Original Research Article
Year: 2018 | Month: August | Volume: 8 | Issue: 8 | Pages: 21-28
Perceptions Regarding Precipitating Factors of Autism among Caregivers of Autistic Children and Adolescents Visiting Health Facilities in Lucknow City
Dr. Aparna Jain1*, Dr. Naim Ahmed2*, Dr. Pooja Mahour3**, Dr. Vivek Agarwal4**, Nitesh Kumar Shrivastav5, Dr. Chandrakanta6
1Junior Resident, 2Assosiate Professor, 3Assistant Professor, 4Professor,
*Department of Community Medicine and Public Health, **Department of Psychiatry,
5M.O.T, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 6Professor, Department of Paediatrics,
King George’s Medical University, UP, Lucknow
Corresponding Author: Dr. Naim Ahmed
Introduction: The cause of autism is largely unknown. Genetics has a proven role in autism but many studies suggests role of various environmental factors. This has lead parents to create their own peceptions regarding the causal factors of autism in their children. The present study was conducted to determine the Perceptions regarding precipitating factors of Autism among Caregivers of Autistic Children and Adolescents visiting Health Facilities in Lucknow City.
Methodology: It was a cross sectional study conducted on 90 principal caregivers of diagnosed autistic children and adolescents visiting government and private care centres for autism in Lucknow city.
Result: The age at which the caregivers perceived the autistic symptoms in their child ranged from 6 months to 84 months. While, the age at which diagnosis of autism was made ranged from 6 months to 191 months. Majority (54.4%) of the caregivers didn’t know what could be the probable cause of Autism in their children. Caregivers of 14.4% children perceived that the health issues which preceded the autistic symptoms and complications in the neonatal period like poor cry, birth asphyxia, meconium aspiration etc. were perceived to be the cause of autism by 13.3% caregivers in their children.
Conclusion: The knowledge of Autism problem per se is at its infancy in India especially among the parents. The absence of clear explanation about the causative factors for autism, has led to the development of many theories among caregivers regarding the causative factors of autism. This study showed lack of understanding about autism among the parents of autistic children and adolescents. This lack of understanding could be the root cause of delay in the diagnosis of autism of their children.
Key words: Perceptions, Principal Caregivers, Precipitating factors of Autism.