Year:2024   Volume: 6   Issue: 2   Area:

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Associate Professor Dhiba S GRIFA

FAMILY HISTORY OF PSYCHOLOGICAL DISORDERS MODERATES THE ASSOCIATION BETWEEN PRENATAL MATERNAL STRESS AND RISK OF AUTISM

The increase in number of cases with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) requires further investigation to the etiology of it, which is not fully understood. It is suggested that children who are vulnerable to psychological disorders more likely to develop ASD when experience prenatally stress than children who do not. The researcher sought to conduct a natural experiment by collecting data from a sample derived from population lived in a region that experienced number of the worst civil wars in Libya. The sample consisted of 38 parents of children with ASD and 40 parents of typical children living in south Tripoli. These children were in utero during the civil wars that happened in 2011, 2014, and 2019. A case-control study was carried out comparing the two groups in terms of family history of psychological disorders. The child’s sex, parents’ age, and birth complications were controlled. Conditional logistic regression models were utilized to examine whether family history of psychological disorders predicted ASD. Findings from this study indicated that: children with ASD were more likely to have relatives with psychological disorders than those without ASD; the proportion of relatives with psychological disorders was significantly higher among children with ASD than those without ASD; there was significant associations between ASD and parents’, grandparents’, uncles’, aunts’ psychological disorders, having a first-degree relative suffers from a psychological disorder was associated with increase in odds of ASD. ,having second-degree relatives with a psychological disorder was significantly associated with increase odds of ASD, psychological disorders in first degree relatives and second degree relatives had comparable effect on the risk of ASD, when first degree relatives and second degree relatives affected the risk of ASD did not increase compared to the presence of a psychological disorder in either relatives

Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorder, Libya, Etiology, Risk factor, Natural Experiment.

http://dx.doi.org/10.47832/2757-5403.25.4


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