ASPERGER SYNDROME IN GIRLS AND WOMEN: KEEPING UP APPEARANCES AND MISSED DIAGNOSIS

The female profile of Asperger Syndrome has largely been ignored in research (as compared to male research) and in definitions of Asperger Syndrome. This is due to a strong gender bias, with females known as ‘research orphans’, according to Yale’s Ami Klin. Many girls and women with Asperger Syndrome or High Functioning Autism fly under the radar undetected by health professionals or are misdiagnosed, which then leads to years of misdirected treatment and interventions.

The diagnosis of Asperger Syndrome in girls and women is one of the newest areas in Autism research and in clinical/anecdotal experience. Most children referred for a diagnostic assessment for Asperger Syndrome are boys.  However, in very recent times, an influx of females on the Autism Spectrum has caused researchers and clinicians to take notice. Females tend to be missed in the diagnostic process due to the following:

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