The misplaced belief in ABA, how a real therapy is emerging - Hello NEMO.
Updated: Sep 1, 2022
A promising new medical treatment for moderate to severe autism
(And other neurological conditions, and selected wounds)
Michael W. Allen, Founding Partner
NEMO (Neurological Enhancement with Managed-Oxygen) Therapy is a new form of normobaric oxygen developed and patented by NEMO Therapeutic, in which the dose of oxygen is controlled to promote healing in chronic neurological conditions such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD), stroke, mild traumatic brain injury, and Alzheimer’s dementia, and selected uncompromised acute wounds such as those resulting from elective cosmetic surgery and hair transplantation. The focus of this article is to review the remarkable results achieved with NEMO Therapy in the treatment of moderate to severe autism, compare these results with those of the current “go-to” psychological intervention based on the principles of applied behaviour analysis (ABA), and point to a way ahead that offers clinically meaningful change (i.e., a real and substantial change in the quality of life) for those affected by moderate to severe autism.
What is ASD and why is it such a problem?
ASD is a life-long heterogeneous neuropathological condition with symptoms that manifest in aberrant behaviours. It is highly pervasive and impacts not only the affected individual but the whole family who must live with it on a day-to-day basis. We know from our research into autism over more than twelve years, there are many on the spectrum who have made, and continue to make, often stunning contributions to the world of science and the arts. They are typically part of a growing number of individuals who identify as neurodiverse rather than autistic. The neurodiverse community is living proof that being on the spectrum does not mean one cannot lead a full and independent life. So much so, that reading the social media around this group could easily lead one to think that autism is not a problem, it is. We must not lose sight of the fact that the autism spectrum is a range, and at the moderate to severe end of that range are millions of individuals globally who are incapable of being neurodiverse, are not blessed with the gift of speech, exhibit profound behavioural problems, shy away from community and, given the effectiveness of currently approved treatments, no expectation of ever leading what might even remotely be considered a “normal” life. These are the people who will, for their entire lives, be dependent on their families and ultimately the state for their care and support. All the cases we have worked with in our pilot studies were in the moderate to severe end of the spectrum. The lifetime costs of caring for these individuals based on the current standard of care are estimated to be as high as US $2.44 million .
It is a problem because as of the time of writing there is no cure and, despite the billions expended on autism research over more than 60 years, there is still no treatment available that brings about a clinically meaningful change in the quality of life for those with moderate to severe autism or relief for their families. When the first demographic studies of autism were published in the U.K. and U.S. in 1966 and 1970 respectively, the estimated prevalence was 3.1 to 4.5 cases per 10,000 children [2,3]. The annual live birth rate in the U.S. at that time was approximately four million and, based on that data, the average incidence of autism was 1,520 new cases annually. In 2018 the CDC’s (Centers for Disease Control) Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network published a report estimating the incidence of autism in the U.S. stood at about 1 in 44 (or 2.3%) of 8-year-old children. The ADDM data was based on tracking 8-year-old children living in 11 communities across the United States. This report also notes that children born in 2014 were 50% more likely to receive an ASD diagnosis or ASD special education classification by 48 months of age compared to children born in 2010 . The current U.S. live birth rate is averaging about 3.8 million which means that, based on the CDC’s 2018 report, the estimated incidence of new cases of autism has risen from 1,520 annually to an incredible 86,000 in the U.S. alone. In just a little over 60 years, autism has become a pandemic of biblical proportions and shows no sign of slowing. On a personal level, this means over this same timeframe, we have gone from it being very unusual to know or even hear of someone with autism or a family living with autism to its being very unusual not to know at least one person or family living with it today.
The autism pandemic is global. Epidemiological data published by the World Health Organisation (WHO) referring to a 2022 study by Zeidan and colleagues, estimates one in 100 children have autism . The WHO states that this estimate represents an average figure with reported prevalence varying substantially across studies and noted that some well-controlled studies report substantially higher rates while the prevalence of ASD in many low and middle-income countries remains unclear . Using this WHO prevalence estimate and an estimated world population of 7.8 billion in 2020, there could be as many as 70 million individuals with autism around the world at this time.
The stark reality is that, except for some of those only mildly affected who may respond to ABA, there is no intervention or group of interventions that make a clinically meaningful change in quality of life for those with moderate to severe autism. The current situation may in part be related to the popularity of therapies based on the principles of behavioral conditioning among medical professionals that are touted as the gold standard for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder. As discussed below, even though the results generated by ABA do not live up to the hype it gets, it has grown into a global industry employing thousands and generates millions for its providers. Consequently, with no treatment that significantly reduces ASD’s impact, the human and financial costs of this life-long condition will continue to spiral upwards until we can complete the controlled studies necessary to gain regulatory approval for the introduction of NEMO Therapy as a mainstream intervention.
What is NEMO Therapy?
