USA TODAY Health Reports: Diseases and Disorders: Autism Spectrum Disorders

By Worsley, Jean | The Science Teacher, April-May 2013 | Go to article overview

USA TODAY Health Reports: Diseases and Disorders: Autism Spectrum Disorders


Worsley, Jean, The Science Teacher


USA TODAY Health Reports: Diseases and Disorders: Autism Spectrum Disorders By Ana Maria Rodriguez. $34.60. 128 pp. Lerner Publications Co. Minneapolis, MN. 2011. ISBN: 9780761358831.

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Using articles from the USA Today archives, the author offers readers an opportunity to increase their knowledge and understanding of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Based on current and well-documented research, with numerous case studies, the book provides a constructive introduction in a format that will profoundly engage readers.

Readers learn about causes, symptoms, methods of diagnosis, treatments, and effective techniques that families may use to cope with children in this spectrum.

The book discusses research by Leo Kanner and Hans Asperger, who identified common characteristics and differences in communication, rote memory, sensation, movement, and obsessive repetitive behaviors in autistic children.

Further research has revealed that autism is not a single disorder but a mixture of characteristics resulting in the following groups: (1) Autistic disorder, (2) Asperger's syndrome, and (3) Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified.

This classification system has resulted in an increase in the number of children diagnosed with these disorders and suffering from a wide range of severity.

The role of the brain in this spectrum is explained with help from pictures and descriptions of how different parts of the brain function, including differences between normal and autistic children. …

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