A case-control evaluation of sensory profile among preschool children affected by autism spectrum disorder

Margherita Salerno, Davide Testa, Giuseppe Quatrosi, Lucia Parisi, Maria Ruberto, Davide Testa, Margherita Salerno, Palmira Romano, Michele Sabatino, Mariarosaria Caliendo, Giuseppe Quatrosi, Rosa Marotta, Annabella Di Folco, Rosanna Marotta, Tiziana Nuara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are neurobehavioral syndromes caused by a developmental disorder, biologically determined, with a very early onset and deficit mainly related to social communication and interaction.There is a considerable amount of literature on ASD suggesting abnormal sensory experience as a basic symptom, as also reported by the DSM-5 and ICD-10.The current case-control study aimed to investigate the sensory perception skills in preschool children affected by ASD compared with a control group of typical developing children.Materials and methods: The study sample was composed of 42 children, subdivided into two groups: 21 ASD (12 males); 21 typical developing (TDC) (10 males). All partcipants underwent the Bogdashina's Sensory Profile Checklist Revised (SPCR) to evaluate sensory perceptual abilities. ASD performance on SPCR was compared to TDC's.Results: Individuals with ASD, showed significantly higher scores in all perception areas than TDC, except for the smell sub-scale, where the two groups were similar. The Cohen's d distribution showed a greater effect for vision, hearing, touch, vestibular and proprioception scales and a medium effect for smell scale.Conclusions: ASD subjects have an abnormal interaction between auditory and somatosensory modalities, probably linked to a dysfunctional interaction between auditory and somatosensory systems associated with abnormal involvement of the non-classical auditory pathways. In this light, ASD children and adolescents present disorders in inter-sensory processing profiles when compared with TDC.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2235-2240
Number of pages6
JournalActa Medica Mediterranea
Publication statusPublished - 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Medicine


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