Pervasive Developmental Disorder
Pervasive developmental disorder also referred to as PDDs is a collective term used in reference to a group of medical conditions that entails delays in development of different basic skills. The group comprises of five disorders that are all characterized by the delay in development of different functions such as communication and socialization.
These disorders are:
- Childhood disintegrative disorder
- Rett syndrome
- Asperger syndrome
- Pervasive developmental disorder that is not specific and it include atypical autism
Pervasive developmental disorder that is not specific, autism and asperger syndrome are commonly referred to as autism spectrum disorders. The others are rare and they may be placed in the spectrum of autism in some cases.
In most cases, pervasive developmental disorder onset occurs at infancy. However, this condition is more often not identified in little children until when they are about three years old. A parent may start questioning the health of a child when they fail to meet the normal developmental milestones such as speech production and motor movement at the appropriate age.
Doctors are divided on how the term pervasive developmental disorder should be used. Some doctors use the term PDD as a simple or short way of describing or saying PPD-NOS. There are also doctors who use the term PDD as a general category label of the disorders since they are always hesitant when it comes to diagnosing young children with specific types of PDD like autism. Both of these approaches always contribute to the confusion about this term because PDD is an actual reference of a category of different disorders rather than a diagnostic label.
Classification of pervasive developmental disorder was updated in May of 2013 when Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-Fifth Edition was released. The manual regrouped the disorders including Autism, PDD-NOS, Rett syndrome, CDD and Asperger syndrome removing and replacing with a general term, Autism Spectrum Disorders.
The Association of the American Psychiatric concluded that the use of ASD’s general diagnosis supports accurate diagnosis. The standpoint that common symptoms characterize Autism fueled the combination of the disorders and therefore, they should bear one diagnostic term. To make distinguishing between different disorders easier, the manual employed severity levels. Severity levels consider the required report, repetitive behaviors, deficits in the social communication and restricted interests.
Generally, symptoms of pervasive developmental disorder include the following difficulty in understanding and using language, relating to objects, events and people. Other symptoms include unusual play with objects such as toys and difficulties in changing routine even in familiar surroundings among others.
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