As previously stated, NEMO Therapy is a new form of normobaric oxygen developed and patented by NEMO Therapeutics, in which the dose of oxygen is controlled based on the progress shown by the patient. Developed by the founders of NEMO Therapeutics, NEMO Therapy is the culmination of more than eighty man-years experience in the use of oxygen in deep-diving, hyperbaric medicine, and human physiology; and hundreds of hours spent researching the scientific literature. This experience, coupled with the knowledge gained during our self-funded pilot studies, has enabled us to demonstrate and report on the effectiveness of NEMO Therapy in moderate to severe autism, and develop a hypothesis that we believe explains how and why it brings about what seems to be permanent physiological remodelling in the autism brain [7,8].
For the results of any study into autism to have value, the degree of change achieved must be quantified and easy to see in terms of impact on quality of life. To do this, researchers must use assessment tools that allow data to be gathered and recorded in a clear and consistent manner and present it in a format that can be easily understood. Most autism testing tools are designed for use by medical professionals in diagnosing the condition rather than evaluating and monitoring the efficacy of a given treatment. To ensure our data was properly recorded and presented, we needed an objective assessment tool designed to be conducted by the child’s caregivers that would enable us to establish baseline severity and variability data for each subject prior to starting treatment, and then monitor progress, if any. After a literature search, we found the Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC). The ATEC was developed in the 1990’s by Bernard Rimland Ph.D., and Stephen M. Edelson Ph.D., of the Autism Research Institute (ARI) and is available free of charge on their website. (www.autism.org). The ATEC consists of seventy-seven questions presented in four subscales and uses a scoring system to assess severity and monitor progress. Once a caregiver is familiar with it, the ATEC assessment can normally be completed in less than 20 minutes. The scores in each subscale are combined to produce a total score, with the highest possible score being 179. The higher the score, the more severely that individual is impacted by autism. A score of 30 or less is associated with mild autism, 31 to 103 with moderate to severe autism, and a score of 104 or higher is associated with severe autism. All our subjects had baseline ATEC scores well into the moderate to severe range when they entered a pilot study, and one was in the severe range with a baseline score of 113. In each case, NEMO Therapy produced a hitherto unseen degree of positive change. The detailed results of our first five studies were published in the online journal Autism-Open Access . At time of writing, the efficacy of the ATEC as a monitoring and assessment tool has been independently validated in five studies and found to have a high level of consistency and reliability [9-13]. ATEC has also been compared with the Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS) by Geier, Kern and Geier in their 2013 paper “A Comparison of the Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC) and the Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS) for the Quantitative Evaluation of Autism” . CARS is a widely used rating scale for the detection and diagnosis of autism and is designed for use by medical professionals. In their conclusions Geier and colleagues wrote: - "the results of this study revealed a significant correlation between total ATEC and CARS scores. It was also observed that there were significant correlations between the ATEC domains and the CARS total score. The findings from the study validate the parent-completed ATEC in comparison with the CARS, an established, professional-related measure of autism."
NEMO Therapy results
Our pilot studies with NEMO Therapy commenced in 2010. Only children between the ages of 6-18 with a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder by a medical professional were accepted. Our first five subjects were pre-teens and teenagers . The only children excluded were those on pharmaceuticals such as aripiprazole or risperidone. This was done to avoid any potential adverse reaction to hyperoxia and the possibility of the drug influencing the response. Once a child was accepted for entry into a pilot study, we required their caregivers to provide serial ATEC reports for a period of 6 to 8 weeks prior to starting therapy. This enabled us to build a database of ATEC scores to establish the subject’s severity and allowed us to see how much the child’s behaviours varied naturally prior to treatment. Using this data, we were able to establish the starting ATEC score and a standard deviation for each subject. A standard deviation is a numerical value that, in this case, indicates the degree of natural variation in an individual’s behaviour as measured by the pre-treatment ATEC scores, and was used in assessing the response (i.e., degree of change) to treatment. With respect to what the change in score means in this calculation, Michael Aman Ph.D., the developer of the ABC (Antecedents (or Action), Behaviour and Consequence) chart, advised that in autism a reduction of one standard deviation is considered a clinically meaningful change . Another important meter of success in clinical trials is Patient-Reported Outcome (PRO) which provides insight into changes occurring in the subject’s quality of life and, in this case, the family’s as well. We recognised none of our subjects would be able to report on their status so, in addition to the ATEC’s every two to three weeks, caregivers (in every case the child’s mother) were asked to provide a short subjective review, perhaps a paragraph or two, describing the child’s status over each reporting period. These subjective reviews were provided voluntarily and in practice sometimes ran on to several pages. They gave us a unique subjective and often highly emotional insight into the changes as they happened in the child from the caregiver’s perspective and how this was impacting the family dynamic.
