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Congenital anomalies associated with autism spectrum disorders

This study examined whether major congenital structural anomalies identified in infancy occurred more frequently in children later diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD; n=417; 341 males, 76 females) than in comparison children (n=2,067; 1,681 males, 386 females). Participants were sampled from infants born at Kaiser Permanente Northern California facilities between 1995 and 1999 who remained health plan members for at least 2 years (n=88,163). Comparison children were frequency-matched to children with ASD according to sex, birth year, and birth hospital. Congenital anomalies were diagnosed in 10.8% of children with ASD and 6.2% of comparison children (crude odds ratio [ORc] 1.8, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.3-2.6). This association remained significant after adjustment for key maternal and infant covariates (adjusted OR [ORa] 1.7, 95% CI 1.1-2.4). Almost all organ-system anomaly categories were more prevalent in children with ASD, however only gastrointestinal anomalies were significantly associated with ASD in adjusted analyses (1.9 vs 0.4%, ORa 5.1, 95% CI 1.8-14.1).

Authors: Wier ML; Yoshida CK; Odouli R; Grether JK; Croen LA

Dev Med Child Neurol. 2006 Jun;48(6):500-7.

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