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Autism and Psychiatric Drugs. Can parents of Autistic children firmly say that drugs help?

Citalopram, a medication commonly prescribed to children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), was NO more effective than a placebo at reducing repetitive behaviors, according to researchers funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and other NIH institutes. The study was published in the June 2009 issue of Archives of General Psychiatry.

OCD is effectively treated with SSRIs, leading some researchers to wonder whether similar treatment may reduce repetitive behaviors in children with ASD. So far, studies have produced mixed results, but SSRIs remain among the most frequently prescribed medications for children with ASD.


Asked by Anonymous at 2:40 PM on Sep. 9, 2009 in Kids' Health

This question is closed.
Answers (5)
  • I say don't drug your child unless it is absolutely without a doubt necessary. My child is being tested for autism (which I don't think he has and if he does it's very little) and I have made up my mind that I will firmly refuse any drugs that they try to push our way. My husband was on ritalin and other ADHD meds that are extremely bad for you because they are very similar to cocaine. He would know because he has had plenty of drug experiences back in college.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:45 PM on Sep. 9, 2009

  • Since Autism is a condition that Doctors can pinpoint where is coming from I think that medicate the children is contraindicated.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:50 PM on Sep. 9, 2009

  • I meant Doctors CAN'T* pinpoint.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:51 PM on Sep. 9, 2009

  • My son has high functioning Autism. He is not on any medication (never has been). I really can't say wether meds work or not, I imagne it is like other 'treatments' - what works for one may not work for all.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:56 PM on Sep. 9, 2009

  • You can't use medication to treat the disorder autism, but you can use medication to treat some of the symptoms of the disorder autism. Treating the symptoms of autism is no different than treating the symptoms of any other disorder - there is no one size fits all, therefore what works for one child may not work for another child. And, just because one study shows that one medication didn't work for the target group doesn't mean that all medications are without benefits.

    And SSRIs are an odd bunch of medications anyway. When one SSRI doesn't work, doctors will often prescribe a different one because, even though they're all supposed to provide the same or similar benefits, they all do it in a different way. Even the drug companies who make the SSRIs can't explain how the SSRIs do what they do or why they work so well for one person, but not for the next, even when they have the exact same diagnosis & similar symptoms.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:36 PM on Sep. 9, 2009