Few data exist on the prevalence of autism in low-income countries. We translated, adapted and tested the acceptability of a Nepali-language version of a screening tool for autism (Autism Quotient-10). Using this tool, we estimated autism prevalence in 4098 rural Nepali children aged 9–13 years. Fourteen children scored > 6 out of 10, indicative of elevated autistic symptomatology, of which 13 also screened positive for disability. If the AQ-10 screening tool is as sensitive and specific in the Nepali population as it is in the UK, this would yield an estimated true prevalence of 3 in 1000 (95% confidence interval 2–5 in 1000). Future research is required to validate this tool through in-depth assessments of high-scoring children.
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