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The Dilemma  


With the recent publication of the DSM-5 (the “Bible” of diagnosis for developmental, health and mental disorders), a number of previously common diagnoses are being modified or even eliminated.  Such is the case with Asperger’s Disorder.  


Many children who were identified as Asperger’s (in the past, I’ve even heard them referred to as “Aspies”), will have to be reclassified into another disorder. It appears that the two main choices will be:


  1. Some type of Language Disorder involving receiving and expressing language, including pragmatics (language in social context or interaction)


  1. A trek back to placement somewhere on the spectrum of Autistic Disorder


Professionals are still exploring the issue of reclassifying Asperger’s, including other diagnostic options as well as which test instruments would be most appropriate.   Lately, there seems to be renewed interest in using Autism rating scales and then specifying as “severe….moderate….mild.”  I wonder if the specifier “very, very mild” could be used?


My Thoughts


Can a “label change” just suddenly make Asperger children turn Autistic?  (Yes, I know, Asperger’s Syndrome was always considered a spectrum disorder anyway.)  


I see this diagnostic change is a tough transition, especially for most advanced youngsters and their parents. Many books on the subject of Asperger’s Syndrome helped parents understand their children–and more importantly, helped the children understand themselves.  National workshops and international conferences allowed professionals and parents to interact for greater knowledge.  With this diagnostic change, a plethora of helpful information with the term Asperger’s Syndrome is no longer valid.  At in theory.    For me, it is still applicable.


One book I have found that has wonderful insights and practical tips is:  Quirky, Yes.  Hopeless, No:  Practical Tips to Help Your Child with Asperger’s Syndrome be More Socially Accepted by Cynthia LaBrie Norall, Ph.D.  I still modify and utilized the suggested explanations and activities in my practice, not only for “Aspies,” but other children struggling with social skills.


For a light-hearted approach to Apergers/Autism, visit:

http://www.aspiecomic.com

              

The following comes from that site:


             


Asperger’s Revisited

A big THANK YOU  to Michael McCreary for all he and his family is doing to educate people about Aspies.  The site also has good section on IEP meetings.  Check it out:  http://www.aspiecomic.com/ieps-made-fun.html

“I feel like a fugitive from the Law of Averages.”–William H. Mauldin


The following comes from http://www.medicinenet.com/asperger_syndrome/article.htm  Go for a visit!

Asperger's syndrome facts