Autistic Spectrum Disorders in a transgender population attending transgender health services: A comparative study between a large group of transgender and cisgender people

Anna Nobili

Institute of Mental Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom

I am Anna Nobili, a PhD student in Applied Psychology at the University of Nottingham.I come from Italy but I have been living outside of my native land for the past 10 years. At first I was an exchange student in Norway, which gave me the opportunity to learn English and to open new doors towards an exciting future abroad. Then I moved to London to study a BSc in Psychology and there my passion for research in psychology started. Therefore, I continued and I gained an MSc in Health Psychology at the Leiden University (the Netherlands). There I met great professors and researchers and I decided that one day I will be one of them! So I am undertaking a PhD and I am currently researching interpersonal issues of Transgender people. I aim at developing an online self-help programme to help Transgender youth with interpersonal problems, while transitioning.

Background

Studies and clinical reports suggest that there might be an over-representation of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and ASD traits among the Transgender population attending Transgender Health Services. These studies are... [ view full abstract ]

Aim(s)

The aims of the study were to 1) investigate rates of ASD clinical caseness (described as features suggesting ASD diagnosis), as measured by the AQ-28, in the Transgender population and to compare these to a matched (by... [ view full abstract ]

Methods

In this case-control study participants in the Transgender group were selected from the database of a National Transgender Heath Service in the UK (total n=1020). Participants were selected for inclusion if they consented to... [ view full abstract ]

Main Outcome Measures

Socio-demographic variables such as assigned gender at birth, employment status, and age were collected. The Autism Spectrum Quotient (AQ-28) (Hoekstra et al., 2011) was used. This is a 28 items questionnaire assessing traits... [ view full abstract ]

Results

People in the Transgender group were more likely to score above the cut-off for possibly clinically significant ASD traits (17.1%) compared to Cisgender people (14.2%) (OR=1.31; CI=1.04-1.66). Cisgender participants scored... [ view full abstract ]

Conclusion

A Transgender population attending Transgender Health Services was more likely than matched Cisgender controls to have levels of ASD traits in the clinically significant range suggesting possible ASD. Although Cisgender people... [ view full abstract ]

Authors

  1. Anna Nobili (Institute of Mental Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom)
  2. Cris Glazebrook (Institute of Mental Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom)
  3. Simon Baron-Cohen (Autism Research Centre, Psychiatry Department, Cambridge University, Cambridge, United Kingdom)
  4. Walter Pierre Bouman (Nottingham National Centre for Transgender Health, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Nottingham, United Kingdom)
  5. Paula Smith (Autism Research Centre, Psychiatry Department, Cambridge University, Cambridge, United Kingdom)
  6. Derek Glidden (Nottingham National Centre for Transgender Health, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Nottingham, United Kingdom / Nottingham City Asperger’s Service, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Nottingham, United Kingdom)
  7. Jon Arcelus (Nottingham Center for Gender Dysphoria)

Topic Area

Oral & Poster Topics: Mental health

Session

OS-2A » Mental Health II: Autistic Spectrum Symptomatology and Non-binary Genders (11:00 - Friday, 7th April, Baltic)

Presentation Files

Presentation_EPATH.ppt