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Development problems were common five years after positive screening for language disorders and, or, autism at 2.5 years of age.

Journal article
Authors Carmela Miniscalco
Elisabeth Fernell
Lucy Thompson
Eva Sandberg
Björn Kadesjö
Christopher Gillberg
Published in Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992)
ISSN 1651-2227
Publication year 2018
Published at Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre
Language en
Keywords Autism spectrum disorder; Developmental disorder; Developmental language disorder; Outcome; Screening
Subject categories Child and adolescent psychiatry


This study identified whether children who had screened positive for either developmental language disorder (DLD) or autism spectrum disorder (ASD) at the age of 2.5 years had neurodevelopmental assessments five years later.Our study cohort were 288 children born from 1 July 2008 to 20 June 2009 who screened positive for DLD and, or, ASD at 2.5 years. Of these, 237 children were referred to, and assessed, at the Paediatric Speech and Language Pathology clinic (n = 176) or the Child Neuropsychiatry Clinic (n = 61) at the Queen Silvia Children's Hospital, Gothenburg, Sweden. Clinical registers covering all relevant outpatient clinics were reviewed five years later with regard to established diagnoses.When the 237 were followed up five years later, 96 (40%) had established neurodevelopmental disorders or problems, often beyond DLD and ASD. Co-existing problems were common in this cohort and multidisciplinary assessments were indicated. The other 60% did not appear in subsequent clinic records. It is likely that this 40% was a minimum rate and that more children will be referred for developmental problems later.Five years after they had been screened positive for DLD and, or autism at 2.5 years, 40% of our cohort had remaining or other developmental problems.

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