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J. Clin. Med. 2018, 7(4), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm7040079

Minor Neurological Dysfunctions (MNDs) in Autistic Children without Intellectual Disability

1
Dipartment PROSAMI, Paolo Giaccone Hospital, University of Palermo, 90127 Palermo, Italy
2
Childhood Psychiatric Service for Neurodevelopmentals Disorders, Centre Hospitalier du Chinonais, 37500 Saint-Benoît-la-Forêt, France
3
UMR 1253, iBrain, Université de Tours, Inserm, 37000 Tours, France
4
Clinic of Child and Adolescent Neuropsychiatry, Department of Mental and Physical Health, and Preventive Medicine, University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, 80138Naples, Italy
5
Department of Psychological Sciences, Pedagogical and Education, University of Palermo, 90128 Palermo, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 March 2018 / Revised: 7 April 2018 / Accepted: 9 April 2018 / Published: 12 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Neuroscience)
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Abstract

Background: Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) require neurological evaluation to detect sensory-motor impairment. This will improve understanding of brain function in children with ASD, in terms of minor neurological dysfunctions (MNDs). Methods: We compared 32 ASD children without intellectual disability (IQ ≥ 70) with 32 healthy controls. A standardized and age-specific neurological examination according to Touwen was used to detect the presence of MNDs. Particular attention was paid to severity and type of MNDs. Results: Children with ASD had significantly higher rates of MNDs compared to controls (96.9% versus 15.6%): 81.3% had simple MNDs (p < 0.0001) and 15.6% had complex MNDs (p = 0.053). The prevalence of MNDs in the ASD group was significantly higher (p < 0.0001) than controls. With respect to specific types of MNDs, children with ASD showed a wide range of fine manipulative disability, sensory deficits and choreiform dyskinesia. We also found an excess of associated movements and anomalies in coordination and balance. Conclusions: Results replicate previous findings which found delays in sensory-motor behavior in ASD pointing towards a role for prenatal, natal and neonatal risk factors in the neurodevelopmental theory of autism. View Full-Text
Keywords: minor neurological dysfunctions; autism spectrum disorder; sensory-motor impairment minor neurological dysfunctions; autism spectrum disorder; sensory-motor impairment
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Tripi, G.; Roux, S.; Carotenuto, M.; Bonnet-Brilhault, F.; Roccella, M. Minor Neurological Dysfunctions (MNDs) in Autistic Children without Intellectual Disability. J. Clin. Med. 2018, 7, 79.

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