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Age of Autism Science Summary: Anxiety, Sensory Over-Responsivity, and Gastrointestinal Problems in Children with Autism Spectru

Posted Aug 01 2012 12:00am

Science post image J Abnorm Child Psychol. 2012 Aug 1. [Epub ahead of print]

Anxiety, Sensory Over-Responsivity, and Gastrointestinal Problems in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Mazurek MO , Vasa RA , Kalb LG , Kanne SM , Rosenberg D , Keefer A , Murray DS , Freedman B , Lowery LA .

Department of Health Psychology and Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, University of Missouri - Columbia, 205 Portland Street, Columbia, MO, 65211, USA, mazurekm@missouri.edu .

Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) experience high rates of anxiety, sensory processing problems, and gastrointestinal (GI) problems; however, the associations among these symptoms in children with ASD have not been previously examined. The current study examined bivariate and multivariate relations among anxiety, sensory over-responsivity, and chronic GI problems in a sample of 2,973 children with ASD enrolled in the Autism Treatment Network (ages 2-17 years, 81.6 % male). Twenty-four percent of the sample experienced at least one type of chronic GI problem (constipation, abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, and/or nausea lasting three or more months). Children with each type of GI problem had significantly higher rates of both anxiety and sensory over-responsivity. Sensory over-responsivity and anxiety were highly associated, and each provided unique contributions to the prediction of chronic GI problems in logistic regression analyses. The results indicate that anxiety, sensory over-responsivity and GI problems are possibly interrelated phenomenon for children with ASD, and may have common underlying mechanisms.

Posted by Age of Autism at August 14, 2012 at 5:44 AM in Science Permalink

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