The only consistent developmental data included in the DSM-IV diagnostic criteria are:
a. clinically derived systems
b. age of onset and course of the disorder
c. comorbidity estimates
d. using a special axis for child disorders
My question actually is whether you could suggest any other appropriate feedback.
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As the DSM-IV affects my son enormously, I believe that the data included is not enough. There is no place given for observation data whether parent, teacher or otherwise. Most parents of autism spectrum disorders could add to the data with their own observations of behavior, fears, and reactions to ordinary happenings which other children never notice. In a clinical interview, many doctors ask my son if he can grocery shop by himself, and he says yes because he can. However, when you probe further and ask when or how he grocery shops, he will answer that it is usually 3 am, no one is in the store, and he can buy 3-5 things without anyone noticing him. Now, that presents two completely different pictures of grocery shopping for someone on the autism spectrum. Mental health professionals are few and far between who can spend the time necessary to get a good picture of the obstacles he faces if they only use the DSM. That covers only a small part of living with the diagnosis which unfortunately, are different for each of the people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
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