PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A local expert says he is not surprised with recent studies that seem to indicate that behavioral therapies are much more effective than medication in the treatment of autistic children.

schultz robertmd side Philadelphia Expert Agrees: Medication Of Little Use In Treating AutismDr. Robert Schultz is director of the Center for Autism Research at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

“I think the evidence is the behavioral treatments are better,” Dr. Schultz (right) told KYW Newsradio this morning.  “We don’t really have good medications to treat the core symptoms of the autism spectrum disorders but we have a lot of useful medicines for other aspects of the disorder, such as seizure disorders.”

Schultz says the behavioral therapies reward children with positive reinforcement for learning certain tasks and behaviors.

“When we  talk about treating kids with autism, we need to understand that autism at its core is a failure of skill development,” he explains.  “In the future, I believe medications which are going to be helpful are those that remove roadblocks at the level of biology to allow the child to learn. ”

There are several studies taking place at CHOP. For more information go to

Reported by Michelle Durham, KYW Newsradio 1060.

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