What’s the difference between a syndrome and a disorder?
I was thinking about Autism Spectrum *Disorders*, and the way I have been told it is, is that Asperger’s *Syndrome* is a type of ASD. So why is Asperger’s considered to be a syndrome rather than a disorder and why is autism considered a disorder (especially since if anything autistic people are generally “more ordered” than other people are). Just wondering……..:)
Ok, then why autism considered to be a disorder? Autism is mental, not physical.
A syndrome refers to a specific set of recurring symptoms, whereas a disorder is a more general term for a disturbance. You can have a disorder but not display the symptoms, whereas a syndrome *is* the symptoms.
For example, AIDS is a syndrome (hence the S) caused by HIV. You can have the virus, but if you’re not displaying any symptoms, then you don’t have AIDS.
Don’t get too worked up on the difference, though. This is especially true when it comes to autism, considering it can have benefits as well as downsides, and for a lot of people isn’t really a problem. Autism isn’t really a disease so much as it is a difference from the norm, and for some people those differences cause a problem and for others they don’t. That’s why the terminology gets so shaky.
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