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Asperger syndrome

Asperger syndrome: Introduction

Asperger syndrome is a developmental disorder and one type of autism spectrum disorder. Asperger syndrome develops in childhood and can impact a child's ability to socialize and communicate normally. It is also frequently called Asperger's syndrome or AS.

Although symptoms of Asperger syndrome can be similar to autism disorder, another type of autism spectrum disorder, it is actually a different condition. The hallmark difference between the two disorders is that people with Asperger syndrome develop and can use language skills, while people with autism disorder have severe delays in developing language skills as a child and often lose what they have learned as they grow.

The exact cause of Asperger syndrome is not known, although abnormalities in the brain and heredity or abnormal gene may be involved.

Symptoms of Asperger syndrome include an obsessive interest in a single topic or object, poor social skills, and delayed or poor motor skills. For more information on symptoms, refer to symptoms of Asperger syndrome.

Making a diagnosis of Asperger syndrome begins with taking a thorough personal and family medical history, including symptoms, and completing a physical and neurological examination. There is no single test to detect Asperger syndrome, and pinpointing a diagnosis should involve a team of medical professionals who are specialists in developmental disorders. These professionals will assess symptoms and observe behaviors and social interactions. Tests might be performed to measure different cognitive skills, such as language, and to rule-out behavioral or mental health conditions.

A diagnosis of Asperger syndrome can easily be missed or delayed because the symptoms may be attributed to other conditions. For information on misdiagnosis, refer to misdiagnosis of Asperger syndrome.

There is no cure for Asperger syndrome, although people with the disorder can be treated to best cope with their challenges. Treatment involves a multifaceted approach. For more information on treatment, refer to treatment of epilepsy. ...more »

Asperger syndrome: Asperger syndrome (AS) is a pervasive developmental disorder characterized by an inability to understand how to interact socially. (Source: excerpt from NINDS Asperger Syndrome Information Page: NINDS) ... more about Asperger syndrome.

Asperger syndrome: A neuropsychiatric disorder mainly involving the inability to understand and becoming involved in social interaction. More detailed information about the symptoms, causes, and treatments of Asperger syndrome is available below.

Asperger syndrome: Symptoms

The symptoms and severity of Asperger syndrome can vary from person to person. However, children and adults with the syndrome typically exhibit an overly passionate, obsessive interest in a particular object or topic. They often become well versed in every detail of a particular topic and will talk about little else with others. They frequently are "walking encyclopaedias" on ...more symptoms »

Asperger syndrome: Treatments

Asperger syndrome is not curable, but early recognition and treatment can help minimize symptoms so that children with the disorder can live as normal and productive lives as possible. The best treatment for Asperger syndrome is a plan that is individualized to the person's specific needs and symptoms. It generally includes therapies that address the primary types of symptoms of the ...more treatments »

Asperger syndrome: Misdiagnosis

Asperger syndrome can be a difficult diagnosis to make because there is no single test to detect it. An accurate diagnosis generally requires the evaluation of a team of professionals who are specialists in developmental disorders.

In addition, the symptoms of Asperger syndrome are similar to some symptoms of some other disorders. This can result in a ...more misdiagnosis »

Symptoms of Asperger syndrome

Treatments for Asperger syndrome

Home Diagnostic Testing

Home medical testing related to Asperger syndrome:

Wrongly Diagnosed with Asperger syndrome?

Asperger syndrome: Related Patient Stories

Asperger syndrome: Deaths

Read more about Deaths and Asperger syndrome.

Asperger syndrome: Complications

Review possible medical complications related to Asperger syndrome:

Causes of Asperger syndrome

Read more about causes of Asperger syndrome.

Disease Topics Related To Asperger syndrome

Research the causes of these diseases that are similar to, or related to, Asperger syndrome:

Asperger syndrome: Undiagnosed Conditions

Commonly undiagnosed diseases in related medical categories:

Misdiagnosis and Asperger syndrome

Mild worm infections undiagnosed in children: Human worm infestations, esp. threadworm, can be overlooked in some cases, because it may cause only mild or even absent...read more »

Parental fears about toddler behavior often unfounded: There are many behaviors in infants and toddlers that may give rise to a fear that the child has some form...read more »

Undiagnosed stroke leads to misdiagnosed aphasia: BBC News UK reported on a man who had been institutionalized and treated for mental illness because he suffered from sudden inability to speak. This was initially...read more »

Dementia may be a drug interaction: A common scenario in aged care is for a patient to show mental decline to dementia. Whereas this can, of course, occur due to various medical conditions, such as a stroke or Alzheimer's disease...read more »

