Autism Asperger's ASDs/PDDs more psychiatric or neurological

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Frieslander
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16 Dec 2012, 4:30 pm

Just had an online discussion about this with a friend (whom I am afraid I offended).

Are Autism/Asperger's/ASDs/PDDs more psychiatric or neurological disorder? Treated more by psychiatrists or neurologists? And, explain your reason behind your view.



cathylynn
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16 Dec 2012, 4:48 pm

ASD's are described in the psychiatric bible, the DSM. they are arbitrarily considered psychiatric problems.



Callista
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16 Dec 2012, 4:59 pm

Technically psychiatric, yes, but so are things like dyslexia and Alzheimer's. The DSM includes many neurological problems.

ASDs are neurodevelopmental disorders. That means that your brain develops differently from the beginning. An autistic brain is a healthy autistic brain, not a sick neurotypical one.


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dyingofpoetry
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16 Dec 2012, 7:17 pm

It is neurobiological, which means that it is caused by where and in what way chemical signals are sent in the brain. Since it is a difference in brain function, it is technically psychiatric, but it is not a mental illness.


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Green89tom
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16 Dec 2012, 7:34 pm

How can autism be neurodevelopment because there no prove on that. I think that it maybe the environment cause damage to the brain. I think it might be a mis dx because autism is being over dx.



dyingofpoetry
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16 Dec 2012, 7:56 pm

:!:


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Last edited by dyingofpoetry on 16 Dec 2012, 8:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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16 Dec 2012, 8:12 pm

Neurological, an autistic person can be mentally healthy or mentally ill and still have the same degree / visibility of autism. An autistic person can also have depression, for example. The autism is the neurological state, the depression is the mental illness.



IChris
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16 Dec 2012, 8:24 pm

I see it as a psychiatric disorder as it is classified under "Mental and behavioural disorders" in ICD-10.



Callista
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17 Dec 2012, 10:49 am

Green89tom wrote:
How can autism be neurodevelopment because there no prove on that. I think that it maybe the environment cause damage to the brain. I think it might be a mis dx because autism is being over dx.
There's proof, actually.
1. Autistic brains look measurably different on brain scans.
2. Autism has a very high heritability (i.e., is caused mostly by genetic factors, with any environmental triggers being so ubiquitous that everyone encounters them; for example, the increased social demands in the toddler years.) If a child is autistic, the parents will usually have at the very least mild autistic traits; or else the extended family will show atypical cognitive traits.
3. Autistic people perform differently on neuropsych tests. On IQ tests, they tend to have a widely scattered subscore profile.
4. Autism looks different, both in terms of symptoms and in terms of cognitive profiles, from any kind of brain injury we know of, including diffuse brain injury, TBIs, or brain injuries resulting in cerebral palsy. Fragile X has autism-like traits, but it is genetic, not the result of a brain injury.
5. Even before children are known to be autistic, home videos show their behavior as measurably different even while they were still infants.


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OddDuckNash99
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17 Dec 2012, 12:33 pm

Neither. They are neuropsychiatric disorders (i.e., they are brain disorders with psychiatric symptoms). All "psychiatric disorders" are brain-based. There's really no debate about that. They are equally psychiatric and neurological in nature. And as I've stated on this forum many times prior, I take offense to the term "neurodevelopmental disorder." Why should an ASD be labeled this and not schizophrenia, just because an ASD shows its symptoms earlier? I feel that describing such diagnoses as ASDs and Tourette's and ADHD as "neurodevelopmental disorders" only heightens stigma by making a divide between this category and "mental illnesses" like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.


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