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Intensive Intervention for Toddlers With Autism (EARLY STEPS)

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
 
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00698997
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : June 17, 2008
Results First Posted : February 17, 2020
Last Update Posted : February 17, 2020
Sponsor:
Collaborators:
University of Washington
University of Michigan
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
University of California, Los Angeles
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
University of California, Davis

Brief Summary:
Goals of the current project: (1) Does the Early Start Denver Model experimental intervention for toddlers with autism reduce disability associated with autism significantly more than standard community interventions?; and (2) What environmental, child, and biological characteristics mediate and moderate intervention response and outcomes at age 4?

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Autism Autism Spectrum Disorder Behavioral: Early Start Denver Model Behavioral: Standard community care Not Applicable

Detailed Description:

Thanks to the development of better diagnostic tools and a greater level of professional education, autism is being identified in two year olds and in even younger children, with such early diagnosis justified by the rationale that the earlier intervention begins, the better the outcomes may be. However, there are no published outcome data on intervention models or effectiveness for children who begin intervention by or before 24 months. Furthermore, some teaching procedures considered appropriate for older children, (e.g., 40 hours per week of adult-directed intervention, much repetitive practice while sitting at a table (Lovaas, 2002), 1987) are considered developmentally inappropriate for toddlers (Sandall, McLean, & Smith, 2000).

Dawson and Rogers have implemented a feasibility study of a intervention designed for toddlers with autism using a randomized controlled design. The approach involves a relationship-based frame to accomplish developmentally based objectives using naturalistic application of applied behavior analytic principles. The approach fuses the Denver Model (Rogers, Hall, Osaki, Reaven, & Herbison, 2000) and Pivotal Response Training (Koegel, Koegel, & Carter, 1999), and is delivered 1:1 for 25 or more hours per week to 24 toddlers with autism for a two year period. The contrast group receives standard community based intervention. Preliminary results demonstrate large and significant group effects after only 12 months and considerable variability of intervention outcomes in both groups.

All families will be referred to the appropriate community service programs, if they have not been referred previously.

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 118 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Single (Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Intensive Intervention for Toddlers With Autism
Actual Study Start Date : April 2008
Actual Primary Completion Date : July 2013
Actual Study Completion Date : December 2013

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine


Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: 1 Early Start Denver Model

Phase 1 of ESDM intervention: 12 weekly, 1 to 1.5 hr. sessions focused on teaching & coaching parents to use the ESDM in all natural caretaking routines & play periods with their child. Parents are taught & coached on 1 aspect of the ESDM each week in the clinic session, & then practice it at home daily in natural family routines & play.

Phase 2: each child in the ESDM will receive 25 hrs. a week of ESDM intervention in their homes, 50 wks. a year, for 2 years. 20 hrs. weekly will be delivered by trained interventionists (ITs); 5 hrs. weekly will be delivered by parents. (ITs) will provide ten 2 hour teaching episodes involving play activities per week in the home. Parents will continue to deliver the ESDM in natural family routines & play activities. In addition, each child will receive additional services through public services, or other therapies that the parents may choose, for several more hrs. per week.

Behavioral: Early Start Denver Model

Phase 1 of ESDM intervention: 12 weekly, 1 to 1.5 hr. sessions focused on teaching & coaching parents to use the ESDM in all natural caretaking routines & play periods with their child. Parents are taught & coached on 1 aspect of the ESDM each week in the clinic session, & then practice it at home daily in natural family routines & play.

Phase 2: each child in the ESDM will receive 25 hrs. a week of ESDM intervention in their homes, 50 wks. a year, for 2 years. 20 hrs. weekly will be delivered by trained interventionists (ITs); 5 hrs. weekly will be delivered by parents. (ITs) will provide ten 2 hour teaching episodes involving play activities per week in the home. Parents will continue to deliver the ESDM in natural family routines & play activities. In addition, each child will receive additional services through public services, or other therapies that the parents may choose, for several more hrs. per week.

Other Names:
  • intensive intervention for infants and toddlers with autism and ASD
  • autism treatment
  • PDD NOS
  • University of California, Davis
  • Sally Rogers
  • University of Washington and early autism intervention
  • University of Michigan and early intervention

2 Standard Care available in the Community
Any intervention that were available and that families accessed in their communities
Behavioral: Standard community care
Treatment and interventions, chosen by families, meeting current standards of community intervention for toddlers with autism and ASD
Other Names:
  • Current, standard community based intervention for toddlers with autism
  • intensive intervention for infants and toddlers with autism and ASD
  • autism treatment
  • PDD NOS
  • University of California, Davis
  • Sally Rogers
  • University of Washington and early autism intervention
  • University of Michigan and early intervention




Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Language Age Equivalent [ Time Frame: 24 months ]
    Composite language measure consisting of an average of the Expressive Language and the Receptive Language age equivalent scores from the Mullen Scales of Early Learning.The Mullen Scales of Early Learning (MSEL) is a developmental test with five subscales: gross motor, visual reception, fine motor, receptive language, and expressive language. The lower the score on this scale, the more immature the ability; the higher the score, the more mature the ability. Measurements were taken at baseline, 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months and a hierarchical longitudinal growth curve approach used to calculate overall rate of growth during the 24 month period.


Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Overall Developmental Quotient (DQ) [ Time Frame: 24 months ]
    Overall DQ was calculated by averaging the Time 1 (baseline) age equivalence scores of the two language and two nonverbal subtests from the Mullen Scales of Early Learning (MSEL), dividing by child age in months, and multiplying by 100 to create a quotient score, in order to capture the full range of variability of the sample, since many children fell below the basal standard score. The Mullen Scales of Early Learning (MSEL) is a developmental test with five subscales: gross motor, visual reception, fine motor, receptive language, and expressive language. Gross motor score was not used for the calculations. The lower the score on this scale, the more immature the ability; the higher the score, the more mature the ability. Measurements were taken at baseline, 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months and a hierarchical longitudinal growth curve approach used to calculate overall rate of growth during the 24 month period.

  2. Adaptive Behavior Age Equivalent Scores [ Time Frame: 24 months ]
    Adaptive behavior age equivalent was characterized by averaging the means of the age equivalents in months of the four domain scores from the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales - Second edition (VABS) because the manual does not provide developmental ages corresponding to total scores that could be used to construct quotient scores. Data were provided by parents who were not naïve to group assignment. The Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales 2 provide a standardized measure of adaptive behavior in four domains: motor, language, social, and activities of daily living. Information is gathered from parents via parent questionnaire. The lower the score on each domain score and the overall score, the more immature the ability; the higher the score, the more mature the ability. Measurements were taken at baseline, 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months and a hierarchical longitudinal growth curve approach used to calculate overall rate of growth during the 24 month period.

  3. Autism Severity [ Time Frame: 24 months ]
    Autism severity was calculated using the Calibrated Severity Scores, derived by using tables in publications by Gotham, Pickles, & Lord( 2012) (Esler, Bal, Guthrie, Weismer, and Lord, 2015). We identified the severity score listed in the CSS table that was associated with a subject's ADOS-2 total score for the ADOS module that was administered to each subject at each of four time points - at entry into the project, and 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months after enrollment. The ADOS Calibrated Severity Score scale range is 1-10, with lower scores representing milder and less numerous symptoms and higher scores representing more severe and more numerous systems. Scores 1-3 represent few to no ASD symptoms, scores of 4-5 represent mild to moderate symptoms and concerns related to ASD, and scores of 6-10 represent moderate to severe symptom severity.



Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   12 Months to 24 Months   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
Criteria
Inclusion criteria: (1) 12-24 months of age at the time of telephone screening and living within 60 minutes of the university clinic; (2) ambulatory; (3) unimpaired hand use; (4) parent agreement to have a caregiver present during all home sessions; (5) attendance at all intake sessions; (6) permission to videotape evaluations and ESDM treatment; (7) English as one primary language of the parent; (8) unimpaired hearing and vision; (9) developmental quotient of 35 or higher on the Mullen Scales of Early Learning (MSEL); and (10) meets all of these ASD diagnostic criteria: (a) Autism Diagnostic Observation Scale for Toddlers (ADOS-T) cutoff score of 12 if child produces no words or 10 if child produces some words; (b) agreement by two experienced psychologists that ASD is present; and that child meets DSM-IV criteria for Autistic Disorder or Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDDNOS). 5,7,8 Exclusion criteria: (1) serious parental substance abuse; (2) parental self-report of bipolar disorder or psychosis; (3) known genetic syndromes; (4) serious medical conditions (e.g., encephalitis, concussion, seizure disorder); (5) significant sensory impairment; (6) birth weight <1600 grams and/or gestational age < 34 weeks; (7) history of intraventricular hemorrhage; (8) known exposure to neurotoxins (including alcohol, drugs); (9) non-English-speaking parents; and for the ESDM-assigned group only, (10) current enrollment in an intensive, 1:1 delivered behavioral intervention of more than 10 hours per week. There was no other restrictions on additional community-based treatment.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT00698997


Locations
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United States, California
UC Davis Mind Institute
Sacramento, California, United States, 95817
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of California, Davis
University of Washington
University of Michigan
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
University of California, Los Angeles
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Investigators
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Principal Investigator: Sally J Rogers, Ph.D. UC Davis MIND Institute
  Study Documents (Full-Text)

Documents provided by University of California, Davis:
Study Protocol  [PDF] January 18, 2019

Publications automatically indexed to this study by ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier (NCT Number):
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Responsible Party: University of California, Davis
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00698997    
Other Study ID Numbers: 200816233
1R01MH081757 ( U.S. NIH Grant/Contract )
First Posted: June 17, 2008    Key Record Dates
Results First Posted: February 17, 2020
Last Update Posted: February 17, 2020
Last Verified: February 2020
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: Yes
Plan Description: Individual participant data from primary analyses are available on NDA.
Supporting Materials: Study Protocol
Statistical Analysis Plan (SAP)
Informed Consent Form (ICF)
Time Frame: September 2019 - September 2021
Access Criteria: access data via NDA: https://nda.nih.gov request other materials from PI srogers@ucdavis.edu
Keywords provided by University of California, Davis:
autism
autism spectrum disorder
intensive intervention for toddlers with autism
PDD NOS
early steps study
early start denver model
early intervention for infants and toddlers with autism
toddler treatment
Sally Rogers
University of California, Davis
University of Michigan
MIND Institute
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Autistic Disorder
Autism Spectrum Disorder
Child Development Disorders, Pervasive
Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Mental Disorders