Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Cerebellum Motor Coordination Rehabilitation

Autism Spectrum Disorder reduces quality of life due to decreased brain function in essential areas. These deficits commonly include poor social and emotional skills, repetitive and inflexible behaviors, limited interests, and impaired communication skills. Self-regulation in family, school, and other social environments can be significantly impaired. Struggles with learning are common. ASD can occur from both genetic and environmental factors such as exposure to toxins, poor nutrition, and emotional or psychosocial trauma during development. Some ASD patients have decreased volume of the cerebral cortex. Intelligence (IQ) is commonly reduced in ASD.

Gifford Neurology Institute’s (GNI) clinical research started in 2011 and continues currently. From 2011 to 2021 we investigated the effects of our Cerebellum Motor Coordination Rehabilitation Program™ (CMCRP) on more than 500 patients who suffered with brain dysfunctions such as poor balance and coordination, dementia, emotional disorders, learning disorders, ASD, Down Syndrome, and sensory processing disorder. We discovered that CMCRP powerfully improves brain function, including all areas affected by ASD.

The following tables include data from eight ASD patients. Explanations of the data and its importance are included after each table. Please take the time to look carefully at the data and our explanations. They show the power of CMCRP in improving cerebellum motor coordination and intelligence. We hope this encourages you to bring your ASD-afflicted loved ones and join us at GNI in our mission to bless humanity.

Table 1
Cerebellum Motor Coordination and Intelligence – Descriptive Data

Descriptive Statistics

N Minimum Maximum Mean Std. Deviation
Age 8 9 50 17.438 13.5104
ICARS #1 8 21.00 45.00 32.6250 8.63444
Full Scale IQ #1 8 54.40 120.00 91.1750 25.17741
Non-Verbal IQ #1 8 70.00 112.00 92.4787 16.65188
Verbal IQ #1 8 36.97 127.00 90.2462 33.74420

Patients ranged from 9 to 50 years of age. The International Cooperative Ataxia Rating Scale (ICARS) measured cerebellum motor coordination and Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales version 5 (SB5) assessed IQ and its components. Table 1 shows the range of scores for ICARS, Full Scale IQ (FSIQ), and the subcomponents of IQ – Non-Verbal (NVIQ) and Verbal (VIQ). Healthy cerebellum motor coordination scores range from 0 to about 12. The ICARS test adds points for each area of dyscoordination, so a lower score is better. ICARS scores for these 8 patients ranged from 21 to 45 with a Mean (statistical average) of 32.625. SB5 test scores opposite to ICARS – higher scores equal higher IQ. In this group of 8 ASD patients, FSIQ ranged from 54.40 to 120 with Mean at 91.175. NVIQ ranged from 70 to 112 with Mean at 92.4787, and VIQ from 36.97 to 127 with Mean at 90.2462.

Interpretation of IQ scores indicates functional levels as follows:

Highest IQ Range 145 – 160
Gifted or Advanced 130 – 144
Shows Superiority 120 – 129
High Average 110 – 119
Average 90 – 109
Low Average 80 – 89
Borderline Impairment 70 – 79
Mildly Impaired 55 – 69
Moderately Impaired 40 – 54

Reference: https://stanfordbinetiqtest.com.

Table 2
Correlation between Cerebellum Motor Coordination and Intelligence

Correlations

ICARS #1 Full Scale IQ #1 Non-Verbal IQ #1 Verbal IQ #1
ICARS #1 Pearson Correlation 1 -.941 -.939 -.905
Significance (2-tailed) .000 .001 .002
N 8 8 8 8
Full Scale IQ #1 Pearson Correlation -.941 1 .955 .987
Significance (2-tailed) .000 .000 .000
N 8 8 8 8
Non-Verbal IQ #1 Pearson Correlation -.939 .955 1 .897
Significance (2-tailed) .001 .000 .003
N 8 8 8 8
Verbal IQ #1 Pearson Correlation -.905 .987 .897 1
Significance (2-tailed) .002 .000 .003
N 8 8 8 8

Correlation between two variables (ICARS & IQ) looks to see if there is a relationship. If there is a relationship, what happen to one variable happens to the other. How much that happens is called a Pearson Correlation (PC) and ranges from -1 to +1. A value of 0 indicates no relationship. A value of -1 or +1 indicates a perfect correlation – meaning that the changes in the two variables are virtually identical. ICARS scores go up with dysfunction and SB5 IQ scores go down with dysfunction. This gives us a negative (-) PC value. PC values for ICARS and FSIQ, NVIQ and VIQ are all over -.90, indicating a strong relationship between cerebellum motor coordination and intelligence. The Significance (2-tailed) values indicate strong support for the research hypothesis. The research hypothesis states that there is a causal relationship between cerebellum motor coordination and intelligence, and that poor cerebellum motor coordination negatively affects IQ.

