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Why Some Children May 'Grow Out' of Autism

But Kids With Several Physical, Psychological Problems May Be Less Likely to Improve Over Time, Study Shows

Treatment May Help Kids With Co-Occurring Conditions continued...

He says many of the co-occurring conditions, like ADHD, can be effectively treated with medications or cognitive behavioral therapy. And treatment may relieve some of the distress and dysfunction that many people with autism and their families face.

The second reason the study is noteworthy, Horrigan says, is that it sheds some light on the differences between those kids diagnosed with autism who will see their symptoms improve and those who don’t.

He cautions, however, that because the research is just a snapshot in time, it can’t say very much about why some people’s symptoms become milder over time while others continue to qualify for an autism diagnosis.

“It doesn’t really get into that notion of how does the pattern change for an individual, or what sort of things might have happened that may have been associated with a change,” like medication, or early, intensive behavioral therapy, he says.

For that, he says, a longer study that follows patients over time will be needed.

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