbamazepine is reported. It is hypothesized that obsessive compulsive symptoms may be a variant of epileptiform forced thinking in a subgroup of patients, and may be preferentially responsive to anticonvulsant therapy.
    ~ L.F. Koopowitz and M. Berk, "Response of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder to Carbamazepine in Two Patients with Comorbid Epilepsy" (abstract) [Retrieved August 23, 2007]
  • ... all kinds of problems with impulse control (called compulsions by laymen) such as overeating, gambling, paraphilias, various patterns of alcohol and drug abuse, and so forth have been labeled Obsessive Compulsive spectrum disorders because SSRIs are sometimes effective. The reason these compulsions were originally excluded from OCD was that they revolved around giving in to temptation, over indulgence of a forbidden pleasurable activity.
    ~ Simon Sobo, M.D., from The Alternative Mental Health News, issue 25, August 2002 [Retrieved August 23, 2007]
  • At the OCD Recovery Centers of America we receive requests from around the U.S. for training and or affiliation with our center from professionals working with persons suffering from Obsessive Compulsive (OC) Spectrum Disorders including: OCD, Body Dysmorphic Disorder, Hypochondriasis, Tourette's disorder, Trichotillomania, and Asperger's Syndrome.
    ~ OCD Recovery Centers of America [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • Asperger syndrome is considered to be a form of childhood autism (see, e.g., 209850). The DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association, 1994) specifies several diagnostic criteria for Asperger syndrome, which has many of the same features as autism. In general, patients with Asperger syndrome and autism exhibit qualitative impairment in social interaction, as manifest by impairment in the use of nonverbal behaviors such as eye-to-eye gaze, facial expression, body postures, and gestures, failure to develop appropriate peer relationships, and lack of social sharing or reciprocity. Patients also exhibit restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests, and activities, including abnormal preoccupation with certain activities and inflexible adherence to routines or rituals. Asperger syndrome is primarily distinguished from autism by the higher cognitive abilities and a more normal and timely development of language and communicative phrases. Gillberg et al. (2001) described the development of the Asperger syndrome (and high-functioning autism) Diagnostic Interview (ASDI), which they claimed has a strong validity in the diagnosis of the disorder.
    Forms of Asperger syndrome have been mapped to chromosome 3q (ASPG1), chromosome 17p (ASPG2; 608631), and chromosome 1q21-q22 (ASPG3; 608781). Two X-linked forms, ASPGX1 (300494) and ASPGX2 (300497), are associated with mutation in the NLGN3 gene (300336) and the NLGN4 gene (300427), respectively.
    ~ Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man, Susceptibility to Asperger Syndrome [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • Co-morbid disorders commonly associated with Asperger’s syndrome
    Research indicates people with Asperger syndrome may be far more likely to have the associated conditions. People with Aspergers syndrome symptoms may frequently be diagnosed with gastrointestinal disorders, sensory problems, seizures and epilepsy, fragile X syndrome, ADHD, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, Tourette syndrome, general anxiety disorder, Tuberous sclerosis, clinical depression, oppositional defiant disorder, antisocial personality disorder, dysgraphia (problems with writing), dyspraxia (problems with movement), dyslexia (problems with reading) and dyscalculia (problems with numbers).
    ~ Autism, Asperger's & Related Disorders [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • Co-morbid disorders associated with Asperger syndrome
    There are several psychiatric disorders that are commonly associated with Asperger's syndrome. Children are likely to present with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), while depression is a common diagnosis in adolescents and adults.
    People with Aspergers syndrome symptoms may frequently be diagnosed with clinical depression, oppositional defiant disorder, antisocial personality disorder, Tourette syndrome, ADHD, general anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder or obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. Dysgraphia, dyspraxia, dyslexia or dyscalculia may also be diagnosed.
    ~ Barry Morris, Introduction to Asperger's syndrome [Retrieved October 2, 2007]
  • [Asperger's syndrome] is a variant of autism, but exhibits its own characteristics....
    Cognitively, those with Asperger's are obsessed with complex topics, like music, history, and weather. They are typically poor at math and may have dyslexia and a lack of common sense. IQs are usually not a variable; they can fall anywhere along the spectrum.
    A child diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome will exhibit several behavioral traits that will help doctors identify the disorder. These include awkward or clumsy movements, sensory problems, and socially inappropriate reciprocal interaction. Other behavioral symptoms include sensitivity to smells, tastes or touch. Because of this, people with the disorder may prefer certain foods or clothing all the time.
    As with autism, Asperger's can be mild or severe. Those with it can often just be labeled as "eccentric" because of their normal IQ and high intelligence in one certain area. This, coupled with low social skills and sometimes inappropriate or strange social behavior, can often be tell-tale signs of Asperger's Syndrome.
    ~ 4 Troubled Teens, Symptoms Of Aspergers Syndrome [Retrieved October 12, 2007]
  • What Is Stimming [self-stimulating]?
    Stimming is repetitive stereotypic behavior commonly found in autism, but also found in other developmental disabilities. This behavior may involve any or all of the senses in various degrees in different individuals. Several examples are listed below.
    Visual – staring at lights, blinking, gazing at fingers, lining up objects
    Auditory – tapping fingers, snapping fingers, grunting, humming
    Smell – smelling objects, sniffing people
    Taste – licking objects, placing objects in mouth
    Tactile – scratching, clapping, feeling objects nail biting, hair twisting, toe-walking
    Vestibular – rocking, spinning, jumping, pacing
    Proprioception – teeth grinding, pacing, jumping
    ~ Stimming [Retrieved October 5, 2007]
  • Developmentalists have not reached consensus as to whether there is any difference between AS [Asperger's Syndrome] and what is termed high functioning autism (HFA). Some researchers have suggested that the basic neuropsychological deficit is different for the two conditions, but others have been unconvinced that any meaningful distinction can be made between them.
    ~ Stephen Bauer, M.D., M.P.H., Asperger Syndrome [Retrieved September 26, 2007]
  • Asperger Syndrome (AS) is a type of high functioning autistic spectrum disorder in which there is no clinically significant delay in language and an IQ of at least average (often higher). Although people with AS learn to speak at or near the usual age, they usually have an odd style of speech and difficulties with nonverbal communication. Many people with Asperger Syndrome have fine and/or gross motor skills delays although this is not necessary for a diagnosis. People with AS also frequently have difficulties with math and with organizational skills.
    ~ High Functioning Autistic Spectrum Conditions: High Functioning Autism, PDD-NOS, Asperger Syndrome [Retrieved September 26, 2007]
  • Symptoms [of Asperger Syndrome]
    • Abnormal nonverbal communication, such as problems with eye contact, facial expressions, body postures, or gestures
    • Failure to develop peer relationships
    • Being singled out by other children as "weird" or "strange"
    • Lack of spontaneous seeking to share enjoyment, interests or achievements with others (a lack of showing, bringing, or pointing out objects of interest to other people)
    • Markedly impaired expression of pleasure in other people's happiness
    • Inability to return social or emotional feelings
    • Inflexibility about specific routines or rituals
    • Repetitive finger flapping, twisting, or whole body movements
    • Unusually intense preoccupation with narrow areas of interest, such as obsession with train schedules, phone books, or collections of objects
    • Preoccupation with parts of whole objects
    • Repetitive behaviors, including repetitive self-injurious behavior
    ~ MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: Asperger syndrome [Retrieved October 1, 2007]
  • Are AS (Asperger Syndrome) or HFA (High Functioning Autism) disabilities?
    • Both can be thought of as a personality style in which the individual does not ‘tune in’ naturally to people and is more attracted by objects, systems, and how things work
    • Both involve strengths in attention to detail, and can be associated with talent in areas such as mathematics, science, fact-collecting or rule-based subjects
    • Both are disabilities only in environments where the individual is expected to be both sociable and a good communicator
    What is the difference between AS and HFA?
    Both share:
    • Abnormalities in social development
    • Abnormalities in communicative development
    • The presence of unusual and strong, narrow repetitive behaviours (sometimes called obsessions)
    • Average or above average intelligence (IQ)
    But in HFA there is language delay; in AS there is not.
    ~ Autism Research Centre, Asperger Syndrome [Retrieved September 26, 2007]
  • In a new study, published in the September Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, researchers have found that symptoms [of autism] can improve with age.
    "On average, people are getting better," says Paul T. Shattuck, assistant professor at the George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, who worked on the study as a graduate student and post-doctoral fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Waisman Center and is the first author of the paper....
    "For all major symptoms, the percentage of people who improved was always greater than the percentage who worsened," Shattuck says. "If there was significant symptom change over time, it was always in the direction of improvement, though there was always a group in the middle that showed no change. The mean never went down."
    Like most people, individuals with developmental disabilities such as autism continue to grow and change over time, Shattuck explains: "Their development is not frozen in time and forever the same. That's just not the case."
    ~ Washington University in St. Louis, Study shows autism symptoms can improve into adulthood [September 25, 2007] [Retrieved September 25, 2007]
  • In describing the typical symptoms and profile of Asperger Syndrome, it must be stressed that children will vary in their own unique expression of any processing disorder, be it AS or dyslexia. Aspergers could be conceived as a “social dyslexia.”
    As the dyslexic child struggles with the with alien world of print, so to the Aspergers child finds himself lost in reading social interactions and intent. In both stories, an naturally unfolding developmental process is stunted, leaving the child helpless, if left without the support and understanding of the adult world.
    ~ Richard Howlin, Asperger Syndrome: Social Dyslexia [Retrieved October 14, 2007]
  • People who identify themselves as members of the "autistic community" are generally, as described in the opening paragraph of this article, autistic adults (sometimes adolescents) and tend to focus their concern on autistic adults. They usually resist the idea of a cure for or prevention of autism and promote the beliefs that autistic children should be educated and brought up to be healthy autistic adults and that society should be more accepting and tolerant of autistic people.
    "Autistic community" groups promote the idea of autism as an inherent part of an autistic person's personality, and often reject the person-first terminology "person with autism" in favour of "autistic person". They generally perceive Asperger syndrome and classic autism more as part of a continuous spectrum than as distinct conditions.
    ~ Wikipedia, Autistic community [Retrieved October 4, 2007]
  • ... the neuropsychiatric deficits inherent of AS predispose both to insomnia and to anxiety and mood disorders. Therefore a careful assessment of sleep quality should be an integral part of the treatment plan in these individuals. Conversely, when assessing adults with chronic insomnia the possibility of autism spectrum disorders as one of the potential causes of this condition should be kept in mind.
    ... Clinicians with substantial experience in AS have noticed that anticipatory anxiety is a nearly universal feature of AS as a result of the developmental deficit in intersubjectivity and excessive adherence to routines inherent in AS. Both the temperament and character of AS adults predispose to anxiety, which might be difficult to classify in terms of present clinical anxiety disorders. Most AS subjects in the present study had one or more anxiety disorders but also the remaining ones displayed subthreshold anxiety symptoms. This is in accordance with the observation that those few AS subjects without axis-I and axis-II comorbidity also had symptoms of insomnia.
    ~ Pekka Tani, Nina Lindberg, Taina Nieminen-von Wendt, Lennart von Wendt, Lauri Alanko, Björn Appelberg and Tarja Porkka-Heiskanen, "Insomnia is a frequent finding in adults with Asperger syndrome" [Retrieved October 8, 2007]
  • Children with Asperger’s Syndrome are known to be more naturally "anxious" than their non-ASD peers. The challenges presented by the 5 characteristics of Asperger’s Syndrome (social impairment, communication impairment, sensory sensitivity, repetitive behaviours and difficulty with change) potentially make their world a confusing and frightening reality. Add anxiety to the mix and you may have a child who is anxious and worried 100% of the time. Anxiety and stress over sustained periods of time is shown to lead to exhaustion, the development of allergies and illness.
    Children with Asperger’s Syndrome demonstrate their anxiety through a variety/combination of behaviours:-
    • Physical symptoms (stomach pains; headache; racing heart; sweaty palms; constricted chest; tight muscles; insomnia)
    • Avoidance desire
    • Inattention and
    • Irritability
    ~ Asperger’s Syndrome and Anxiety [Retrieved December 3, 2007]
  • F84.5 Asperger's syndrome
    A disorder of uncertain nosological validity, characterized by the same type of qualitative abnormalities of reciprocal social interaction that typify autism, together with a restricted, stereotyped, repetitive repertoire of interests and activities. It differs from autism primarily in the fact that there is no general delay or retardation in language or in cognitive development. This disorder is often associated with marked clumsiness. There is a strong tendency for the abnormalities to persist into adolescence and adult life. Psychotic episodes occasionally occur in early adult life.
    Autistic psychopathy [Hans Asperger's term for Asperger's syndrome]
    Schizoid disorder of childhood [another term for Asperger's syndrome]
    ~ World Health Organization, International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 10th Revision (ICD-10) [Retrieved December 20, 2007]
  • In 1964, child psychiatrist Sula Wolff had an unpublished paper entitled “Schizoid personality disorder in childhood” read at the Sixth International Congress of Psychotherapy. She did not formally publish on the topic until 1979; her first published paper on the topic was entitled “Schizoid Personality in Childhood: A Comparative Study of Schizoid, Autistic and Normal Children”. In this paper, Wolff identified her ‘schizoid children’ with Hans Asperger’s ‘autistic psychopaths’. Thereafter, she published regularly on the topic of ‘schizoid disorder of childhood’. In 1995, she wrote a comprehensive treatment of ‘schizoid Disorder of chilhood’ entitled Loners: The Life Path of Unusual Children. Critically, her book was highly regarded. However, it seems that ultimately, her lifelong work on ‘schizoid disorder of childhood’ would be ignored by mainstream psychiatric academia with favor going to an ‘autism spectrum’ approach.
    ~ Evolution of Asperger's Syndrome Diagnosis [Retrieved December 12, 2010]
  • 313.22       Introverted disorder of childhood
    Include:
    • Social withdrawal of childhood or adolescence
    • Withdrawal reaction of childhood or adolescence
    ~ ICD-9, "313 Disturbance of emotions specific to childhood and adolescence [Retrieved May 25, 2008] (the same code as schizoid disorder of childhood or adolescence in the DSM-III)
  • 15. Dementia Praecox
    This group cannot be satisfactorily defined at the present time as there as there are still too many points at issue as to what constitute the essential clinical features of dementia praecox....
    ... The term “schizophrenia” is now used by many writers instead of dementia praecox....
    Appearance of autistic thinking and dream-like ideas, peculiar feelings of being forced, of interference with the mind, of physical or mystical influences, but with retention of clearness in other fields (orientation, memory, etc.).
    Committee on Statistics of the American Medico-Psychological Association (now the American Psychiatric Association) in collaboration with the Bureau of Statistics of the National Committee for Mental Hygiene, Statistical Manual for the Use of Institutions for the Insane. New York. 1918. Page 24.
    [Note: The first version of the DSM (1952) was a revision of a manual, published in ten editions between 1918 and 1942, chronologically named: Statistical Manual for the Use of Institutions for the Insane (1918), Statistical Manual for the Use of Institutions for Mental Diseases (1920), Statistical Manual for the Use of Institutions for Mental Defectives (1941), and Statistical Manual for the Use of Hospitals for Mental Diseases (1942).]
  • ... schizophrenic reactions, characterized by fundamental disturbances in reality relationships and concept formations, with associated affective, behavioral, and intellectual disturbances, marked by a tendency to retreat from reality, by regressive trends, by bizarre behavior, by disturbances in stream of thought, and by formation of delusions and hallucinations ....
