Similarities and differences between children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder and those with obsessive compulsive disorder Executive functioning and repetitive behaviour
ABSTRACT In order to examine hypothesized underlying neurocognitive processes in repetitive behaviour, children and adolescents (7–16 years) with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) were compared on a range of executive function (EF) measures. Performance on neuropsychological tests assessing executive functioning showed a trend for children with ASD to perform poorly on tasks requiring generation of multiple responses, while children with OCD tended to demonstrate impairments on a task requiring inhibition. Parental ratings on a questionnaire measure of EF indicated impairments in both groups relative to controls. Relationships between questionnaire and performance measures of EF were generally weak. There was some limited support for a relationship between EF and repetitive behaviour, but effects tended to be small and variable across groups and measures.