Research Article  |   May 2010
Evidence Review to Investigate the Support for Subtypes of Children With Difficulty Processing and Integrating Sensory Information
Author Affiliations
  • Patricia L. Davies, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, is Associate Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, Colorado State University, 219 Occupational Therapy, Fort Collins, CO 80523; pdavies@lamar.colostate.edu
  • Rebecca Tucker, MS, OTR/L, is Occupational Therapist, HCR Manor Care, Denver, CO
Article Information
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder / Autism/Autism Spectrum Disorder / Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / Sensory Integration and Processing / Methodology
Research Article   |   May 2010
Evidence Review to Investigate the Support for Subtypes of Children With Difficulty Processing and Integrating Sensory Information
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May/June 2010, Vol. 64, 391-402. doi:10.5014/ajot.2010.09070
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May/June 2010, Vol. 64, 391-402. doi:10.5014/ajot.2010.09070
Abstract

We investigated the evidence for subtypes in children with difficulty processing and integrating sensory information. Fifty-seven articles were incorporated into a systematic literature review; only 4 articles provided direct evidence for subtypes. These studies did not provide a comprehensive assessment of all sensory functions and sensory-based motor functions (i.e., praxis) and included different diagnostic groups. Therefore, generalized conclusions about subtypes could not be drawn. The other 53 studies reviewed provided meaningful information about strengths and challenges that children with difficulty processing and integrating sensory information demonstrate, but these studies were limited in scope. A principal theme was the importance of conducting comprehensive assessments of sensory-based functions, including multiple measures of sensory integrative functions such as praxis, sensory modulation, and sensory discrimination in children and adolescents with various clinical disorders. In addition, more consistency in the use of specific assessment tools will allow for synthesis of data across studies.