Hyperlexia: A Marker for Improvement in Children With Pervasive Developmental Disorder?

LARRY BURD, WAYNE FISHER, DOUGLAS KNOWLTON, JACOB KERBESHIAN

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

In a population of 59 patients with pervasive developmental disorders, four patients manifested hyperlexia. These four patients had improved outcomes when contrasted with other patients with pervasive developmental disorders who had similar cognitive ability and levels of behavioral dysfunction. In children with hyperlexia the average IQ at first evaluation was 43 and the most recent IQs averaged 94.7. This change over time was significant (x2 = 8.0, p = 0.02). All patients with hyperlexia demonstrated this improved outcome. The authors speculate that hyperlexia may reflect an island of skills relating to generalized language function and may be a marker for children who have the potential to achieve an improved cognitive outcome. A trend for behavioral improvement was also observed. Treatment differences between groups were not identified. Possible explanations for this improved outcome are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-412
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Volume26
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1987

Keywords

  • Pervasive Developmental Disorder
  • autism
  • hyperlexia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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