Background: Autism as part of the category called Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), is caused by disorders in brain and nervous network and characterized by defect in social behavior, language and cognition. This study aimed to investigate receptive and expressive language performance and the severity of the disorder in 30 children with autism aged 2-8 years who speak in Persian language.
Materials and Methods
In this cross-sectional study 30 children with autism were selected using random sampling method. The study tools included "The Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS)", and "Newsha Developmental Scale (NDS)" for assessing the receptive - expressive language skills. In order to assess the level of language impairment in subjects, the participants were divided into 5 groups with 6 people (considering the speaking ability including sign language and speech), with equal number of boys and girls (3 girls and 3 boys) in each group. All of these children were evaluated by pediatric psychiatry, pediatric neurologist and pediatrician and were assessed according to the criteria for autism based on the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V). Eventually, the data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics in SPSS version 16.0 software.
The results showed that there was a significant difference between the mean (standard deviation) and scores of receptive – expressive language skills in autistic subjects in each of the groups (P<0.05). In other words, there is a substantial difference in the mean scores of subscales of Newsha developmental scale with the scores of the subjects. Results also revealed that the processes of language development in subjects improved gradually during the treatment period.
Altogether, it can be said that the HMTM treatment method (Hojjati Model) which is derived from Iranian traditional medicine and holistic philosophy, can be effective in the treatment of language disorder in children with autism.