Home > Science > Join Our Webchat with Dr. Coury: Should My Child Take Medicine for Challenging Behavior? What Can Help My Child Stay Calm during Routine Blood Work?

Join Our Webchat with Dr. Coury: Should My Child Take Medicine for Challenging Behavior? What Can Help My Child Stay Calm during Routine Blood Work?

Please join us Wednesday, Sept. 14 at 1 pm Eastern/10 am Pacific, for a live webchat with Dan Coury, MD, medical director of Autism Speaks’ Autism Treatment Network (ATN) and chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in Columbus, Ohio. Dr. Coury will be answering questions related to the release of the ATN’s first two toolkits for parents and healthcare providers:

* “Should My Child Take Medicine for Challenging Behavior?” is a family decision aid that can help you work with your child’s healthcare provider to choose a treatment that matches your needs and values.

* “Taking the Work Out of Blood Work” is an aide for parents and healthcare providers who want to ease the process of routine blood work for children with autism.

You can download both of these toolkits here; and send us webchat questions in advance at sciencechat@autismspeaks.org. Thanks and chat with you soon… 

  1. l
    September 12, 2011 at 9:41 am

    My son, 12 yrs, on abilify. It helps a little but still the dose is probably not high enough. I’m nervous abt increasing it. We have tried him on and off various meds and NOT being on something is not an option. Behaviors not just challenging..can be dangerous.

  2. Katie Wright
    September 12, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    A good nurse who takes a lot of blood is priceless. Visiting nurse associations and hospitals are a good source for referrals. It is Ok to ask for someone special in a hospital. They will thank you later on.

  3. stephanie
    September 12, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    I agree. It is scary especially when your child is nonverbal. My son is 20 yr. old. He has been on risperidol for years at the end of Jan. this year he became manic due to the risperidol re-order milligrams were off. He was taking 3mg TID and the refill order was of 1mg and instead of recieving 9mg a day he was getting only 3mg a day so he went into a manic agressive mode. His doctor order intuniv. He worked his way up to 4mg QD which is the maximum dose… 2 weeks ago I put him to bed as usual and heard him having a weird cough 30 min. later. He happened to be unconscious, gurgling and appeared he had had a seizure at which this lasted over 20 minutes until the paramedics arrived. He got admitted to childrens with a b/p 90″s over 40’s with pulse mid 40’s the neurologist asked me if this was his baseline and I said “No I don’t think so” I usually don’t take his vital signs when he goes to bed! Also he is not an athelete like Lance Armstrong. Yet they stated it was probably his baseline “resting” vital signs. After lots of convincing, his Pediatrician finally weaned him off of the intuniv, due to all the research I did stating it causes syncope, hypotension, bradycardia, rare unconsciousness and rare seizures! Yet during the weaning period a week later he had a grand mal seizure while again trying to fall asleep. I believe his B/P became so low and his pulse too, it caused him to become hypoxic to his brain which then caused a seizure.
    Nothing in the packet of Intuniv spoke of this bradycardia or hypotension, so then again, if you have a child with autism and cannot relate how they feel to the parents how are you to be alerted the medication is causing harm. My son is mute, he could not tell me he felt dizzy or bad. Also his pediatrician did not have him come to the office to have his vitals monitored to see if they were going lower or higher, due to his behavior problem.

    • Cynthia
      September 13, 2011 at 8:41 pm

      Thanks for sharing this. I know have questions to ask at and upcoming appointment for my 19 year old who is non-verbal. He has some behaviors that could potentially become violent so I am considering meds. Also, I would like to be able to take him out to different places and not be so overly concerned about his behavior that we can enjoy the outing.

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