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Research Article  |   March 2007
Lessons Learned: A Pilot Study on Occupational Therapy Effectiveness for Children With Sensory Modulation Disorder
Author Affiliations
  • Lucy Jane Miller, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, is Associate Clinical Professor, Departments of Rehabilitation Medicine and Pediatrics, University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center; Director, Sensory Therapies and Research (STAR) Center; and Director, KID Foundation, 5655 South Yosemite Street, Suite 305, Greenwood Village, CO 80111; miller@KIDfoundation.org
  • Sarah A. Schoen, PhD, OTR, is Clinical Instructor, University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center; Director of Occupational Therapy, STAR Center; and Senior Researcher, KID Foundation, Greenwood Village, CO
  • Katherine James, MSPH, MSCE, is Doctoral Candidate, Health Sciences Center, Department of Epidemiology, University of Colorado at Denver
  • Roseann C. Schaaf, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, is Associate Professor, Vice Chair, and Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Occupational Therapy, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia
Article Information
Complementary/Alternative Approaches / Sensory Integration and Processing / Conceptualizing and Identifying Sensory Processing Issues
Research Article   |   March 2007
Lessons Learned: A Pilot Study on Occupational Therapy Effectiveness for Children With Sensory Modulation Disorder
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, March/April 2007, Vol. 61, 161-169. doi:10.5014/ajot.61.2.161
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, March/April 2007, Vol. 61, 161-169. doi:10.5014/ajot.61.2.161
Abstract

OBJECTIVE. The purpose of this pilot study was to prepare for a randomized controlled study of the effectiveness of occupational therapy using a sensory integration approach (OT-SI) with children who have sensory processing disorders (SPD).

METHOD. A one-group pretest, posttest design with 30 children was completed with a subset of children with SPD, those with sensory modulation disorder.

RESULTS. Lessons learned relate to (a) identifying a homogeneous sample with quantifiable inclusion criteria, (b) developing an intervention manual for study replication and a fidelity to treatment measure, (c) determining which outcomes are sensitive to change and relate to parents’ priorities, and (d) clarifying rigorous methodologies (e.g., blinded examiners, randomization, power).

CONCLUSION. A comprehensive program of research is needed, including multiple pilot studies to develop enough knowledge that high-quality effectiveness research in occupational therapy can be completed. Previous effectiveness studies in OT-SI have been single projects not based on a unified long-term program of research.