Potential Impact of DSM-5 Criteria on Autism Spectrum Disorder Prevalence Estimates

Source: 
JAMA Psychiatry
Date Published: 
January 22, 2013
Abstract: 

Researchers found that estimates of the number of children with ASD might be lower using the current DSM-5 criteria than using the previous criteria. This study looked at information collected by CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network. This is the first population-based study in the United States to look at what effect the updated ASD criteria in the DSM-5 might have on estimates of the number of children with ASD. One of the advantages of the ADDM Network method is that it does not rely solely on the presence of an ASD diagnosis, but also includes review of records for children who have behaviors consistent with ASDs, even if they do not have a diagnosis. Because of the way the ADDM Network collects data, in the future CDC will be able to use both the previous DSM-IV-TR and the current DSM-5 criteria to estimate the number of children with ASD. CDC will also continue to evaluate the effect of using the DSM-5 on trends in how doctors and other health professionals diagnose ASD and how service providers evaluate and document symptoms as they transition to using the new criteria.