Epidemiological controversies in autism

Fombonne Eric

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Once considered to be rare with a prevalence of 4-5/ 10,000, autism today has a prevalence in the range of 0.9-1.5%. The increased prevalence reflects mostly a broadening of the diagnosis, and improved awareness and identification among children. The hypothesis that the rise in autism prevalence was due to increased use of childhood vaccines has been refuted in well-controlled and replicated studies. Few environmental causes are well established (advanced paternal age, prenatal exposure to valproate); most other findings require replication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberw03084
JournalSwiss Archives of Neurology, Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • Autism
  • Environment
  • Epidemiology
  • Immunisation
  • Paternal age
  • Prevalence
  • Risk factor
  • Vaccine
  • Valproate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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