Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 44, Issue 6, pp 1483–1485 | Cite as

Symptom Recognition to Diagnosis of Autism in Nepal

  • Merina Shrestha
  • Rena Shrestha
Brief Report


Awareness and knowledge about autism is almost non-existent in Nepal. Children who eventually get the diagnosis often miss their opportunity for early intervention. The current study shows that medical help was seeked at mean age of 27.9 + 14.5 months and most of them were for delayed language and the first preference for parents were pediatricians. The mean age of diagnosis of autism was 55.6 months. The time length between help seeking to diagnosis was 29.4 months with longest time lag of 13 years. Delay in recognition of symptoms, delay in health seeking and lack of awareness even in treating physicians might be the reason for advanced age at diagnosis of autism in Nepal.


Autism Early intervention Health seeking 



We would like to thank chair person of Autism Care Nepal, Dr. Sunita Malekhu for granting us permission to conduct this study. We are also very grateful to all the parents who were very cordial in answering all the questions.


  1. Autism Care Nepal, Kathmandu, Nepal. (n.d.). Retrived from:
  2. Baseline survey of persons with disability of having disability ID card. (2010). National federation of disabled Nepal. Kathmandu.Google Scholar
  3. Center for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). Prevalence of autism spectrum disorders: Autism and developmental disabilities monitoring network, 14 Sites, United States, 2008. Retrieved from
  4. Daley, T. C. (2004). From symptom recognition to diagnosis: Children with autism in urban India. Social Science and Medicine, 58, 1323–1335.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Imran, N., Chaudhary, M. R., Azeem, M. W., Muhammad, R. B., Zaidan, I. C., & Mohsin, A. C. (2011). A survey of autism knowledge and attitudes among the healthcare professionals in Lahore, Pakistan. BMC Pediatrics, 11(107).Google Scholar
  6. Khatri, G. K., Onta, S. R., Tiwari, S., & Choulagai, B. P. (2011). Knowledge and management practices of pediatricians about autism spectrum disorder in Kathmandu, Nepal. Journal of Nepal Pediatric Society, 31(2), 98–104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ministry of Health and Population. (2006). WHO—AIMS report on mental health system in Nepal. Kathmandu: Government of Nepal.Google Scholar
  8. Ministry of Health and Population ( 2011 ). Nepal Demographic Health Survey. Kathmandu: Government of Nepal.Google Scholar
  9. Sauvey, S. O. D., Manandhar, D. S., Costello, A. M., & Wirz, S. (2005). Prevalence of childhood and adolescent disabilities in rural Nepal. Indian Pediatrics, 42(7), 697–702.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Tulachan, P., Chapagain, M., & Kunwar, A. R. (2011). Psychiatric morbidity pattern in a child and adolescent guidance clinic. Journal of Psychiatrist’s Association of Nepal, 1(1), 20–23.Google Scholar
  11. United Nations. (2010). Nepal millennium development goals report 2010. Kathmandu: United Nations and Government of Nepal.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Child HealthTribhuvan University Teaching HospitalMaharajgunj, KathmanduNepal
  2. 2.Department of Psychology, Padma Kanya CampusTribhuvan UniversityKathmanduNepal
  3. 3.Autism Care NepalKathmanduNepal

Personalised recommendations