Sex differences in the reciprocal behaviour of children with autism

Tineke Backer van Ommeren, Hans M Koot, Anke M Scheeren, Sander Begeer

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Differences in the social limitations of girls compared to boys on the autism spectrum are still poorly understood. Impaired social-emotional reciprocity is a core diagnostic criterion for an autism spectrum disorder. This study compares sex differences in reciprocal behaviour in children with autism spectrum disorder (32 girls, 114 boys) and in typically developing children (24 girls, 55 boys). While children with autism spectrum disorder showed clear limitations in reciprocal behaviour compared to typically developing children, sex differences were found only in the autism spectrum disorder group: girls with autism spectrum disorder had higher reciprocity scores than boys with autism spectrum disorder. However, compared to typically developing girls, girls with autism spectrum disorder showed subtle differences in reciprocal behaviour. The sex-specific response patterns in autism spectrum disorder can inform and improve the diagnostic assessment of autism in females.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)795-803
Number of pages9
JournalAutism
Volume21
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017

Keywords

  • Journal Article

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