April is National Autism Awareness Month!
At Lake Country Pediatrics/Delafield Pediatrics we have been using a standard screening tool for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at 18 and 24 month Well Child Examinations called the M-CHAT (Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers). This is in line with the recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics for formal screening of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
ASD includes autistic disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) and Asperger syndrome.
You may have noticed recently that at well child examination visits or when there is a developmental concern, we are using a Developmental Screening tool called Survey of Well-Being of Young Children (SWYC). The SWYC is being used at 9 months – 60 months, not including 18 and 24 months when the M-CHAT will continue to be used. The SWYC is a comprehensive, brief questionnaire that assesses three areas of child functioning: Developmental Domain, Emotional/Behavioral Domain and Family Context.
It is important to note, screening is not the same as diagnosing. Family observations as well as the examination done during the well-child examination visits by your pediatrician, along with family and child health history, continue to be of the utmost importance in identifying children at risk for ASD.