Parents who receive a diagnosis of autism in their child face a daunting set of questions. To provide guidance and support, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has created a series of audio interviews with developmental and behavioral pediatricians, a pediatric neurologist, autism researchers and other parents of children with autism. Listen to “Sound Advice on Autism” at http://www.aap.org/audio/autism/
“We want parents to use these audio interviews as a resource as they learn about their child’s diagnosis and plot a course of therapies and services,” said Judith Palfrey, MD, FAAP, president of the AAP. “We know parents have many questions, and pediatricians want them to have access to the scientifically based information they need to make decisions about their child’s care.”
April is Autism Awareness Month, which is an opportunity to increase understanding about autism and issues within the autism community. At the Sound Advice on Autism site, parents can listen first-hand as experts answer questions about autism spectrum disorders:
• What causes autism? How common is it?
• What are the early signs of autism?
• How can families learn about early intervention services in their area?
• What are the most effective therapies for autism?
• What guidance would you offer parents who want to explore complementary and alternative therapies?
• Can particular diets or vitamins help children with autism?
• Is autism related to gastrointestinal disorders?
• Why do some children “lose” their autism diagnosis?
“It’s very important for families to educate themselves about autism spectrum disorders and the recommended therapies so they can help develop the treatment plan for their child,” said Susan Hyman, MD, FAAP, a developmental and behavioral pediatrician and chair of the AAP Autism Subcommittee.
In Sound Advice on Autism, Dr. Hyman answers questions about complementary and alternative treatments for autism, including advice on the best way for parents to approach such treatments. Interviews also include conversations with developmental and behavioral pediatrician Susan Levy, MD, FAAP, pediatric neurologist Max Wiznitzer, MD, FAAP, and developmental and behavioral pediatrician Patricia Manning-Courtney, MD, FAAP.
The AAP offers additional resources for families at http://www.aap.org/healthtopics/autism.cfm.