Personal stories and professional research findings make this highly readable book a ready summary of the current kwledge surrounding autism. Recent coverage in popular media has increased awareness and understanding of this condition, creating the need for access to current scientific research and reports of common experiences with it. Directed toward parents and professionals, this book explains what research has revealed and supports it with personal accounts written by people with autism and the parents of autistic children. The focus of the book encompasses the wide spectrum of characteristics and ability levels that exist within autism and their implications for individuals as children, older adolescents, and adults. From the first diagsis of autism by Leo Kanner in 1943 to the most recent research by neurologists Isabelle Rapin and Robert Katzman, the study of autism has shed increasing light on the mysteries of this disorder. This book summarizes research findings as it explores the dilemmas faced by parents and individuals with autism in their search for early diagsis, professional help, and suitable services. Chapters include discussions of co-existing conditions, causes of autism, and its relationship to Asperger Syndrome. Appendices include a glossary of related terms and an international directory of support organizations and publications.
ANN HEWETSON is both a professional and a parent of a son with high-ability autism. In her professional capacity she has worked as a research scientist with the National University of Ireland and later as Head of Science in a large public school. She was instrumental in founding the Asperger Syndrome Association of Ireland.