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: Mental Disorders [DSM-I], 1952, p.12 [Retrieved December 22, 2007]
  • 000-x20 SCHIZOPHRENIC REACTIONS This term is synonymous with the formerly used term dementia praecox. It represents a group of psychotic reactions characterized by fundamental disturbances in reality relationships and concept formations, with affective, behavioral, and intellectual disturbances in varying degrees and mixtures. The disorders are marked by strong tendency to retreat from reality, by emotional disharmony, unpredictable disturbances in stream of thought, regressive behavior, and in some, by a tendency to "deterioration." The predominant symptomatology will be the determining factor in classifying such patients into types.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: Mental Disorders [DSM-I], 1952, p.26 [Retrieved December 22, 2007]
  • 000-x28 Schizophrenic reaction, childhood type
    Here will be classified those schizophrenic reactions occurring before puberty. The clinical picture may differ from schizophrenic reactions occurring in other age periods because of the immaturity and plasticity of the patient at the time of onset of the reaction. Psychotic reactions in children, manifesting primarily autism, will be classified here. Special symptomatology may be added to the diagnosis as manifestations.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: Mental Disorders [DSM-I], 1952, p.28 [other than "schizophrenic reaction, paranoid type" and "schizoid personality," the only disorder labelled "autistic" in the manual] [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • 000-x24 Schizophrenic reaction, paranoid type
    This type of reaction is characterized by autistic, unrealistic thinking, with mental content composed chiefly of delusions of persecution, and/or of grandeur, ideas of reference, and often hallucinations. It is often characterized by unpredictable'behavior, with a fairly constant attitude of hostility and aggression. Excessive religiosity may be present with or without delusions of persecution. There may be an expansive delusional system of omnipotence, genius, or special ability. The systematized paranoid hypochondriacal states are included in this group.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: Mental Disorders [DSM-I], 1952, pp.26-27 [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • 000-x42 Schizoid personality
    Inherent traits in such personalities are (1) avoidance of close relations with others, (2) inability to express directly hostility or even ordinary aggressive feelings, and (3) autistic thinking. These qualities result early in coldness, aloofness, emotional detachment, fearfulness, avoidance of competition, and day dreams revolving around the need for omnipotence. As children, they are usually quiet, shy, obedient, sensitive and rearing. At puberty, they frequently become more withdrawn, then manifesting the aggregate of personality traits known as introversion, namely, quietness, seclusiveness, "shut-in-ness," and unsociability, often with eccentricity.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual: Mental Disorders [DSM-I], 1952, p.35 [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • 295 Schizophrenia
    This large category includes a group of disorders manifested by characteristic disturbances of thinking, mood and behavior. Disturbances in thinking are marked by alterations of concept formation which may lead to misinterpretation of reality and sometimes to delusions and hal lucinations, which frequently appear psychologically self-protective. Corollary mood changes include ambivalent, constricted and inappropriate emotional responsiveness and loss of empathy with others. Behavior may be withdrawn, regressive and bizarre. The schizophrenias, in which the mental status is attributable primarily to a thought disorder, are to be distinguished from the Major affective illnesses (q.v.) which are dominated by a mood disorder. The Paranoid states (q.v.) are distinguished from schizophrenia by the narrowness of their distortions of reality and by the absence of other psychotic symptoms.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-II], 1968, p.33 [Retrieved December 22, 2007]
  • 295.8* Schizophrenia, childhood type*
    This category is for cases in which schizophrenic symptoms appear before puberty. The condition may be manifested by autistic, atypical, and withdrawn behavior; failure to develop identity separate from the mother's; and general unevenness, gross immaturity and inadequacy in development. These developmental defects may result in mental retardation, which should also be diagnosed. (This category is for use in the United States and does not appear in ICD-8. It is equivalent to "Schizophrenic reaction, childhood type" in DSM-I.)
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-II], 1968, p.35 [other than "schizoid personality disorder," the only disorder labelled "autistic" in the manual] [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • 301.2 Schizoid personality
    This behavior pattern manifests shyness, over-sensitivity, seclusiveness, avoidance of close or competitive relationships, and often eccentricity. Autistic thinking without loss of capacity to recognize reality is common, as is daydreaming and the inability to express hostility and ordinary aggressive feelings. These patients react to disturbing experiences and conflicts with apparent detachment.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-II], 1968, p.42 [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • Some believe that Infantile Autism is the earliest form of Schizophrenia, whereas others believe that they are two distinct conditions. However, there is apparently no increased incidence of Schizophrenia in the families of children with Infantile Autism, which supports the hypothesis that the two disorders are unrelated.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-III], 1980, p.87 [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
    [Compiler's note: Autism was not a DSM category until 1980. Under the DSM-I, children with autistic behaviors were diagnosed with schizophrenic reaction, childhood type. Adults were diagnosed with either schizophrenic reaction, paranoid type or schizoid personality disorder. Now, researchers and clinicians certainly talked about autism, even under the DSM-I. However, the standard view was that it was, in children, a stage, or manifestation, of childhood schizophrenia. This quotation indicates the changing in perspectives.]
  • Diagnostic criteria for Infantile Autism
    A. Onset before 30 months of age.
    B. Pervasive lack of responsiveness to other people (autism).
    C. Gross deficits in language development
    D. If speech; is present, peculiar speech patterns such arimmediate and delayed echolatia, rnetaphorical langyage, pronominal reversal
    E. Bizarre responses to various aspects of the environment, e.g., resistance to change, peculiar interest in or attachments to animate or inanimate objects.
    F. Absence of delusions, hallucinations, loosening of associations, and incoherence as in Schizophrenia.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-III], 1980, pp.89-90 [Retrieved January 3, 2008]
  • Diagnostic criteria for Childhood Onset Pervasive Developmental Disorder
    A. Gross and sustained impairment in social relationships, e.g., lack of appropriate affective responsivity, inappropriate clinging, asociality, lack of empathy.
    B. At least three of the following:
    (1) sudden excessive anxiety manifested by such symptoms as freefloating anxiety, catastrophic reactions to everyday occurrences, inability to be consoled when upset, unexplained panic attacks
    (2) constricted or inappropriate affect, including lack of appropriate fear reactions, unexplained rage reactions, and extreme mood lability
    (3) resistance to change in the environment (e,g., upset if dinner time is changed), or insistence on doing things in the same manner every time (e.g., putting on clothes always in the same order)
    (4) oddities of motor movement, such as peculiar posturing, peculiar hand or finger movements, or walking on tiptoe
    (5) abnormalities of speech, such as questionlike melody, monotonous voice
    (6) hyper- or hypo-sensitivity to sensory stimuli, e.g., hyperacusis
    (7) self-mutilation, e.g., biting or hitting self, head banging
    C. Onset of the full syndrome after 30 months of age arid before 12 years of age,
    D. Absence of delusions, hallucinations, incoherence, or marked loosening of associations.
    [Note: This diagnosis was combined with Infantile Autism into Autism Disorder in the DSM-III-R.]
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-III], 1980, p.91 [Retrieved January 3, 2008]
  • 299.80 Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified
    This category should be used when there is a qualitative impairment in the development of reciprocal social interaction and of verbal and nonverbal communication skills, but the criteria are not met for Autistic Disorder, Schizophrenia, or Schizotypal or Schizoid Personality Disorder. Some people with this diagnosis will exhibit a markedly restricted repertoire of activities and interests, but others will not.
    [Note: This category was the result of creating the new category of Autistic Disorder in the DSM III-R. In the DSM-IV, PDDNOS (PDD-NOS) was divided into Asperger’s Disorder, some other pervasive developmental disorders, and (the new) PDD-NOS.]
    American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-III-R], 1987, p.39. Retrieved on July 7, 2013.
  • 313.22 Schizoid Disorder of Childhood or Adolescence [This outdated category, eliminated from the DSM-III-R “since in clinical settings a defect in the capacity to form social relationships has been observed only in the presence of other signs of psychopathology that suggest a Pervasive Developmental Disorder.” is now considered an alternate designation for "Asperger's syndrome" in the ICD-10. In effect, it was, in addition to a lesser degree of infantile autism in the DSM-III, a precursor to "Asperger's disorder."]
    The essential feature is a defect in the capacity to form social relationships that is not due to any other mental disorder, such as Pervasive Developmental Disorder; Conduct Disorder, Undersocialized, Nonaggressive; or any psychotic disorder, such as Schizophrenia.
    Children with this disorder have no close friend of similar age other than a relative or a similarly socially isolated child. They do not appear distressed by their isolation, show little desire for social involvement, and prefer to be "loners," although they may be attached to a parent or other adult. When placed in social situations, they are uncomfortable, inept, and awkward. They have no interest in activities that involve other children, such as team sports and clubs. They often appear aloof, reserved, withdrawn, and seclusive. Associated features. These children may be belligerent and irritable, especially when demands for social performance are made. They are erratically sensitive to criticism, displaying occasional outbursts of aggressive behavior. They are frequently scapegoated by their peers....
    Diagnostic criteria for Schizoid Disorder of Childhood or Adolescence
    A. No close friend of similar age other than a relative or a similarly socially isolated child.
    B. No apparent interest in making friends.
    C. No pleasure from usual peer interactions.
    D. General avoidance of nonfamilial social contacts, especially with peers.
    E. No interest in activities that involve other children (such as team sports, clubs).
    F. Duration of the disturbance of at least three months.
    G. Not due to Pervasive Developmental Disorder; Conduct Disorder, Undersocialized, Nonaggressive; or any psychotic disorder, such as Schizophrenia,
    H. If 18 or older, does not meet the criteria for Schizoid Personality Disorder.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-III], 1980, p.60-61 [Retrieved December 26, 2007]
  • Diagnostic criteria for Childhood Onset Pervasive Developmental Disorder
    A. Gross and sustained impairment in social relationships, e.g., lack of appropriate affective responsivity, inappropriate clinging, asocialfty, lack of empathy.
    B. At least three of the following:
    (1) sudden excessive anxiety manifested by such symptoms as freefloating anxiety, catastrophic reactions to everyday occurrences, inability to be consoled when upset, unexplained panic attacks
    (2) constricted or inappropriate affect, including lack of appropriate fear reactions, unexplained rage reactions, and extreme mood lability (3) resistance to change in the environment (e,g., upset if dinner time is changed), or insistence on doing things in the same manner every time (e.g., putting on clothes always in the same order)
    (4) oddities of motor movement, such as peculiar posturing, peculiar hand or finger movements, or walking on tiptoe
    (5) abnormalities of speech, such as questionlike melody, monotonous voice
    (6) hyper- or hypo-sensitivity to sensory stimuli, e.g., hyperacusis (7) self-mutilation, e.g., biting or hitting self, head banging C. Onset of the full syndrome after 30 months of age arid before 12 years of age,
    D. Absence of delusions, hallucinations, incoherence, or marked loosening of associations.
    [Note: This diagnosis was combined with Infantile Autism into Autism Disorder in the DSM-III-R.] ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-III], 1980, p.60-61
  • Diagnostic criteria for 299.80 Asperger's Disorder
    1. Qualitative impairment in social interaction, as manifested by at least two of the following:
      1. marked impairment in the use of multiple nonverbal behaviors such as eye-to-eye gaze, facial expression, body postures, and gestures to regulate social interaction
      2. failure to develop peer relationships appropriate to developmental level
      3. a lack of spontaneous seeking to share enjoyment, interests, or achievements with other people (e.g., by a lack of showing, bringing, or pointing out objects of interest to other people)
      4. lack of social or emotional reciprocity
    2. Restricted repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests, and activities, as manifested by at least one of the following:
      1. encompassing preoccupation with one or more stereotyped and restricted patterns of interest that is abnormal either in intensity or focus
      2. apparently inflexible adherence to specific, nonfunctional routines or rituals
      3. stereotyped and repetitive motor mannerisms (e.g., hand or finger flapping or twisting, or complex whole-body movements)
      4. persistent preoccupation with parts of objects
    3. The disturbance causes clinically significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
    4. There is no clinically significant general delay in language (e.g., single words used by age 2 years, communicative phrases used by age 3 years).
    5. There is no clinically significant delay in cognitive development or in the development of age-appropriate self-help skills, adaptive behavior (other than in social interaction), and curiosity about the environment in childhood.
    6. Criteria are not met for another specific Pervasive Developmental Disorder or Schizophrenia.
  • ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.77 [Retrieved October 7, 2007]
  • For the DSM-5 (June, 2013) ASD diagnosis, see this PDF file. (Compiler’s Note: Since Autism is a life-long condition, the diagnostic criteria in the DSM-5 appear to presume a developmental, or life-cycle, approach to the individual. Data are included from throughout a person’s life, not only from the present. This approach is especially relevant to adult Autists. They often learn to compensate for common Autistic traits. In addition, according to the DSM-5, “Individuals with a well-established DSM-IV diagnosis of autistic disorder, Asperger's disorder, or pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified should be given the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder.” Thank you, American Psychiatric Association!)
  • Autism spectrum disorders and related disorders
    Parent(s)

          • Neurodevelopmental disorders

    Autism spectrum disorders is [sic, are] a group pf [sic, of] disorders characterised by a varied mixture of an impaired capacity for reciprocal socio-communicative interaction and restricted interests and repetitive behaviours. These disorders are manifest from early childhood but milder forms may only be first diagnosed in adolescents or adults. Typical features include decreased general intellectual ability and/or social cognitive deficits, unusual cognitive talents, adolescent onset epilepsy, increased head circumference developing during the preschool years, and often a period of transient developmental regression in language and social skills during the same age period. General intellectual ability and useful structural language are important features that predict adjustment and functioning within autism spectrum disorders and these should be noted through quantified specifiers.

    Synonyms
         • Pervasive developmental disorders

    Body Site

         • Entire brain (body structure)
         • Brain structure (body structure)
    ICD-11 Beta Draft. International Classification of Diseases. World Health Organization (WHO). July 9, 2013

  • Although terms like "psychosis" and "childhood schizophrenia" were once used to refer to individuals with these conditions [Pervasive Developmental Disorders], there is considerable evidence to suggest that the Pervasive Developmental Disorders are distinct from Schizophrenia (however, an individual with Pervasive Developmental Disorder may occasionally later develop Schizophrenia).
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.66 [Retrieved December 6, 2007]
  • The symptoms do not occur exclusively during the course of a Pervasive Developmental Disorder, Schizophrenia, or other Psychotic Disorder and are not better accounted for by another mental disorder (e.g., Mood Disorder, Anxiety Disorder, Dissociative Disorder, or a Personality Disorder). [This section refers to ADHD.]
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.85 [Retrieved December 6, 2007]
  • Schizoid Personality Disorder should not be diagnosed if the pattern of behavior occurs exclusively during the course of Schizophrenia, a Mood Disorder With Psychotic Features, another Psychotic Disorder, or a Pervasive Developmental Disorder or if it is due to the direct physiological effects of a neurological (e.g., temporal lobe epilepsy) or other general medical condition ....
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.639 [Retrieved December 6, 2007]
  • Schizotypal Personality Disorder should not be diagnosed if the pattern of behavior occurs exclusively during the course of Schizophrenia, a Mood Disorder With Psychotic Features, another Psychotic Disorder, or a Pervasive Developmental Disorder.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.642 [Retrieved December 6, 2007]
  • Some activities, such as eating (e.g., Eating Disorders), sexual behavior (e.g., Paraphilias), gambling (e.g., Pathological Gambling), or substance use (e.g., Alcohol Dependence or Abuse), when engaged in excessively, have been referred to as "compulsive." However, these activities are not considered to be compulsions as defined in this manual because the person usually derives pleasure from the activity and may wish to resist it only because of its deleterious consequences. ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.422 [Retrieved October 8, 2007]
  • The Paraphilias are characterized by recurrent, intense sexual urges, fantasies, or behaviors that involve unusual objects, activities, or situations and cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning. The Paraphilias include Exhibitionism, Fetishism, Frotteurism, Pedophilia, Sexual Masochism, Sexual Sadism, Transvestic Fetishism, Voyeurism, and Paraphilia Not Otherwise Specified.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.492 [Retrieved October 8, 2007]
  • The Paraphilias described here are conditions that have been specifically identified by previous classifications. They include Exhibitionism (exposure of genitals), Fetishism (use of nonliving objects), Frotteurism (touching and rubbing against a nonconsenting person), Pedophilia (focus on prepubescent children), Sexual Masochism (receiving humiliation or suffering), Sexual Sadism (inflicting humiliation or suffering), Transvestic Fetishism (cross-dressing), and Voyeurism (observing sexual activity). A residual category, Paraphilia Not Otherwise Specified, includes other Paraphilias that are less frequently encountered. Not uncommonly, individuals have more than one Paraphilia.
