If your child is manifesting symptoms consistent with Autism Spectrum Disorders, this second phase of evaluation simply could not be more important, with family participation the critical element of it. You’ll be able to give the doctors anecdotal evidence of the symptoms, the behaviors in question. What’s more, your presence at the evaluation will soothe your child.
This second part of your toddler’ evaluation will call for at least two of the four diagnostic tools described immediately below.
Autism Diagnosis Interview-Revised (ADI-R): Used to evaluate children eighteen months or older (and, interestingly, adults as well), the ADI-R interview relies on very specific questions, honing in on social communication, social interaction, restricted interests, and repetitive behaviors.
Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic (ADOS-G): Your child’s ability to express herself/himself using the spoken word becomes the sole subject of this test. Expect four thirty-minute modules of evaluation.
Childhood Autism Rating Scale, Second Edition (CARS2): This scale designed for children two and older offers more precise diagnoses in two principal ways: it distinguishes the symptoms of ASD from other disabilities, and it gauges the severity of those symptoms. Your child’s level of functioning will determine the specific form of the test to be administered, wherein there will come an assessment of the frequency, duration, and intensity of each ASD diagnostic criterion.
Gilliam Autism Rating Scale – Second Edition (GARS-2): Designed for teachers and clinicians, this scale may be used to evaluate anyone between the ages of three and twenty-two. The forty-some items on the scale fall into three categories: stereotyped behavior, communication, and social interaction.
Naturally, once the comprehensive diagnostic evaluation is complete, you can discuss the outcomes with your physician and — if your child should receive a diagnosis of ASD— you can explore possible treatment options.
The Hughes Brothers are honored to offer you some thinking about these treatments, most especially those addressing the difficulties that so often occur at bedtime in children with ASD. Kindly read on.