International Meeting for Autism Research (London, May 15-17, 2008): Predictive Value Of BITSEA In Detecting ASD In French-Speaking Children Attending Daycare Settings

Predictive Value Of BITSEA In Detecting ASD In French-Speaking Children Attending Daycare Settings

Thursday, May 15, 2008
Champagne Terrace/Bordeaux (Novotel London West)
11:30 AM
K. Morasse , Child psychiatry, Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis, Lévis, QC, Canada
E. Gilbert , Centre de recherche Université Laval Robert-Giffard, QC, Canada
S. Pouliot , Université Laval
J. Lambert , Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis
L. BenAmor , Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis, Quebec, QC, Canada
Background: In Quebec, a large proportion of preschool children is attending public daycare facilities. Screening for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in those institutions could considerably enhance early diagnosis. BITSEA is the brief form of ITSEA (Infant-Toddler Social and Emotional Assessment), a questionnaire assessing social-communicative functioning in preschool children. ITSEA is recognised for its sensitivity to ASD. Unpublished French versions of ITSEA-BITSEA are used in this study. Objectives: To assess the efficiency of the BITSEA in detecting ASD children in daycare settings, and to examine the relations between BITSEA and other questionnaires. Methods: 24 children were recruited in two public childcare services, in groups where children were suspected of ASD or related disorders. BITSEA were completed by the caregivers for each child. More information on everyday functioning and global development was obtained with ITSEA and ASQ (Age & Stages Questionnaire) completed by parents. Children were individually observed during a play session with a psychologist. Children showing atypical results on any of these measures were invited to a psychiatric assessment. Nine of them were met by professionals of our child psychiatry department, three receiving formal ASD diagnoses. Results: Only the ASD children were scoring above the clinical cut-off for problems on the BITSEA, and they also scored under the cut-off for competencies. Analyses on the entire sample show that Problems on BITSEA negatively correlates with Competencies on BITSEA, and with ASQ Communication, Fine motor skills and Problem resolution subscales. BITSEA Problems and Competencies correlate with Competencies and Dysregulation ITSEA subscales. Results of WPPSI-III and Vineland administered to a subgroup of children will also be discussed. Conclusions: Those results strongly suggest that the use of BITSEA in Quebec daycares can efficiently enhance early diagnosis of ASD. However, replication of this study is needed with larger samples of children and facilities.