IT IS PROJECTED.. BY 2025, 
ONE OUT OF EVERY TWO CHILDREN BORN IN USA 
WILL BE DIAGNOSED WITH AUTISM
AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER (ASD) affects over 2 million individuals in the U.S. and tens of millions worldwide.  

By Miriam Falco, CNN .... March 28, 2014

One in 68 U.S. children has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a 30% increase from 1 in 88 two years ago, according to a new report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

This newest estimate is based on the CDC's evaluation of health and educational records of all 8-year-old children in 11 states: Alabama, Wisconsin, Colorado, Missouri, Georgia, Arkansas, Arizona, Maryland, North Carolina, Utah and New Jersey.

"We look at all of the characteristics of autism," says Coleen Boyle, the director of the CDC's National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities.

 

"So we look at the age in which they're identified. We look at their earliest diagnosis. We look at co-occuring conditions that these children might have, other developmental disabilities, whether or not they have intellectual disability, so essentially their IQ."

Schools picking up autism tab

The largest increase was seen in children who have average or above-average intellectual ability, according to the CDC. 

The study found nearly half of children with an autism spectrum disorder have average or above-average intellectual ability -- an IQ above 85 -- compared with one-third of children a decade ago.

Moreover, government autism statistics suggest that prevalence rates have increased 10 to 17 percent annually in recent years.

There is no established explanation for this continuing increase, although improved diagnosis and environmental influences are two reasons often considered.

The incidence of autism ranged from a low of 1 in 175 children in Alabama to a high of 1 in 45 in New Jersey, according to the CDC.Children with autism continue to be overwhelmingly male. According to the new report, the CDC estimates 1 in 42 boys has autism, 4.5 times as many as girls (1 in 189).
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