A Pilot Examine on Covid and Autism: Prevalence, Medical Presentation and Vaccine Aspect Results
A pilot study of Covid and autism: prevalence, clinical presentation and side effects of the vaccine
Background: Several neurobiological mechanisms have been proposed to support the hypothesis of a higher risk of COVID-19 in people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, no real data are available on this population. Methods: We compared the period prevalence (March-May 2020) and symptom presentation of COVID-19 infections between a sample of people with severe ASD (n = 36) and the staff (n = 35) of two specialized centers. Anti-SARS-Cov-2 antibody positivity was used as a proxy for infection. In addition, we looked at the side effects of vaccines in the same groups. Results: No significant difference was found between the prevalence of COVID-19 positivity between autistic participants and staff. The levels of antibodies to the spike protein and the receptor binding domain did not differ significantly between autistic and associate participants. The antibody level against the N-terminal domain was higher in autistic subjects. There was a significant difference between the prevalence of symptomatic COVID-19 in autistic participants (9.1%) compared to staff (92.3%). The most common side effect in autistic participants was mild fever.
Conclusions: The present study provides preliminary data on the transmission and presentation of COVID-19 in ASA. Our data do not support the hypothesis of a higher susceptibility and severity of COVID-19 in people with ASD.