David E. Epperson Professor of Social Work and Professor of Psychiatry Shaun Eack, is the lead investigator of an six-year study, "Cognitive enhancement therapy for adult autism spectrum disorder: Results of an 18-month randomized clinical trial," recently published in the journal, Autism Research.
From U.S News & World Report:
For young people with autism, the leap to adulthood can feel like jumping off a cliff, but researchers may be zeroing in on a safety net.
In a small study, young adults who had one of two psychotherapies were better able to deal with the thinking, flexibility and social awareness challenges of autism. They were also more employable as a result, because those issues can often hold adults with autism back, particularly in the workplace.
A larger, follow-up study is in the works. Lead researcher Shaun Eack hopes it will confirm the initial findings, a key to popularizing the therapies and getting insurers to pay for them. Help for adults with autism is hard to come by, he noted.
"The field of autism has forgotten about adults until recently," said Eack, a professor of social work and psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh.