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Acupressure and Acupuncture as an Intervention with Children with Autism II

Principal Investigator:
Lana
Warren

The purpose of this feasibility study is to see if children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) will tolerate an acupressure and acupuncture intervention twice weekly over a 3 month period of time that targets regulatory and behavioral functions. It is anticipated that: 1) children with ASD will tolerate acupressure and, when properly prepared, acupuncture; 2) parents and children will attend bi-weekly appointments over a 3 month period; 3) parents will find administered acupressure technique beneficial to their child and the parent/child relationship; 4) parents will report lower levels of stress regarding their parenting experience. In addition, we will learn information about specific child regulatory and behavior functions (including sleep and attention) from parent and teacher reports while the child receives acupressure and/or acupuncture.

A small clinical trial will be conducted with 50 eligible children (6-10 years of age) with ASD (and one parent each) who will be enrolled into two groups: Phase 1 pre-pilot group of 10 children who will complete 8 weeks of treatment to help develop a treatment protocol; Phase 2 with 40 children treated for 12 weeks. Parents and teachers will complete pre-intern and post surveys, and children who do not tolerate acupressure/acupuncture will be counted as "treatment failures" for analyses.

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