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Old 09-08-2009, 10:55 PM   #1
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Question Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

My DS is 32 months old and I have a feeling he may be autistic. He seems to have a speech delay(though he has not been evaluated yet) and has several other characteristics. I have no idea where to start with him. We are getting a new Dr.(our last Dr took the wait and see approach for his speech) so should I just talk to the new Dr about it and see what he says? Or is there somewhere else I should start? I'm pretty sure that because of our insurance I will need a refferal to take him to any kind of specialist. I'm just at the point where I feel like I've already waited too long and I should have been pushing for at least speech eval a good 6 months ago at the latest.

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Old 09-09-2009, 11:22 AM   #2
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

First of all, your son can start getting help through your local early intervention w/o a diagnosis. Early intervention is not allowed to diagnosis, but they can help point you in the right direction and get him services that they think he needs. Depending on your state, early intervention is free or low cost based on income. Just google early intervention and your state and you should be able to find the one you need to call for where you are located. Just call them and schedule an appointment for an evaluation.

Those who can diagnosis autism spectrum disorders are psychologists who specialize in autism, often times they are neuro-psychs, and developmental pediatricians. Depending on where you live, it may be hard to find these specialists. Often times there is also a waiting list to get into see them. The waiting list for the neuro-psych that my son saw was 1yr when I called to schedule an appointment, it ended up being 16 months before we got in and it was only due to a cancellation.

Your state may also have an autism clinic that is based on a sliding scale for payment. I know Utah (where I'm at) has one, although they aren't the best at diagnosing higher functioning autism -- we chose not to go see them because of that.

Bringing it up with your child's doctor is also a good thing, especially since you said your insurance requires you to have a referral to see a specialist. Good luck in the diagnostic process as it can be very tiring.
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Old 09-09-2009, 12:59 PM   #3
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

Chelsea,

I have a 5 yr old autistic son. We have gone through the whole process. Do figure out what your state offers for intervention and diagnosis. Here in Florida ours is called Early Steps and there is another program called First Words. The services are free and confidential. Luckily we did not have a long waiting list. It all depends on where you live and the local services available.

Early intervention is important. I always thought by the time my son was 5 that he would be stuck. Haha I was so wrong. He has made the most progress this year! He was speaking 1-2 word sentence in March and now he is up to 5-6 word sentences from doing an intensive at home therapy program called the Son-Rise program! I really believe there is a cure. I do not care what others may say. He is already a different child and I really believe he will FULLY recover!

Please feel free to ask any questions you may have. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Rachel
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Old 09-09-2009, 01:25 PM   #4
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

Early Intervention or whatever your state offers. As long as you have a concern, no matter how big or small, you get a referal to early intervention for a eval!

Our almost 6 year old is on the spectrum, he started early intervention at 13 months old, after a LONGGGGGGGGGGGGGG waiting list for the developmental pediatrician he was seen and diagnosed right after his 3rd birthday.

I thought our youngest had a speech delay... becuase he said almost NOTHING at 2 years of age, they said he was advanced becuase he understood EVERYthing! I was shocked!
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Old 09-09-2009, 04:49 PM   #5
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

I would also call First Steps/EI. Our therapists have been wonderful and have suggested doctors for us to help. They also will help when the child transitions to the school district at 3 years old. But call soon since at 3 years, your child will move to therapies with the schools and the more advocates you have on your team, the better.
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Old 09-09-2009, 04:55 PM   #6
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChelseaGirl7 View Post
My DS is 32 months old and I have a feeling he may be autistic. He seems to have a speech delay(though he has not been evaluated yet) and has several other characteristics. I have no idea where to start with him. We are getting a new Dr.(our last Dr took the wait and see approach for his speech) so should I just talk to the new Dr about it and see what he says? Or is there somewhere else I should start? I'm pretty sure that because of our insurance I will need a refferal to take him to any kind of specialist. I'm just at the point where I feel like I've already waited too long and I should have been pushing for at least speech eval a good 6 months ago at the latest.
Early Intravention is free until they reach about 3yrs or school age. About the Ins. if you have PPO you do NOT need a refferal. Some specialist like to be referred through the doc; so they can stay in the loop, but it isn't required.
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Old 01-17-2010, 06:50 PM   #7
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

I'm wanting to piggy back onto this thread. DS2 turned 4 last October. I've been concerned about him for a while. He was speaking single words until Dec 08 and said his 1st sentence last Easter. I had asked our ENT about his lack of speech and the ENT wasn't concerned. We did a speech eval with the schools last Feb and he just barely passed. But he doesn't communicate much - he'll tell you about his obsessions ut there is no two-way conversation, doesn't know how to verbalize emotions, just seems stuck overall. Right now he constantly yells at everyone to shush (and was called rude by his sunday school teacher today for it ) because he wants to be left alone to do his own thing.

I know I should go talk to the ped but I'm worried it'll be blown off, or that I'll have spent all this time agonizing over him to have it turn out MIL is right and that he is just DH all over again. We just got onto Medicaid (DH laid off last month) and I don't even know if they cover a developmental ped.

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Old 01-30-2010, 01:27 AM   #8
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

[

I know I should go talk to the ped but I'm worried it'll be blown off, or that I'll have spent all this time agonizing over him to have it turn out MIL is right and that he is just DH all over again. We just got onto Medicaid (DH laid off last month) and I don't even know if they cover a developmental ped.[/QUOTE]

Hi there,
It sounds to me that you have some valid concerns (sound alot like my 9 yr old and he was your DS's age!). I would try to get in with a developmental pediatrician in your area and have him evaluated. That way, if it's nothing, great, and if it is something you can start doing something about it
Kristi
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Old 01-30-2010, 04:38 PM   #9
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChelseaGirl7 View Post
He seems to have a speech delay(though he has not been evaluated yet) and has several other characteristics.
Do you mind sharing what some of the other characteristics are?
I contacted Early intervention and did my own referral for my son when he was 30 months old and hadn't said a single word. The initial eval was at no cost to us and then the treatments were on a sliding scale based on income and family size. My son had other things besides that speech that worried me as well and I brought up these concerns to both my ped. and the early intervention team I was working with and neither thought there was any need for him to be seen by a specialist.
After 6 months of speech therapy he transitioned to the public school district and it was a great thing to have the early intervention team that had some history with him help with the transition and let the school know what was his needs were. After barely a month of "preschool" we have seen great improvements in his speech as well as some of the worrisome characteristics being less noticable.
I would definately get a call into the early intervention and see what they can do for you.
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Old 01-30-2010, 04:48 PM   #10
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Re: Were do I begin to get a diagnosis for possible autism?

My son displayed a lot of the symptoms of Auism, i.e. toe-walking, delayed speech, glazed over expressions, lining up and stacking toys obsessively, etc. I skipped the diagnosis bc with Autism, the diagnosis is really a matter of opinion. There is no definite yes or no, which is why it is a spectrum disorder. When I had enough of waiting for him to progress on his own, I went to a preventative/natural medicine practitioner, who was able to determine the underlying cause of my ds's autistic symptoms. As it turns out, my ds was allergic to the thiomerosal(spelling is wrong, I'm sure), which is the mercury component in vaccinations. His symptoms were a direct result of his allergic reaction. This is quite common in Autistic children. To fix this, the doctor (Dr Erickson in Gainesville, FLorida) gave him some amino acid supplements and we further chelated my ds for his high level of lead in his system and his brain function is now normal. I have my son back.

This being said, I went the unconventional way and I encourage anyone to do the same. Autism is just a display of symptoms from an underlying problem, not a disease itself, so go find out what's causing these symptoms!

PM me if you need help!
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