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Impulsivity and immediate mood changes were also reported more in individuals with PDA, whereas individuals with ASD were noted to lack impulsivity and adhered to routine.Recent work in individuals with ASD and problem behavior suggests a robust correlation between non-compliance with routine requests and irritability (Chowdhury et al. Also differentiating ASD and PDA, there is some evidence to show individuals with PDA show good imagination and role-playing [although reports of observed behaviour suggest this often involves mimicking characters and stories rather than introducing novelty (O’Nions et al. PDA is informally recognised by some practitioners and some service-user groups in the UK and beyond, but has remains controversial.Whilst PDA currently falls under the umbrella diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) (DSM-5), individual services/clinicians can choose to use PDA as a descriptive diagnosis alongside a clinical diagnosis of ASD.
PDA describes a child who is primarily led by a need to avoid demands and control situations, struggles with social communication and relationships. Children’s attachment: Attachment in children and young people who are adopted from care, in care or at high risk of going into care.
However, these exact same characteristics could equally be used to describe a child with disordered attachment (NICE, 2015). Psychiatric diagnostic screening of social maladaptive behaviour in children with mild intellectual disability: differentiating disordered attachment and pervasive developmental disorder. Defining criteria for diagnosis of pathological demand avoidance syndrome (2nd revision).
Professor Elizabeth Newson (founder of the term PDA) and her colleagues suggest that PDA accurately describes a group of children who, similarly to children on the autistic spectrum, present with difficulties in social communication, relationships and use of language, as well as displaying rigidity and obsessive behaviour.
However, they highlight a few key, but important differences between PDA and ASD.
While parents and carers observe and report associated behaviours, PDA is not currently included in diagnostic manuals, and research on the topic is in its infancy.
There is debate as to whether the PDA profile represents a set of behaviours that can occur across many diagnostic profiles, a pattern of comorbidity of multiple behavioural syndromes, or is a distinct profile in itself, perhaps signifying future diagnoses (Vizard ).
The observer-rated EDA Questionnaire (EDA-Q) for children was adapted as an adult self-report (EDA-QA), and tested in relation to personality and the short-form Autism Screening Questionnaire (ASQ).
Study 1 (n = 347) found the EDA-QA reliable, univariate, and correlated with negative affect, antagonism, disinhibition, psychoticism, and ASQ scores.
In addition, demand avoidance in individuals with PDA was reportedly unselective; enjoyable activities were as likely to be rejected as stressful ones.
This suggests that demands in themselves were aversive for these individuals.