Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Screening

What is Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Screening?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) screening is a procedure used to determine whether or not a person has ASD. Screening is used to help identify people who might benefit from further assessment or from particular types of intervention or treatment. Screening can help identify people with ASD who are in need of clinical care or other services.

Preparing for ASD Screening

The preparation or preparation for an ASD screening may vary depending on the type of screening that is performed. Generally, the preparation involves obtaining information about the person’s medical and developmental history, any family history of ASD, and any previous assessments that have been done. In addition, the person may be required to complete a medical examination prior to the screening.

Procedure for ASD Screening

The procedure for an ASD screening may vary depending on the type of screening that is performed. Generally, the procedure includes an assessment of development history, language development, social skills, behavior, and other aspects of functioning that are important in ASD. In some screenings, observations of the person’s behavior and interactions may be included. In addition, some screenings include assessments of sensory abilities, motor skills, and other abilities. The length of the screening may vary, but is generally completed in one or several visits.

Types of ASD Screening

There are different types of ASD screenings that can be used. Some of the most commonly used are:

  • The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5)
  • The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS)
  • Autism Diagnostic Interview – Revised (ADI-R)
  • Autism Diagnostic Screening Instruments (ADSI)
  • Gilliam Autism Rating Scale (GARS)

Risks of ASD Screening

There are generally no risks associated with ASD screening. However, some people may experience anxiety or discomfort related to the process. In addition, it is important to consider that false positives may occur, meaning that a person may be identified as having ASD when they actually do not.

Why Should ASD Screening Be Done?

ASD screening can help to identify those who may benefit from further assessment or intervention. Early identification of ASD can lead to more effective management and treatment, as well as improved quality of life. Studies have also shown that early detection and intervention can lead to improved educational and social outcomes.

When Should ASD Screening Be Done?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all children be screened for ASD at 18 and 24 months of age. However, parents or caregivers should speak with their child’s healthcare provider to determine when is the best time to screen.