    ... Many individuals with these disorders assert that the behavior causes them no distress and that their only problem is social dysfunction as a result of the reaction of others to their behavior. Others report extreme guilt, shame, and depression at having to engage in an unusual sexual activity that is socially unacceptable or that they regard as immoral. There is often impairment in the capacity for reciprocal, affectionate sexual activity, and Sexual Dysfunctions may be present.
    ... A Paraphilia must be distinguished from the nonpathological use of sexual fantasies, behaviors, or objects as a stimulus for sexual excitement in individuals without a Paraphilia. Fantasies, behaviors, or objects are paraphiliac only when they lead to clinically significant distress or impairment (e.g., are obligatory, result in sexual dysfunction, require participation of nonconsenting individuals, lead to legal complications, interfere with social relationships).
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, pp.523-525 [Retrieved October 8, 2007]
  • 302.9 Paraphilia Not Otherwise Specified
    This category is included for coding Paraphilias that do not meet the criteria for any of the specific categories. Examples include, but are not limited to, telephone scatologia (obscene phone calls), necrophilia (corpses), partialism (exclusive focus on part of body), zoophilia (animals), coprophilia (feces), klismaphilia (enemas), and urophilia (urine).
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.532 [Retrieved October 8, 2007]
  • The essential feature of Impulse-Control Disorders is the failure to resist an impulse, drive, or temptation to perform an act that is harmful to the person or to others. For most of the disorders in this section, the individual feels and increasing sense of tension or arousal before committing the act and then experiences pleasure, gratification, or relief at the time of committing the act. Following the act, there may or may not be regret, self-reproach, or guilt.
    ~ American Psychiatric Association (Washington, D.C.), Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM-IV but unchanged in the 2000 text revision, the DSM-IV-TR], 1994, p.608 [Retrieved October 8, 2007]
  • Amazingly, the definition and diagnosis of autism has changed radically over just the last few decades. What was – not so long ago – described and diagnosed as a rare form of schizophrenia is now understood to be a very broad, relatively common collection of symptoms which can be quite mild or extremely severe.
    ~ Lisa Jo Rudy, How Has the Definition and Diagnosis of Autism Changed Over Time? July 25, 2013. Retrieved on August 2, 2013.
  • Many children with AS-HFA [Asperger's syndrome and high-functioning autism] display every one of these problems, but often for very different reasons than the child with ADHD. The child with AS-HFA may not seem to listen and my not follow directions because of social deficits and language processing problems.
    ~ Sally Ozonoff, Ph.D., Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D., and James McPartland, Ph.D. A Parent's Guide to Asperger Syndrome & High-Functioning Autism: How to Meet the Challenges and Help Your Child Thrive. New York: Guilford Press. 2002. Page 40.
  • Since autism spectrum disorders always involve social deficits and repetitive behaviors, the areas of the brain that control these functions have been a focus of neuroimaging studies. In the late 1970s, two American neurologists, Drs. Antonio Damasio and Ralph Maurer, published a paper that pointed out behavioral similarities between people with autism and patients with damage to their frontal lobes .... Both groups had difficulty controlling their emotions, would get very upset by small changes, were compulsive (wanting things "just so"), and were rigid in their solutions to problems, seeing things in a concrete, black-in-white manner. This led to a theory, still influential today, that if the frontal lobes did not develop correctly, this could cause autism.
    ~ Sally Ozonoff, Ph.D., Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D., and James McPartland, Ph.D. A Parent's Guide to Asperger Syndrome & High-Functioning Autism: How to Meet the Challenges and Help Your Child Thrive. New York: Guilford Press. 2002. Pages 60-61.
  • Since deficits of the frontal lobes often are manifested by problems in executive functioning, these findings suggest a physiological basis for the problems of interpreting and initiating social interactions. In addition, anomalous thalamic findings indicate a functional source for the problems with analyzing environmental stimuli and performing appropriate responses. The anomalies in the dentate nucleus may provide the explanation for the clumsiness and other coordination problems of some boys with autistic disorder. Furthermore, the findings suggest a deficiency in the pathway connecting the affected frontal lobe with the ipsilateral thalamus and the contralateral cerebellum. Thus, altered serotonergic metabolism in the dentatothalamocortical pathways may be a pathophysiological mechanism of autistic disorder in some boys.
    ~ James Robert Brasic, MD, MPH, and Dean Wong, MD, PhD. "PET Scanning in Autism Spectrum Disorders." [Retrieved December 12, 2007]
  • There are two theories of autism which are supported by evidence for the involvement of the frontal lobes in autism. The executive dysfunction theory posits that the base deficit in autism is a deficit in the ability to control one’s own thought, attention, and behavior. The theory of mind posits that the base deficit in autism is difficulty with "mind-reading:" forming theories about what other people know and think. (A third major theory, the limbic system theory, posits that damage to both the amygdala and the frontal cortex is at the heart of autism ....)
    ~ Autism: Theories of Autism [Retrieved December 11, 2007]
  • What I typically find in the EEG of those with the symptoms of Autism and Asperger's are problems in the right hemisphere of the brain combined with frontal lobe dysfunction. If there are language issues (Autism), the left side of the brain shows neurological issues as well. In both cases, there are also problems in the "mirror neuron" system.
    ~ Marvin W. Sams, Autism/Asperger's [Retrieved December 11, 2007]
  • What parts of the brain are affected? ...
    ... brain abnormalities are often found in people with autism and it is assumed that those that do not have observable anomalies are simply outside the range of what today's science can detect....
    At present, various techniques are used to obtain pictures of the brain including CAT (Computer Axial Tomography) scans and MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scans. Several studies have revealed abnormalities in different regions of the brain. The following areas have been highlighted for special attention:
    1. Abnormalities in the frontal lobes ­ areas in the brain responsible for planning and control.
    2. Abnormalities in the limbic system ­ the part of the brain responsible for emotional regulation.
    3. Abnormalities in the brain stem and fourth ventricle or in the cerebellum ­ which governs motor coordination.
    ~ About Autism: Possible Causes [Retrieved December 12, 2007]
  • There is a view that Autism is not a disorder, but a normal, healthy variation in neurological hard-wiring, and therefore does not need to be cured. A cure is seen as destroying the original personality of the individual and is perceived similar to attempts to “cure” homosexuality, therefore this perspective considers the disease classification insulting. In line with this belief an autistic culture has begun to develop similar to deaf culture.
    ~ Causes of Autism [Retrieved December 11, 2007]
  • Perhaps most important - and encouraging - are the contributions from adults who have been recently diagnosed with AS [Asperger's syndrome] and HFA [high-functioning autism]. Their stories are often painful, and their courage in sharing both the good and the bad is to be commended....
    ... In many cases, these adults were misdiagnosed or not diagnosed at all, misunderstood, and, too often horribly mistreated. In addition to the unfortunately "usual" teasing, bullying, and lonliness, some persons were subjected to emotional, physical, and sexual abuse at the hands of parents, professionals, and strangers; misdiagnosis and resulting treatment that was traumatic (institutionalization, electroconvulsive therapy - previously known as shock treatment - over- and mismedication), or attempts to self-medicate through alcohol and drug abuse....
    Persons with AS, particularly those who are older, and have found a place for themselves in the world, are extremely proud of their independence and their differences. Some have an almost reflexive aversion to anything and anyone that seems to place a higher value on conformity to social norms than on the happiness and the acceptance of the individual. Given that we neurotypicals have the ability to adopt different perspectives, should it not be we who bend to accommodate those who cannot rather than to force those with AS to be what they naturally are not?
    ~ Patricia Romanowski Bashe, M.S.Ed., and Barbara L. Kirby. The OASIS Guide to Asperger Syndrome: Advice, Support, Insight, and Inspiration. New York: Crown. 2005. Pages 441-443.
  • This characteristic [having difficulty with theory of mind or understanding that others have different viewpoints than one's own] ... explains the preference [by those with Asperger's syndrome] for reading books of information rather than fictional works, as these portray the characters and personal experience of people and their interactions. Fiction emphasizes social and emotional experiences, in contrast to nonfiction, which does not require an understanding of people and their thoughts, feelings and experiences to the same degree ....
    ~ Tony Attwood. Asperger's Syndrome: A Guide for Parents and Professionals. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley. 2006. Page 114.
  • One or several sensory systems are affected such that ordinary sensations are perceived as unbearably intense. The mere anticipation of the experience can lead to intense anxiety or panic. Fortunately, the hypersensitivity often diminishes during later childhood, but for some individuals it may continue throughout their lives.... The most common sensitivities involve sound or touch.
    ~ Tony Attwood. Asperger's Syndrome: A Guide for Parents and Professionals. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley. 2006. Page 129.
  • He [a child with Asperger's autism] was said to be an inveterate "liar." ... He liked to tell fantastic stories, in which he always appeared as the hero. He would tell his mother how he was praised by the teacher in front of the class, and other similar tales.
    ~ Hans Asperger quoted by Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 25.
  • The ability to understand the value of deception and recognize when it might be expected occurs later in the development of the child with Asperger's syndrome, sometimes as late as the early teens. This can cause confusion to parents and teachers, as the previous honest (perhaps to a fault) child recognizes that one can deceive people and avoid anticipated consequences....
    ... What the person might not acknowledge is that lying can also be a way of maintaining self-esteem should he or she have an arrogant self-image, whereby the making of mistakes is unthinkable.
    Adults with Asperger's syndrome can be renowned for ... having a strong sense of social justice ....
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Pages 117-118.
  • Other reasons for problems with anger management include having a difficulty expressing feelings through words (alexithymia) ....
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 146.
  • When considering the feeling of love, the person with Asperger's syndrome may enjoy a very brief and low-intensity of expression, and become confused or overwhelmed when greater levels of expression are experienced or expected. However, the reverse can occur for some children and adults with Asperger's syndrome, with the person needing more frequent expressions of affection (sometimes for reassurance) and often expressing affection that can be overbearing for others.
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 148.
  • Hans Asperger was the first to describe the problems some children have with handwriting....
    ... Teachers may become frustrated by the illegibility of the handwriting, but need to remember that this is an expression of a movement disorder ....
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 264.
  • ... problems with sexual expression and experiences can lead a person with Asperger's syndrome to be charged with a sexual offence.... The person may have difficulty distinguishing between kindness and attraction, and assume a friendly act was an indication of romantic or sexual attraction. This can lead to a crush or infatuation with the person.... The person may be charged with offences related to stalking.
    ... the person with Asperger's syndrome may not have had the usual social, sensual and sexual experiences of typical adolescents, and my develop sexually arousing fantasies involving objects, clothing, children or animals. The technical term is paraphilia....
    A curiosity and confusion regarding sexuality can lead to the desire for more information and the development of a solitary and clandestine special interest in pornography.
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 337.
  • About 25 percent of adults with Asperger's syndrome also have the clear clinical signs of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder ....
    Sometimes parents describe the person's special interest as an "obsession" which suggests a diagnosis of OCD, but there is a distinct qualitative difference between an interest and a clinical obsession. The person with Asperger's syndrome clearly enjoys the interest: it is not egodystonic [referring to personally distressing behaviors which are dissonant with the individual's self-perception] and therefore not necessarily indicative of OCD ....
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 138.
  • Hans Asperger first described the tendency of children with autistic personality to be avid collectors ....
    The collection of unusual objects can also occur in adults with Asperger's syndrome ....
    The collection of objects can mature into a collection of facts about a specific topic or concept, with the person becoming an expert in the special interest....
    The child's "encyclopaedic" knowledge can become quite remarkable and he or she is perceived as a "little professor" ....
    Girls and boys with Asperger's syndrome may enjoy the same interests, for example becoming an expert on the Titanic or avidly collecting Pokéman cards....
    As an adult, an intense interest in literature can lead to reading popular "psychology" books that provide practical and much-needed advice on relationships.
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Pages 178-182.
  • We recognize that the special interest can provide a source of extreme pleasure for the person with Asperger's syndrome. However, several adults who have been prescribed medication to treat anxiety, depression, or problems with anger management have described how the medication has "lifted" their mood, but "flattened" their enjoyment of the special interest.
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 191.
  • ... some adults with Asperger's syndrome are prone to stuttering when anxious. Here the problem is not strictly impairment in language skills, but the effect of emotion on the ability to speak.
    ~ Tony Attwood. The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2007. Page 224.
  • The similarities between the symptoms and autistic spectrum disorders are actually significant when one looks at the symptoms associated with ADHD. In fact, when we examine them, they seem almost identical.... It has also been noted that there is a similarity between autistic disorder and Asperger's syndrome and that Asperger's syndrome goes under many different types of names, some of the names are semantic-pragmatic disorder, right hemisphere learning disability, nonverbal learning disability, and schizoid disorder.
    Much of this confusion has come about by the way we diagnose these problems. We would like to believe that there is a lab test or an objective test somewhere that confirms the diagnosis of ADHD, OCD or Tourette's; but in fact, the diagnosis is purely subjective. There are no consistent anatomic or physical markers for these conditions. Most often, these disorders are diagnosed by a professional sitting down with a parent or teacher and reading to them a list of symptoms and checking off if the parent or teacher believes that the child manifests the relevant symptoms. However, even this process is not as clear-cut as it sounds. The list of symptoms is extremely vague and many of these symptoms are hard if not impossible to distinguish.
    One problem, according to Linda Lotspeich ..., Director of the Stanford Pervasive Developmental Disorders Clinic, is that the rules in the DSM-IV do not work.... What is happening is that a group of symptoms is being called a disorder and if we add or subtract a few symptoms or make a few more severe, then it is called a different condition or syndrome. However, when we look at the areas of the brain involved in all these conditions, and the neurotransmitter systems involved, they are all basically the same. Therefore, in reality, these are all possibly the same problem along a spectrum of severity. The most common of all comorbidities is OCD, developmental coordination disorder or more simply put "clumsiness" or motor incoordination.
    ~ Robert Melillo and Gerry Leisman. Neurobehavioral Disorders of Childhood: An Evolutionary Perspective. New York: Springer. 2004. Page 11.
  • Patients with frontal lobe lesions sometimes present with OCD symptoms and OCD patients may show evidence of frontal lobe impairment in electrophysiological studies....
    ~ Robert Melillo and Gerry Leisman. Neurobehavioral Disorders of Childhood: An Evolutionary Perspective. New York: Springer. 2004. Page 239.
  • All the children with AS [Asperger's syndrome] turned out to meet the criterion for a diagnosis of motor impairment.... This study is consistent with others suggesting a high prevalence of clumsiness in AS.
    ~ Robert Melillo and Gerry Leisman. Neurobehavioral Disorders of Childhood: An Evolutionary Perspective. New York: Springer. 2004. Page 271.
  • Stuttering may co-occur with virtually any condition, however, some are more problematic for therapy and communication. More common ones include cluttering, articulation or phonological disorders, ADHD and ADD, apraxia of speech, Asperger's syndrome, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome and Tourette syndrome.
    ~ Darrell M. Dodge, Stuttering: Basic Information [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • The schizoid person is cut off from outer reality to such a degree that he or she experiences outer reality as dangerous. It is a natural human response to turn away from sources of danger and toward sources of safety. The schizoid individual, therefore, is primarily concerned with avoiding danger and ensuring safety....
    Unlike Asperger's Syndrome, SPD [schizoid personality disorder] does not involve an impairment in nonverbal communication (e.g., lack of eye-contact or unusual prosody) or a pattern of restricted interests or repetitive behaviors (e.g., a strict adherence to routines or rituals, or an unusually intense interest in a single topic). Instead people with SPD are typically more indifferent with regard to their activities. However, in a sample of schizoid children, Sula Wolff noticed that "Having special interest patterns differentiated highly between schizoid and control boys." SPD does not affect the ability to express oneself or communicate effectively with others, and is not believed to be related to any form of autism.
    ~ Wikipedia, Schizoid personality disorder [Retrieved October 6, 2007]
  • Asperger's students are cognitively "rigid". They often think in black and white, and they think that everyone else does too! This interferes with problem solving socially and mathematically. They struggle with mental planning, mental imagery, impulse control, and ability to stay focused until a task is complete.