Table 3
Effects of 12 Weeks Cerebellum Motor Coordination Rehabilitation Program™ Therapy
Paired Samples T-Test

Descriptive Statistics

N Minimum Maximum Mean Improvement Std. Deviation
Age 6 9 50 19.67 15.214
ICARS #1 6 21.00 45.00 29.8333 8.08497
ICARS #2 6 16.00 36.00 20.8333 30 % 7.67898
Full Scale IQ #1 6 54.40 120.00 99.5667 23.30336
Full Scale IQ #2 6 61.39 128.00 111.2317 11.7 % 24.70559
Non-Verbal IQ #1 6 71.83 112.00 98.4717 14.41204
Non-Verbal IQ #2 6 85.24 126.00 110.2067 11.9 % 13.78986
Verbal IQ #1 6 36.97 127.00 100.1617 32.55341
Verbal IQ #2 6 37.54 129.00 110.7567 10.6 % 35.97226

Six of the eight ASD participants listed in Tables 1 and 2 completed 12 weeks of CMCRP. Look carefully at the data in Table 3. Improvements can be seen in the Minimum, Maximum, and Mean data columns. Percentages of change are listed in the Improvement column.

Table 4
Paired Samples Correlation

N Correlation Significance
Pair 1 ICARS #1 & ICARS #2 6 .882 .020
Pair 2 Full Scale IQ #1 & Full-Scale IQ #2 6 .977 .001
Pair 3 Non-Verbal IQ #1 & Non-Verbal IQ #2 6 .854 .031
Pair 4 Verbal IQ #1 & Verbal IQ #2 6 .970 .001

This paired samples correlation looks at change between pre-therapy and post-therapy test scores for each variable. The correlation values in Table 4 are all strong indicators that the hypothesis is supported.

Table 5
Power of CMCRP Effects on ASD-based Movement Coordination and Intelligence

Paired Samples Test

Paired Differences

 

95% Confidence Interval of the Difference
Mean Std. Deviation Effect Size Std. Error Mean Lower Upper t df Sig. (2-tailed)
Pair 1 ICARS #1 - ICARS #2 9.000 3.84708 2.34 1.57056 4.96274 13.03726 5.730 5 .002
Pair 2 Full Scale IQ #1 - Full Scale IQ #2 -11.665 5.35587 -2.18 2.18653 -17.28564 -6.04436 -5.335 5 .003
Pair 3 Non-Verbal IQ #1 - Non-Verbal IQ #2 -11.735 7.64940 -1.53 3.12286 -19.76256 -3.70744 -3.758 5 .013
Pair 4 Verbal IQ #1 - Verbal IQ #2 -10.595 9.09726 -1.16 3.71394 -20.14199 -1.04801 -2.853 5 .036

Paired samples T-Tests analyze the amount of change between pre-therapy (#1) and post therapy (#2) test scores and the strength of those changes. Effect sizes are like Pearson Correlation values but are not limited statistically to -1 through 1. Calculation of effect size is done by dividing the Mean difference between tests #1 and #2 (column 3) by its Standard (Std.) Deviation value (column 4). The strength of Effect Sizes are as follows:

Effect Size Strength of Effect
0.0 None
0.2 Small
0.5 Medium
0.8 Strong
Greater than 1.0 Very Strong

The range of effect sizes for these 6 ASD patients was -1.16 to -2.34 and indicates extraordinarily strong effects from CMCRP. Significance (2-tailed) all show strong support for our hypothesis.

Summary

Gifford Neurology’s Cerebellum Motor Coordination Rehabilitation Program™ is effective in helping Autism Spectrum Disorder afflicted people. In addition to higher IQ and physical coordination, we observed that negative emotional states and poor self-governance changed to positive emotion and peaceful behavior for all six patients. This finding was also seen in our Down Syndrome, Dementia, and Academic Proficiency research studies. Other changes seen in our ASD research participants included better communication skills – both verbal and non-verbal, the ability to cooperate in family and social environments, greater interest in being with and helping others, and an expansion of their interests. Improving cerebellum function positively and powerfully affects a broad spectrum of neurological functions and encourages GNI forward in expanding our influence within the ASD community. Please come help us!

Dr. G Kevin Gifford