https://www.yahoo.com/health/seeing-how-the-brain-responds-to-hugs-could-lead-104168308312.html

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Thanks to new research, we may be able to see autism in the same way we see a broken ankle on an X-ray. (Photo by Getty Images)

Psychiatric disorders – including autism – are currently diagnosed based on a clinical behavioral assessment, a process that’s highly nuanced and highly subjective.

To assess for autism in toddlers include, parents are asked: “If you point at something across the room, does your child look at it,” and “does your child play pretend or make-believe?” Anyone with a young child knows that these types of general questions are very difficult to conclusively answer.

But now, Carnegie Mellow University researchers have created a potentially decisive way to diagnose autism— and other psychiatric disorders — with 97 percent accuracy: By examining how our brains respond to the thought of a hug.

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