Oct. 23, 2008 -- Question: Do you recommend that every child with autism have a neurological evaluation as a baseline even before any seizure activity is suspected?
Answer: Autism can be diagnosed by a child psychiatrist, developmental or behavioral pediatrician, or a pediatric neurologist. Any of the above clinicians can perform a neurological exam. If there are indications of history or exam that any other neurological problem like seizures may be occurring, then referral to a pediatric neurologist is appropriate.
In all children with autism, it is not necessary to do an EEG, an MRI, or a CT scan. Cases in which children show regression, in which they've lost developmental milestones that they had previously attained, or if there are odd facial features that might suggest a syndrome, then it is very important to get a pediatric neurology evaluation.