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Dev Med Child Neurol. 2000 Dec;42(12):796-802.

Effect of secretin on children with autism: a randomized controlled trial.

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Child Development Service, Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Ottawa, Canada.


To determine the effect of intravenous porcine secretin on autistic behaviours in children aged 2 to 7 years, the effects of secretin on (1) performance on a standardized language measure, and (2) autistic behaviours, as rated by parents and child development professionals was examined. Employing a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled design, 95 participants were assigned to one of two groups and administered a single dose of either secretin or placebo. A follow-up assessment was conducted 3 weeks after the injection. No significant differences in language or autistic behaviour measures were observed at the 3-week follow-up between the groups. Also, there was no significant difference in the proportion of individuals who improved by > or = 6 points on the language measure at follow-up. This study showed no significant effects of secretin on children with autism. Our results are consistent with a systematic review of randomized controlled trials evaluating the effect of secretin in children with autism.

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