Good Essays

A little girl named Sally, quietly sits alone in a corner, rocking back and forth, humming to herself. Her classmates roam about in a chaotic manner, casually conversing, and inadvertently ignoring the little girl. Sally’s parents begin to wonder; is it just a phase or something more. Her parents soon learn that it is something more.

With little more to go on than that of what the parents have observed, Sally’s pediatrician has decided that she should be tested for autism. There is no blood to be drawn, no pulse to be taken, for there are no medical tests that can diagnose an autistic child.(2, pg 16) Through careful observation a team of neurologists, psychologists, developmental pediatricians, speech and language pathologists, and a few other specialists can knowledgeably diagnose Sally. After observing Sally in various social atmospheres and acquiring a developmental history from her parents, this team of trained professionals has diagnosed Sally as autistic.

Autism is a complex developmental disability that appears to be the result of a neurological disorder that affects the brain. Autism impacts normal developmental areas including, but not limited to, impaired social interaction, problems with verbal and nonverbal communication, and unusual or limited activity. “People with autism often have abnormal responses to sounds, touch, or other sensory stimulation. Many show reduced sensitivity to pain. They also may be extraordinarily sensitive to other sensations. These unusual sensitivities may contribute to behavioral symptoms such as resistance to being cuddled.”(4, pg. 32) Most children are identified as autistic between the ages of birth and three years. Sally being of school age is relatively older tha...

... middle of paper ... endeavor of living with autism.


(1) Horvath, K., Stefanatos, G., Sokolski, K. N., Wachtel, R., Nabors L., & Tildon, J. T. (1998). Improved social and language skills after secretin administration in patients with autistic spectrum disorders. Journal of the Association for Academic Minority Physicians, 9, 9-15.

(2) Pervasive Developmental Disorders: Finding a Diagnosis and Getting Help by Mitzi Waltz, (19990 by O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.

(3) Sandler, A. D., Sutton, K. A., DeWeese, J., Girardi, M. A., Sheppard, V., & Bodfish, J. W. (1999). Lack of benefit of a single dose of synthetic human secretin in the treatment of autism and pervasive developmental disorder. New England Journal of Medicine, 341, 1801-1806

(4) When Listening Comes Alive by Paul Madaule ,Moulin Paper Back (1998) Guide to Effective Learning and Communication
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