As per a study, which has been published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, it has been revealed that advancements are being made to diagnose autism in children, who are just six months old. The research was being conducted in seven institutions in which they found that behavioral symptoms were a key way to detect autism symptoms.
The study authors from different institutions including Children's Hospital of Philadelphia told that they enrolled dozens of kids of six months age and followed their brain development till the age of two months.
After assessing them, it has been revealed that though behavioural symptoms are a great way to judge autism in children, who are as young as six months, a firm diagnosis can only be known when a child is of two years. Children who were enrolled in the experiment were the ones who have elder autistic siblings.
In addition to track behavioral symptoms, a special kind of MRI was also used to judge the functioning of brain, which is known as diffusion tensor imaging. After assessing MRI scans, it has been revealed that children who develop autism in later stage of their lives have different type of brain development. There are less healthy neurons in the brain and there is shrinkage in brain tissues.
The study is one of its kinds and has broken one of the common myths that autism is an abrupt neurological problem which occurs later in life. Parents will now be able to keep an eye on every movement of children and will able to judge any odd behavior of them.
Some of the common symptoms are eye gaze movement, avoiding eye contact and not paying attention to shown things. “Identifying infants at highest risk for [autism spectrum disorders] before the full syndrome is manifest offers the possibility of implementing interventions that could reduce or even prevent the manifestation of the full syndrome”, said the study researchers.