Speech and language profiles in 4- to 6-year-old children with early diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder without intellectual disability
Received 23 April 2018
Accepted for publication 17 July 2018
Published 20 September 2018 Volume 2018:14 Pages 2415—2427
Checked for plagiarism Yes
Review by Single anonymous peer review
Peer reviewer comments 2
Editor who approved publication: Dr Roger Pinder
Liselotte Kjellmer,1,2 Elisabeth Fernell,2 Christopher Gillberg,2 Fritjof Norrelgen2–4
1Department of Special Education, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden; 2Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Sahlgrenska Academy, Gothenburg University, Gothenburg, Sweden; 3Functional Area Speech and Language Pathology, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden; 4Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
Purpose: This study aimed to present speech and language data from a community-representative group of 4- to 6-year-old children with early-diagnosed autism spectrum disorder (ASD) without intellectual disability (ID).
Methods: The study group comprised 83 children 4–6 years of age with ASD without ID. They had been diagnosed with ASD before age 4.5 years and had received intervention at a specialized habilitation center. At 2-year follow-up, their language abilities were evaluated comprehensively by two speech–language pathologists using a battery of assessments. Receptive and expressive language and phonology were examined. The phonology evaluation included measures of phonological speech production and of phonological processing.
Results: Results revealed that almost 60% had moderate–severe language problems. Nearly half exhibited combined expressive and receptive language problems, of which a majority also had phonology problems. Phonological speech problems were found in 21% of the total group.
Conclusion: The findings underscore the importance of considering speech/language disorders in children with ASD without ID, since they usually attend mainstream classes but need specific educational adaptations.
Keywords: autism spectrum disorder, language, speech, language disorders, speech–language pathology
This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.Download Article [PDF] View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]