Prognosis (Long Term Outcome) of ASD
The long-term outcome for ASD is variable. It is difficult to determine during the first visit of a 1 to 2-year-old child what his future ability will be. It is however clear that this is a life long disorder that will leave its impact one way or another on the individual’s life. The most important prognostic factor is the I.Q. ability of the child. Also, the degree of social interaction impairment and lack of appropriate communication early on correlates with the severity of the outcome. Early intervention that includes behavioral modification and speech therapy may also change the outcome positively. The most accurate predictor of outcome, however, is the progression over a period of about 1 year from early diagnosis. Those with mild ASD and few autistic features may do remarkably well. Some other factors, such as associated comorbid disorders like depression, anxiety, and severe OCD may have a significant impact on outcome.