Reduced bone cortical thickness in boys with autism or autism spectrum disorder.

Bone development, casein-free diet use, supplements, and medications were assessed for 75 boys with autism or autism spectrum disorder, ages 4-8 years. Second metacarpal bone cortical thickness (BCT), measured on hand-wrist radiographs, and % deviations in BCT from reference medians were derived. BCT increased with age, but % deviations evidenced a progressive fall-off (p = .02): +3.1 +/- 4.7%, -6.5 +/- 4.0%, -16.6 +/- 3.4%, -19.4 +/- 3.7%,-24.1 +/- 4.4%, at ages 4-8, respectively, adjusting for height. The 12% of the boys on casein-free diets had an overall % deviation of -18.9 +/- 3.7%, nearly twice that of boys on minimally restricted or unrestricted diets (-10.5 +/- 1.3%, p < .04), although even for boys on minimally restricted or unrestricted diets the % deviation was highly significant (p < .001). Our data suggest that the bone development of autistic boys should be monitored as part of routine care, especially if they are on casein-free diets.
AuthorsMary L Hediger, Lucinda J England, Cynthia A Molloy, Kai F Yu, Patricia Manning-Courtney, James L Mills
JournalJournal of autism and developmental disorders (J Autism Dev Disord) Vol. 38 Issue 5 Pg. 848-56 (May 2008) ISSN: 0162-3257 [Print] United States
PMID17879151 (Publication Type: Journal Article, Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural, Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural)
  • Autistic Disorder (epidemiology, physiopathology)
  • Bone Diseases (epidemiology, physiopathology, radiography)
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Hand
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metacarpal Bones (abnormalities, radiography)

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