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Possible Similarities Between the Fragile X and Asperger's Syndromes-Reply

Randi J. Hagerman, MD
Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(6):601-602. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460060019009.
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In Reply.—Drs Bartolucci and Szatmari present an interesting speculation that I have considered many times in the past. Although approximately 16% of male children with fra(X) chromosome will fulfill Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, ed 3, criteria for infantile autism, the majority of boys with fra(X) syndrome demonstrate only some autistic features, such as hand flapping, hand biting, and poor eye contact without a pervasive lack of relatedness.1 These problems, combined with perseverations in language and behavior, such as fascination with spinning objects, makes one consider the terms autisticlike or a high-functioning autistic child, and yet many children with fra(X) syndrome can relate quite well to their family and peers. The juxtaposition of an ability to relate with some autistic features is perhaps the source of controversy concerning the incidence of autism in fra(X) syndrome and the incidence of fra(X) chromosome in autism.

Asperger's syndrome can be simplistically viewed

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