July 28, 2022—Scientists believe that biological indicators found in the retina can help make diagnosing ADHD and autism easier.
In a study published by Frontiers of Neuroscience as reported by California 18, researchers concluded that an eye test could help distinguish the conditions in patients.
While ADHD occurs most frequently of the two, affecting 5 percent to 8 per of children, and typically in boys, Autism affects about 1 percent of the population and is more difficult to diagnose and affects each child differently.
The difficulty in diagnosing the two comes due to overlapping symptoms.
Scientists used a specific electroretinogram (ERG) signal to distinguish ADHD and autism cases from control cases testing 55 individuals with autism, 15 with AHD and 156 others in a control group between ages 3 and 27. The scan found that autism patients had ERG levels below the control group while those people with ADHD had higher ERG levels than the control group.
“Retinal signals are generated by specific nerves and if we can identify these differences and locate the specific pathways that use different chemical signals that are also used in the brain, then we can see the distinct differences in children with ADHD or autism or potentially other neurodevelopmental conditions”, said researcher Paul Constable.