    ~ Asperger's Syndrome [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • It is ... a myth that all people with Aspergers are good at Math and computers. In fact, people with Aspergers can have learning disabilities such as discaculia [sic]. They may be a great artist but horrible at operating a computer. Each individual is very person specific. Sadly, we only hear about the gifted individual which gives a false picture of what Aspergers is and excludes everyone else.
    ~ April Malone, FAQ, The Global and Regional Asperger Partnership [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • Some people with Asperger’s are visual thinkers and others are math, music, or number thinkers, but all think in specifics.
    ~ Temple Grandin, The World Needs People With Asperger’s Syndrome: American Normal [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • Behaviors associated with Asperger's syndrome
    • Obsession with complex, age-inappropriate topics such as patterns, weather, music, history, cars, trains, door knobs, hinges, meteorology, astronomy, electronics, etc. but unable to process information outside their sphere of interest.
    • Obsessive routines.
    • Dyslexia, writing problems, and difficulty with mathematics.
    • Concrete thinking problems: For instance, a child with Asperger’s Syndrome may not be able to process the many steps necessary to be successful in completing a simple task like, "Put the book away", "Bring me the ball", or "Go get a cookie".
    • Over sensitivity to certain sounds, tastes, smells, and certain sights (e.g. light)
    • Socially aware but unable to act appropriately with others.
    • Difficulty adjusting to change.
    Although many children with Asperger’s syndrome exhibit a high I.Q. and are especially superior in verbal ability, the Intelligence Quotients of Asperger’s patients fall along the full spectrum. However, though grammatically correct, their speed frequently is laced with abnormalities in inflection and repetitive patterns. In addition, common to most with Asperger’s Syndrome is the fact that they are below average in performance abilities for their age.
    It's important to remember that the behaviors of children with Asperger’s Syndrome are not because of intentional rudeness, willfulness, or poor parenting. Rather, their behavior is the result of the different way they perceive their environment. In addition, because Asperger’s Syndrome is so newly recognized and difficult to diagnose, society is ill equipped to deal with the special social and educational needs of these children.
    ~ Mental Disorder Network, What is Asperger's Syndrome? [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • What does it mean to have Asperger’s Syndrome? Clearly, since so many successful people seem to have the diagnosis (Dan Ackroyd, for one, announced his diagnosis on the air -- and rumor has it that Bill Gates may also have Asperger’s) it is not a disability in the classic sense. In fact, some historians suggest that Einstein, Mozart, and Alan Turing (the inventor of the first electronic computer) may all have been diagnosable with Asperger’s.
    What people with Asperger’s Syndrome do have in common is a set of characteristics that may make social interaction particularly difficult. Many “aspies” (a term that teens and adults with Asperger’s Syndrome sometimes use to refer to themselves) have been bullied or teased as children. They may be awkward with the opposite sex. And they may have a tough time maneuvering through complex social cues at school, at work, or elsewhere.
    ~ Lisa Jo Rudy, Is it Asberger Syndrome? [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • AS: Clinical Features
    One of the primary features of Asperger’s syndrome is their passion for favorite topics or special interests
    Some of these areas include:

          – math
          – science
          – reading
          – history
          – geography
          – social studies
          – metereology
          – astronomy
          – extraterrestrials
          – weather
          – music
          – machines or machinery
          – trains
          – dinosaurs
          – maps
          – space travel
    ~ Rosalind A. Hoffman, D.Ed., Asperger’s Syndrome Institute® [Retrieved September 28, 2007 and, with new URL, July 3, 2013]
  • There is clearly a great deal of overlap between Asperger’s Disorder (AD) and Nonverbal Learning Disabilities (NVLD) – so much so that it is possible that the symptoms of each diagnosis describe the same group of children from different perspectives, AD from either a psychiatric/behavioral perspective, and NVLD from a neuropsychological perspective. The specific conventions of these diagnoses may lead to a somewhat different group of children meeting diagnostic criteria, but it is not clear that this reflects something “true” in nature. That is, it may only be convention that separates these two groups....
    Studies conducted by the Yale Child-Study Group suggest that up to 80% of children who meet the criteria for AD also have NVLD. While there are no studies on overlap in the other direction, most likely children with the more severe forms of NVLD also have AD. Children from both groups are socially awkward and pay over-attention to detail and parts, while missing main themes or underlying principles.
    ~ David Dinklage, PhD, Asperger's Disorder and Nonverbal Learning Disabilities: How are These Two Disorders Related to Each Other? [Retrieved July 25, 2012]
  • The purpose of this article is to review similarities and differences between Asperger (AS) and Nonverbal Learning Disability (NVLD) Syndromes. The existence of AS as a separate diagnostic entity from Autism remains controversial. Much of this controversy stems from the presence of children who have social deficits characteristic of Autism but exhibit lesser degrees of language impairments, and from the use of the age of onset of language deficits to distinguish between the two syndromes. Perhaps even more contestable is whether a distinction exists between AS and NVLD. The latter, which has not yet been recognized by the DSM-IV-TR as a diagnostic entity, has been most frequently defined in the literature by a specific neuropsychological profile. This profile can be very similar to that of children with AS. The main difference between the two disorders, as they are most frequently defined clinically, is the absence in children with NVLD of restricted interests or special skills. The diagnostic situation is further complicated, however, by the complex and still-changing definitions of the social deficits observed in NVLD.
    ~ Bonny Forrest, Ph.D, "The Boundaries between Asperger and Nonverbal Learning Disability Syndromes" [Retrieved December 19, 2007]
  • Of special interest ... is the observation and debate about the overlap particularly between NLD [Nonverbal Learning Disorder] and the clinical characteristics of Asperger's Disorder, such as high verbal abilities, compromised motor and coordination abilities, and unique social and relationship difficulties. Clinically, Asperger's is part of the autistic spectrum. It has also been postulates [sic] that Asperger's is in fact a part of the far end spectrum of Nonverbal Learning Disorders. Proponents of this analysis point out that as high as 80% of Asperger's Disorder persons have neuro-psychological profiles consistent with NLD. Some argue that Asperger's Disorder incorporates both spectra.
    ~ Wikipedia, Nonverbal learning disorder [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • Nonverbal Learning Disabilities (NLD) are diagnosed in children who may show very impressive verbal, reading, spelling and rote memory skills but very weak motor, social, sensory, and visual-spatial abilities. NLD is a neurological disorder overlapping with and possibly occupying the same end of the autism spectrum as Asperger Syndrome.
    ~ Terri Mauro, Nonverbal Learning Disabilities [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • ... nonverbal learning disabilities ... [is] a disorder that may have more in common with Asperger syndrome and other points on the autism spectrum than with traditional learning disabilities.
    ~ Terri Mauro, First Five: Nonverbal Learning Disabilities [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • The DSM-IV notes that essential features of AS are severe and sustain impairment in social interaction with restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, and activities but without clinically significant delays in cognitive development or language. Although basic language skills are intact in AS, there are delays in the nonverbal communication skills and the social use of language (pragmatics). NLD is a neurological syndrome involving right hemisphere dysfunction and/or significant perturbations of the brain's white matter (long, myelinated fibers). There are strengths in basic verbal/auditory skills, rote memory, and early literacy skills but deficits in visual-spatial organization, tactile perception, motor functions, social skills, and executive functions such as self-regulation, planning, and problem-solving. Anxiety and difficulty adapting to novel or complex situations are common.
    ~ Karen Miller, M.D., When Asperger's Syndrome and a Nonverbal Learning Disability Look Alike [Retrieved October 28, 2007]
  • AS [Asperger's Syndrome] children tend to be very obsessive on a particular object or topic they have interest in and stay fixated on only that. They will actually know everything there is to know about their topic of fixation and will talk about little else. In contrast, a child with NLD [Nonverbal Learning Disorder] will know how to verbalize anything to which is being discussed.
    Children with Asperger Syndrome tend to have repetitive routines or rituals and have peculiarities in their speech and language. They have a tendency to be emotionally and socially inappropriate and have difficulties interacting positively with peers. Many AS children have problems with nonverbal communication, but it isn’t the same as NLD children. It isn’t that they cannot understand anything other than verbal. They tend to not be able to see outside of themselves. They do share the same motor control issues and clumsiness of NLD children, though. The largest reason for Asperger children’s isolation is their narrow interests and poor social skills. Their inappropriate and eccentric behavior can make making new friends hard, even though they will approach others. Compounded by the obsession on only one topic or interest makes peer socialization limited and may also cause others to withdraw from wanting to play with them. Many AS children will also experience motor skill developmental delays that make riding a bike, playing on outdoor climbing equipment, or playing catch very hard to learn.
    Nonverbal Learning Disorder (NLD), also called Nonverbal Learning Disabilities can often times go undiagnosed and not be noticed well into a child’s school career, unlike AS. A child with a nonverbal learning disability cannot understand other forms of communication and has a hard time reading and retaining information. Because of their extraordinary gift of verbalization they are often thought to be gifted, unlike AS children....
    ... AS children that might take more time to learn these skills [than NLD children] but are capable with much less trouble. AS children can read and write if they are interested or made to interested in a subject. It is their solitary interest that holds them back, not inability to process other forms of communication as with NLD children. NLD children are also labeled as disruptive, rude, lazy, and difficult. This not true they actually work hard and try to learn as much as possible but their disability robs them of the ability to comprehend anything nonverbal. AS children have been labeled the same but their difficulty lies in their inability to see beyond the one interest they have. So their concentration leaves and they cannot stay focused. There are many similarities between NLD and AS, but there are several differences. They may appear outwardly similar but the underlying issues that cause them are very different and they require a totally different set of treatments for rehabilitation.
    ~ Asperger Syndrome (AS) vs Nonverbal Learning Disorder (NLD) [Retrieved September 27, 2007]
  • Types of Asperger Children and Teens (according to Alan Sohn, Ed.D., and Cathy Grayson, M.A., Parenting Your Asperger Child: Individualized Solutions for Teaching Your Child Practical Skills. New York, NY: Penguin Group. 2005.) [Retrieved September 10, 2007]
    1. Having a set of rules to live by is the most important issue for this type [The Rule Boy]. Once he has a set of rules to follow, there tend to be few, if any, concerns, except in areas where you have not yet established rules. If there is a void where a rule has not been established, the Rule Boy is not happy; because he doesn't know what to do in that situation, he makes up his own rules.... There are two main subtypes of Rule Boy – the innocent/passive and the overcontrolled ....
      • This child or teen [The Innocent/Passive Boy] is often seen as a teacher's delight. Everywhere he goes, others remark how well behaved he is. He is never a discipline problem, never a disruption. However, at home his behaviors can be terrible. He can be quite bossy and controlling. Tantrums, yelling, and arguing can be a daily occurrence.
      • This [The Overcontrolled Boy] is another type of Rule Boy, who is very similar to the above subtype, except his behavior is good at home as well as at school. He is also rule bound, with rules for everything. He has learned to control outbursts, sometimes too much, in all situations. In this case, he sees his parents, who have created many rules for him to follow at home, as authority figures just like his teachers. There are no situations that don't have rules for him to follow.
      • This child or teen [The Logic Boy] needs to know the reasons for the rules before he is okay. Blindly accepting your rules is not the way he operates. He wants to know the reasons behind your actions, why something is done a certain way, and it has to make sense to him. If it seems too arbitrary, it's not an adequate reason in his mind, and he won't listen. His coping strategy is to try to make sense of the world through logic, reasoning, and rational thought. He wants the world to be a place with order and rationality to it. This reduces his anxiety. He may ask lots of questions about how the world works. He uses his very well-developed logical mind to understand what is going on, and you need to give him the reasoning behind a decision or an action.
      • This is the most difficult type [The Emotion Boy] to deal with because rules and reasons mean much less to him or her. Many of the Asperger children fall into one of the emotion types. Their emotions control their behaviors....
        • By far, this [The Paranoid Boy] is the most difficult type. Fortunately, their numbers are small. Some other subtypes may have characteristics similar to this type, but not all. He sees the world from an adversarial point of view. The world is against him.
        • This child [Predominately ADHD] is very unfocused and has difficulty attending to and processing information on a consistent basis. He is easily distracted and forgetful, loses things, and has significant difficulty keeping track of school assignments.
        • This child [Predominately OCD] has many obsessions that take him elsewhere, away from the here and now. Although he appears inattentive, in reality, he has other issues that he is dealing with instead.
        • This child [Predominately Fantasy] is very similar to the OCD type except his distractions primarily involve his preoccupations with fantasy. This means Game Boy, Nintendo, Xbox, video games, Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, the Cartoon Network, TV shows, Japanese animé, fantasy books, show tunes – the list is endless, but often involves electronics in some way.
        • This child [The Anxiety Boy] differs from all other types because he has no coping strategy. While every other type experiences anxiety to some degree, they cope with it through rules, rituals, obsessions, or fantasy. The Anxiety Boy has never figured out how to deal with problems. As a result, his anxiety overwhelms him and he shuts down, hides under furniture, cries, wants to stay at home, acts silly, wants to stay inside, and tries to avoid people and places outside of his small comfort zone. In other words, he becomes a mess. He is very rigid but doesn't really know the rules of the world. His anxiety comes from his confusion and lack of understanding of how the world works. He just doesn't get it.
        • This child or teen [The Angry/Resistant Boy] may look similar to the paranoid type, but he is less adversarial and less intense. He is also easier to deal with if and when he feels safer. He argues about everything, and almost anything can lead to a tantrum of some size. At times, he can be violent and physical or will destroy property. He wants things to go his way.
        • This child or teen [The Negative Boy] tends to be more of an annoyance than anything else. He does a lot of complaining and whining about doing things that are not preferred activities because he only enjoys preferred activities. As a result of his actions, there can be a good deal of arguing and refusals.
  • Sex, in some form, is an issue that can become an obsession for the Asperger teen. Pornography, chat rooms, instant love affairs, or cyber-dating can all become areas of fascination for your teen.
    ~ Alan Sohn, Ed.D., and Cathy Grayson, M.A., Parenting Your Asperger Child: Individualized Solutions for Teaching Your Child Practical Skills. NY: Penguin Group. 2005.
  • Aspie teens are not privy to street knowledge of sex and dating behaviors that other teens pick up naturally. This leaves them naive and clueless about sex. Boys can become obsessed with Internet pornography and masturbation.
    ~ Your Little Professor, "Problems Teens With Asperger Syndrome Often Face" [Retrieved September 28, 2007]
  • Teens with Asperger's are typically uninterested in following social norms, fads, or conventional thinking, allowing creative thinking and the pursuit of original interests and goals. Their preference for rules and honesty may lead them to excel in the classroom and as citizens.
    ~ WebMD, Asperger's Syndrome - Symptoms [Retrieved September 28, 2007]
  • Inappropriate sexual conduct, paraphilias, deviant behaviours, aggression, excessive self-stimulation, and sexual compulsions are also found in individuals with AS [Asperger's syndrome].
    ~ Isabelle Hâenault. Asperger's Syndrome and Sexuality: From Adolescence Through Adulthood. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2006. Page 43.
  • Since individuals with AS [Asperger's syndrome] have a propensity for repetitive and ritualized activities, sexual behaviours may become their special circumscribed interest. It will be difficult to curb such an interest, especially if it is a source of pleasure and satisfaction....
    It is possible that sexuality can take on another dimension and become a veritable obsession, characterized by uncontrollable, disproportionate desires that may be accompanied by anxiety. This phenomenon is not present in all individuals with AS and few empirical studies exist, but the author's clinical observations show that it is detectable in some individuals. In these cases, sexuality becomes the only source of interest and stimulation to the detriment of all other activities. The obsession can take on a variety of forms: excessive use of pornographic materials (magazines, Internet, etc.), voyeurism, compulsive masturbation, seeking out sexual contact, excessive desire for closeness and repetitive fantasies, for example. If the obsessions are not satisfied (which is likely), the individual can become frustrated, isolated, and depressed.
    ~ Isabelle Hâenault. Asperger's Syndrome and Sexuality: From Adolescence Through Adulthood. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2006. Pages 50-53.
  • Negative body image, lack of sexual experiences, and symptoms of depression and anxiety may contribute to the sexual dysfunction observed in some individuals with AS [Asperger's syndrome]. Lack of opportunities and a restrictive environment also increase the incidence of inappropriate sexual conduct.
