As More Autism Reported, Doctors Say Check Early

Christopher Astacio reads with his daughter Cristina, 2, recently diagnosed with a mild form of autism, in her bedroom on Wednesday, March 28, 2012 in New York.   Autism cases are on the rise again, largely due to wider screening and better diagnosis, federal health officials said Thursday, March 2012.  (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

As More Autism Reported, Doctors Say Check Early

According to new government statistics, the rate of autism is about 1 in 88—nearly twice as common as it appeared in data the government gathered 10 years ago.

Published April 2, 2012

CHICAGO (AP) — More kids are being diagnosed as autistic — including surge in Hispanic children — according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The agency says about 1 in 88 children has the disorder. The latest numbers are based on 2008 data from 14 states and suggest that autism rates have climbed 23 percent since 2006. Rates are highest in boys and white children.

But the biggest rate increase was among Hispanics, from 1 in 270 in 2002 to about 1 in 125 in 2008.

Experts, including CDC researchers, think broader screening and better diagnosis have largely contributed to that. But autism's cause remains a mystery, and government researchers are seeking answers.

BET Health News - We go beyond the music and entertainment world to bring you important medical information and health-related tips of special relevance to Blacks in the U.S. and around the world.

(Photo: AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Written by Lindsey Tanner, AP Medical Writer


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