DSM-5-TR: Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnosis

The diagnosis of ASD is made according to the criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5). In this article, we will discuss the criteria for the diagnosis of ASD according to the DSM-5-TR.

reuben kesherim
Published By Ruben Kesherim
June 22, 2023

DSM-5-TR: Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnosis

The DSM-5-TR is an updated version of the DSM-5. The TR stands for text revision, which means that it includes small changes to the original DSM-5. These changes were made to improve the reliability and validity of the diagnosis of ASD.

The DSM-5-TR criteria for the diagnosis of ASD include two main categories: social communication and interaction, and restricted and repetitive behaviors. To receive a diagnosis of ASD, an individual must have persistent deficits in both categories.

Social Communication and Interaction

The first category of the DSM-5-TR criteria for the diagnosis of autism is social communication and interaction. This category includes three criteria:

  1. Deficits in social-emotional reciprocity: This criterion refers to difficulties in social interaction. For example, an individual with autism may not initiate or respond to social interactions appropriately.
  2. Deficits in nonverbal communication: This criterion refers to difficulties in understanding and using nonverbal communication. For example, an individual with autism may not make eye contact or use facial expressions appropriately.
  3. Deficits in developing and maintaining relationships: This criterion refers to difficulties in developing and maintaining relationships. For example, an individual with autism may not have friends or may have difficulty understanding social cues.

Restricted and Repetitive Behaviors

The second category of the DSM-5-TR criteria for the diagnosis of ASD is restricted and repetitive behaviors. This category includes four criteria:

  1. Repetitive movements, use of objects, or speech: This criterion refers to repetitive behaviors or speech patterns. For example, an individual with ASD may repeat words or phrases or engage in repetitive movements like hand flapping.
  2. Insistence on sameness: This criterion refers to a resistance to change or a need for routines. For example, an individual with autism may become upset if their routine is disrupted.
  3. Highly restricted interests: This criterion refers to a narrow range of interests. For example, an individual with autism may have a strong interest in a particular topic and may talk about it constantly.
  4. Hyper- or hypo-reactivity to sensory input: This criterion refers to unusual reactions to sensory input. For example, an individual with autism may be sensitive to certain sounds or textures, or may seek out certain sensations.

Diagnosing Autism

To receive a diagnosis of autism, an individual must meet the criteria outlined in the DSM-5-TR.

A diagnosis is typically made by a healthcare professional, such as a psychologist or psychiatrist, who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders.

In addition to the DSM-5-TR criteria, a healthcare professional may also use other tools and assessments to diagnose ASD.

For example, they may use standardized tests to assess an individual's language and cognitive abilities, or they may observe the individual in various social situations.

How Autism Is Diagnosed

In addition to the DSM-5-TR criteria, diagnosing autism often involves a comprehensive evaluation of an individual's development and behavior. A healthcare professional may ask questions about the individual's medical history, developmental milestones, and current symptoms.

They may also observe the individual in various settings, such as at home or school, to get a better understanding of their behavior and social interaction.

The healthcare professional may also use standardized tests to assess an individual's language and cognitive abilities. For example, they may use the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS), a standardized assessment that evaluates communication, social interaction, play, and imaginative use of materials.

Another tool that might be used is the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R), which is a structured interview with caregivers that assesses early developmental history and current symptoms.

Diagnosing autism can be complex and requires expertise in the field of neurodevelopmental disorders. Therefore, it's crucial for parents or caregivers who suspect their child may have autism to seek out a qualified healthcare professional for an evaluation.

FAQs

Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the DSM-5-TR and its criteria for the diagnosis of ASD:

What is the DSM-5-TR?

The DSM-5-TR is an updated version of the DSM-5, which is a manual used by healthcare professionals to diagnose and classify mental disorders.

What changes were made in the DSM-5-TR?

The changes made in the DSM-5-TR were minor revisions to improve the reliability and validity of the diagnosis of ASD.

Can a child be diagnosed with autism before age 2?

Yes, it's possible for a child to be diagnosed with autism before age 2. However, most children are not diagnosed until after age 4.

Can adults be diagnosed with autism?

Yes, adults can be diagnosed with autism. In fact, many individuals are not diagnosed until adulthood.

Is there a cure for autism?

There is no known cure for autism. However, early intervention and treatment can help individuals with autism develop social, communication, and behavioral skills that can improve their quality of life.

Conclusion

The DSM-5-TR criteria for the diagnosis of autism provide a standardized set of criteria that healthcare professionals can use to diagnose autism. The criteria include deficits in social communication and interaction, as well as restricted and repetitive behaviors.

To receive a diagnosis of ASD, an individual must have persistent deficits in both categories. A diagnosis is typically made by a healthcare professional who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders.

References

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/hcp-dsm.html
  2. https://www.autismspeaks.org/autism-diagnosis-criteria-dsm-5
  3. https://raisingchildren.net.au/autism/learning-about-autism/assessment-diagnosis/dsm-5-autism-diagnosis
  4. https://www.spectrumnews.org/news/dsm-5-revision-tweaks-autism-entry-for-clarity/
  5. https://www.psychiatry.org/File%20Library/Psychiatrists/Practice/DSM/DSM-5-TR/APA-DSM5TR-AutismSpectrumDisorder.pdf
  6. https://www.research.chop.edu/car-autism-roadmap/diagnostic-criteria-for-autism-spectrum-disorder-in-the-dsm-5