Autism risks for siblings are higher than thought

CHICAGO (AP) -- A new study suggests that nearly 20 percent of children who have an autistic older brother or sister will develop the disorder too. That's a rate much higher than previously thought.

Researchers at the University of California at Davis followed 664 infants in the U.S. and Canada who had at least one older sibling with autism. About 19 percent, or 132 infants, ended up with an autism diagnosis as well by their third birthday.

Lead researcher Sally Ozonoff, who's with the UC Davis Mind Institute, says "We were all a bit surprised and taken aback about how high it is."

The highest rates were in infants who had at least two older siblings with autism -- that was 32 percent. Also, boys with autistic older siblings had a 26 percent chance of being diagnosed themselves versus 9 percent of girls. Autism is known to be more common in boys.

The study is in Monday's Pediatrics online.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


Join the Conversation!

To comment, the following rules must be followed:

  • No Obscenity, Profanity, Vulgarity, Racism or Violent Descriptions
  • No Negative Community Comparisons
  • No Fighting, Name-calling, or Personal Attacks
  • Multiple Accounts are Not Allowed
  • Stay on Story Topic

Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.

Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Links require admin approval before posting.
Questions may be sent to webmaster@wvlt-tv.com. Please provide detailed information.

powered by Disqus

WVLT VOLUNTEER TV

6450 Papermill Drive Knoxville, TN 37919 Phone - (865) 450-8888; Fax - (865) 450-8869
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2014 WVLT-TV Inc. - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 127718518