The challenge and the promise of autism spectrum disorders in adulthood and aging: A systematic review of the literature (1990-2013)

Scott D. Wright, Denise E. Brooks, Val D'Astous, Temple Grandin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

In the past five years, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of publications addressing the issues of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) in the domain of adulthood and aging. However this increase still represents an extremely small proportion of the overall literature which is predominantly focused on autism in the childhood and adolescence stages of development. The purpose of this paper is to present results from a systematic literature review covering the timeframe of 1990 to 2013 (including advance online publications). Five data bases were queried at the intersection of ASD in the domain of adulthood and aging. Using “ASD” and “adulthood and aging” as the two primary foci, we had several objectives: (1) to conduct an exhaustive and comprehensive review of the literature; (2) to determine emergent sub-themes from the comprehensive review of publications; (3) to identify the top exemplar articles per emergent theme; (4) to establish an emergent theme that had the greatest number of publications; (5) to document three journals that most frequently publish articles exploring ASDs, adulthood and aging. This review is different than previous reviews in that: (a) it emphasizes intergenerational factors; (b) it stresses multidisciplinary perspectives; (c) it is life-course oriented; and (d) we review the promise and potential of neurodiversity and highlight the abilities and capabilities possible for individuals with ASDs into adulthood and aging.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberN/A
Pages (from-to)21-73
Number of pages53
JournalAutism Insights
Volume2013
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Apr 2013

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