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Table 3 Characteristics of infants and young children with PWS or autism spectrum disorders

From: Prader–Willi syndrome and autism spectrum disorders: an evolving story

  PWS Idiopathic Autism
Failure to thrive + ±
Poor suck, feeding + ±
Central hypotonia + ±
Motor delaysa + ±
Developmental regression ±
Impaired social communicationb Limited data +
Repetitive interests, behaviorsc + +
Delays in play skillsd Limited data +
  1. (+) indicates a consistently seen feature, (−) indicates that the feature is not generally present, (±) indicates that the feature is variably present or not consistently found
  2. aMotor delays are less pronounced in PWS infants receiving growth hormone therapy
  3. bSocial communication impairment includes: atypical eye gaze, orienting to name, social smiling, and social interest and affect, with reduced expression of positive emotion
  4. cRepetitive behaviors encompass atypical exploration of toys or objects, including prolonged visual examination, unusually repetitive actions
  5. dDelays in play skills include motor imitation and functional use of toys (summarized in Zwaigenbaum, 2010 for infants aged 12–18 months)