"syndrome" is not a
diagnosis, in fact it was described in the
Syndrome was first identified in 1944, but was only officially
recognized as a diagnostic category in the DSM-IV in 1994. As a result,
many children were misdiagnosed over the years as ADD/ADHD, Autistic,
OCD, or even schizophrenic." While Hans
Asperger was describing
this disorder in Austria, Leo Kanner was describing something else a
half a world away. Kanner described Autism at almost the same
time. The two disorders share some symptoms, but the degree
disability can vary widely.
What is Asperger's Syndrome?
Syndrome is a neurobiological disorder
that is classified as one of the Pervasive Developmental Disorders
(PDD). It is characterized by significant impairment in social
interaction, as well as the development of repetitive and restricted
fields of interest and activities.
While there are
some similarities with Autism,
people with Asperger's usually have average to above average IQ, and do
not demonstrate clinically significant delays in language or self help
While they may
have an extremely good command of
language and have a very rich vocabulary, they are unable to use
language appropriately in a social context and often speak in a
monotone with little nuance and inflection in their voice.
Asperger's may or may not seek out
social interaction, but always have difficulty in interpreting and
learning the skills of social and emotional interaction with others,
leading to significant impairment in relationships and peer interaction.
parents often notice problems at an early
age, diagnosis is usually made during preschool age or later. While
both boys and girls can have Asperger's, the syndrome is more common in
What is High functioning Autism?
Functioning Autism (HFA) is the traditional
diagnosis for individuals with severe social interaction and
communication deficits. Although the distinction with
blurred and indeed, Asperger's is often
considered a subset of HFA,
people diagnosed with HFA tend to have a much higher Performance IQ
(P-IQ) than Verbal IQ (V-IQ). HFA-ers tend to avoid social contact
more, but are less likely to feel embarrassed in social situations,
being relatively unconcerned by other people's opinions. They
also tend to have had a slower language acquisition during
childhood. They frequently were late in their developmental
milestones. Parent's of these
children frequently find this true
when reviewing their baby books for information on when their child
said their first word, put several words together, and so forth.
If you suspect that you or a
loved one is affected by a behavioral disorder, contact a qualified behavioral healthcare professional.