What is Asperger Syndrome (Autistic Psychopathy, Schizoid Childhood Disorder)?
This rare condition was first described by Asperger (1944). It is characterized by impaired social behavior (as in autism) in combination with stereotypical, repetitive actions against the background of normal cognitive development and speech.
Causes of Asperger Syndrome (Autistic Psychopathy, Schizoid Childhood Disorder)
The causes of autistic psychopathy are unknown. Some cases are likely a mild version of childhood autism, but they are mostly an independent disease. Symptoms usually persist in adulthood. Most of those suffering from this disease are able to work, but they do not have relationships with other people, rarely one of them marries.
The condition is more common in boys (8: 1 ratio).
Symptoms Asperger Syndrome (Autistic Psychopathy, Childhood Schizoid Disorder)
Up to 3 years of age, a period of normal development is observed. Then there are violations in relationships with adults and peers. Speech becomes monotonous. The child begins to stay detached, isolated, devotes a lot of time to a narrow, stereotypical circle of interests. Behavior is determined by impulsivity, contrasting affects, desires, and perceptions. Some children show the ability to an unusual, non-standard understanding of themselves and others. Logical thinking is well developed, but knowledge is extremely uneven. Active and passive attention is unstable. Unlike other cases of childhood autism, there is no significant delay in speech and cognitive development. In appearance, a detached “beautiful” facial expression attracts attention, the facial expressions are frozen, the gaze is turned to the void, the fixation on the faces is fleeting. Sometimes the gaze is directed “inward”. Motility is angular, irregular, stereotyped movements. The communicative functions of speech are weakened, it is peculiar in melody, rhythm and tempo, the voice is either quiet or sharp. Attachment to the house is characteristic, but not to relatives.
Diagnosis Asperger Syndrome (Autistic Psychopathy, Childhood Schizoid Disorder)
Unlike childhood autism, the diagnosis of Asperger syndrome is based on the presence of communication disorders, social interaction; limited, stereotyped behavior, interests and occupations; and the absence of a general delay in speech and cognitive development.
Treatment of Asperger Syndrome (Autistic Psychopathy, Schizoid Childhood Disorder)
Management of patients with Asperger’s Syndrome includes psychological and pedagogical measures, behavioral and family psychotherapy. Drug treatment is supportive in nature.