Mesenteric adenitis misdiagnosed as appendicitis in children: Because appendicitis is one of the more feared conditions for a child with abdominal pain, it can be over...read more »

Blood pressure cuffs misdiagnose hypertension in children: One known misdiagnosis issue with hyperension, arises in relation to the simple...read more »

Mild traumatic brain injury often remains undiagnosed: Although the symptoms of severe brain injury are hard to miss, it is less clear for milder injuries, or even those causing a mild concussion...read more »

ADHD under-diagnosed in adults: Although the over-diagnoses of ADHD in children is a well-known controversy, the reverse side related to adults. Some adults can...read more »

MTBI misdiagnosed as balance problem: When a person has symptoms such as vertigo or dizziness, a diagnosis of brain injury may go overlooked. This is...read more »

Bipolar disorder misdiagosed as various conditions by primary physicians: Bipolar disorder (manic-depressive disorder) often fails to be diagnosed...read more »

Eating disorders under-diagnosed in men: The typical patient with an eating disorder is female. The result is that men with eating disorders...read more »

Depression undiagnosed in teenagers: Serious bouts of depression can be undiagnosed in teenagers. The "normal" moodiness of teenagers can cause...read more »

Brain pressure condition often misdiagnosed as dementia: A condition that results from an excessive pressure of CSF within the brain is often misdiagnosed. It may be misdiagnosed as Parkinson's disease...read more »

Post-concussive brain injury often misdiagnosed: A study found that soldiers who had suffered a concussive injury in battle often were misdiagnosed on their return. A variety of symptoms can occur in post...read more »

Children with migraine often misdiagnosed: A migraine often fails to be correctly diagnosed in pediatric patients. These patients are not the typical...read more »

Undiagnosed anxiety disorders related to depression: Patients with depression (see symptoms of depression) may also have undiagnosed anxiety disorders (see symptoms of anxiety disorders). Failure to diagnose these...read more »

Asperger syndrome: Research Doctors & Specialists

Research related physicians and medical specialists:

Other doctor, physician and specialist research services:

Hospitals & Clinics: Asperger syndrome

Research quality ratings and patient safety measures for medical facilities in specialties related to Asperger syndrome:

Choosing the Best Hospital: More general information, not necessarily in relation to Asperger syndrome, on hospital performance and surgical care quality:

Asperger syndrome: Rare Types

Rare types of diseases and disorders in related medical categories:

Evidence Based Medicine Research for Asperger syndrome

Medical research articles related to Asperger syndrome include:

Click here to find more evidence-based articles on the TRIP Database

Asperger syndrome: Animations

Prognosis for Asperger syndrome

Prognosis for Asperger syndrome: Children with AS have a better outlook than those with other forms of pervasive developmental disorders, and are much more likely to grow up to be independently functioning adults. Nonetheless, in most cases, these individuals will continue to demonstrate, to some extent, subtle disturbances in social interactions. (Source: excerpt from NINDS Asperger Syndrome Information Page: NINDS)

Research about Asperger syndrome

Visit our research pages for current research about Asperger syndrome treatments.

Clinical Trials for Asperger syndrome

The US based website ClinicalTrials.gov lists information on both federally and privately supported clinical trials using human volunteers.

Some of the clinical trials listed on ClinicalTrials.gov for Asperger syndrome include:

Statistics for Asperger syndrome

Asperger syndrome: Broader Related Topics

Asperger syndrome Message Boards

Related forums and medical stories:

User Interactive Forums

Read about other experiences, ask a question about Asperger syndrome, or answer someone else's question, on our message boards:

Article Excerpts about Asperger syndrome

Asperger syndrome (AS) is a pervasive developmental disorder characterized by an inability to understand how to interact socially. (Source: excerpt from NINDS Asperger Syndrome Information Page: NINDS)

Definitions of Asperger syndrome:

A childhood disorder predominately affecting boys and similar to autism (AUTISTIC DISORDER). It is characterized by severe, sustained, clinically significant impairment of social interaction, and restricted repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior. In contrast to autism, there are no clinically significant delays in language or cognitive development. (From DSM-IV) - (Source - Diseases Database)

Asperger syndrome is listed as a "rare disease" by the Office of Rare Diseases (ORD) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This means that Asperger syndrome, or a subtype of Asperger syndrome, affects less than 200,000 people in the US population.
Source - National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Ophanet, a consortium of European partners, currently defines a condition rare when it affects 1 person per 2,000. They list Asperger syndrome as a "rare disease".
Source - Orphanet

 

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