Pervasive developmental disorder

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A pervasive developmental disorder (PDD) is characterized by developmental delays in social and communication skills.[1]

Disorders classified as PDD

Pervasive developmental disorders is a diagnostic category which refers to a number of related disorders:


Symptoms may appear as early as infancy. Typically the age of onset is before 3 years of age.

Symptoms may include

  • problems with using and understanding language;
  • difficulty relating to people, objects, and events;
  • unusual play with toys and other objects;
  • difficulty with changes in routine or familiar surroundings, and repetitive body movements or behavior patterns.

Children with PDD vary widely in abilities, intelligence, and behaviors. Speech may be very limited or completely absent. Some children, on the other hand, have relatively normal language development. Repetitive behaviour and limited social skills are generally evident. PDD children may also demonstrate unusual responses to sensory stimulation, such as loud noises and lights.