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I was interested in the hypothetical or otherwise case of the Maths
Student with psychiatric symptoms. An alternative construct of how this
person presents may be to look at the issue from a developmental
perspective. These types of symptoms are also frequently reported in
individuals with Asperger syndrome, who like the student described in the
article, use their narrow area of interest as a coping mechanism at times
Similarly, people with Asperger Syndrome report differences in
sensory integration across all sensory domains, which may provide an
alternative reason as to why this student had particular difficulties with
To rule out an Autism Spectrum Disorder and provide confirmation of
OCD, it may been helpful to have carried out a developmental history.
No competing interests
09 July 2009
head of dept; psychology and speech and language therapy