Preprint Review Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Diagnostic Tools for Autism Spectrum Disorders by Sex: Analysis of Current Status and Future Lines

Version 1 : Received: 25 February 2021 / Approved: 2 March 2021 / Online: 2 March 2021 (10:05:57 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Navarro-Pardo, E.; López-Ramón, F.; Alonso-Esteban, Y.; Alcantud-Marín, F. Diagnostic Tools for Autism Spectrum Disorders by Gender: Analysis of Current Status and Future Lines. Children 2021, 8, 262. Navarro-Pardo, E.; López-Ramón, F.; Alonso-Esteban, Y.; Alcantud-Marín, F. Diagnostic Tools for Autism Spectrum Disorders by Gender: Analysis of Current Status and Future Lines. Children 2021, 8, 262.

Journal reference: Children 2021, 8, 262
DOI: 10.3390/children8040262

Abstract

Studies on the prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders show a gender disproportion. In the last years, there has been an increasing interest in the search for an explanation. There are two main lines of research; the first one looks for sex-related biological reasons that justifies the low prevalence of ASD in women (some protective factor related to hormones or immune system among others), and the second line of studies is related to the possible biases introduced in the diagnostic tools or procedures. In this article, a review of the latter line of research is made. Theoretical analysis following two objectives: a) Analysis of possible biases in diagnostic tools and b) Other non-biological explanations for gender differences in the prevalence of ASD. The literature analyzed provides contradictory results although it evidences the possible bias both in the construction of the diagnostic tools and in the assessment and determination of their standards. It is necessary to develop specific or complementary tools and diagnostic procedures differentiated by gender in order to control for this bias.

Keywords

Autism Spectrum Disorders; Diagnostic Tools; Sex; Differential Diagnostic.

Subject

BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES, Applied Psychology

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