Perkins School for the Blind Transition Center

Archive for the ‘Assessment and Diagnosis’ Category

Evaluation and Assessment of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a generally life-long neurodevelomental disorder characterized by impairments in social communication and social interaction and the presence of restricted and repetitive behavior. There is significant heterogeneity among individuals with ASD, and symptoms of ASD...

In Genetic Diagnosis, a Path Forward – Discovering Their Son’s Genetic Diagnosis Helps One Family in Many Ways

By the time her son Curren was 3 months old, Nerissa Ramsey knew there was something different about him. He had low muscle tone and flapped his hands. Hand-flapping is a repetitive behavior commonly seen in autism. After consulting with a series of specialists, the Ramsey family was referred to...

Screening for Autism in an Adult Psychiatric Facility

Three years ago, the CEO of Oglethorpe, Inc., John Picciano, LCSW, sat snoozing in the back of the room while listening to a presentation at a National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Conference called, “Autism, Asperger’s and the Culture of Neurodiversity.” Somewhere in the middle of...

The Ultimate Question: Would I Change Him?

My kids went back to school this week, and in preparation for my son Jack’s move to 6th grade, I took out the folder. You know, the folder. The one that holds every single piece of paper and prescription and description, dating back to the day he was officially diagnosed in November of 2006....

Should Parents Tell Their Children They Have Asperger’s?

A diagnosis of Asperger’s can be an overwhelming experience for parents and children. Some parents may feel an initial sense of relief at finally finding an answer to their child’s difficulties; at the same time, it also can foreshadow a long and trying road ahead full of therapies, academic...

What to Expect When Expecting a Functional Behavior Assessment

In 1994, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) mandated the use of Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) under certain conditions for special education students. Today, FBA is used to set the foundation for treatment of challenging behaviors in schools, homes, group homes for adults...

When an ASD Diagnosis Isn’t the Whole Answer – A Diagnostic Perspective

Receiving a diagnosis of ASD or Asperger’s Syndrome can be intense, emotional, and validating for an individual and his/her family. For many, it can begin a journey of self-discovery and understanding concerning one’s past experiences. Even in the best-case scenario for an ASD individual to...

Autism Treatment: Addressing the Changes and Challenges

This past March, it became clearer than ever that the scope of autism is changing. With new estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identifying that 1 in 68 children in the U.S. are now affected by autism, a nationwide conversation ignited on how to address the...

A New Way of Thinking About Autism

On April 29, 2013 Dr. Thomas Insel, the Director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), wrote on the NIMH Director’s Blog that the Institute will be re-orienting its research away from currently used diagnostic categories (the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual or “DSM”) and...

Some Thoughts on Early Diagnosis and Effective Treatment of ASD

I am the director of an Early Intervention agency and until recently was its primary Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) evaluator. I am a bilingual child psychologist and have been diagnosing and ruling out ASD in children below age three for several decades. We’ve seen ever-earlier diagnosis (down...