Studies determine if smartphones can help in diagnosing autism

mobile phoneAthens, GA – A new assessment method that will potentially aid medical professionals in diagnosing autism through uploaded videos recorded on smartphones is currently being tested.

Researchers at Idaho-based Imaging Solutions are collaborating with Georgia Tech and an Arizona autism research center in order to determine the accuracy of the fledgling diagnostic procedure. The testing was conducted through the use of the NODA app ( Naturalistic Observational Diagnosis Assessments) where 10 minutes of video footage clips of the participants’ behavior during meal time, solitary play and when interacting with peers was submitted for evaluation.

The data garnered from assessments of the video was identical to that obtained through face-to-face testing which took place at a later date at a level of almost 90%. Clinicians subsequently used the information to ascertain whether or not the participants met the DSM criteria, a rating scale used for diagnosing autism and related disorders.

Researchers believe that the speed and efficacy of the method of diagnosis can be beneficial by helping children receive early intervention which is critical in the effective treatment of ASD.However despite the success of the research, further testing will be needed. As a result, recruitment is currently taking place with a larger and more comprehensive study scheduled to begin in early 2015.