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Diagnosis of ASD in Adults: a Spectrum of Symptom Manifestation

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Prevalence rates of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have been rising over the last 20 years, with most recent estimate suggesting 1 in 54 children at age 8 have been diagnosed with ASD (CDC, 2016). While there have been important strides in our understanding and early identification of ASD in children, less is known about ASD in adults. Resources for evaluation and diagnosis were not available at the same level in the past, and many adults living with ASD are experiencing difficulties without an adequate understanding of themselves and potentially reduced access to services for them and their families. Adults with ASD experience higher rates of psychiatric comorbidities than the general population, making differential diagnosis of ASD itself more challenging. Adults with ASD also often experience difficulties with relationships, educational and occupational attainment, and living independently. Identification of ASD in adults is essential to provide adequate treatment, support, and resources. OBJECTIVES: - Participants will learn about the factors that complicate or delay diagnosis of ASD in adults, including differentials/comorbidities, clinician assumptions, and environmental factors. - Participants will learn about the importance of diagnosis of ASD in adults. - Participants will expand their knowledge of how the core symptoms of ASD manifest in individuals (particularly in those who are “high functioning”) with specific examples. - Participants will learn strategies for assessment and identification of ASD in adults. - Participants will learn how to differentiate ASD from other psychiatric comorbidities. Read More: https://members.mepa.org/event-4268330 After watching the webinar, contact Amy Safford at asafford@mepa.org for a short quiz to earn 2 CEUs.