Autistic Symptoms in Children and Adolescents with Gender Dysphoria

Anna I.R. van der Miesen*, Annelou L.C. de Vries, Thomas D. Steensma, Catharina A. Hartman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Studies have shown an increase of symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in gender dysphoria (GD). Various hypotheses try to explain this possible co-occurrence (e.g., a role of resistance to change, stereotyped behaviors or prenatal testosterone exposure). This study examined ASD symptoms with the Children’s Social Behavior Questionnaire (CSBQ) in 490 children with GD compared to 2507 typically developing (TD) and 196 children with ASD. CSBQ total scores of the GD sample were in between scores from the TD and ASD sample. The GD sample showed elevated levels of autistic symptomatology on all subdomains, not only on stereotyped and resistance to change. Further, no gender differences and interaction effects were found on the total CSBQ, making a sole role for prenatal testosterone unlikely.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1537-1548
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2018

Cite this