Author(s): Sung M, Fung DS, Cai Y, Ooi YP
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: Pervasive developmental disorder (PDD) is associated with emotional and behavioural problems. There is no pharmacological cure for PDD, but some comorbidities and dysfunctional behaviours in PDD can be managed pharmacologically. The aim of the present study was to provide a better understanding of the efficacy and limitations in the currently available agents. METHODS: Electronic literature searches were conducted from the following sources: MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, PSYARTICLES and PsycINFO. Search terms included, but were not limited to, 'autism', 'PDD', 'autism spectrum disorder' ('ASD'), and 'pharmacological management'. RESULTS: A range of pharmacological agents are available for the management of various dysfunctional symptoms in PDD. Broadly speaking, these agents help in the management of repetitive stereotyped behaviours, anxiety, aggression/irritability/self-injurious behaviour, hyperactivity/inattention and in sleep. CONCLUSIONS: There is a paucity of systemic, well-conducted trials on the use of pharmacological agents in the management of PDD, and more research in this area is warranted.
This article was published in Aust N Z J Psychiatry
and referenced in Journal of Molecular and Genetic Medicine