Children with ASD 'display variability in social interactions'

28 February 2012

New research has highlighted the changes in social interactions which children suffering from autism spectrum disorders (ASD) go through.

In a survey conducted by Katherine Rice and colleagues from the Marcus Autism Center, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, and Emory University School of Medicine, they show how people seeking corrective eye surgery for such a condition actually achieve variability in successful social strategies when it comes to studying eye-tracking.

It involved 135 children with an average age of ten, 109 of whom had ASD, with each shown clips of school-age children undertaking age-appropriate social activities.

The results indicated that those diagnosed with ASD were more likely to focus on the bodies of the individuals on screen, as well as inanimate objects, instead of eyes and faces.

"These results help us tease apart some of the vast heterogeneity of the autism spectrum," Ms Rice acknowledged.

In other findings, scientists at St George's, University of London, predicted that the number of individuals seeking corrective eye surgery for age-related macular degeneration could rise by a third in the next ten years.

Posted by Philip Briggs

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