Thursday, October 06, 2005

Reviewing the Autism Prevalence (The Use of the IDEA Data: Part 3)

The final reason I will give not to accept the IDEA autism data as a good predictor of prevalence is the discrepancy to the epidemiology prevalence rates. I consider the two main reasons already given along with this reason, to be adequate to explain why the IDEA data should not be used to calculate autism prevalence.

Based on the data in the annual report to congress, provided by ( there are 77,453,872 students ages 3-21 in the US in 2003. There are 163,746 students meeting criteria for Autism ages 3-21 in the US in 2003 ( Based on this (Autism Diva, 2005) calculated a prevalence of 1 per 473 students age 3-21; this converts to 21 per 10,000.

This discrepant from Fombonne (2003) and the Center for Disease Controls (2005) upper estimation for pervasive developmental disorders at 1 per 166 or 60 per 10,000.

Autism Diva. Sunday April 27, 2005. Accessed April 27, 2005

Center for Disease Control. February 17, 2005.
Accessed October 6, 2005

Fombonne, E. (2003). Epidemiological surveys of autism and other pervasive developmental disorders: an update. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 33, 365-382.


Blogger Autism Diva said...

Wow. :-D

6:52 PM  
Blogger Autism Diva said...

Hi, I think you meant April 27, 2005 for the blog date, and I don't know how you accessed it before it was written. :-)

Or did I read your citation incorrectly?


6:59 PM  
Blogger Interverbal said...

Thanks Diva,

Your stats, are important! They show the discrepancy from the epidemiology, and give folks another good reason to question the "epidemic".

I hope other folks trace my refernces and read your articles on this.

I was just kidding re the April 17th, citation. It is actually the 27th as you stated. I will fix that in a second.

7:09 PM  
Blogger Interverbal said...


I seem to have made another erratum when citing the diva besides the two you pointed out.

Anyway, fixed it now.

7:20 PM  

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