DSM Autism Update May Have Little Impact, Study Finds
By Michelle Diament

October 2, 2012

In the largest study yet examining proposed changes to the autism diagnosis, researchers say far fewer people would be cut from the spectrum than previous studies have suggested.

Major changes to the autism diagnosis are expected in the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM, slated for publication in May 2013. The proposal has brought widespread concern in the autism community after a study earlier this year suggested that a significant number of people currently diagnosed with autism may not qualify under the new definition

The true test, however, will come when clinicians of varying pedigrees will be left to interpret the changes.

“What they report is impressive in scope and magnitude, but it is using meticulously characterized cases with what are probably very experienced clinicians,” Fred Volkmar, the Yale University researcher who led a similar study earlier this year with different findings, told The New York Times. “The problem is one of moving this to the real world outside of academic centers.”

contributed by: ConLang