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Study: GI Problems Linked to Underlying Anxiety in Youth with ASD

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May 10, 2022Internalizing symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), including withdrawn and anxious behavior, were correlated with gastrointestinal (GI) problems like stomach pain and constipation, according to a new study of 621 children and adolescents under the age of 18 recently published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

1The exploratory, cross-sectional study analyzed parent reports of internalizing symptoms and GI problems — such as constipation, diarrhea, nausea, and stomach pain — in study participants with an ASD diagnosis who were enrolled in the Autism Care Network registry at the University of Mis­souri Thompson Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders.

Most participants were male and Caucasian (81%).Less than half of the study participants (43%) had GI problems. Of those who did, 55% experienced one GI problem.

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