Pervasive developmental disorder
|Pervasive developmental disorder|
The diagnostic category pervasive developmental disorders (PDD), as opposed to specific developmental disorders (SDD), is a group of disorders characterized by delays in the development of multiple basic functions including socialization and communication. The pervasive developmental disorders were autism, Asperger syndrome, pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS, i.e. all autism spectrum disorders (ASD)), childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD), overactive disorder associated with mental retardation and stereotyped movements and Rett syndrome. The first four of these disorders are commonly called the autism spectrum disorders; the last disorder is much rarer, and is sometimes placed in the autism spectrum and sometimes not.
The terminology PDD and ASD is often used interchangeably and varies depending on location. The two have overlapping definitions but are defined differently by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5) and the International Classification of Diseases, 10th edition (ICD-10). DSM-5, removed PDD as a diagnosis and replaced it with ASD and the relative severity of the condition. ICD-10 on the other hand labels ASD as a pervasive developmental disorder with the subtypes previously mentioned.
The onset of pervasive developmental disorders occurs during infancy, but the condition is usually not identified until the child is around three years old. Parents may begin to question the health of their child when developmental milestones are not met, including age appropriate motor movement and speech production.
There is a division among doctors on the use of the term PDD. Many use the term PDD as a short way of saying PDD-NOS (pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified). Others use the general category label of PDD because they are hesitant to diagnose very young children with a specific type of PDD, such as autism. Both approaches contribute to confusion about the term, because the term PDD actually refers to a category of disorders and is not a diagnostic label.
Signs and symptoms
Symptoms of PDD may include behavioral and communication problems such as:
- Difficulty using and understanding language.
- Difficulty relating to people, objects, and events; for example, lack of eye contact, pointing behavior, and lack of facial responses.
- Unusual play with toys and other objects.
- Difficulty with changes in routine or familiar surroundings.
- Repetitive body movements or behavior patterns, such as hand flapping, hair twirling, foot tapping, or more complex movements.
- Inability to cuddle or be comforted.
- Difficulty regulating behaviors and emotions, which may result in temper tantrums, anxiety, and aggression.
- Emotional breakdowns.
Children with PDD vary widely in abilities, intelligence, and behaviors. Some children do not speak at all, others speak in limited phrases or conversations, and some have relatively normal language development. Repetitive play skills and limited social skills are generally evident. Unusual responses to sensory information – loud noises, lights – are common.
Diagnosis is usually made during early childhood. With the release of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-Fifth Edition (DSM-5) in May 2013, the diagnosis for PDD was removed and replaced with autism spectrum disorders. Distinction between the past disorders is implicated by a series of severity levels. Individuals who received diagnoses based on the DSM-IV maintain their diagnosis under the autism spectrum disorders. However, an editorial published in the October 2012 issue of American Journal of Psychiatry notes that, while some doctors argue that there is insufficient evidence to support the diagnostic distinction between ASD and PDD, multiple literature reviews found that studies showing significant differences between the two disorders significantly outnumbered those that found no difference.
Unlike the DSM-5, the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Diseases, 10th edition (ICD-10) categorizes PDD into four distinct subtypes, each with their own diagnostic criteria. The four disorders (childhood autism, atypical autism, Rett syndrome, and other childhood disintegrative disorder) are characterized by abnormalities in social interactions and communication.
The disorders are primarily diagnosed based on behavioral features, although the presence of any medical conditions are important, they are not taken into account when making a diagnosis.[medical citation needed]
Before the release of the DSM-5, some clinicians used PDD-NOS as a "temporary" diagnosis for children under the age of five when, for whatever reason, they are reluctant to diagnose autism. There are several justifications for this. Very young children have limited social interaction and communication skills to begin with, so it can be tricky to diagnose milder cases of autism in toddlers. The unspoken assumption is that by the age of five, unusual behaviors will either resolve or develop into diagnosable autism. However, some parents view the PDD label as no more than a euphemism for autism spectrum disorders, problematic because this label makes it more difficult to receive aid for early childhood intervention.[medical citation needed]
The pervasive developmental disorders were:
- Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), which includes atypical autism, and is the most common (47% of autism diagnoses);
- Typical autism, the best-known;
- Asperger syndrome (9% of autism diagnoses);
- Rett syndrome; and
- Childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD).
In May 2013, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-Fifth Edition (DSM-5) was released, updating the classification for pervasive developmental disorders. The grouping of disorders, including PDD-NOS, Autism, Asperger Syndrome, Rett Syndrome, and CDD, has been removed and replaced with the general term of Autism Spectrum Disorders. The American Psychiatric Association has concluded that using the general diagnosis of ASD supports more accurate diagnoses. The combination of these disorders was also fueled by the standpoint that Autism is characterized by common symptoms and should therefore bear a single diagnostic term. In order to distinguish between the different disorders, the DSM-5 employs severity levels. The severity levels take into account required support, restricted interests and repetitive behaviors, and deficits in social communication.
PDD and PDD-NOS
There is a division among doctors on the use of the term PDD. Many use the term PDD as a short way of saying PDD-NOS. Others use the general category because the term PDD actually refers to a category of disorders and is not a diagnostic label.
PDD is not itself a diagnosis, while PDD-NOS is a diagnosis. To further complicate the issue, PDD-NOS can also be referred to as "atypical personality development", "atypical PDD", or "atypical Autism".
Medications are used to address certain behavioral problems; therapy for children with PDD should be specialized according to the child's specific needs.
Some children with PDD benefit from specialized classrooms in which the class size is small and instruction is given on a one-to-one basis. Others function well in standard special education classes or regular classes with support. Early intervention, including appropriate and specialized educational programs and support services, play a critical role in improving the outcome of individuals with PDD.
- Infantile neuroaxonal dystrophy
- Multiple complex developmental disorder
- Multisystem developmental disorder
- Overactive disorder associated with mental retardation and stereotyped movements
- World Health Organization (1992). The ICD-10 classification of mental and behavioural disorders : clinical descriptions and diagnostic guidelines. World Health Organization. ISBN 92-4-154422-8. OCLC 28294867.
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- Posar, Annio; Resca, Federica; Visconti, Paola (2015). "Autism according to diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders 5(th) edition: The need for further improvements". Journal of Pediatric Neurosciences. 10 (2): 146–148. doi:10.4103/1817-1745.159195. ISSN 1817-1745. PMC 4489060. PMID 26167220.
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- National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY) (October 2003) Disability Info: Pervasive Developmental Disorders (FS20). Archived 2008-03-09 at the Wayback Machine Fact Sheet 20 (FS20)
- This article incorporates public domain material from the National Institutes of Health document: "NINDS Pervasive Developmental Disorders Information Page".
- American Psychiatric Publishing. "Autism Spectrum Disorder" (PDF). American Psychiatric Association. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
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- CDC's "Learn the Signs. Act Early." campaign - Information for parents on early childhood development and developmental disabilities
- NINFS Pervasive Developmental Disorders Information Page