Bass et al., 2009

Study DescriptionInterventionInclusion/Exclusion
Criteria/Population
Baseline MeasuresOutcomes
Author:
Bass et al., 2009
Country:
US
Practice setting:
Academic
Intervention setting:
Residential center
Enrollment period:
NR
Funding:
NR
Author industry relationship disclosures:
NR
Design:
RCT
Intervention:
Therapeutic horseback riding sessions, 1 hour per week over the span of 12 weeks, consisting of:
  • Mounting/dismounting: 5 minute instruction sessions aimed at stimulating verbal communication
  • Exercises: 10 minute warm-up with stretches, side walkers practice giving verbal/modeled/physical prompts
  • Riding Skills: 15 minutes riding skill practice aimed to stimulate sensory seeking, gross fine motor domains
  • Mounted Games: 20 minute segment focusing on group and individual games to stimulate social and communication skills
  • Horsemanship: 10 minutes of taking part in grooming activities
Assessment:
SRS and Sensory Profile, pre- and post-intervention
Groups:
G1: therapeutic horseback riding
G2: waitlist group
Provider:
Staff at the Good Hope Equestrian Training Center
Measure of treatment fidelity reported:
No
Co-interventions held stable during treatment:
Yes
Concomitant therapies, n:
None:
G1: 8
G2: 3
Inclusion criteria:
  • Met criteria for DSM-IV- TR autism spectrum diagnosis
  • Parents had to consent to pre-testing, 12 weeks of therapeutic horseback riding, and one post testing session
  • No previous exposure to equine activities
Exclusion criteria:
  • See inclusion criteria
Age, years ± SD (range):
G1: 6.95 ± 1.67 (5–10)
G2: 7.73 ± 1.65 (4–10)
Mental age:
NR
Gender, n:
Male:
G1: 17
G2: 12
Female:
G1: 2
G2: 3
Race/ethnicity:
NR
SES:
Maternal education: NR
Household income: NR
Diagnostic approach:
Referral
Diagnostic tool/method:
DSM-IV-TR
Diagnostic category, n:
Mild autism:
G1: 6 (18)
G2: 5 (15)
Moderate autism:
G1: 10(29)
G2: 6(18)
Severe autism:
G1: 2 (6)
G2: 3(9)
Aspergers:
G1: 1(3)
G2: 1(3)
Social skills:
SRS score, mean ± SD:
Total:
G1: 85.9 ± 37.5
G2: 89.3 ± 35.4
Social cognition:
G1: 20.8 ± 7.3
G2: 11.5 ± 3.6
Social awareness:
G1: 12.1 ± 4.7
G2: 11.5 ± 3.6
Social motivation:
G1: 17.3 ± 7.1
G2: 18.2 ± 7.1
Motor skills:
Sensory Profile score, mean ± SD:
Fine motor/perception:
G1: 8.9 ± 3.5
G2: 8.6 ± 2.9
Sedentary:
G1: 13.5 ± 5
G2: 11.9 ± 5.1
Sensory:
Sensory Profile score, mean ± SD:
Total:
G1: 237.6 ± 55.9
G2: 240.9 ± 50.9
Sensory seeking:
G1: 58.4 ± 10.6
G2: 53.9 ± 10.9
Sensory sensitivity:
G1: 15.7 ± 3.6
G2: 16.1 ± 4.6
Educational/cognitive/academic attainment:
Sensory Profile inattention/distractibility score, mean ± SD:
G1: 21 ± 7.1
G2: 21.6 ± 4.6
Social skills:
SRS score, mean ± SD:
Total:
G1: 73.6 ± 24.1
G2: 94.4 ± 32.1
G1/BL: P < 0.017
G2/BL: P = NS
G1/G2: P < 0.05
Social cognition:
G1: 16.1 ± 5.8
G2: 18.9 ± 6.6
G1/G2: P = NS
Social awareness:
G1: 9.9 ± 2.7
G2: 11.1 ± 3.2
G1/G2: P = NS
Social motivation:
G1: 12.5 ± 5.9
G2: 16.2 ± 6.7
G1/BL: P < 0.003
G2/BL: P = NS
G1/G2: P < 0.05
Motor skills:
Sensory Profile score, mean ± SD:
Fine motor/perception:
G1: 9.4 ± 3.0
G2: 8.7 ± 3.1
G1/G2: P = NS
Sedentary:
G1: 16 ± 3.3
G2: 11.3 ± 4.8
G1/BL: P < 0.001
G2/BL: P = NS
G1/G2: P < 0.01
Sensory:
Sensory Profile score, mean ± SD:
Total:
G1: 269.4 ± 51.6
G2: 245.7 ± 50.3
G1/BL: P < 0.001
G2/BL: P = 0.101
G1/G2: P < 0.01
Occupational therapy:
G1: 6
G2: 5
Occupational/speech therapy:
G1: 2
G2: 0
Occupational/speech/physical therapy:
G1: 0
G2: 1
Occupational/physical therapy:
G1: 2
G2: 5
Speech therapy:
G1: 1
G2: 1
N at enrollment:
G1: 19
G2: 15
N at follow-up:
G1: 19
G2: 15
Other characteristics, n:
Verbal:
G1: 9
G2: 6
Non-verbal
G1: 10
G2: 9
Sensory seeking:
G1: 62 ± 9.0
G2: 53.2 ± 10.5
G1/BL: P < 0.001
G2/BL: P = NS
G1/G2: P < 0.01
Sensory sensitivity:
G1: 17.2 ± 2.6
G2: 15.7 ± 4.8
G1/BL: P < 0.001
G2/BL: P = NS
G1/G2: P < 0.001
Educational/cognitive/academic attainment:
Sensory Profile inattention/distractibility score, mean ± SD:
G1: 27 ± 4.6
G2: 21.4 ± 4.5
G1/BL: P < 0.001
G2/BL: P = NS
G1/G2: P < 0.01
Harms:
NR
Modifiers:
NR

From: Appendix C, Evidence Tables

Cover of Therapies for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders
Therapies for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Comparative Effectiveness Reviews, No. 26.
Warren Z, Veenstra-VanderWeele J, Stone W, et al.

PubMed Health. A service of the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.