    ~ Isabelle Hâenault. Asperger's Syndrome and Sexuality: From Adolescence Through Adulthood. London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2006. Page 189.
  • Impotence, the inability to achieve an erection, is one of the most commonly cited problems in AS-NT [Asperger's syndrome-neurotypical] relationships.... [M]ore frequently, the problem behind the impotence is a psychological one. In many cases, the man may not be truly impotent; he may prefer the more solitary experience of masturbation, where he has complete control and doesn't have to worry about pleasing his partner. As mentioned before, men with AS tend to avoid conflict and are not willing to address what is bothering them with their partner. Instead, he may withdraw, verbally, physically, and sexually, to get his message across to her that he is angry and resort to masturbation to meet his physical needs.... Furthermore, once a man with AS has begun masturbating, as with many AS habits, it becomes a habit that is very hard to break. As a result, one more channel of possible communication is closed....
    Premature ejaculation is often associated in all men with worry or anxiety about performance - a state of mind that is fairly common in people with AS. The situation may be compounded by the difficulty many people with AS have in being in touch with the state of their mind and body; this may mean that the man with AS will not himself understand when he is about to have an orgasm.
    Retarded ejaculation is an issue of control and being able to let go. If the man with AS is anxious, in some cases, rather than lose control and ejaculate prematurely, he will become so focused on control that he is not able to stop worrying long enough to release and voluntarily ejaculate.
    ~ Juanita P. Lovett, Ph.D. Solutions for Adults with Asperger Syndrome: Maximizing the Benefits, Minimizing the Drawbacks to Achieve Success. Gloucester, MA.: Fair Winds Press. 2005. Pages 249-251.
  • Dyspraxia. - is Greek for not being good at doing. Dyspraxia is also called DAMP or disorders of attention and motor perception in some European countries. For the most part dyspraxia relates to having poor motor skills and clumsiness. This oftens goes along with Asperger's or Dyslexia.
    ~ Larry Arnold, Neurological Difference Page [Retrieved September 5, 2007]
  • Hikikomori (... lit. "pulling away, being confined", i.e. "acute social withdrawal") is a Japanese term to refer to the phenomenon of reclusive individuals who have chosen to withdraw from social life, often seeking extreme degrees of isolation and confinement due to various personal and social factors in their lives. The term hikikomori refers to both the sociological phenomenon in general as well as to individuals belonging to this societal group.
    Although there are versions where the hikikomori may venture outdoors, the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare defines hikikomori as individuals who refuse to leave their parents' house, and isolate themselves away from society and family in a single room for a period exceeding six months. While the severity of the phenomenon varies depending on the individual, some youths remain in isolation for years, or in rare cases, decades. Often hikikomori start out as school refusals ....
    ... the hikikomori phenomenon is similar to the symptoms exhibited by people with Pervasive Developmental Disorders in western cultures. Japan has the highest incidence of Pervasive Developmental Disorders, a group of disorders including autism and Asperger’s syndrome, in the developed world. In Japan, PDDs are some 2.95 times more common than in western countries. Some 3.3% of Japanese males have PDD compared with approximately 1% in Europe and the US. This has led some western commentators to suggest that people with hikikomori are affected by PDDs or disorders that affect social competence, but that their disorders are altered from their typical western presentation by the social and cultural pressures unique to Japan....
    The lack of social contact and prolonged solitude has a profound effect on the mentality of the hikikomori, who gradually lose their social skills, social references and mores necessary to interact with the outside world. They may immerse themselves into the fantasy worlds of manga, anime and video games, which in turn become their only frame of reference. Due to a lack of interpersonal stimulus the hikikomori may developmentally stagnate into routine behaviors as time passes, sleeping all day and staying up all night only to sneak out into the kitchen for food when the family is asleep. In extreme cases, the hikikomori eventually abandons all diversions of books and TV and simply stares into space for hours at a time.
    ~ Wikipedia, Hikikomori [Retrieved October 13, 2007]
  • I see parallels with hikikomori culture and Aspie culture. Aspies are independently minded people who are developing their own culture, system of interaction and expression. I agree that there are pressures that are unique and different in Japan - where there is alot more shame, guilt and stigma. It is far more difficult to develop a positive Aspie culture in Japan under those circumstances. So Japanese Aspies withdraw more.
    I believe that hikikomori is more closely associated with AS and other similar socially disabling conditions - and that ASDs [autism spectrum disorders]are more common in Japan, evinced by Japan's technological revolution after the WWII. Aspie engineers, scientists and industrialists turned Japan into a 21th century success. Also, I do not think that ASDs have increased recently - but have been consistently high in Japan. Just look at their houses and gardens. Angular, minimalist, simple, repetitive, accurate...
    ~ Diamonddavej, Hikikomori [Retrieved October 14, 2007]
  • Prognosis of Asperger syndrome: Children with AS have a better outlook than those with other forms of pervasive developmental disorders, and are much more likely to grow up to be independently functioning adults. Nonetheless, in most cases, these individuals will continue to demonstrate, to some extent, subtle disturbances in social interactions.
    ~ Basic Summary for Asperger syndrome [Retrieved August 20, 2007]
  • Just as many people tend towards astrology because it presents believers with simple, complimentary accounts of themselves, critics of the Indigo Child concept claim that parents relate to the hypothesis because it provides a more flattering conclusion about their child than current mainstream psychological descriptions that are popular among most parents, such as ADHD or Asperger's Syndrome. Indigo Child is not a recognized term in the field of psychology, although some of the authors of Indigo literature have degrees in psychology; one reason for this might be that the concept of Indigo children is relatively new.
    ~ Indigo Society, Indigo Child Critism & Investigation [Retrieved September 25, 2007]
  • According to [Lee] Carroll and [Jan] Tobar, the Indigos appear self centered and demanding when their needs are not immediately met, they often act like they are royalty and they have no problem expressing their own self-worth, they have difficulty with authority and will not comply, waiting in line is difficult for them. All of these are symptoms of ADD/ADHD and in some cases Asperger’s Syndrome. Indigos are also purported to be energetically vibrating at a higher frequency and are scrambled by negative energy (human or machine), and have more problems with food and environmental sensitivities-these issues are observed in most children diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome as well as many other Autistic Spectrum Disorders. Children with these disorders often have difficulty with sensory overload and are unusually sensitive to sound, smell or taste and very often extremely sensitive to touch.
    Indigos are supposedly visual/spatial learners, right brain dominant. The characteristics of this type of learner include having reading/writing/spelling problems despite having intelligence or "common sense", they often have severe behavior problems, they usually test high in psycho and intelligence tests but still score academically low in classroom environments, are usually very creative in the areas of art, drama, music, etc., think and understands with images rather than internal dialog, or often are uncoordinated physically. All of these traits can be readily observed in Autistic Spectrum Disorders as well as ADHD and other developmental disorders....
    Children with AS [Asperger's Syndrome] are very likely to have comorbid ADHD and/or Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. People with Asperger’s syndrome very often mention a feeling of being detached from the world around them and often withdraw or become problematic in their behavior patterns....
    It is my belief, supported by established facts, that the "Indigo Phenomenon" is merely a convenient way for parents who are, for some reason unwilling to acknowledge their children’s neurodiversity, and would rather label them as something non-human ie descended from another race far, far away.
    ~ Charlet C. Estes, Indigo Blues [Retrieved September 24, 2007]
  • Some Indigos are natural healers and seem to be naturally attuned to Reiki energy. Some children who have autism and those with Asperger's Syndrome are also Indigo Children and it is thought that with spiritual counseling and various energy therapies such as Reiki, Shamballa, and EMF Balancing, among others, that these children may come out of their shells.
    Indigo Children are named for the predominant auric color of indigo (an ink-like dark blue with a touch of red). The color indigo represents the third eye chakra, the energy center of psychic activity, which is believed to be wide open on most Indigos. Indigos experience a thinner "veil" or separation between the earth and the spirit worlds, and they are able to access information many cannot. Most of the behaviors of Indigos are explainable by this aspect of a thinner veil.
    ~ Wendy Chapman, Who are the Indigo Children? [Retrieved October 23, 2007]
  • Characteristics of the Crystal Child
    • Usually born in 1995 or later
    • Possess large eyes with an intense stare
    • Have magnetic personalities
    • Are highly affectionate
    • Start talking late in childhood
    • Are very musically oriented, and may sing before talking
    • Use telepathy and self-invented sign language to communicate
    • May be diagnosed with Autism or Asperger's syndrome
    • Are even-tempered, sweet, and loving
    • Are forgiving of others
    • Are highly sensitive and empathetic
    • Are very much connected to nature and animals
    • Exhibit healing abilities
    • Are quite interested in crystals and rocks
    • Often discuss angels, spirit guides, and past life memories
    • Are extremely artistic and creative
    • Prefer vegetarian meals and juices to "regular food"
    • May be fearless explorers and climbers, with an amazing sense of balance
    Adapted from "The Crystal Children: A Guide to the Newest Generation of Psychic and Sensitive Children" by Doreen Virtue, Ph.D. Hay House 2003
    ~ Who are the Crystal Children [Retrieved December 6, 2008
  • "The trouble comes about when the Crystals are judged by medical and educational personnel as having 'abnormal' speaking patterns. It's no coincidence that as the number of Crystals are born, that the number of diagnoses for autism is at a record high."
    ~ Who are the Crystal Children [Retrieved December 6, 2008
  • ... we will start with the Indigo Children, who seem to have been born around the 1970's and even more in the 1980's. These children are most commonly misdiagnosed as having ADD or ADHD because they get bored very easily. These children have amazing mental abilities and they are very sensitive to the energies that surround them. They are known as the 'system-busters'. They do not tolerate lies or manipulation and they can tell when someone is not acting with their highest integrity. The old system of guilt is not in their vocabulary or sense of judgment, which is what frustrates so many parents and teachers because that is how we were manipulated in previous generations....
    ... Basically, the Indigo Children were born to pave the way, redesign old belief systems and make space for the Crystal Children, who will teach us some even more important lessons.
    The Crystal Children are said to have started being born about 7 years ago, but I think more like 3 years ago. Some sources say they haven't come yet but there are forerunners who are elders that carry the same characteristics . The Crystals are here to bring love. They are even more super sensitive to energies than the Indigos and are even more psychic. Some characteristics of a Crystal child are that they learn to speak at a much later age (often after 3, 4 or even 5 years old). They are most commonly misdiagnosed with Autism or Asperger's Syndrome.
    ~ Cynthia Berkeley, Crystal Children - New Perceptions [Retrieved November 28, 2008]
  • Asperger's syndrome is one of the disorders on the autistic spectrum - a milder form of the condition that afflicted Raymond Babbitt, the character played by Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man. In the taxonomy of autism, those with Asperger's syndrome have average - or even very high - IQs, while 70 percent of those with other autistic disorders suffer from mild to severe mental retardation....
    ... Autism was added to the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1980, but Asperger's syndrome wasn't included as a separate disorder until the fourth edition in 1994. The taxonomy is further complicated by the fact that few if any people who have Asperger's syndrome will exhibit all of the behaviors listed in the DSM-IV.
    ~ Steve Silberman, The Geek Syndrome [Wired, issue 9.2, December 2001] [Retrieved September 8, 2007]
  • CHARACTERISTICS OF ASPERGER SYNDROME
    Each person is different. An individual might have all or only some of the described behaviors to have a diagnosis of AS. These behaviors include the following:
    • Marked impairment in the use of multiple nonverbal behaviors such as: eye gaze, facial expression, body posture, and gestures to regulate social interaction.
    • Extreme difficulty in developing age-appropriate peer relationships. (e.g. AS children may be more comfortable with adults than with other children).
    • Inflexible adherence to routines and perseveration.
    • Fascination with maps, globes, and routes.
    • Superior rote memory.
    • Preoccupation with a particular subject to the exclusion of all others. amasses many related facts.
    • Difficulty judging personal space, motor clumsiness.
    • Sensitivity to the environment, loud noises, clothing and food textures, and odors.
    • Speech and language skills impaired in the area of semantics, pragmatics, and prosody (volume, intonation, inflection, and rhythm).
    • Difficulty understanding others’ feelings.
    • Pedantic, formal style of speaking; often called “ little professor”, verbose.
    • Extreme difficulty reading and/or interpreting social cues.
    • Socially and emotionally inappropriate responses.
    • Literal interpretation of language. difficulty comprehending implied meanings.
    • Extensive vocabulary. Reading commences at an early age (hyperlexia).
    • Stereotyped or repetitive motor mannerisms.
    • Difficulty with “give and take” of conversation.
    ~ Asperger Syndrome Education Network (ASPEN), What is Asperger Syndrome? [Retrieved September 25, 2007]
  • The hallmarks of obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) are recurrent intrusive and unpleasant thoughts often allied with compulsive actions. One study examining the prevalence of obsessional symptoms using two self-report measures in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy obtained scores in the clinical range in 22% of the patient group and 2.5% of healthy controls. There are also some case reports of epilepsy and comorbid OCD. Further, obsessive thoughts can occasionally be part of an epileptic aura in temporal lobe seizures in the form of "forced thinking"
    ~ Stefan Beyenburg et al., Anxiety in patients with epilepsy: Systematic review and suggestions for clinical management [Retrieved August 4, 2007]
  • This condition [Asperger's Syndrome] was originally described by Hans Asperger in Vienna in 1944. Although Asperger was not aware of Leo Kanner's work on autism, he did use the word autism ("autistic psychopathy") to describe the social deficits he observed in a group of boys. His original description, in German, received little attention in the English-language literature until recent years. In people with Asperger's Syndrome, deficits in social interaction and unusual responses to the environment, similar to those in autism, are observed. Unlike in autism, however, cognitive and communicative development are within the normal or near-normal range in the first years of life, and verbal skills are usually an area of relative strength. Idiosyncratic interests are common and may take the form of an unusual and/or highly circumscribed interest (e.g., in train schedules, snakes, the weather, deep-fry cookers, or telegraph pole insulators). There is some suggestion of an increased incidence of this condition in family members.
    ~ Yale Developmental Disabilities Clinic [Retrieved July 8, 2007]
  • One in four children with ASD [autism spectrum disorders] develops seizures, often starting either in early childhood or adolescence. Seizures, caused by abnormal electrical activity in the brain, can produce a temporary loss of consciousness (a "blackout"), a body convulsion, unusual movements, or staring spells. Sometimes a contributing factor is a lack of sleep or a high fever. An EEG (electroencephalogram—recording of the electric currents developed in the brain by means of electrodes applied to the scalp) can help confirm the seizure's presence.
    ~ National Institute of Mental Health, Autism Spectrum Disorders (Pervasive Developmental Disorders) [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • The frontal lobes have been found to play a part in impulse control, judgment, language production, working memory, motor function, problem solving, sexual behavior, socialization, and spontaneity. The frontal lobes assist in planning, coordinating, controlling, and executing behavior. People who have damaged frontal lobes may experience problems with these aspects of cognitive function, being at times impulsive; impaired in their ability to plan and execute complex sequences of actions; perhaps persisting with one course of action or pattern of behavior when a change would be appropriate (perseveration).
    ~ Wikipedia, Frontal lobe [Retrieved August 3, 2007]
  • There are important asymmetrical differences in the frontal lobes. The left frontal lobe is involved in controlling language related movement, whereas the right frontal lobe plays a role in non-verbal abilities. Some researchers emphasize that this rule is not absolute and that with many people, both lobes are involved in nearly all behavior.
    ~ Centre for Neuro Skills, Frontal Lobes [Retrieved August 3, 2007]
  • Together with morbid obsessions, magical and superstitious thinking makes up one of the stranger and more misunderstood aspects of OCD. When my patients try to describe their symptoms, they preface their explanation with, "I know this sounds crazy, but...." The presence of magical thinking is probably the main reason why many with OCD have been misdiagnosed over the years as schizophrenic. superstitious thinking makes strange and magical connections between things which logically don't seem to connect in the real worldthus the apparent 'craziness'. Some common examples, would be the idea that thinking of an unlucky number can ruin your day, that clothing you wore to a funeral can lead to more unhappiness if you wear it again, or that thinking of the name of a disease will cause you or someone else to get that disease....

