Free
Research Article  |   September 2008
Outcomes of a Pilot Training Program in a Qigong Massage Intervention for Young Children With Autism
Author Affiliations
  • Louisa M. T. Silva, MD, MPH, is Visiting Professor, Teaching Research Institute, Western Oregon University, PO Box 688, Salem, OR 97308; lmtsilvaqigong@comcast.net
  • Robert Ayres, PhD, is Research Professor, Teaching Research Institute, Western Oregon University, Monmouth, OR
  • Mark Schalock, BS, is Associate Research Professor, Teaching Research Institute, Western Oregon University, Monmouth, OR
Article Information
Autism/Autism Spectrum Disorder / Complementary/Alternative Approaches / Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / Children and Youth
Research Article   |   September 2008
Outcomes of a Pilot Training Program in a Qigong Massage Intervention for Young Children With Autism
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, September/October 2008, Vol. 62, 538-546. doi:10.5014/ajot.62.5.538
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, September/October 2008, Vol. 62, 538-546. doi:10.5014/ajot.62.5.538
Abstract

Sensory impairment is a common and significant feature of children on the autism spectrum. In 2005, a qigong massage intervention based on Chinese medicine and delivered by a doctor of Chinese medicine was shown to improve sensory impairment and adaptive behavior in a small controlled study of young children with autism. In 2006, the Qigong Sensory Training (QST) program was developed to train early intervention professionals to provide the QST intervention. This article describes the preliminary evaluation of the QST program as piloted with 15 professionals and 26 children and outcomes testing using standardized tests of sensory impairment and adaptive behavior. Results of outcomes comparing delivery by QST-trained therapists with delivery by a doctor of Chinese medicine showed that both groups improved and that there was no difference in outcome between the two groups. The intervention and training program are described, and implications for future research are discussed.