Autism pioneer Dr. Valerie Scaramella-Nowinski

Autism pioneer Dr. Valerie Scaramella-Nowinski

Raised to value service above self, Dr. Valerie Scaramella-Nowinski has dramatically improved the lives of countless children on the autism spectrum. For parents of children on the autism spectrum, and those impacted by similar developmental disorders, the worst four words you can hear are “don’t expect too much.” So much of the uncertainty facing these families is owed to the broad nature of autism. It’s not a single, uniform disorder, but rather an umbrella diagnosis comprising a range of conditions affecting speech, the sensory system and social interactions. Some neurodiverse children may have a small communications delay compared to their neurotypical peers, while others may be completely nonverbal and exhibit repetitive behaviors. The severity of these symptoms often varies wildly from child to child, and the worst of the effects can be lifelong. AAG_3559 Research doesn’t point to a single cause for autism, but a combination of genetic and environmental factors. And the disorder has no genetic or biological markers for early detection, unlike prenatal screenings for Down syndrome or cystic fibrosis. Most neurodiverse children receive their diagnosis based on symptoms that manifest at 24 months old. Over the past two decades, the prevalence of autism has risen dramatically […]

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