    Examples of compulsive magical behaviors I have witnessed would include:

    • Repetitive praying or crossing oneself
    • Counting up to or beyond certain numbers
    • Reciting or thinking of certain words, names, sounds, images, phrases, or numbers
    • Moving one's body or gesturing in a special way
    • Stepping in special ways or on special spots when walking
    • Washing off bad ideas or thoughts
    • Arranging objects or possessions in a special order
    • Performing physical actions in reverse
    • Thinking thoughts in reverse
    • Repeating behaviors a special number of times, or an odd or even number of times
    • Performing behaviors at special times or on particular dates
    • Repeating one's own words, or the words of others
    • Repetitively apologizing to another person, or to God
    • Gazing at certain numbers or words to cancel others out
    • Touching certain things in a special way or a particular number of times
    ~ Very Superstitious, by Fred Penzel, Ph.D. [Retrieved July 3, 2007]
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in children can look remarkably like childhood schizophrenia. Children can seem very psychotic and have OCD. One needs to be careful about the differential diagnosis (i.e., eliminating other possible diagnoses).
    ~ Brain Disorders in Children, by Timothy Wilens, M.D., July 25, 2000 [Retrieved July 3, 2007]
  • Hoarding is often a specific symptom of OCD which results in people keeping large amounts of items that to the outside world are considered excessive or worthless/useless. It is also still being researched much and surrounded with much secrecy and shame.
    ~ Understanding OCD Hoarding [Retrieved September 17, 2007]
  • It is not clear whether compulsive hoarding is a condition in itself, or simply a symptom of other related conditions. Several studies have reported a correlation between hoarding and the presence and / or severity of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Hoarding behaviour is also related to obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD). There may be an overlap with a condition known as impulse control disorder (ICD), particularly when compulsive hoarding is linked to compulsive buying or acquisition behaviour. However, some people displaying compulsive hoarding behaviour show no other signs of what is usually considered to be OCD, OCPD or ICD. Those diagnosed with Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often have hoarding tendencies.
    ~ Wikipedia, Compulsive hoarding [Retrieved September 17, 2007]
  • Among kids and teens with OCD, the most common obsessions include:

    • fear of dirt or germs
    • fear of contamination
    • a need for symmetry, order, and precision
    • religious obsessions
    • preoccupation with body wastes
    • lucky and unlucky numbers
    • sexual or aggressive thoughts
    • fear of illness or harm coming to oneself or relatives
    • preoccupation with household items
    • intrusive sounds or words

    The following compulsions are the most common among kids and teens:

    • grooming rituals, including hand washing, showering, and teeth brushing
    • repeating rituals, including going in and out of doorways, needing to move through spaces in a special way, checking to make sure that an appliance is off or a door is locked, and checking homework
    • rituals to undo contact with a "contaminated" person or object
    • touching rituals
    • rituals to prevent harming self or others
    • ordering or arranging objects
    • counting rituals
    • hoarding and collecting things
    • cleaning rituals related to the house or other items
    ~ Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, KidsHealth [Retrieved July 3, 2007]
  • In opening the conference, Drs. Hollander and Zohar noted that distributed throughout the various sections of the DSM are a number of disorders which, like Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, are characterized by repetitive thoughts or behaviors. These include obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD), hoarding (not currently in DSM-IV as a separate disorder but one of the criteria for OCPD), Tourette's and other tic disorders, Sydenham's and other PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections), trichotillomania, body dysmorphic disorder, hypochondriasis, autism, eating disorders, Huntington's and Parkinson's diseases, impulse control disorder (e.g., pathological gambling [and compulsive sexual behavior]), and substance addictions. Given potential commonalities in terms of brain circuitry, familial/genetic factors, neurotransmitter/peptide systems, phenotypes, and treatment response, it has been proposed that these disorders be grouped together under the rubric of Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorders (OCSD).
    ~ DSM-V Prelude Project: Research and Outreach, "Obsessive Compulsive Spectrum Disorders Conference" (June 21-22, 2006) [Retrieved June 28, 2007]
  • Mental disorders and ailments can cause insomnia. Many patients that suffer Posttraumatic Stress Syndrome, Sleeping Disorders, ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), Schizophrenia, Psychosis, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Impulsive Control Disorder, OCD (Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder), or other mental disorders often suffer insomnia. To treat chronic insomnia the underlying sources must be treated first. Most disorders of the mind are easily treated with medications; however, few mental disorders may require extensive psychotherapy. Patients with Oppositional Defiant, Schizophrenia, Psychosis, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder often need ongoing treatment, with few patients suffer Oppositional Defiant Disorder requiring ongoing psychotherapy.
    ~ Chronic Insomnia, Insomnia ABC [Retrieved August 20, 2007]
  • We compared the history, the profile, and the severity of sexual symptoms of 31 patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) to those of 26 patients with social anxiety disorder (SAD) by means of the Sexual Inventory of the Institute of Psychiatry of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, the Clinical Interview for the Diagnosis of DSM-IV Sexual Disorders, the Female Sexual Function Index, the International Index of Erectile Function, the Arizona Sexual Experience Scale, and the Sexual Behavior Inventory. Patients with OCD reported more difficulties to reach orgasm (p = 0.009), less frequent effective erections (p = 0.05), and a positive history of sexual abuse (p = 0.006) significantly more often than patients with SAD. Male patients with SAD reported not using contraceptive methods significantly more frequently than male patients with OCD (p = 0.007). Patients with OCD and patients with SAD exhibit different profiles of sexual behavior.
    ~ Fontenelle, Leonardo F. MD; de Souza, Wanderson F. PhD; de Menezes, Gabriela B. MD; Mendlowicz, Mauro V. MD; Miotto, Roberto R. MD; Falcao, Rodrigo MD; Versiani, Marcio MD; Figueira, Ivan L. MD, "Sexual Function and Dysfunction in Brazilian Patients With Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Social Anxiety Disorder" [abstract]. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 195(3):254-257, March 2007 [Retrieved August 24, 2007]
  • Focal seizures (also called partial seizures) are seizures which affect only a small part of the brain, and are split into two main categories; simple partial seizures and complex partial seizures
    A simple partial seizure will often be a precursor to a larger seizure such as a complex partial seizure, or a tonic-clonic seizure. When this is the case, the simple partial seizure is usually called an aura.
    Focal seizures are common in temporal lobe epilepsy.
    ~ Wikipedia, Focal seizures [Retrieved September 9, 2007]
  • The effects of partial seizures can be quite dependent on the area of the brain in which they are active. For example, a partial seizure in areas involved in perception may cause a particular sensory experience
    ~ Wikipedia, Seizure types [Retrieved November 18, 2007]
  • Simple partial seizures occur in children and adults with some forms of epilepsy. They are about half as common as complex partial seizures.
    The person remains awake and aware during the seizure.
    ~ Quality health: Simple partial seizures [Retrieved November 18, 2007]
  • Simple partial seizures are seizures which affect only a small region of the brain, often the temporal lobes and/or hippocampi. Simple partial seizures are often precursors to larger seizures, where the abnormal electrical activity spreads to a larger area of (or all of) the brain, usually resulting in a complex partial seizure or a tonic-clonic seizure. In this case they are often known as an aura.
    Presentation
    Simple partial seizures are a very subjective experience, and the symptoms of a simple partial seizure vary greatly between people. This is due to the varying locations of the brain the seizures originate in, and a simple partial seizure may go unnoticed by others or shrugged off by the sufferer as merely a "funny turn". However, there are some common symptoms experienced by those having a simple partial seizure.
    Some common symptoms of simple partial seizures are:
    • preserved consciousness
    • sudden and inexplainable feelings of joy, anger, sadness, or nausea
    • experience of unusual feelings or sensations
    • altered sense of hearing, smelling, tasting, seeing, and tactile perception (sensory illusions and/or hallucinations), or feeling as though the environment is not real or detachment from the environment (depersonalization)
    • deja vu (familiarity) or jamais vu (infamiliarity)
    • laboured speech or inability to speak at all
    • amnesia around the seizure event and sometimes events which occurred before the seizure
    ~ Wikipedia, Simple partial seizure [Retrieved September 4, 2007]
  • Tonic-Clonic [formerly called grand mal] is a generalized seizure where a person's body becomes rigid and they fall down. During a Tonic-Clonic seizure a person may then make a high pitched cry. Colour is lost from the face and their mouth becomes blue. Breathing becomes erratic and saliva foams from the mouth. During these seizures the body makes jerking movements and grunt. A person may bite their tongue and loose bladder or bowel control. When recovering from this form of seizure the person is confused and sleepy. They may also experience headaches and nausea.
    ~ Epilepsy Support [Retrieved September 5, 2007]
  • Tonic-clonic seizure: The classic type of epileptic seizure consisting of two phases to a tonic-clonic seizure -- the tonic phase and the clonic phase. In the tonic phase the body becomes entire rigid, and in the clonic phase there is uncontrolled jerking. Tonic-clonic seizures may or may not be preceded by an aura, and are often followed by headache, confusion, and sleep. They may last mere seconds, or continue for several minutes. Also known as a grand mal seizure.
    ~ MedicineNet.com [Retrieved September 5, 2007]
  • European researchers have pinpointed another genetic marker for autism, according to a new study. Published in the journal Nature Genetics, the study reports on a recent breakthrough by researchers at France's Pasteur Institute. There, geneticists identified a gene sequence labeled SHANK3, which tends to occur in children who suffer from both autism and its milder counterpart, Asperger syndrome. Researchers believe that identification of the gene marker may hold the key to the development of neurochemical treatments for the disorder.
    ~ New Autism Gene Identified (January 12, 2007) [Retrieved October 14, 2007]
  • A lot of autistics were misdiagnosed with schizophrenia. People with Asperger's Syndrome were thought to have some type of schizophrenia.
    ~ Hierarchy of conditions for perfect matches [Retrieved October 14, 2007]
  • At present there is no test for Asperger Syndrome. A proper assessment for the disorder must be made by a qualified professional such as a psychiatrist or a psychologist. Such an assessment will include a detailed personal and family history of the individual.
    ~ Maureen Garde, Can you test for Asperger Syndrome? [Retrieved October 25, 2007]
  • There is no specific test for Aspergers. There is no medical test, no genetic test, no definitive psychological test for Aspergers. Aspergers is defined and diagnosed behaviorally. There are quizzes and questionnaires where people with Asperger syndrome will on average score higher or lower than the rest of the population, but in themselves they are not adequate for a diagnosis by themselves. That means that someone who is trained in Autism Spectrum Disorders generally and who has specific experience with Aspergers must get to know a person and through their observations and interviews come to make the diagnosis based on those experiences.
    ~ Asperger's Syndrome [Retrieved December 3, 2007]
  • When you research SPD [semantic pragmatic disorder], you will read conflicting opinions on what it is and where it fits as a diagnostic entity. Some believe SPD is a component, or a language style, of other disorders. Others believe it is either the same as High Functioning Autism and/or Asperger Syndrome, or that it is a separate, valid disorder on the autistic spectrum. Lastly, there are those who view SPD as a disorder with some autistic-like characteristics, but not part of the spectrum.
    Characteristics of this disorder overlap with other, more well known disorders, which causes diagnostic confusion. It doesn't help that this is not a "valid" disability as yet in the US. You might receive a diagnosis of High Functioning Autism, Asperger's Syndrome, Hyperlexia, PDD-NOS, or even ADHD, or you may hear the word "Atypical" attached to your diagnosis.
    To further confuse the issue, there seems to be two separate groups of SPD, which researchers are referring to as Pragmatic Language Impairment Pure and Pragmatic Language Impairment Plus. PLI Plus children seem to fall on the autistic spectrum, with possible different underlying causes for their pragmatic language difficulties than with the PLI Pure children.
    ~ Semantic Pragmatic Disorder Web Page [Retrieved October 25, 2007]
  • We know that Semantic-Pragmatic Disordered children have many more problems than just speaking and understanding words, so we call it a communication disorder rather than a language disorder. We think that the difficulty for children with S.P.D. may be in the way they process information. Children with S.P.D. [Semantic-Pragmatic disorder] find it more difficult to extract the central meaning or the saliency of an event. They tend to focus on detail instead; for example the sort of child who finds the duck hidden in the picture but fails to grasp the situation or story in the picture or the child who points out the spot on your face before saying 'hello'....
    The S.P.D. child's difficulty in seeing the world through other people's eyes or understanding that other people think differently from himself, is often described as a child who does not have a "theory of mind."...
    Most "core" Autistic children never acquire a complex theory of mind where as S.P.D. do seem to but later than other skills at the same developmental stage.
    This recently adopted phrase [autism spectrum disorders] refers to children who fall some way between normality and Autism but outside Core Autism. Labels like Atypical Autism, Aspergers Syndrome, or Semantic-Pragmatic disorder are often used and they all describe similar communication difficulties to a greater or lesser degree. All children on the Autistic Continuum including those with Core Autism have Semantic-Pragmatic difficulties with language and they should all be viewed in the context of Autism. That is they share the same triad of difficulties, with sociability, pretence and language....
    Children with Aspergers Syndrome tend to have more problems with socialising than children with Semantic Pragmatic Disorder but are generally earlier fluent speakers. There seems to be a pay off between early comprehension skills and sociability. As children mature, it is often difficult to specify what label best fits. Many children improve dramatically and diagnostic labels can change.
    We now think there is a family link between these Autistic Spectrum Disorders. We have sometimes found that having identified one child on the Autistic Continuum, another child in the family has been found to have milder communication problems too, particularly if they are male.
    ~ Margo Sharp [apparent author], Semantic Pragmatic Disorder [Retrieved October 25, 2007]
  • Semantic-Pragmatic Disorder (SPD) is a developmental disorder that many experts believe is closely related to autism and Asperger's Syndrome. The name refers to the fact that people with SPD have special challenges with the semantic aspect of language (the meaning of what is being said) and the pragmatics of language (using language appropriately in social situations).
    The term has been around for years, but is more widely used in England than in America, where it is just starting to be recognized. It was first coined by Rapin and Allen in 1983. There is some debate about whether SPD is a diagnostic category unto itself, or merely a subtly different flavor of high-functioning autism. There is emerging agreement among experts that most people who exhibit this language disorder are, in fact, on the autism spectrum, and many children with SPD are given the label of Asperger's Syndrome, apparently because AS has become the catch-all diagnostic label for autistic people who are verbal and have normal IQs. However, people with the SPD label have features that differ from both classic Asperger's syndrome and classic autism. Some experts believe that people with SPD have better social functioning than the typical Asperger's person, while having greater impairment in language use and development.
    ~ Wikipedia, Semantic pragmatic disorder [Retrieved October 25, 2007]
  • Sensory Integration Dysfunction (SID, also called sensory processing disorder) is a neurological disorder causing difficulties with processing information from the five classic senses (vision, auditory, touch, olfaction, and taste), the sense of movement (vestibular system), and/or the positional sense (proprioception). For those with SID, sensory information is sensed normally, but perceived abnormally. This is not the same as blindness or deafness, because, unlike those disorders, sensory information is sensed by people with SID, but the information tends to be analyzed by the brain in an unusual way that may cause pain or confusion.
    SID can be a disorder on its own, but it can also be a characteristic of other neurological conditions, including autism spectrum disorders, dyslexia, Developmental Dyspraxia, Tourette's Syndrome, multiple sclerosis, and speech delays, among many others. Unlike many other neurological problems that require validation by a licensed psychiatrist or physician, this condition can only be properly diagnosed by an occupational therapist. There is no known cure; however, there are many treatments available.
    ~ Wikipedia, Sensory Integration Dysfunction [Retrieved October 27, 2007]
  • Ever wonder why your child does the things he/she does?
    • Do you wonder why they are excessive risk takers, jumping and crashing into anything they can
    • Why they can’t do puzzles, write well, or find the coordination for riding a bike or hitting a ball?
    • Why they cry or cover their ears with every loud sound (even vacuums, toilets or hairdryers)?
    • Why they don’t like to be touched or can’t be touched enough?
    • Why they will only eat macaroni and cheese and pizza?
