The efficacy of sensory integration approach in treating constructional apraxia of children with autism over four years old: A pilot study

Document Type : Original Articles


1 (M.Sc), Occupational Therapist, Academic Member of Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran

2 B.A), Occupational Therapist, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran



Introduction: Apraxia is a prevalent disorder in autistic children and has high correlation with behavioral and communicational – social problems in these children. Among all kinds of apraxia, constructional type is a common type. Although one of the conventional treatments for autism children is sensory integration approach (SI), however, due to the controversy about the efficacy of this approach the present study was designed to examine the efficacy of this approach in treating the constructional apraxia of autism children. Material and methods: This is a quasi-experimental study and was done in one of the autism schools in Shiraz in the summer of 1391. Convenience sampling performed among children whose parents were willing to cooperate in the study. Of the 21 eligible children, 11 participants were randomly assigned into control group and 10 in the intervention group. The intervention group treated with SI approach for twenty sessions and the control group didn’t receive any intervention. A researcher-made of Block test was used to test childhood constructional apraxia. ANCOVA statistical test used to evaluate the results. Results: Statistical results showed no significant differences between two groups with regard to improving the constructional apraxia (F= 0.2005, P=0.175). Discussion: Since applying the SI approach is common among the Occupational Therapists, however, according to the results of this study, when the goal of therapy is treating the constructional apraxia of autism children it is recommended to make use of other frame of references simultaneously with the SI in order to raise the chance of therapy.    Keywords: autism, sensory integration, constructional apraxia