Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that impairs a child’s ability to effectively communicate with and relate to others and also results in restricted and repetitive behavior, activity, and interests. It is called a spectrum disorder because the level and type of impairment created by these symptoms varies widely by individual, such that some diagnosed with ASD experience severe dysfunction in communication and day-to-day activity while others experience milder symptoms. ASD was diagnosed in 1 out of 68 children (about 1.5%) in 2010, a level more than doubled from that in 2000. This increase may be partially explained by the change in diagnostic terminology surrounding ASD or increased awareness of the disorder but may also reflect a real increase in the prevalence rate. ...

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