Brief report: autistic-like traits in childhood predict later age at menarche in girls

J Autism Dev Disord. 2011 Aug;41(8):1125-30. doi: 10.1007/s10803-010-1129-1.


We investigated the relationship between autistic-like traits in early childhood and age at menarche in typically developing girls. Autistic-like symptoms were measured at age 2 years using the Child Behaviour Checklist, and age at menarche (AAM) was determined prospectively using self-report questionnaires at age 8, 10, 14 and 17 years. Girls with 'high' autistic-like symptoms at age 2 years demonstrated significantly later AAM (n = 70; M = 13.07 years; SD = 1 year) than girls reported to show 'typical' (n = 216; M = 12.72 years; SD = 1.1) or 'low' (n = 47; M = 12.66 years; SD = 1.13 years) levels of these behaviors. These data further establish a link between the autism phenotype and later AAM and may provide insights into the etiology of the condition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Development*
  • Autistic Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Menarche*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Self Report
  • Surveys and Questionnaires