Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Behavior-focused therapies help children with autism, study shows

Date:
August 6, 2014
Source:
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Summary:
Updated findings regarding the benefits of behavior-focused therapies for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have been reported by researchers. The review updates a prior systematic review of interventions for children (up to age 12) with a focus on recent studies of behavioral interventions.

Vanderbilt researchers this week reported updated findings regarding the benefits of behavior-focused therapies for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Related Articles


The review, conducted by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)-funded Vanderbilt Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC), updates a prior systematic review of interventions for children (up to age 12) with a focus on recent studies of behavioral interventions.

Study authors said the quality of research studies has improved dramatically since AHRQ's 2011 review of studies on ASD, when authors reported that there were significant gaps in research available to document the benefits of treatments.

The updated review examined published evidence regarding the effectiveness of early intensive behavioral and developmental interventions -- interventions with a primarily behavioral approach based on applied behavioral analysis (ABA) principles and a comprehensive focus targeting multiple areas of functioning.

"We are finding more solid evidence, based on higher quality studies, that these early intensive behavioral interventions can be effective for young children on the autism spectrum, especially related to their cognitive and language skills," said lead author Amy Weitlauf, Ph.D., assistant professor of Pediatrics and a Vanderbilt Kennedy Center investigator. "But the individual response to these treatments often varies from child to child."

"We are also finding evidence that some of these targeted interventions, especially related to cognitive treatments for anxiety disorders, are also very effective for many, many children. Again, responses vary substantially and there are some children for whom these treatments have not yet been studied. So there is lots of promising evidence that these interventions are helpful, but we definitely need more research on which kids the treatments are more helpful for over time," Weitlauf said.

In previous decades ASD was often thought to be almost untreatable, said senior author Zachary Warren, Ph.D., director of the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center's Treatment and Research Institute for Autism Spectrum Disorders (TRIAD).

But researchers, clinicians and parents have increasingly documented impressive improvements in early cognitive, language and educational outcomes for some children with ASD receiving intervention.

Research results were not as strong in terms of improving broad developmental outcomes of children with ASD when interventions focused on training parents to use behaviorally based approaches with their children, but the interventions did show positive effects on parenting behaviors, on interactions between parents and children and on communications skills for some children.

"Given the potential for interventions to powerfully improve children's quality of life, in combination with the significant costs and resources often associated with treatment, it is not surprising that many groups -- parents, providers, policymakers, insurance providers -- are searching for an enhanced understanding of which interventions work the best for children with ASD," said Warren, associate professor of Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Special Education.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Vanderbilt University Medical Center. The original article was written by Craig Boerner. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Vanderbilt University Medical Center. "Behavior-focused therapies help children with autism, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 August 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140806161559.htm>.
Vanderbilt University Medical Center. (2014, August 6). Behavior-focused therapies help children with autism, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 4, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140806161559.htm
Vanderbilt University Medical Center. "Behavior-focused therapies help children with autism, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140806161559.htm (accessed March 4, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Newsy (Mar. 4, 2015) Researchers found adults only get the flu about once every five years. Scientists analyzed how a person&apos;s immunity builds up over time as well. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mount Everest Has a Poop Problem

Mount Everest Has a Poop Problem

Buzz60 (Mar. 4, 2015) With no bathrooms to use, climbers of Mount Everest have been leaving human waste on the mountain for years, and it&apos;s becoming a health issue. Mike Janela (@mikejanela) has more. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obamacare's New Supreme Court Battle

Obamacare's New Supreme Court Battle

Washington Post (Mar. 4, 2015) The Affordable Care Act is facing another challenge at the Supreme Court in King v. Burwell, which deals with subsidies for health insurance. The case could cut out a major provision of Obamacare, causing the law to unravel. Here’s what you need to know about the case. Video provided by Washington Post
Powered by NewsLook.com
Investigation Finds Hurt Workers Suffer More In Some States

Investigation Finds Hurt Workers Suffer More In Some States

Newsy (Mar. 4, 2015) ProPublica and NPR&apos;s joint investigation found drastic cuts to workers compensation benefits and employees&apos; access to those benefits. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins