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Case Reports in Psychiatry
Volume 2014, Article ID 459524, 4 pages
Case Report

Lifetime Autism Spectrum Features in a Patient with a Psychotic Mixed Episode Who Attempted Suicide

1Section of Psychiatry, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Pisa, Via Roma 57, 56100 Pisa, Italy
2Bipolar Disorders Program, Clinical Institute of Neuroscience, Hospital Clinic, University of Barcelona, 170 Villarroel Street, 08036 Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain

Received 8 July 2014; Accepted 24 September 2014; Published 1 October 2014

Academic Editor: Samuele Cortese

Copyright © 2014 Marly Simoncini et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We present a case report of a young man who attempted suicide during a mixed episode with psychotic symptoms. The patient’s history revealed the lifetime presence of signs and features belonging to the autism spectrum realm that had been completely overlooked. We believe that this case is representative of an important and barely researched topic: what happens to children with nondiagnosed and nontreated subthreshold forms of autism when they grow old. The issue of early recognition of autism spectrum signs and symptoms is discussed, raising questions on the diagnostic boundaries between autism and childhood onset psychotic spectrums among patients who subsequently develop a full-blown psychotic disorder.