    • Why they will only wear certain clothes or need you to cut the tags out of their shirts?
    • Ever wonder why you can’t seem to calm them down or get them to sleep?
    • Why they won’t put their hands in anything messy or use glue, Play Doh, or play with mud?
    • Why they fear playground equipment or being tipped upside down?
    • Or, why crowded stores bother them so much leading to major meltdowns in public places?

    ~ Sensory Processing Disorder [Retrieved October 27, 2007]
  • Sensory processing difficulties seem to go hand in hand with autism—-is sensory processing disorder a unique condition of its own? The June 5th [2007] New York Times notes that some therapists and researchers have petitioned the American Psychiatric Association to include sensory processing disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM); these attempts have met “resistance.” What is not in dispute, the New York Times article notes, is sensory processing difficulties in autistic persons ....
    ~ Kristina Chew, Ph.D., Sensible Accommodations for Sensory Issues [Retrieved October 27, 2007]
  • Almost every parent of young children has heard an anguished cry or two (or 200) something like:
    “This shirt is scratchy, this shirt is scratchy, get it off!”
    “This oatmeal smells like poison, it’s poisonous!”
    “My feet are hot, my feet are hot, my feet are boiling!”
    Such bizarre, seemingly overblown reactions to everyday sensations can end in tears, parents know, or escalate into the sort of tantrum that brings neighbors to the door asking whether everything’s all right.
    Usually, it is. The world for young children is still raw, an acid bath of strange sights, smells and sounds, and it can take time to get used to it.
    Yet for decades some therapists have argued that there are youngsters who do not adjust at all, or at least not normally. They remain oversensitive, continually recoiling from the world, or undersensitive, banging into things, duck-walking through the day as if not entirely aware of their surroundings.
    The problem, these therapists say, is in the brain, which is not properly integrating the onslaught of information coming through the senses, often causing anxiety, tantrums and problems in the classroom. Such difficulties, while common in children with developmental disorders like autism, also occur on their own in many otherwise healthy youngsters, they say.
    No one has a standard diagnostic test for these sensory integration problems, nor any idea of what might be happening in the brain. Indeed, a diagnosis of such problems is not yet generally accepted. Nor is there evidence to guide treatment, which makes many doctors, if they have heard of sensory problems at all, skeptical of the diagnosis.
    ~ Benedict Carey, "The Disorder Is Sensory; the Diagnosis, Elusive" The New York Times. June 5, 2007. [Retrieved October 27, 2007]
  • The primary criterion for adding a new disorder to DSM-V is whether there is sufficient empirical evidence of its validity and clinical utility. In the case of Sensory Processing Disorder, three options for DSM-V were discussed: 1) adding it as a new disorder; 2) adding it as a subtype that would apply to disorders such as Autistic Disorder or Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder; or 3) adding a dimensional definition to the DSM-V appendix for "criteria sets and axes needing further study" in order to stimulate additional research. A very high threshold of empirical data has been set for adding a new disorder to DSM-V in order to insure that only diagnostically valid disorders are added to the system. The types of data that would be required include 1) evidence that sensory processing disorder describes a condition that is not adequately covered by an existing DSM-IV disorder; 2) evidence supporting its diagnostic validity; 3) evidence supporting its clinical utility; and 4) evidence supporting that there is a low risk of false positive diagnoses that might result if sensory processing disorder were to be added. ~ Michael B. First, M.D. (Columbia University Editor, DSM-IV-TR), Sensory Processing Disorder: Possible Pathways to DSM-V [Retrieved October 27, 2007]
  • Sensory Integration Dysfunction [sensory processing disorder] is the inability of the brain to correctly process information brought in by the senses. Sensory Integration Dysfunction (SID/DSI) or sensory processing deficits can come in many different forms. No two children will be affected in the same ways. SID/DSI was first noticed in children with autism or who had autistic traits but is also seen in children with other disabilities such as cerebral palsy or ADD/ADHD or can be present by itself. Children can have mild, moderate or severe SI deficits. SID/DSI is treatable with therapy and a sensory diet set up by an occupational therapist who is trained in SI. You should look for a therapist who is certified in praxis testing (SIPT certified) and Wilbarger trained....
    Children with SID/DSI can be either hyposensitive or hypersensitive to outside stimuli. For example a child who is hyposensitive to touch will constantly be crashing into things seeking extra stimulation while the hypersensitive child will avoid being touched or touching things when at all possible. SID/DSI can also include children who have processing deficits in one or more areas. Visual and auditory processing deficits are noticed in children with cerebral palsy quite often. When a child has a visual processing deficit, it does not mean that they cannot see. It means that they have a hard time finding the words for objects they are viewing or, if asked to go get an object, they might look right at it and then say they can't find it. This is because they are seeing it but their brains are not processing that they are seeing it. Auditory processing deficits are the same, the child hears what you say but the brain does not process it so the child understands or it takes several minutes for what you have said to "click" with the child. One way to help with auditory processing deficits is to break down instructions, giving them one thing at a time to do. Let them finish the first task before you give them another instruction. Listening or music therapy can also help with auditory processing deficits.
    Below is a list of other behaviors exibited by children with SID/DSI:
    -- Loves to spin, swing and jump--this will seem to calm them down after several minutes.
    -- Complains of how clothing feels, does not like tags left in their clothing and have to have their socks on just so, or a certain kind of sock.
    -- Picky eaters--get stuck on one certain food and is basically impossible to get them to eat anything else.
    -- Oversensitivity to smells. Or undersensitivity--may sniff people, objects, food.
    -- Oversensitivity to sounds--will frequently cover ears. Or undersensivity.
    -- May have an exceptionally high pain tolerance
    -- May tire easily
    -- Unusually high or low activity level
    -- Resists new situations
    -- Problems with muscle tone, coordination, motor planning
    -- Can be very impulsive or distractible.
    -- Persistently walks on toes to avoid sensory input from the bottom of the feet. This can also be a sign of cerebral palsy if the child is unable to bring their feet down flat when asked or trying.
    These are just a few of the symptoms that children with SID/DSI can exibit.
    ~ Sensory Integration Dysfunction [Retrieved November 6, 2007]
  • Few pediatric neurologists believe that SID is a real diagnostic entity. We note that children with a range of neurodevelopmental and behavioral disorders, including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism, and anxiety disorders also have “sensory issues” such as oversensitivity to touch. Many neurologists therefore feel that “sensory symptoms” are a nonspecific indicator of neurodevelopmental immaturity, not a sign of a distinct disorder. Yet thousands of children are sent for these therapies by their parents, at no small expense. Aetna considers sensory integration therapy experimental and does not pay for it. However, a few insurance companies do cover it, and some school districts provide it.
    Anecdotal evidence from parents is often used to support the existence of SID and the effectiveness of treatment. A review of the literature on sensory integration disorder reveals mostly poorly designed studies and flawed methodology. Studies with tiny sample sizes (as small as one patient!) are common....
    It should be remembered that most children develop and improve their behavior spontaneously. Given the fact that few (if any) adult patients have sensory integration disorder, it is reasonable to question whether costly interventions are really necessary for what is a most likely a self-limiting problem of neurodevelopmental immaturity and anxiety. I also believe that children or families whose behavioral or anxiety disorders could benefit treatment would be better off seeking standard treatment than wasting time and money on unproven or irrational approaches.
    Well-designed scientific studies are needed to determine whether or not SID is indeed a disorder, and even if so, whether the treatments currently prescribed are effective or necessary. Until studies along these lines are conducted, the diagnosis of SID should prompt a healthy degree of skepticism.
    ~ Peter L. Heilbroner, MD (pediatric neurology), PhD, Quackwatch, "Why "Sensory Integration Disorder" Is a Dubious Diagnosis" [Retrieved November 6, 2007]
  • Research has identified the main diagnostic groups linked with Sensory Integration:
    • Pervasive Developmental Disorder (including Autism and Aspergers Syndrome)
    • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (A.D.H.D./A.D.D,)
    • Learning Disorders ( i.e. specific learning difficulties e.g. dyslexia)
    • Developmental Disabilities
    • Fragile X Syndrome
    • Developmental Coordination Disorder [DCD] (including Dyspraxia)
    ~ What is Sensory Integration [Retrieved July 9, 2013]
  • And just to settle a related issue, being highly sensitive is not "high functioning autism" or Asperger's Syndrome. It is not anywhere on the "autistic spectrum." Those with autistic disorders have brains that for some reason did not "prune" the neuronal net enough or properly, a process that occurs in infancy. As a result, they are processing too much stimulation also, but all the time and for a much different reason. It's easy to tell the difference, too. Those on the autistic spectrum have had trouble almost since birth with recognizing and responding appropriately to "socio-emotional cues"--what others are thinking and feeling, regardless of words. They have to memorize how to respond to someone who feels sad or angry. HSPs are just the opposite--they feel too aware of these cues. The only exceptions are those HSPs who have "shut down" emotionally due to events in their early childhood, but they were not born this way and their brains are not structured in the same way as someone autistic from birth.
    ~ The Benefits of Being Highly Sensitive, for Ourselves and Our World [Retrieved November 6, 2007]
  • ... there are those who say this [being a highly sensitive person] trait is just the healthy end of the “autistic spectrum.” This confusion is due to the fact that those with autistic disorders (including the hot new disorder, Asperger’s syndrom), are definitely highly sensitive to stimulation and easily over stimulated. But autistic disorders always involve a failure to read accurately social and emotional cues. HSPs are very sensitive to and accurate about social cues and what others are feeling.
    In short, the trait I call high sensitivity has nothing to do with any disorder.
    ~ Coping Corner: What To Say To The Professionals Who DoubtThe Whole Idea Of High Sensitivity [Retrieved November 6, 2007]
  • Many children and adults with autism have problems processing sensory information. Recent research has suggested that 78% of children with autism have significant problems processing sensory information. Temple Grandin, a woman with autistic spectrum disorder, discusses in her books her sensitivity to light touch and sounds. She tells how she used deep-pressure touch to calm and organise her nervous system and reduce her hypersensitivity to touch.
    Children with sensory processing problems may present with some of the following difficulties:
    • Distress with certain sounds
    • Sensitivity to light
    • Avoidance of certain textures
    • Dislikes having hair, fingernails or toenails cut
    • Aversion to certain smells and tastes
    • Fear of heights and movement
    • Disregard of sudden or loud sounds
    • Unaware of pain
    • Unaware of body sensations such as hunger, hot or cold
    • Lack of attention to environment, persons or things
    ~ JuliaDyer.com: Autism/Autistic Spectrum Disorder (including Asperger's Syndrome) [Retrieved November 22, 2007]
  • She [Dr. Temple Grandin] identified three specializations of autistic thought — visual thinkers, music and math dominance, and verbal thinkers. The first, the photorealists like her, are those who function like having a movie projector in the brain, or in a contemporary analogy, a Google Images-like search engine. The second type are those who are good at patterns — much more abstract than the visual thinkers. She illustrated this with a slide of a praying mantis made in origami overlaid on top of the quite complex folding pattern of its square of paper. Some very pattern-oriented mind came up with that folding sequence. Finally, the verbally-oriented folks are those who are good at facts — the history buffs, the sports trivia buffs.
    It seems autism isn’t one single thing or syndrome, rather it’s a manifestation of how different brains can specialize. Obviously it is important to work on making autistic individuals functioning members of society, but as Temple Grandin puts it, we don’t want to cure Einstein (non-verbal at age three). What we see in extreme in autistic individuals are unusual combinations of the intellectual potentials we all have.
    ~ Reclaiming Your Inner Autist [Retrieved November 4, 2007]
  • There seems to be a strong correlation between those with Asperger syndrome or high-functioning autism (HFA) and the INTP type of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI): description 1, description 2. Another theory states that Asperger's correlates to the INTP personality type, whereas high functioning autism correlates to the INFJ personality type.
    ~ "high-functioning autism" asperger's dsm-v [Retrieved November 11, 2007] or here [Retrieved November 16, 2007]
  • [Hans] Asperger's description differed from Kanner's in that speech was less commonly delayed, motor deficits were more common, the onset appeared to be somewhat later, and all the initial cases occurred only in boys. Asperger also suggested that similar problems could be observed in family members, particularly fathers.
    ~ Ami Klin, Ph.D., and Fred R. Volkmar, M.D., "Asperger's Syndrome - Guidelines for Assessment and Diagnosis" [Retrieved November 28, 2007]
  • Autism is a common and heterogeneous childhood neurodevelopmental disorder. Analogous to broad syndromes such as mental retardation, autism has many etiologies and should be considered not as a single disorder but, rather, as "the autisms." However, recent genetic findings, coupled with emerging anatomical and functional imaging studies, suggest a potential unifying model in which higher-order association areas of the brain that normally connect to the frontal lobe are partially disconnected during development. This concept of developmental disconnection can accommodate the specific neurobehavioral features that are observed in autism, their emergence during development, and the heterogeneity of autism etiology, behaviors and cognition.
    ~ Daniel H, Geschwind and Pat Levitt, "Autism spectrum disorders: developmental disconnection syndromes" [abstract] [Retrieved December 1, 2007]
  • ... sources sometimes use autism or the autisms to refer to autistic disorders or to ASD [autism spectrum disorder] ....
    ~ Wikipedia, Autism [Retrieved December 1, 2007]
  • People with Asperger's syndrome - with their lack of flexibility and, often, stunning egocentricity - have major problems coping with "normal" life. At the same time, many are "free thinkers" and may be scientifically aesthetically highly skilled. "Asperger people" (as they sometimes like to refer to themselves) are fascinating and, possibly, specifically valuable for the human species.
    ~ Christopher Gillberg. A Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2002. Page 4.
  • Personality disorders are often diagnosed in individuals who have had autism spectrum disorders since early childhood. Unlike in the case of schizophrenia, such diagnoses are not symptomatically inappropriate: the patients actually meet criteria for many of these disorders (perhaps particularly obsessive-compulsive, schizoid, narcissistic, paranoid, schizotypal, avoidant and borderline personality disorder). The question is whether it adds anything to the understanding of the person with Asperger syndrome to say that he/she also has this or that personality disorder.
    ~ Christopher Gillberg. A Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2002. Page 56.
  • Perceptual problems are commonplace in Asperger syndrome. In a sense, Asperger syndrome is a disorder of unusual perceptions....
    Unusual reactions to sound - ranging from panic at specific "noises" (considered unobtrusive or even inaudible by others) through repetitive clinging to a certain tonal sequence - are almost universal.
    ~ Christopher Gillberg. A Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2002. Page 60.
  • It is possible that unilateral aberrant frontal lobe function is vitally important for human empathy skills, and that people with Asperger syndrome have empathy problems because of specific impairment of such brain function. The evidence is currently equivocal as to which brain hemisphere is most likely to be impaired in Asperger syndrome.
    ~ Christopher Gillberg. A Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2002. Page 78.
  • It is possible that optimal functions in a specific area in the left portion of the frontal lobe ... are necessary the acquisition of adequate empathy skills. This brain area has been suggested to be crucially important for the ability to process mentalizing tasks in a rapid and efficient manner.
    ~ Christopher Gillberg. A Guide to Asperger's Syndrome. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2002. Page 82.
  • Diane Kennedy, author of the The ADHD Autism Connection, makes a strong case for the distinct similarities between the symptoms of ADHD and autism....
    She quickly found that while ADHD research focused on the features of the disorder, autism research examined the disorder for root causes so that more effective treatments could be developed. While both were developmental disorders, they both share similar features and affect children in the same three central areas: communication, social interaction and behavior, each camp approached its disorder differently. Kennedy maintains that this is where the confusion arises as the medical and educational professionals are not trained to recognize the similarities between the disorders. Researchers and clinicians look for the differences between the two....
    A common symptom between autism and ADHD is that both camps suffer from gross and fine motor skills as well as the impulsive driven behaviors. In some cases, the autism behaviors reveal a deficit in being able to respond emotionally.
    ... autism is considered a core deficit in the executive functions of the frontal lobes. Of those three functions, impulsivity, as graphic evidence of the life force, drives the other two issues. Impulse control, the major underlying influence on behavior, is driven by the limbic system, the emotional brain.
