Validation of existing diagnosis of autism in mainland China using standardised diagnostic instruments

East of England
Published Date: 10 Mar 2015

Research to date in mainland China has mainly focused on children with autistic disorder rather than Autism Spectrum Conditions and the diagnosis largely depended on clinical judgment without the use of diagnostic instruments. Whether children who have been diagnosed in China before meet the diagnostic criteria of Autism Spectrum Conditions is not known nor how many such children would meet these criteria. The aim of this study was to evaluate children with a known diagnosis of autism in mainland China using the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule and the Autism Diagnostic Interview–Revised to verify that children who were given a diagnosis of autism made by Chinese clinicians in China were mostly children with severe autism. Of 50 children with an existing diagnosis of autism made by Chinese clinicians, 47 children met the diagnosis of autism on the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule algorithm and 44 children met the diagnosis of autism on the Autism Diagnostic Interview–Revised algorithm. Using the Gwet’s alternative chance-corrected statistic, the agreement between the Chinese diagnosis and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule diagnosis was very good (AC1 = 0.94, p < 0.005, 95% confidence interval (0.86, 1.00)), so was the agreement between the Chinese diagnosis and the Autism Diagnostic Interview–Revised (AC1 = 0.91, p < 0.005, 95% confidence interval (0.81, 1.00)). The agreement between the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule and the Autism Diagnostic Interview–Revised was lower but still very good (AC1 = 0.83, p < 0.005).

Contact 
XIang Sun
xs227@medschl.cam.ac.uk