Currently there is no medical or diagnostic test for Autism. Rather, we rely on the trained physicians and psychologists who perform Autism specific analysis for the rightful identification of the Autistic related symptoms and hence the illness.
Like many other illnesses and issues, parents are the first one to notice their children’s unusual behaviors like inability in making eye contact, no response to name calling, playing with toys in not so natural repetitive ways.
There is a self help Autism diagnosis checklist which is known as M-CHAT or The Modified Checklist of Autism in Toddlers. This will ask some simple behaviour related questions. The answer to the checklist will be indicative and informative. It can be utilized to evaluate whether further check is required by experts or not. These experts include developmental paediatrician, neurologist, psychiatrist or psychologist.
There are some doctors or therapists who are not equipped with skills of diagnosing Autism and related disorders. In this case, it is the duty of parents to trust their own instincts and take their child to the right diagnostic therapist or psychoanalyst. This will ensure the early diagnosis and early intervention. The American Academy of Paediatrics (AAP) recommends the test and screening of autism during regular doctor clinic scheduled visits.
Early diagnosis and treatment can help
There are many conditions which are closely related to Autism and hence the diagnosis has to be proper and should remove any false negatives as well such as ASD, etc. Sometimes, additional testing by specialist can also be required which can be taken up based on recommendation by the family doctor during regular visits.
Some of the Autism Assessment techniques
- Behavioural assessments can help doctors know the child development gaps and then suggest the course of action.
- Checking the Medical history of the child with parents around all the developmental milestones. The questions will be very general but will try to understand the gaps in psychological development.
- There are some additional physical assessments and laboratory tests which judges the symptoms of Autism to control its affects on body in a better way. They include physical examination, for verifying normal growth pattern of the child.