The Autism Parent Screen for Infants: Predicting risk of autism spectrum disorder based on parent-reported behavior observed at 6–24 months of age
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This study examined whether a novel parent-report questionnaire, the Autism Parent Screen for Infants, could differentiate infants subsequently diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder from a high-risk cohort (siblings of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (n = 66)) from high-risk and low-risk comparison infants (no family history of autism spectrum disorder) who did not develop autism spectrum disorder (n = 138 and 79, respectively). Participants were assessed prospectively at 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, and 24 months of age. At 36 months, a blind independent diagnostic assessment for autism spectrum disorder was completed. Parent report on the Autism Parent Screen for Infants was examined in relation to diagnostic outcome and risk status (i.e. high-risk sibling with autism spectrum disorder, high-risk sibling without autism spectrum disorder, and low-risk control). The results indicated that from 6 months of age, total score on the Autism Parent Screen for Infants differentiated between the siblings with autism spectrum disorder and the other two groups. The sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive validity of the Autism Parent Screen for Infants highlight its potential for the early screening of autism spectrum disorder in high-risk cohorts.
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