Topics in Clinical Chiropractic 2001 Dec; 8(4): 42-57
ABSTRACT: Purpose: This article provides a general overview of the prevalence, diagnostic criteria, probable causes, and current treatments of autism. The authors have focused on issues of particular relevance to chiropractic clinicians: The behavioral features of autism, the possible link of vaccines as causative agents, and the potential benefits of chiropractic adjustments as a treatment modality.
Methods: A general review of the literature, with interpretation and synthesis by the authors. The authors also draw upon their own personal experience involving their youngest son.
Summary: There has been an exponential rise in the incidence of autism over the past decade, and it seems more and more likely that a field practitioner will be consulted by the concerned parents of these children. It therefore behooves practitioners to be aware of those treatment options best supported by clinical evidence. The role of the chiropractor can include acting as a gatekeeper to refer the patient for appropriate medical and specialist management, to provide parents with accurate information to help them make more rational decisions for care planning, and to co-manage the patient with a clinical trial of chiropractic care.