Potential Risk Factors for the Development of Self-Injurious Behavior among Infants at Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder
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Prevalence of self-injurious behavior (SIB) is as high as 50% among children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Identification of risk factors for the development of SIB is critical to early intervention and prevention. However, there is little empirical research utilizing a prospective design to identify early risk factors for SIB. The purpose of this study was to evaluate behavioral characteristics predicting SIB at age 2 years among 235 infants at high familial risk for ASD. Logistic regression results indicated that presence of SIB or proto-SIB and lower developmental functioning at age 12 months significantly predicted SIB at 24 months. A pattern of persistent SIB over this period was associated with a diagnosis of autism and poorer cognitive and adaptive outcomes.
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