Siblings of Autistic Kids at Greater Risk for Disorder
A baby born intoِ a family withِ anِ older sibling whoِ hasِ autism hasِ a 19 percent chance ofِ alsoِ developing theِ disorder, a newِ international study hasِ found.
Researchers previously estimated thisِ sibling risk toِ beِ 5 toِ 10 percent.
But nobodyِ elseِ has foundِ such a high recurrence risk forِ siblings before.
The new numbers were published online today (Aug. 15) in the journal Pediatrics.
Early signs of autism
Autism isِ a disorder thatِ affects social andِ communication skills.
The earliest knownِ signs ofِ autism appearِ around a baby’s sixth month — ifِ anِ infant’s notِ smiling byِ this age, itِ raises a red flag.
A lack ofِ babbling andِ gesturing byِ the endِ of theِ firstِ year, whenِ mostِ children haveِ begun theseِ forms ofِ early communication, isِ the nextِ sign, theِ researchers said.
New numbers are a baseline
This firstِ large, prospective study ofِ autism risk inِ siblings offers a place toِ start forِ future studies, saidِ Joachim Hallmayer, a psychiatrist atِ the Stanford School ofِ Medicine.
This isِ a baseline whichِ you canِ build upon, Hallmayer said.
Really, theِ question isِ what causesِ autism inِ these siblings.