It is estimated that one out of every 1000 children in the US has
a Pervasive Developmental Disorder or PDD, a label that includes
autism and a range of other neurological conditions. A
significant number of children (and adults) do not meet the
diagnostic criteria for autism and a diagnosis of Pervasive
Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) is
reached by ruling out known, specific PDDs such as Asperger's
Syndrome, Fragile X and Rett Syndrome.
Paying specific attention to PDD-NOS and atypical PDD, this
thirteen-chapter guide covers facts about PDDs, including a broad
overview of the entire PDD spectrum, how a diagnosis is reached,
drug and non-drug treatments, insurance, school, family issues,
finances, and support systems.
Waltz, the mother of an 11-year-old diagnosed with PDD-NOS,
weaves together throughout the text her own experiences, those of
other parents of PDD children, and those of adults diagnosed with
PDDs. For the parent of a child diagnosed with PDD, this book
offers not just well researched information but practical advice
on coping, and a wealth of additional resources. Waltz doesn't
just describe various therapies; she tells us which ones are
reliable and have documented results, and which ones to avoid and
why. She gives tips for daily life - from bathing and toe
clipping, to sexuality and relationships, to employment and
school. In the final chapter, she lets adults and children with
PDDs describe their own experiences and in so doing, provides a
unique insight into their world.
While most of the information contained in the book is intended
for a US audience, Waltz has also provided information from other
countries, especially Canada, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand.
In addition to providing comprehensive information in the main
body of the text, the author also provides six comprehensive
appendices. These include an annotated list of print and
electronic resources (with advice on which are general and which
ones may be good for one thing only); addresses and contact
information for support and advocacy groups; a list of research
and testing facilities; an extensive, annotated list of
medications (mainstream and alternative) and their use, side
effects and actions; and reprints of 2 diagnostic tests used in
autistic spectrum disorders. Bibliographic references, a glossary
and index complete this text.
Waltz has produced a highly informative and clearly written
guide. She far exceeds her aim of bringing together "basic
information needed by parents of a child diagnosed with PDD,
adults with PDDs and professionals working with individuals with
PDDs." Highly recommended.