Navigating Treatments / Interventions / Therapies
There are various treatments, interventions and therapies described on this website. Are all these “evidence based”? To answer that question one must look at what “evidence based” means. Over the years – in the field of medicine – this phrase has come to be associated with meaning that it is supported by valid double blind randomized controlled (DBRC) studies. These studies are published in peer reviewed journals and regarded as the gold standard for validating a treatment.
However, evidence can also come from other sources, and it regularly does. Many treatments, interventions and therapies used successfully in medicine, and other fields of science, do not yet have the DBRC studies to support their use. Some do not lend themselves to this type of study being done; instead, they have experience behind them.
In 1996, a wonderful editorial was written by the grandfathers of “evidence based medicine”, citing what evidence based medicine is, and what it is not. In this editorial, the authors recognize that the INDIVIDUAL patient must be considered in each and every case. The editorial states:
“Good doctors use both individual clinical expertise and the best available external evidence, and neither alone is enough. Without clinical expertise, practice risks becoming tyrannized by evidence, for even excellent external evidence may be inapplicable to or inappropriate for an individual patient. Without current best evidence, practice risks becoming rapidly out of date, to the detriment of patients.” Click here to read the entire editorial.
Autism Canada’s website lists many treatments, interventions and therapies that are supported by various types of “evidence”. Some are based on scientific DBRC trials, and some are not. The latter, although currently lacking studies, have been found by various experts to be valuable to some patients and so are included.
Autism Canada does not endorse treatments, interventions and therapies but lists them so people can make informed choice. This site is for information purposes only and is a starting point for readers to look into options that may fit or resonate. Remember, therapies for autism, like any condition, should be discussed with a trusted medical practitioner or certified therapist before use.
All information, data and material contained, presented or provided here is for general information purposes only and is not to be construed as reflecting the knowledge or opinions of Autism Canada, or as providing legal or medical advice. All treatment decisions should be made by the individual in consultation with a licensed health care provider.