ASDetect said that my child had a “high likelihood” for autism, but following a formal assessment no autism diagnosis was made; why is this?

May 26, 2017 - Melinda Denham - in category Assessment Support

No Comments

It’s important to remember that ASDetect is not a diagnostic tool, and that a diagnosis can only be accurately made by a specialist child practitioner or by a multidisciplinary team (for more information on who can provide a formal assessment of autism, see Who can provide a formal assessment for autism?). ASDetect aids by providing an indication of the likelihood that a child will have autism, based on the development of their social-communication skills. ASDetect is built around research that found that 81% of children who were not meeting specific social-communication milestones at 12 months, 18 months, and/or 24 months of age were diagnosed with autism between 2 to 3 years of age. However, this also means that 19% of children who were identified as having a “high likelihood” for autism did not end up with a diagnosis of autism, but instead had another diagnosis such as developmental or language delay. A very small percentage of children with a “high likelihood” result may also be typically developing and not have a diagnosis of any developmental disorder, but this was rarely found in the research conducted. If you would like a copy of the complete academic papers by Dr Josephine Barbaro and Professor Cheryl Dissanayake, please email us at

Share this article