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Comparison of Asperger's Syndrome and Autism

Tara Warwick, MS, OTR/L

July 2, 2013

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Question

Clarify the difference between Asperger’s syndrome and autism.

 

Answer

It is going to be different with the new criteria.  The current criteria shows that a child with Asperger’s does not have the delay in language like a child with autism.  With Asperger’s, these are the children who are not early talkers, but they talk on schedule.  However, as they get older, they have a lot of social communication type challenges.  Whereas, a child with autism has a marked delay in communication when they are younger.  Right now that is the big difference between the way the DSM-IV describes it between Asperger’s syndrome and high-functioning autism.  Both high-functioning autism and Asperger’s both have cognitive skills that are within normal limits.  The big difference between the two diagnostically is that children with Asperger’s do not have a delay in language when they are younger. 


tara warwick

Tara Warwick, MS, OTR/L

 

Tara Warwick is an occupational therapist who graduated from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in 2006 with her Master of Science in Rehab Sciences. She received a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy in 2000 also from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. She has spent her entire career focusing on improving the quality of services for children, primarily targeting children with autism. She currently owns an Oklahoma pediatric therapy practice called Today’s Therapy Solutions and is a consultant for Project PEAK through the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center – Child Study Center. She practices as an occupational therapist in home settings, clinic settings, and school settings. Her specialty includes working with children with autism and challenging behavior.


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