Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh, founder and executive director of the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, shares the latest treatments for autism.
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Latest Autism Treatments Dr. Travis Stork: Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh is the Executive Director of the Center for Autism and Related Disorders. And you’ve been taking care of kids with autism for decades. Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh: Yeah. Dr. Travis Stork: What do you feel right now are things that do work? Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh: Well ABA works, Applied Behavior Analysis that’s supported throughout the country and it is the single intervention right now that’s being funded and of course some other types of interventions working together with ABA work. So dietary change, some of the medical interventions together, a lot of the sensory interventions, so kind of an integrative approach to treatment is probably what works the best right now. Dr. Jim Sears: You know I actually love the ABA therapy. It’s very intensive one-on-one therapy and it’s -- you know I’ve seen it being really effective. But it’s also important to look at the child’s other medical conditions because most kids with autism have a pretty wide variety of conditions that are going to affect their therapy and their treatments and just their life in general. And you guys have seen that with Alison right? Meredith Toddre: We wanted to know what is going on with her physically. Long story short, we ended up having to put her on medical food formula for a two-year period and really, really limiting her diet and then doing all sorts of allergy testing and everything else to integrate foods back in. And to get her to a place to where we knew now we’re dealing with autism whatever is left over. Dr. Jim Sears: It’s important to look at the entire child. Ralph Toddre: Yeah, whereas exactly what we saw is that you know ones we started treating her medical conditions and we always talk about early intervention and I say “Don’t forget early medical intervention also.” Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh: You have to really realize a lot of the children actually don’t sleep because they have so much pain. They don’t sleep, they're not eating properly. And you know and ABA is very intensive, it’s 20, 40 hours a week of intervention with a child. Areva Martin: Six to eight to hours a day for a child. Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh: And these are two to three-year-old children. It’s impossible to do that kind of work with them when they're actually not feeling well. So when you treat the medical issues and then you sort of modify some of the sensory inputs for the kids, they learn fast. Dr. Travis Stork: And sounds like the multidisciplinary approach. Really pursuing this is a team and I love the fact again what we talked about during break is the ability to talk with other families as well. Areva Martin: This network is important. Meredith Toddre: Everybody’s biggest complain as far as being a parent is I feel so alone. Avera Martin: Isolated. Meredith Toddre: So isolated but we’re not there was so may of us and then so if we all can you know really start to band together and work together and then you're able to really kind of take the best from every world. Dr. Doreen Granpeesheh: And that’s really, really important because a lot of providers actually tell you not to do anything other than what they're doing, which is kind of a red flag. So if you're able to have centers -- find centers there are not that many where you do have a multidisciplinary sort of integrative function of treatment, that’s really important. Because everybody’s communicating and you can kind of see the changes that you're making in the child. Holly Robinson Peete: In the package you mentioned the hyperbaric oxygen therapy and that’s been, that was one of our sons break through moments. It opened up his language like we hadn’t seen in a long time. Dr. Jim Sears: Yeah, that was one of a kind of difficult therapist at least a few years ago when it’s first started to be used because it was expensive. And some kids have worked great on and some kids it didn’t and then I had parents asked me “well shall I spend the money on it or not”. D