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International Asperger’s Day: a comment by Prof. Anna Ogliari

13 febbraio 2019

On 18th February 1906 Hans Asperger was born in Wien, the Austrian pediatrician who in 1944 first described a development condition characterized by eccentricity, motor awkwardness, difficulties in social relations, limited interests and repetitiveness of behavior: these are some characteristics of the Asperger’s Syndrome, precisely named after him.

On the occasion of his birth, 18th February is now the International Asperger’s Day. What is this syndrome? How can it be recognized? How can this be treated? We talked about this with Prof. Anna Ogliari, M.D., Associate of Clinical Psychology at UniSR, Specialist in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapist at the Servizio di Psicopatologia dello sviluppo, as well as Rector Delegate for Disabilities.

Prof. Ogliari, what is Asperger’s Syndrome?

The new Statistical Diagnostic Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM 5) published in 2014 has assimilated Asperger’s syndrome to Autism Spectrum Disorders, a diagnostic category in which the syndrome now falls. But first things first, and try to describe a clinical picture and some salient features, rather than entering into the difficult diatribe of the diagnostic classification. First of all, Asperger’s syndrome is a pervasive developmental disorder that appears right from the first stages of development and has specific characteristics that may appear to be highly of mildly disabling depending on the severity of the clinical picture.

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