Background: Delayed diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) remains a persistent pediatric health problem, due to limited access to competent diagnosticians and tertiary health care. A telemedicine method using a store-and-forward approach presents an opportunity to facilitate early identification and referral for intervention. This study aimed to evaluate the validity of protocol-guided video recording compared with direct assessment (DA) for diagnosing ASD. Materials and Methods: Children aged 18-30 months with chief complaints of delayed speech or social indifference, and Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers, Revised (M-CHAT-R) score of more than two were included. Parents were instructed to video record certain scenarios, which were assessed by an experienced professional based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) checklist for ASD. DAs using DSM-5 criteria were considered to be the gold standard of diagnosis. Diagnostic agreement, sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, and likelihood ratios were calculated to measure diagnostic validity. Results: The diagnostic agreement between the two methods was 82.5%. The sensitivity of video recording for diagnosing ASD was 91.3% (95% confidence interval [CI] [79.7%-100%]), while the specificity was 70.6% (95% CI [48.9%-92.2%]). The positive predictive value was 80.7% (95% CI [65.6%-95.9%]), while the negative predictive value was 85.7% (95% CI [67.4%-100%]). The positive likelihood ratio was 3.1 (95% CI [1.47-6.5]), while the negative likelihood ratio was 0.16 (95% CI [0.03-0.47]). Conclusions: A telemedicine approach using protocol-guided video recording evaluation has substantial validity compared with DA for diagnosing ASD.
- autism spectrum disorder
- video recording