The Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) diagnostic assessment appointment at Manor clinic is only offered for adults after receiving a referral from your doctor. The referring doctor could be your family physician or psychiatrist.
Dr Thakker prefers to do ASD assessment in person. When it is not possible to conduct the assessment in person, he would complete the assessment virtually – preferably by video-conferencing.
Dr Thakker’s office may provide screening questionnaires to you. These screening questionnaires need to be completed prior to the ASD assessment meeting.
Dr Thakker may complete the assessment over two appointments. It is helpful to have your parents to attend the appointment (or a part of it) when possible and only if you consent.
Evaluating ASD in a previously undiagnosed adult can be challenging. There are no established diagnostic tests for ASD in adults. This condition is diagnosed clinically, based on information gathered from a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation, physical examination (if needed), and the observation of specific characteristic behaviors.
The first meeting is a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation. Each evaluation is different, as each person's symptoms and behaviors are different. When making an ASD diagnosis, Dr Thakker will consider and assess you for other disorders that might overlap or mimic ASD symptoms. Evaluation may include (where relevant):
your mental health symptoms and experiences
your feelings, thoughts and actions
your physical health and wellbeing
your housing and financial circumstances
your employment and training needs
your social and family relationships
your culture and ethnic background
your gender and sexuality
your use of drugs or alcohol
issues relevant to your or others' safety
whether there's anyone who depends on you, such as a child or elderly relative
your strengths and skills, and what helps you best
your hopes and aspirations for the future
You only have to talk about what you want to talk about.
The second assessment is focused on eliciting core symptoms of ASD and observation of specific characteristic behaviours.
Each appointment could last for up to 90 minutes. There could be gap of up to three months between the two assessments.
Once the assessment is complete, Dr Thakker will conclude whether in his opinion, you have ASD or not. There are no tests (including blood test or radiological investigations) to elicit core symptoms of ASD or to confirm/rule out ASD diagnosis.
A report will then be prepared and forwarded to the referrer within approximately 3 weeks outlining the results, diagnosis, support needs, potential comorbities (or potential differential diagnosis if a diagnosis is not conformed), along with recommendations and additional resources.
You may disagree with the assessment outcome. If you do not agree with Dr Thakker’s opinion, you can request your referring doctor to refer you to another professional for second opinion.