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High-functioning pervasive developmental disorders in adults

Sarah J Abrahamson, Peter G Enticott and Bruce J Tonge
Med J Aust 2010; 192 (1): 44-48.

Summary

  • High-functioning pervasive developmental disorders (PDDs) have only recently been widely recognised; they are diagnosed mainly in children.

  • Key features are impaired social cognition and communication; obsessive interests, routines or activities; and social or occupational dysfunction.

  • There are scant data about the prevalence of high-functioning PDDs in adults, and it is possible that many Australian adults with these conditions are undiagnosed.

  • A specialist multidisciplinary approach is used for both children with PDDs and adults with other neuropsychiatric disabilities, and has the potential to help adults with high-functioning PDDs.

  • Increased awareness and diagnosis of these conditions should not limit career or personal goals of individuals with PDDs but should aid them in finding happy and productive careers and lives.

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  • Sarah J Abrahamson1,2
  • Peter G Enticott1
  • Bruce J Tonge1

  • 1 School of Psychology, Psychiatry and Psychological Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC.
  • 2 Department of Rehabilitation, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Melbourne, VIC.


Competing interests:

None identified.

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