Biological changes in auditory function following training in children with autism spectrum disorders
- Equal contributors
1 Auditory Neuroscience Lab, Department of Communication Sciences, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA www.brainvolts.northwestern.edu
2 Department of Pediatrics, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA
3 Department of Behavioral Sciences, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA
4 Department of Neurobiology and Physiology, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA
5 Department of Otolaryngology, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA
Behavioral and Brain Functions 2010, 6:60 doi:10.1186/1744-9081-6-60Published: 16 October 2010
Children with pervasive developmental disorders (PDD), such as children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), often show auditory processing deficits related to their overarching language impairment. Auditory training programs such as Fast ForWord Language may potentially alleviate these deficits through training-induced improvements in auditory processing.
To assess the impact of auditory training on auditory function in children with ASD, brainstem and cortical responses to speech sounds presented in quiet and noise were collected from five children with ASD who completed Fast ForWord training.
Relative to six control children with ASD who did not complete Fast ForWord, training-related changes were found in brainstem response timing (three children) and pitch-tracking (one child), and cortical response timing (all five children) after Fast ForWord use.
These results provide an objective indication of the benefit of training on auditory function for some children with ASD.