by Albina Tskhay
In one of our studies, "Prevalence of prenatal, neonatal and postnatal complications among healthy children and children diagnosed with ASD in Central Asia and Eastern Europe" we surveyed 89 parents of children with autism and 207 parents of healthy children in order to find out how the frequency of pregnancy and delivery complications differed in these groups.
We found out that the mothers of children later diagnosed with ASD had significantly higher rates of infections (56.2% vs. 24.6%) and placental detachment (9% vs. 3.4%) during pregnancy than mothers of healthy children.
Children later diagnosed with ASD had higher rates of hypoxia (58.4% vs. 13.5%), asphyxia (23.6% vs. 3.4%,), active congenital infection (15.7% vs. 1.4%), and different types of CNS damage (15.7% vs. 4.3%) at birth.
Children later diagnosed with ASD were significantly more often characterized as withdrawn (59.6% vs. 13%), and having frequent episodes of health problems (18.1% vs. 3.9%,) during the first three months after birth.
These results confirm that autism is initiated before birth and additionally supports that maternal infections play a role in this disorder.