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J Autism Dev Disord. 2010 Jun;40(6):677-88. doi: 10.1007/s10803-009-0916-z.

Randomized controlled trial for early intervention for autism: a pilot study of the Autism 1-2-3 Project.

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Division of Child Neurology/Developmental Paediatrics/Neurohabilitation, Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong, China.


We piloted a 2-week "Autism-1-2-3" early intervention for children with autism and their parents immediately after diagnosis that targeted at (1) eye contact, (2) gesture and (3) vocalization/words. Seventeen children were randomized into the Intervention (n = 9) and Control (n = 8) groups. Outcome measures included the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, Ritvo-Freeman Real Life Rating Scale, Symbolic Play Test, and Parenting Stress Index. Children with autism improved in language/communication, reciprocal social interaction, and symbolic play. Parents perceived significant improvement in their children's language, social interaction, and their own stress level. This intervention can serve as short-term training on communication and social interaction for children with autism, and reduce the stress of their parents during the long waiting time for public health services.

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