The incidence of AS is not well established, but experts in population studies conservatively estimate that two out of every 10,000 children have the disorder.Boys are three to four times more likely than girls to have AS.Researchers recently identified an association between certain behavioral traits (the insistence on strict routines and repetitive behavior) in a group of children with autism and a specific gene – GABRB3.Another study discovered a strong association between autism and the mutation of a gene the researchers call ENGRAILED 2.In 1944, an Austrian pediatrician named Hans Asperger observed four children in his practice who had difficulty integrating socially.
Asperger’s observations, published in German, were not widely known until 1981, when an English doctor named Lorna Wing published a series of case studies of children showing similar symptoms, which she called “Asperger’s” syndrome.
The exact cause of AS is unknown and the prevalence is not firmly established, due partly to the use of differing sets of diagnostic criteria.
Asperger syndrome was named in honor of Hans Asperger (1906-1980), an Austrian psychiatrist and pediatrician, by researcher Lorna Wing, who first used the eponym in a 1981 paper.
Assistance for core symptoms of AS consists of therapies that apply behavior management strategies and address poor communication skills, obsessive or repetitive routines, and physical clumsiness.
Many individuals with AS can adopt strategies for coping and do lead fulfilling lives – being gainfully employed, getting married or having successful relationships, and having families.