Gothenburg, Sweden — A team of researchers from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden found that men with autism are likely to suffer from depression or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) on top of their autism.
In a study published last month in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, the researchers observed 50 out of the original 100 Swedish teens and boys diagnosed with autism about two decades ago, who were also part of some of the researchers’ previous studies.
The researchers found that majority of the subjects were either suffering from or have suffered from depression at one point in their lives. They found that 29 of the respondents have gone through depression at some point, 27 are currently exhibiting symptoms of psychological disorders, 14 had depression, and another 14 were found to have ADHD.
The scientists stressed the importance of their findings, saying that most men suffering from other disorders on top of their autism are often left untreated, mostly due to the fact that caregivers are often more focused on their autism.
According to University of Gothenburg Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and lead researcher of the study, Christopher Gillberg:
“The focus on autism alone has led to undertreatment of both depression and ADHD.
“Everyone who works with people with Asperger’s or autism needs to be aware that they should be looking out for these problems.”
The researchers’ findings are consistent with results from other similar studies which found that individuals with autism are likely to suffer from one other psychiatric disorder, on top of their autism.
Source: Jessica Wright in SFARI Depression common among men with autism, study finds