Annual trends in prevalence and incidence of autism spectrum disorders in Manitoba preschoolers and toddlers: 2004-2015.
Can J Public Health. 2019 Feb 11. Epub 2019 Feb 11. PMID: 30747348
Amani F Hamad
OBJECTIVES: Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are among the leading causes of disabilities in children. We examined the annual prevalence and incidence rate of ASD between 2004 and 2015 in children aged 1 to 5 years residing in Manitoba.
METHODS: A population-based study was conducted using the Manitoba Population Research Data Repository. The study included children aged 1 to 5 years residing in Manitoba between 2004 and 2015. Standard identification algorithm was used to identify ASD cases from hospital abstracts and medical claims. Annual prevalence and incidence rates were calculated for the overall population and then stratified according to sex, region, and socio-economic status (SES). Multivariable negative binomial regression models, adjusted for sex, region, and SES, were used to examine changes in prevalence and incidence over study years.
RESULTS: Among children aged 1 to 5 years, 1685 ASD cases were diagnosed between 2004 and 2015. The crude ASD prevalence increased from 0.46% in 2004 to 0.97% in 2015 (p = 0.002). The crude incidence rate increased from 0.16% in 2004 to 0.39% in 2015 (p = 0.002). The increase in ASD prevalence and incidence was observed in all subgroups based on sex, region, and SES. The adjusted negative binomial model showed an annual relative risk increase, since 2004, for both prevalence and incidence of 1.69 (95% CI 1.56-1.83) and 1.84 (95% CI 1.62-2.09), respectively.
CONCLUSION: During the period from 2004 to 2015, both prevalence and incidence rates of diagnosed ASD in preschoolers and toddlers residing in Manitoba increased significantly.