Right Cerebral Hemisphere Language and Communication Functions in Females and Males with Autism Spectrum Disorders and Normal Intelligence

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Abstract

The purpose of the study was to compare the functioning of adolescents with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and typically developing adolescents matched for age and IQ, in terms of right hemisphere language communication. Sex differences in that area were also analyzed. Seventy-nine individuals with normal intelligence with ASD, fluent in their native spoken language and aged 10-20 years (41 females), and 79 typically developing individuals (control group, 39 females) were tested. The Polish adaptation of the Right Hemisphere Language Battery (RHLB-PL) was used for participants aged 13-20 years, while children aged 10-12 years were tested using an experimental version of the RHLBPL for young children designed by E. Łojek. Individuals with ASD scored lower in the Humor Test and Discourse Analysis, and made more remarks in the Comments Test about the tasks than the control group. The two groups scored differently in two measures of verbal intellectual skills in the Wechsler Scale: Arithmetic and Comprehension. Individuals with ASD scored lower than controls on both of those measures. No sex differences were found for any of the measured variables.

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