What is Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)?

Category: Lifestyle Modifications

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Applied Behavior Analysis, also known as Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention (EIBI) or Lovaas Therapy, is a program of therapy used for treating children with autism. It reinforces positive behaviors and dissuades the child from engaging in negative behaviors and repetitive interests.

Reported purpose & perceived effectiveness
Purpose Patients Evaluations Perceived Effectiveness
Autism spectrum disorder 24 9
Impaired communication skills 3 4
Self injury or harm 2 1
Asperger's syndrome 1 1
Lack of social skills 1 3
Pervasive development disorder NOS 1 3

Show all 7 reasons taken


  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell

Side effects

Side effects as an overall problem

Side effects as an overall problem
Severity Evaluations
Severe 1
Moderate 0
Mild 2
None 6

Commonly reported side effects and conditions associated with Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Side effect Patients
Anxiety attacks 1
Anxious mood 1
Apathy 1
Fatigue 1
Fear of abandonment 1
Inability to experience pleasure (anhedonia) 1

Show all 10 reported side effects

Dosages

Based on patients currently using Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Dosage Patients
1 other daily 1

Why patients stopped taking Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Multiple reasons could be selected

Reason Patients
Did not seem to work 2
Doctor's advice 2
Side effects too severe 2
Change in health plan coverage 1
Course of treatment ended 1
Other 1
See all 5 patients who've stopped using Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Duration

Currently using Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Duration Patients
10 years or more 1

Stopped using Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Duration Patients
6 months - 1 year 1
1 - 2 years 1
2 - 5 years 3
Adherence
Adherence Evaluations
Always 6
Usually 2
Sometimes 1
Never taken as prescribed 0
Burden
Burden Evaluations
Very hard to take 5
Somewhat hard to take 1
A little hard to take 2
Not at all hard to take 1
Cost per month
Cost per month Evaluations
$200+ 4
$100-199 0
$50-99 0
$25-49 0
< $25 1
Not specified 4
Last updated:

2 patient evaluations for Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Jan 27, 2017 (Started Jun 01, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Asperger's syndrome)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for autism spectrum disorder)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 4 Weekly
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks

Feb 24, 2014 (Started Aug 24, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for lack of social skills)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for repetitive behavior)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for impaired communication skills)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for autism spectrum disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for pervasive development disorder NOS)
  • Side effects
    Mild (fatigue)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Very hard to take
Dosage: 5 hr Weekly
Advice & Tips: Today is the last ABA session my son will receive. It's truly a bittersweet moment. He's been receiving some form of ABA therapy for four and a half years. Now it's up to us to keep it up. He's come an incredibly long way. His first ABA program involved learning how to identify "mom" and "dad". Now he's playing on sports teams, succeeding in school, and just being a typical brother to his sisters. He's still got his quirks and attention can be an issue, but his progress has exceeded our wildest dreams. Early intervention works. Do it early. Do it intensively. Do whatever it takes.
Cost: $200+ monthly

Sep 19, 2011 (Started Aug 24, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for repetitive behavior)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for lack of social skills)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for pervasive development disorder NOS)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for impaired communication skills)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for autism spectrum disorder)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Very hard to take
Dosage: 23.5 hr Weekly
Advice & Tips: We're at the point now where my son does not receive "traditional" table-top ABA anymore. He has had an incredible two years in ABA, gaining wonderful skills and testing very well in them. Now our focus has switched to getting him to consistently use these skills in daily life. So, now we do a lot more play (games, pretend play), social groups (we invite a few models over a couple times a week and do snack, a game, some free play, etc.), and other more non-traditional approaches. At times it seems like the gains aren't quite as huge lately, but I personally believe that has a lot to do with the fact that the skills he is gaining now are HUGE steps (compared with learning individual rote tasks).
Cost: $200+ monthly

Feb 22, 2011 (Started Aug 24, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for lack of social skills)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for impaired communication skills)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for repetitive behavior)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for autism spectrum disorder)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Very hard to take
Dosage: 23.5 hr Weekly
Advice & Tips: ABA therapy is very appropriately filed under "lifestyle modification". That's exactly what it is. It takes over your life. Privacy? A thing of the past. Your house is a revolving door. Social life? Largely gone—between school and ABA therapy, there's hardly any time left in the day. Financially? Well, there are more and more states forcing insurance companies to cover ABA, but there's still a long way to go. For now, we're spending $3,000 per month out of pocket. That, as you can imagine, is devastating. But, it's working. My son started ABA about two weeks after his diagnosis and quickly ramped up to 25 hours. He's now getting 11 hours outside of school (along with 10 hours of direct instruction in school). I distinctly remember about 15 months ago, we were running trials to teach him to say "mommy" and "daddy". Now, he's working on prediction trials, three-step instructions, and reading. It has been amazing. I attribute a ton of it to him. From day one, he has been an incredibly hard worker. There are times when the schedule exhausts him. But we just try to learn not to read too much into it. We all get tired. The truth is, he's making incredible gains. I would consider this a life-saving treatment.
Cost: $200+ monthly

  • 2 helpful marks
Last updated:
Showing 2 of 2 patient evaluations for Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)