New Study: Two-Thirds of Autism-Afflicted Kids Aren't Diagnosed — And It's Their Parents' Fault!

Mon, May 9, 2011 11:05am EST by 3 Comments

New research suggests one-in-38 children has some form of autism. That’s three times as many as previously claimed!

The comprehensive study claims two-thirds of autism sufferers aren’t being diagnosed, often because parents ware unwilling to accept their kids have the condition.

The study was carried out in South Korea by a team from Yale University, led by Dr. Young-Shin Kim, who admits he’s startled by the results: “Are we surprised? Yes!”

55,000 children between the ages of seven and 12 were tested by the team, who studied their behavior for tell-tale signs of the condition.

Autism sufferers typically struggle with social communication, social interaction and social imagination. Those deemed at-risk were then evaluated to confirm the diagnosis.

The result  — a positive diagnosis in 2.84 percent of children, far higher than the 1 percent previously estimated.

Autism experts in Korea are less surprised by the results, claiming many kids slip through the net because of a stigma attached to autism, and because the severity of autism varies greatly between sufferers.

One Korean clinic worker tells the Daily Mail, “A lot of parents in Korea do not recognize autism symptoms. We are not sure if the figure is correct, but if it is, then numbers of autistic children may be underdiagnosed.

“One problem that seems to pop up frequently is that parents do not want to acknowledge that their child/children may be autistic.”

The figures are currently limited to South Korea, but Dr Kim expects the same rules to apply in Europe and the US — where it was previously believed just 0ne-in-110 children had autism.

And Dr. Marshalyn Yeargin-Allsopp, an an epidemiologist at the US Centers for Disease Control concedes autistic children in the US are slipping through the net.

She says, “We know that we are not capturing all of the cases.”

Autism diagnosis has long been a controversial subject. Jenny McCarthy (pictured) made waves when she claimed her son Evan’s autism was caused by vaccinations he was given as an infant.

Her claims and support of British doctor Andrew Wakefield’s controversial research on the topic influenced many parents to refuse to allow their children to be vaccinated against childhood diseases.

McCarthy later claimed Evan was cured of autism by special diet and regular vitamin shots — and now believes he was misdiagnosed and actually suffered  rare neurological disorder called Landau-Kleffner syndrome.

Do you have a child with autism HollyMoms? Share your experiences and thoughts with us below!

– Ian Garland

Get more on Autism Awareness:

  1. Claire Danes’ Uplifting Message To Parents: ‘Autism Exists On A Spectrum — It’s Important We Know How To Work With It!’
  2. Did You Know Having Babies Close In Age May Raise Risk Of Autism In Second Child? We’re Shocked!
  3. Can You Believe That A Stray Cat Helped An Autistic Boy Bond With His Mother?

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Posted at 12:35 PM on May 9, 2011  

I don’t usually comment- but I have to today. Your article is disgusting! You are inciting fear in parents and blaming them for something beyond their control. Simply because a child lacks an autism diagnosis does not mean the child is left unattended to waste away, becoming more and more lost within themselves. These children FREQUENTLY have a diagnosis of something other than autism. Their parents ARE aware. They know their children. The parents are not living under a rock somewhere, ignorant to their child’s behavior and development.

Children with autism are often getting help under different “labels” within special education. An autism diagnosis does not mean you are automatically getting help- just the same as lacking an autism diagnosis does not mean these children are severely lacking in services.

Additionally, the children this article is accounting for are children who likely have mild symptoms. Autism is on a spectrum- some people are very mildly affected and some are severely. The children who are not diagnosed with anything are not the children who are unable to speak and engaging in severe behaviors. The children who are undiagnosed are likely the children with mild autism and aspergers.

As a special education teacher, I know plenty of parents who have children with a diagnosis of autism and for various reasons they can’t or don’t receive services for their child outside of what is provided in the school. I also know plenty of parents who have a child without ANY definitive diagnosis who see their child struggling and get them as much intervention as early as possible.

A diagnosis means NOTHING in terms of how you help your child with autism. It is a statistic. It categorizes children by a set of similar symptoms. Success with autism is all about what you do with YOUR CHILD as a whole person. You know your child better than any diagnosis does and you do what is best for the person- not the diagnosis.

There- I think I’ve said my piece.

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Posted at 12:43 PM on May 9, 2011  

^^^^^^^^^^ I agree 100000000%!!!!!!!

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Posted at 12:07 PM on May 9, 2011  

I couldn’t disagree more with this article!!! Not every parent is educated about Autism and it’s symptoms. How can you blame a parents?! it’s a huge spectrum and yes some children will not be diagnosed. I don’t think it’s the parents fault at all. Autism is not a black and white disorder. It’s VERY gray!!!
Also Jenny McCarthy has crazy/wild opinions about Autism and many people believe what she is saying because she is the only ”celebrity” talking about it.

Spread the word about Autism! More children and diagnosed with Autism that Cancer,Aids and diabetes combine!!!

My son was diagnosed with Autism March of 2009

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