The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is estimating 1 in 150 births will be affected by Autism. In fact, that number is growing at a startling rate of 10 to 17% a year.
"The numbers are huge and they're going up," said Dr. Phillip Demio, Autism Specialist.
The arguments will continue about why the number of persons diagnosed with autism are going up. The arguments have been stated and restated many times and usually boil down to environmental toxins versus changed definitions and greater autism awareness. Bloggers, lawyers, cultural anthropologists and professors of english literature can foam and froth and offer their considered, or ill considered, opinions about why the numbers are rising but they are. In the UK the numbers are higher. Even Neurodiversity icon Simon Baron-Cohen begrudgingly cites 1 in 100 as the incidence figure for autism in the UK. To my knowledge no one has explained the divergence between the 1 in 150 US figure and the 1 in 100 UK figure. Hopefully though we will one day know what is creating the surge in diagnoses of autism disorder.
There is an explosion of research into the causes of autism now taking place. The Autism Knowledge Revolution is happening all around us and we should soon have more reports and more information from Boulder Colorado where the USAAA is holding its conference Treating Autism as a Medical Disorder; Bringing Biomedical Treatments and Behavioral & Developmental Therapies Together. Understanding the causes should help in the development of new treatments for autism. And someday conclude yet another seemingly endless autism debate.