Sensory perception in preschool children affected by autism spectrum disorder: A pilot study

Margherita Salerno, Agata Maltese, Michele Roccella, Lucia Parisi, Maria Rosaria Fortunato, Annabella Di Folco, Teresa Di Filippo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a behavioral syndrome caused by a developmental disorder, biologically determined, with onset in the first three years of life. The areas concerned are mainly those related to social communication, social interaction and mutual functional and symbolic play. In the last decades, different conceptions of autism have taken, also emphasizing different sensory-perceptual abnormalities as the basis of the central features of disorder. This pilot study intends to address the issue of sensory perception in preschool children affected by ASD. Material and methods: 11 ASD children were enrolled (7 males, 4 female) aged between 2.3 years and 4.6 years, (mean age 3.29 ± 0.72). The control group consisted of 24 typical developing children (15 males, 9 females) (mean age 3.08 ± 0.87). All subjects underwent assessment of sensory perceptual abilities according to the Bogdashina's Sensory Profile Checklist Revised (SPCR) evaluation (43). Results: The two groups are comparable for age (p = 0.491) and sex distribution (p = 0.755). Table 1 shows the comparison between the two groups results in the SPCR, specifically, individuals with ASD, showed significantly higher scores on near all perception areas evaluated than healthy controls, suggesting a clear perceptual impairment in ASD subjects. Only for olfactory perception two groups were comparable. Conclusions: no significant differences in behavioral reaction to smell stimulation between ASD and typical developing children, and this result could be explained according to the early age of our sample that could cause high reactivity to smell stimulation also in typical developing examined children.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-53
Number of pages5
JournalActa Medica Mediterranea
Volume33
Publication statusPublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

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