Autism increasing in U.S. children and is most common in whites

Posted April 9, 2012

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Childhood autism spectrum disorder diagnoses are rising in the United States, according to a study of 8-year-olds showing that about one in 88 has some form of the condition.

In 2006, the estimated prevalence was one in 110, says the study published in the March 30 issue of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

The most recent data show that overall prevalence of ASDs was lowest in Alabama (4.8 cases per 1,000 children) and highest in Utah (21.2 cases per 1,000 children). Boys were more likely to be diagnosed with the condition (18.4 cases per 1,000) than girls (4 cases per 1,000). A form of ASD also was more common among white children (12 cases per 1,000) than in blacks (10.2 cases per 1,000) and Hispanics (7.9 cases per 1,000), data show (link).

Researchers assessed data for the 2008 surveillance year on 337,093 children who participated in the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network. The network is an active surveillance system that estimates the prevalence of ASDs among 8-year-olds in 14 states.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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