Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) have reported an inconsistent relationship about the auditory integration training (AIT) in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) among Chinese. The current study was to investigate the efficacy of AIT for children with ASD compared with those in control group by using meta-analysis.
Relevant trials published were identified by an electronic search of PubMed, CENTRAL, EMBASE, WanFang, CNKI, and SinoMed databases up to December 31, 2017. Outcome of interest included childhood autism rating scale (CARS), autism behavior checklist (ABC), intelligence quotient (IQ), and autism treatment evaluation checklist (ATEC). Standardized mean difference (SMD) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) was calculated using a random-effect model. Thirteen RCTs with 976 children with ASD were included for analysis.
The pooled SMD showed that children with ASD had significantly lower ABC scores [summary SMD = -0.58, 95%CI = -0.79 to -0.38] and ATEC scores [summary SMD = -0.75, 95%CI = -1.05 to -0.45] in AIT group compared with that in control group. The analysis of pooled statistics put forward AIT could increase the IQ score when compared with that in control group [summary SMD = 0.59, 95%CI = 0.41-0.77].
A negative association was found about CARS scores between AIT group and control group. No publication bias was found and no single study had essential effect on the pooled results.
In conclusions, AIT can reduce the score of ABC and ATEC and can increase the IQ score among children with ASD in Chinese. Therefore, it is recommended for Chinese children with ASD to receive AIT.
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