Publication Date

Winter 4-19-2020

Document Type

Literature Review


Background: Research, as described in the different articles chosen for comparison, indicates that individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) commonly experience difficulties in displaying good memory, proper social communication, and doing physical activities.
Purpose: To determine and compare which treatment type—physical therapy, psychotherapy, or pharmacotherapy—is commonly used and effective for treating what specific symptom of ASD (primarily in children and adolescent diagnosed subjects that are experiencing difficulties).
Methods: 10 peer-reviewed articles published between 2015 and 2020 from different Databases, including CINAHL Complete, MEDLINE (ProQuest), and, were retrieved.
Results: Thorough examination of the 10 selected studies indicate that all 4 chosen physical therapy articles mentioned procedures that helped improved motor and balance control skills, compared to only 2 of 3 pharmacotherapy studies being successful in treating irritability and 2 of the 3 psychotherapy studies recommended in treating anxiety associated with ASD.
Conclusion: Further research is needed to come to a more decisive conclusion, but the present review of the articles supports the claim that for ASD, pharmacotherapy commonly is used to treat irritability symptoms, physical therapy is commonly used to treat motor skills and balance control, and psychotherapy is commonly used to treat anxiety that results from ASD.