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Difficulties in diagnosing ASD in girls and maintaining that diagnosis in adulthood services of Spanish mental health: A case study

Carol Amat Forcadell

Published Date: 2021-10-12
Carol Amat Forcadell

Consorci Sanitari del Maresme, Spain

Visit for more related articles at Journal of Childhood & Developmental Disorders


ASD has a huge variability, so may be difficult make a good diagnosis, more over in female cases because it has been demonstrated that traits of ASD in girls are less obvious than those in males because of their camouflage and compensation strategies. This is an example of the peripli of a family to get a diagnosis of ASD since first worries and what happens when the child becomes an adult. First contact with public mental health services was at 9 years old for ADHD symptoms. The conclusion at that moment was SLD. At 13 years old a private therapist diagnosed ADHD and she began medical treatment. Next contact with public mental health services was at 16 years old for anorexic symptoms. Initially, the diagnosis was Anorexia Nervosa and Depressive Disorder but, during the treatment, therapists observed certain difficulties in relationships similar to ASD symptoms (first motivation for changing her looks was making friends, executive function difficulties, resistance to change, literal understanding of language, misunderstanding of social situations, some strange rituals..). Therefore, deeper investigations were commenced including a history of social and communication development, repetitive behaviours, ASD screening, ADOS-2 and ToM evaluation. Finally, ASD and Depressive Disorder combined with ADHD was diagnosed at 17 years old. When she started in adult services, the diagnosis was changed for Adaptative disorder..



Carol Amat Forcadell studied psychology at the Ramon Llull University (1998 – 2003). She completed a Master in Child psychopathology in Autonoma University of Barcelona. She spent 14 years working at the Associació Asperger Catalunya diagnosing children and adults, making psychological interventions with children and adults with ASD (individual and social skills groups). She currently works in a Child Mental Health service in Mataró diagnosing ASD, visiting children with ASD and their families and making social skills groups.

Speaker Publications:


2. Current practice of French health professionals regarding Japanese encephalitis vaccination. DOI:10.1016/j.medmal.2019.03.011Corpus ID: 155091309.

3. P005: An opportunity to reduce morbidity in delayed postpartum hemorrhage: Multicentre analysis of tranexamic utilization in the emergency department, DOI:10.1017/CEM.2019.196Corpus ID: 155158783

2nd European Autism Congress; February 28-29, 2020- Budapest, Hungary.

Abstract Citation:

Carol Amat Forcadell, Difficulties in diagnosing ASD in girls and maintaining that diagnosis in adulthood services of Spanish mental health: A Case Study, Autism 2020, 2nd European Autism Congress; February 28-29, 2020-Budapest,Hungary ( 0/difficulties-in-diagnosing-asd-in-girls-and-maintainingthat- diagnosis-in-adulthood-services-of-spanish-mentalhealth- a-case-study)

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