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Archive for Saturday, December 19, 2009

CDC estimate: 1 in 110 children have autism

December 19, 2009

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— About 1 in 110 children have autism, according to the government’s latest estimate released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It’s a small change from a 1 in 100 preliminary estimate that CDC officials made in October from the same study. CDC officials said the latest number comes from a more complete analysis of reports from 11 states.

Until recently, the CDC had been saying autism occurred in 1 in 150 children. The new CDC estimate looks at 8-year-old children who had been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder in 2006.

The increase may be due in part to better diagnosis and changes in how well records were kept in the study sites, said Catherine Rice, a CDC behavioral scientist who worked on the new report.

“At this point it’s impossible to say how much is a true increase and how much is identification,” she said, in a Friday news conference.

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