Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Autism Types - What Are the Types and Forms of Autism?

There have been several types of autism noted along the spectrum. Each differs by severity. Some types are classic autism, autistic disorder or Kanner's syndrome, Rett's Syndrome, and Asperger's Disorder.

Kanner's syndrome was named for psychiatrist Leo Kanner who is credited with discovering this syndrome based off of research done on 11 child patients between 1932 and 1943. This is the most severe form of autism. All the children studied demonstrated the same characteristics. There was a lack of emotional contact with others, a desire for sameness and routine, abnormality in speech or muteness, fascination with manipulating objects, and learning difficulties despite an intelligent appearance. Certain sounds or colors can upset people with classic autism.

Hans Asperger of Vienna discovered Asperger's disorder in 1944, around the same time as Kanner. However, many until the 1980s when his work was translated to English did not know his studies. Asperger's studies concluded some similar findings as Kanner, with one major distinguishing feature, the subjects of Asperger's studies were vocal. People with Asperger's are not found to have language delays. Nor do they have delays in cognition.

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is a type of autism that has developed in children later on between the ages of 2 and 4. Children who suffer with this condition once appeared normal. However, somewhere down the road they stopped talking, lost potty-training skills and stopped socializing with others. Oftentimes they fail to make friends and lose motor skills.

Dr. Andreas Rett identified Rett's syndrome in 1965. Rett's syndrome is established as being a neurological degenerative disorder that affects only girls. Rett's syndrome is marked with poor head growth. Many times girls with this disorder repeat hand motions like hand washing and clapping. The discovery of the gene responsible for the onset of Rett's syndrome was found late in 1999.

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