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wow thats quite a big question. I would be looking at the range IE what issues might ASD cause a high functioning (asperges) person and those who are challenged with severe autism (non verbal /isolated/serious behavioural issues) a diagnosis of asd would cover both of these people but their range of abilities and support services would be very different .(only my take on this of course) Stephen might be around to help later..

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Agreed, a very big question.  Autism in itself is a large spectrum, as @finleysmaid has said.  The other significant thing to consider is whether a person with autism also has associated learning difficulties.  So a child who is not yet communicating verbally may well have a diagnosis of autism as well as one of developmental delay.  The two things are not entirely separate though.


This is a blog post from a mother of an autistic child (from America i think) but it might be useful to have a read - i think the last paragraph is important:



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