Symptoms attributed to attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may overshadow or mask autism spectrum disorder in very young children, a new study reveals.
This can create a significant delay in the diagnosis of autism. It took an average of three years longer to diagnose autism in children initially thought to have just ADHD, the researchers said.
That delay can make a big difference in the future of the child, said study author Dr. Amir Miodovnik, a developmental pediatrician at Boston Children's Hospital.
"It's been shown the earlier that you implement these therapies for autism, the better children do in terms of outcomes," Miodovnik said. "Three years is a significant amount of time for the kids to not be receiving therapy."
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