I have a eight year old son who has been on medication since the age of four. His has been diagnosis by several different professionals with PDD NOS, ODD, ADHD, OCD, Early on set Bi-polar, Mood disorder NOS, they all say my son presents with a difficult case to diagnosis. He is the third of my four children and the only one with special needs and difficult behavior. He has had many evaluations, spent time at the Marcus Institute Behavior clinic, and our family is currently working with a BCBA.
Can you help me understand the difference between Early on set Bi-polar and Autism Spectrum disorders. I've been told that Bi-polar children cycle, but how do you rule out the sensory issues and social difficulties that can cause sudden changes in behavior in children on the Autism spectrum, could that not also look like cycling?
My son had all the early symptoms of Autism including loss of speech, lack of facial expressions, and not interacting with others, yet the professionals in our area continue to tell me that if it was Autism he wouldn't of gotten so much better and there would still be obvious signs. His lack of social skills, occasional spinning, rocking, repeating things off the television, shoe collecting and anxiety are all contributed to the diagnosis of Bi-polar, ADHD, and mood disorder. They say his communication is too advanced to have Hi-functioning Autism and he doesn't present with fixed interest like Aspergers. My question to that is "would a child with true ADHD and an Autsim spectrum disorder be able to maintain a fixed intrest?" I know that you can't offer a diagnose but if you could please clear up the difference between Early onset Bi-polar and Autism spectrum disorders, how much and what kind of improvements children on the spectrum can or may make over time and if a child with both Aspergers and ADHD would still present with fixed intrests. (Would shoe collecting count as a fixed intrest?)
I guess in the end Bi-polar and Aspergers are so alike does it really matter?