Article Text

Download PDFPDF
More autism? Audit of the diagnosis in Scottish children
  1. Michael Andrew Colvin1,
  2. Leanne Brennan2,
  3. Kirsty Hogg2,
  4. Helen Taylor1,
  5. Kathleen Skinner1
  1. 1 Paediatrics, NHS Forth Valley, Larbert, UK
  2. 2 Paediatrics, NHS Lothian University Hospitals Division, Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Michael Andrew Colvin, Paediatrics, NHS Forth Valley, Larbert FK5 4WR, UK; mcolvin{at}

Statistics from

There is widespread concern about the rising prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but if the condition is genetic in aetiology, it cannot be increasing rapidly. Proposed explanations for a spurious increase include a greater awarenessof autism in the general population, misreporting in survey data, changes in diagnostic criteria, lower diagnostic thresholds and a shift from other developmental diagnoses.1–3

The prevalence in Scotland was recently estimated at 1.035% using studies from other developed countries. No diagnostic data have been published, and no national prevalence study is proposed.1 Since 2010, Scottish schools have …

View Full Text


  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.