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Sunday, February 5, 2012

You Heard it Here First!

Remember my post a while back expressing concern about the elimination of Aspergers from the DSMV?
Rather than repeat myself, take a minute to refresh your memory.

Well lookey here at this study below which is seeking to differentiate the cognitive profile of those with 'High Functioning' autism and Aspergers, and subsequently expresses some concerns about the elimination of Aspergers as a separate diagnosis.

I won't say I told you so :)

Having said that I also want to acknowledge the recent post over here which shows, understandably, why the DSMV is heading in it's current direction.

The enigma continues...


  1. Thanks for the link. I'm still not really sure what to make of the DSM 5 proposals. So I'm not trying to defend them. One thing worth bearing mind, though, is that the debate isn't really whether are differences between autism and Asperger's, but whether those differences are anything but circular.

    Normal language development is required for an Asperger diagnosis so it's almost inevitable that their verbal skills are better than those with autism. But you could add having red hair to the diagnostic criteria and suddenly hair colour would differentiate Asperger's from autism.

    Differences in motor skills might be more informative here as there's nothing in the diagnostic criteria that mean we should expect differences between Aspergers and HFA (Nicole Rinehart at Monash has been saying this for years).

    1. Thanks for your thoughts Jon. As I outlined in the initial post about concerns re abolition of Aspergers as a discrete diagnosis, many argue that clinically significant delayed verbal skills should be considered part of the inclusion criteria for AS.
      As for motor skills that's interesting. My son has very good motor skills, as does Clay Marzo, one of the best surfers in the world today who has AS. So again it's hard to use that criteria as a differential. Yet I acknowledge it is a common factor
      AS I said in the original article, after discussing this with experienced therapists, there does seem to be a difference in cognitive profiles between HFA and AS. I think those differences are well worth exploring. Which makes this paper above an interesting one to me.
      I suppose one concern I have is if they abolish the diagnosis of Aspergers how can you make a case for funding research that explores it's apparent unique cognitive expression?

    2. On further reflection it's gross motor skills that harri has no problems with, but when it comes to visio spatial, planning and co ordinating, such as blocks building then he does struggle. I'll have to google some of Nicole's work.

  2. Me I had actually looked at Edward's test he had a couple of years ago and although he has ASD I feel he has some similarities to Asperger's and so I have bought a book written by Tony Attwood and had a look at his chapter on the IQ tests. I compared Edward's results to the book.

    I found it very interesting...

    1. Hi Penny, I'll pop over and have a look later ;)