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24-05-2019 | Original Paper | Uitgave 9/2019 Open Access

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 9/2019

Interoception is Impaired in Children, But Not Adults, with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders > Uitgave 9/2019
Toby Nicholson, David Williams, Katie Carpenter, Aimilia Kallitsounaki
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The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s10803-019-04079-w) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Interoception (the ability to sense what’s going on inside one’s body) is considered integral to many higher-order cognitive processes. Some have speculated that impaired interoception may underpin some features of ASD. Yet, in Experiment 1, we found no evidence of a between-group difference in either cardiac or respiratory interoceptive accuracy among 21 adults with ASD and 21 matched controls. Bayesian analyses suggested the data strongly supported the null hypothesis. In Experiment 2, we measured cardiac interoceptive accuracy in 21 children with ASD and 21 matched controls. Here interoceptve accuracy was significantly diminished in the ASD group and was associated with a moderate-to-large effect size. Results suggest early interoception difficulties are resolved or compensated for by adulthood in people with ASD.

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