Autism or autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is described as a lifelong condition with core behavioural symptoms appearing during infancy or early childhood. Genetic and other effects occurring during the earliest times of life are thought to play a significant contributory role to the presentation of autism, denoting that autism is typically seen as an innate or inborn condition. Such descriptions have, and continue to, define autism research and clinical practice. Inspection of the existing research literature, however, suggests that within the vast heterogeneity of autism, not everyone experiences autism in such a prescribed way. Various reports have observed the presentation of “acquired autism” following a period of typical development. Other findings have documented an abatement of clinically relevant autistic features and related comorbid pathology for some. Such reports offer important insights into the heterogeneity and complexity of autism.

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