    ~ Autism & ADHD [Retrieved January 6, 2008]
  • Some research suggests a possible genetic and behavioral connection between ADHD and autism.
    ~ Wikipedia, Autism spectrum [Retrieved December 4, 2007]
  • Presently, some researchers and experts recognize that there is a correlation between Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorders. Some believe that ADHD is closely related to Asperger’s Syndrome. Autism Spectrum Disorders and ADHD are developmental disorders that affect the areas of social skills, behavior, and communication.
    ~ ADHD: Autism [Retrieved December 4, 2007]
  • Clinical experience suggests that there are quite a number of patients in adult psychiatric hospitals who have been misdiagnosed as having anankastic [obsessive-compulsive] personality disorder rather than Asperger syndrome. While the misdiagnosis of Asperger syndrome as simple schizophrenia and other conditions is very familiar, anankastic personality has not been given sufficient consideration in the differential diagnosis.
    ~ Michael Fitzgerald. "Misdiagnosis of Asperger syndrome as anankastic personality disorder." Autism. 6(4): 435 (1992).
  • Since 1994, ethically responsible diagnosticians have adopted the view that autism is a spectrum disorder. Individuals diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) occupy positions from one extreme end of autistic functioning continuum to the other.
    To reflect current professionals' thinking about ASD's, the following section is a more accurate depiction of AS [Asperger syndrome]. Symptoms of AS include: impaired ability to utilize social cues such as body language, understand irony, or other “subtexts” of communication; restricted eye contact and odd, failed efforts at socialization; a marked and limited range of encyclopedic interests; perseverative, odd behaviors; didactic speech, verbosity, substantial problems with prosody, with voice tone regulation (monotone, droning voice); “concrete” thought accompanied with black and white dichotomous thinking; hyper and hyposensitivity to sensory stimuli; and unusual body awareness and movement....
    AS individuals are known for their remarkable memories....
    ... AS individuals have strong but relatively constricted interests. They may develop them as children and persevere in their pursuit of knowledge in the same topic throughout their lives. Other individuals develop strong but successive interests, moving from one intense perseveration to the next. Many AS children and adults, regardless of whether they are introverts or extroverts, become known by others as "little professors". Many AS adults actually do become teachers or professors due to their considerable knowledge on one subject. Universities and research institutes are perfect homes for persons with exquisite and arcane knowledge.
    ~ Official Criteria for Asperger Syndrome [Retrieved December 20, 2007]
  • My name is Ari Ne'eman and I am here today in my capacity as President of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network....
    Asperger's Autism is characterized by difficulties in interpreting social interactions. When neurologically typical people communicate, what is being said is just the tip of the iceberg. Vast amounts of unspoken communication occurs as a result of nonverbal cues, intonations, contexts and other subtle forms of talking "between the lines". My people, Asperger's Autistics, do not naturally pick up on these more subtle forms of communication. The ability to understand neurologically typical social skills can be learnt, but it is like learning any foreign language - the process is long, difficult and one always prefers communicating in ones mother tongue. At the same time, the social difficulties that we face are not the totality of our neurology. Asperger's Autistics typically display high levels of intellectual ability in specific areas of interest, particularly (though not always) those related to categorization-heavy fields like mathematics or engineering. It is because of this that many Asperger's Autistics have found success in fields like computer science, engineering and similar fields. It is also because of this that today many historians believe that some of the great but eccentric minds of the past, including Einstein, Newton and Jefferson, may have been Asperger's Autistics.
    ~ Ari Ne'eman, ASAN's Testimony on Autism to the NJ Legislature [Retrieved January 2, 2008]
  • The reason for their [autistic individuals'] inability to lie is closely tied to theory of mind. Most autistic individuals have difficulty understanding that other people have their own thoughts, feelings, plans and point of views. They also assume that others know their own thoughts, feelings, plans, etc.
    In the case of lying, autistic individuals would have to realize that they themselves are aware of two different perspectives of an event - the true perspective (e.g., “I broke the toy”) and the ‘false’ perspective (e.g., “Someone else broke the toy”) - while the parent is told only the ‘false’ perspective (e.g., “Someone else broke the toy”). This type of cognition would not be likely for those who do not have theory of mind because they believe that others always know what they are thinking.
    When an autistic individual begins to lie, it can lead to additional problems/worries as does lying in non-autistic children. At the same time, the advent of lying behavior can be viewed as reaching a new cognitive milestone and can be seen as a reason to celebrate!
    ~ Stephen M. Edelson, Ph.D. (Center for the Study of Autism, Salem, Oregon), "Lying in Autism: A Cognitive Milestone" [Retrieved January 18, 2008]
  • As she's [my daughter's] grown older, she's learned ... to work with us to alleviate some of the symptoms of autism that trouble her. For example, she still hates certain sounds, like a baby crying, the car alarm that tells you your seat belt isn't fastened, or the sound of a bathtub draining. When she hears them, she gets agitated, holds her hands over her ears, and vocalizes to block out the sound. She has the same reaction when she hears me clear my throat, or when someone says words associated with bathing, such as "bath," "shower," or "shampoo."
    ~ Roy Richard Grinker. Unstrange Minds: Remapping the World of Autism. New York: Basic Books. 2007. Page 299.
  • Picking up people's names can be a problem but it is very important for topics of conversation involving famous people or the following of plots to films, books and especially to detective stories.
    Picking up names of people you know personally may also be difficult but it is not quite as essential as you might think. If you remember not to ask someone's name more than two times and after this, if you still can't remember the name, to listen out for the next time someone calls it, you can usually get away with having a bad memory for names.
    ~ Marc Segar, Survival Guide for People living with Asperger's Syndrome [Retrieved January 4, 2008]
  • Epilepsy is more common in people with AS [Asperger's syndrome], affecting perhaps as many as one in every five; possibly slightly less than in autism, but still a substantially increased risk compared to the general population.
    ~ Digby Tantam. "Assessment and Treatment of Comorbid Emotional and Behavior Problems." In Margot Prior, editor. Learning and Behavior Problems in Asperger Syndrome. New York: Guilford Press. 2003. Page 159.
  • Asperger's syndrome had at different times been called Autistic psychopathy [by Hans Asperger] and Schizoid disorder of childhood [in the DSM-III], although those terms are now understood as archaic and inaccurate, and are therefore no longer accepted in common use.
    ~ Asperger's Syndrome - History [Retrieved February 25, 2008]
  • Schizoid Disorder of Childhood ... A disorder of childhood and adolescence that is characterized by social isolation, an apparent lack of interest in making friends, the general avoidance of nonfamilial social contacts, especially with peers, and the lack of pleasure in usual peer interactions.
    ~ The AIRS/211 LA County Taxonomy [Retrieved February 25, 2008]
  • Nathan would become so overwhelmed by his inner world that he'd forget where he was, the name of the game we were playing, or whose turn it was. He was so mightily caught up in his intricate idea-system, common among young people with Asperger's syndrome, that he seemed, literally, to forget aspects of himself.
    ~ Karen Zelan. Between Their World and Ours: Breakthroughs with Autistic Children. New York: St. Martin's Press. 2003. Page 145.
  • Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) presents with inattention, distractability, fidgetiness, impulsivity and hyperactivity. Persons with HFA [high-functioning autism] spectrum disorders may be hyperactive, impulsive, have a short attention span and share similar executive function deficits as patients with ADHD. The conditions differ in that ADHD lacks the classic impairment in reciprocal social interaction, narrow interests, repetitive routines and non-verbal problems of Asperger syndrome. In accordance with a hierarchical rule in DSM–IV, a person meeting the criteria for a pervasive developmental disorder cannot be diagnosed as having ADHD. This is not the case in ICD–10, in which a dual diagnosis of Asperger syndrome and ADHD is possible.
    Gillberg & Ehlers (1998) point out that children who meet criteria for ADHD may also meet the full criteria for Asperger syndrome. They mention one study, in which 21% of children with severe ADHD met the full criteria for Asperger syndrome and 36% showed autistic traits. A developmental history is usually sufficient to separate ADHD from Asperger syndrome, but ADHD can present as soon as the child can walk, and it is important to consider that impulsivity can interfere with social relationships, making children appear unempathic. Indeed, children with ADHD can be so easily distracted that they appear to be in a world of their own and therefore seem socially disconnected. It is not surprising, therefore, that children with Asperger syndrome are not uncommonly misdiagnosed as having ADHD, since it is often the attention and hyperactive problems that parents first observe.
    ~ Michael Fitzgerald and Aiden Corvin, "Diagnosis and differential diagnosis of Asperger syndrome" [Retrived March 25, 2008]
  • ... the term “obsession” can only be used in the context of autism with difficulty. This centers on the traditional definition of an obsession being “egodystonic” (or unwanted). In autism, there is no evidence that the child’s strong interests are unwanted. Rather, those individuals with autism or AS who can report on why they engage in these activities report that they often derive some pleasure from them. They are therefore probably egosyntonic.
    ~ Simon Baron-Cohen, "Are children with autism superior at folk physics?" Wellman, H, & Inagaki, K, (eds) The emergence of core domains of thought: Children’s reasoning about physical, psychological and biological phenomena. New Direction for Child Development Series, 75, 45-54.Jossey-Bass Inc. (1997) [Retrieved May 18, 2008]
  • Key to the Asperger style of politics and media is the constant repetition of thought patterns and the imperviousness of the practitioners' thinking to outside fact or argument. The technical name for this is perseveration which has been defined as "the persistent repetition of a response after cessation of the causative stimuli; for example, the repetition of a correct answer to one question as the answer to succeeding questions," an almost perfect description of what regularly occurs on your average Sunday talk show. A less technical but even more generally apt definition is "continuation of something usually to an exceptional degree or beyond a desired point."
    ~ Sam Smith, "The Autistic Confederacy" [Retrieved May 24, 2008]
  • ... the use of language for communicative purposes and certain behavioral and stylistic characteristics involving repetitive or perseverative features ....
    ~ Stephen Bauer, M.D., M.P.H., "Asperger Syndrome" [Retrieved May 24, 2008]
  • Unlike children with more garden-variety ADHD, a large group of children with Asperger’s Disorder, regarding stimulants, either have an absent, muted, or greater adverse reaction (tics, increase in repetitive and perseverative behaviors, etc.)
    ~ Daniel Rosenn, M.D., "Is it Asperger's or ADHD?" [Retrieved May 24, 2008]
  • They [perseverations] have a common element – repetition, otherwise they differ....
    Take the repetitive phrases, little ditties gleaned from the cosmos, that they repeat in a loop, sometimes for many hours; ‘to infinity and beyond,’ ‘Elliot…..idiot,’ ‘ I am not a number.’ Here, we have echolalic [translation – repeat as in an echo] tendencies, which complicate the picture.
    What about the fixations or special interests? “ I am a train, not a boy, not a toy, not a girl, not a lamb,” with the elements of rhyme, meter and rhythm. Autistic children often fixate on a narrow subject that infiltrates any number of aspects, if not all, of their lives. Trying to dissect different elements may only confuse you further.
    How about we try slipping in the tick or the stim? Stims and tics are terms used as shorthand to describe ‘self stimulatory behaviours.’ Many of us are familiar with hand flapping, flickering fingers and oh so many more variations on a theme....
    There again, we have the OCD factor – ‘trains are busy, trains are fast, I am a train, no I can’t eat trains, eat nothing.’ The fear factor, the phobia, special interest or fixation can all play a role and confuse the picture, especially if you are not an expert. It’s hard to determine what you are witnessing, which makes it more difficult to decide what, if anything, to do about it?
    ~ Maddy Whitterer, "Whitterer on Autism" [Retrieved May 24, 2008]
  • We begin with sexuality. The picture is not uniform there. Some cases are sexually cool and uninterested, weak in their drive, throughout their childhood but also beyond puberty - and do not achieve any healthy, strong sexuality later in life either. In the larger number of cases, however, there are early occurrences of sexual peculiarities. In very many cases these manifest themselves in the form of an early occurring, intensely practised, stubbornly maintained masturbation, which defies all attempts at treatment. There is often an extensive lack of the feeling of shame and guilt which normally accompanies these acts; the children may indulge in their passion in an exhibitionistic way, with all the stubbornness and unimpressionability of the Autistic Psychopaths. You also find out about homosexual acts among relatively young children (see case 2!).
    ~ Hans Asperger, Die "Autistischen Psychopathen" im Kindesalter (Autistic Psychopathy of Childhood), pp.123-124 [Retrieved May 29, 2008]
  • ADHD is a condition sometimes mistaken for, and sometimes co-morbid with ASDs, and in fact, some experts believe it is related to the Autism Spectrum. It is certainly true that many ACs [autistics and cousins] were first diagnosed ADHD, before being discovered to have an ASD.
    Whilst some people are given the dual diagnosis of ADHD with ASD, hyperactivity and distractibility can be a component of ASDs. However, studies have shown that the majority of ACs lack the ability to shift attention quickly, as people with ADHD can do.
    ~ Mental Health and Behaviour Disorders: Common Mis-Diagnoses and Co-Morbid Conditions (from the alt.support.autism FAQ) [Retrieved July 7, 2008]
  • ... autism was once very incorrectly thought to be the same as schizophrenia, and was later thought to be a type of schizophrenia, and judging by the literature and anecdotal evidence, misdiagnosis of autistic people with schizophrenia and it’s numerous sub-types has been very common, some sub-types of schizophrenia include: paranoid, hebephrenic (disorganized), catatonic, residual, simple schizophrenia, “chronic schizophrenia”, “chronic undifferentiated schizophrenia”
    ~ Incorrect Pleasures [Retrieved July 7, 2008]
  • It is generally assumed that autistic people can't identify the emotions of others, but clinical studies alternatively suggest that perhaps they feel others' emotions too well, to the point that they are overwhelmed. "These experiments can help tease these options apart," says [Christian] Keyser.
    ~ Helen Thomsom, "Why real and imagined disgust have the same effect." NewScientist. August 13, 2008. [Retrieved August 18, 2008]
  • From the practical perspective, perhaps the most damaging impact of ADHD is the social ineptness associated with it. People with ADHD often experience chronic problems in social relationships. They are viewed by others as too much in a rush, clueless, too intense, and too aloof or isolated....
    Among individuals with ADHD there is a wide variation in emotional intelligence. Many ADHD individuals evidenced impaired emotional intelligence. Others, such as those with Asperger's Disorder or Autism may evidence impaired emotional intelligence even though they do not have ADHD. But, there seems to be a certain continuum or continuity among these disorders.
    Asperger's Disorder evidences normal verbal ability during early development, but an inability to empathize and interact with peers. There is a lack of social and emotional reciprocity This is combined with unusual interests and narrow focus on those interests to the exclusion of other interests. In addition to odd speech patterns and literal language we also observe poor non-verbal communication. (Klin, 2000) (Attwood, 1998)
    With Non-Verbal LD as defined by Byron Rourke we see deficits in visualization, perceptual organization, conceptual organization, the ability to grasp the overall picture and problems with summarizing and integrating information.
    When comparing these ADHD and Non-Verbal LD with Aspergers we note that individuals with Asperger Syndrome have virtually all the characteristics of Non Verbal LD. Both have problems with behavior and adaptive functioning, both have IQ test profiles where the verbal quotient is greater than the performance quotient and similar neuropsychological profiles with impaired right hemisphere functioning. (Rourke, 2000). When we look at Asperger's Syndrome and High Functioning Autism, we find appear to be the same disorder when we look at the research data. So, we may need to view these disorders as being more different in degree or emphasis than as distinct entities. For instance, we know that Asperger's children demonstrate less severe early symptoms, a milder developmental course and better out-come than high functioning autistics, but they still appear to involve the same fundamental symptomatology and only differ in degree or severity.
    ~ Susan Crum, "Does my child really have ADHD?" [Retrieved November 30, 2008]
  • Other terms that have been applied to what we now call "autism". Childhood schizophrenia, infantile autism, Aspergers Syndrome, Kanner's Syndrome. Probably lots of autistic people used to be termed retarded, or schizophrenic, though obviously those terms (as then used) were not as specific as our current "autism" label.
    ~ Autism FAQ - History [Retrieved December 6, 2008]
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