At time of writing, we have now conducted 10 separate pilot studies since 2010, with study durations varying between 3 and 18 months. All subjects responded readily to the treatment. For our first five studies treatments were administered 5 days per week. Based on the response in those studies we came to believe 3 treatments is more effective and introduced this reduced requirement in our later studies. All studies were conducted in the subjects’ homes using an early delivery system with treatments administered by the child’s mother on a schedule that fit with the family’s daily activities. The starting data points and those generated during the ongoing assessments are clearly shown in the charts we maintained for each subject. All our subjects were geographically separated and unaware of each other .
The magnitude of the changes seen in our subjects during these uncontrolled pilot studies, while subject to verification by controlled research, seem to support the veracity of our belief that NEMO Therapy stimulates angiogenesis and physiological remodeling in the autism brain . Further, this seems to be confirmed by long-term follow-up, which shows no regression of symptoms. For example, including the most recent ATEC evaluation completed on 14th May 2022, we have now followed our first two subjects, who are brothers, for more than ten years (Figures 1 & 2). Subject 1, the younger of the two, was 12 and a half years old when he started in the study (Figure 1). At start of treatment, he had a mean baseline ATEC score of 101, just three points below the ATEC score of 104 for severe autism. His standard deviation was 9.43. When treatment was stopped by his mother at about 18 months his ATEC score was 9 meaning that he had improved by almost 10 (9.76) standard deviations over the course of treatment. His total ATEC scores fluctuated slightly in the lower part of the mildly autistic (0-30) range over the ten-year follow-up, and just happened to be 18 on the day the ten-year ATEC was assessed by his mother. Subject 2 was the older child and suffered from uncontrollable rages during which he would attack anybody close to him. He was a few weeks away from his 14th birthday when he started NEMO Therapy and had an average baseline ATEC score of 82 (Figure 2). His pre-treatment standard deviation was 6.55. When treatment was stopped by his mother at about 18 months his ATEC score was 5 meaning he had improved by almost 12 (11.76) standard deviations. Like his brother, he oscillated in the lower portion of the mildly autistic range throughout the ten-year follow-up and just happened to be 4 on the day the ATEC was assessed by his mother. There are several points of note about this subject. As the treatment continued his rages subsided and by about the sixth month, had ceased altogether. He also began to mature and started showing an interest in things more in line with his chronological age and, of his own volition, threw out all his age-inappropriate toys. Both brothers stopped treatment at the same time. Over the ten-year follow-up, they have shown no significant regression despite several disruptive events of the type that would normally cause an autistic child to have a meltdown. These include the loss of a beloved family pet, moving to a new house, and for the younger brother entering puberty. These boys are now young men in their 20’s and play an active role in the day-to-day running of a small farm owned by the family (Figure 3) .
Figure 1: Subject 1 Total ATEC scores before and during a 1½-year course of treatment and during the ten-year follow-up. The final datapoint is the ATEC assessment conducted by the mother 14th May 2022.
Figure 2: Total ATEC scores before and during a 1½-year course of treatment and during the ten-year follow-up. The final datapoint is the ATEC assessment conducted by the mother 14th May 2022.
Figure 3: Subject 2 getting ready to plough a field at age 19
More information about our pilot study results including details of the Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC) assessment tool can be found in our 2018 publication “Evolution and Preliminary Testing of a Hyperoxic Therapy for Autism Spectrum Disorders” . Both this and our hypothesis paper are available online or can be downloaded using the links provided on our website https://www.nemotherapeutic.com
The sheer scale and apparent permanence of the improvements that have occurred in our subjects, i.e., up to 94% reduction in ATEC scores, and the consistency of these responses clearly show NEMO Therapy has the potential to transform the quality of life for those with moderate to severe autism, and their families. Based on our pilot study data, it seems that NEMO Therapy addresses all behaviours simultaneously and we expect the typical treatment program to run over the course of 18-24 months in pre-teens and teenagers, like those we treated in our pilot studies. We believe this duration will also be typical for adult subjects. In younger children whose brains are still growing, we believe the course of therapy may go on longer or need to be repeated periodically until they are in their teens and brain growth comes to an end. Based on our three-day protocol the average commitment to therapy should be about 4.5 hours per week i.e., 3 hours of therapy with 1.5 hours pre-post treatment for preparation and tidying-up. This compares very favourably with the time commitment required for a course of ABA which uses behavioural conditioning to make autistic children act more like “normal” ones and addresses behaviours one at a time. ABA therapy often runs between 20 and 40 hours per week and can continue for years depending on the behaviors to be addressed.
To facilitate treatment, we have developed the specifications for a self-contained platform that will enable NEMO Therapy to be delivered in the widest possible range of locations and situations. This platform is also called NEMO. NEMO will produce its own hyperoxic gas and incorporate everything needed to conduct a course of treatment and control the oxygen dose. NEMO will include an application that will enable remote data gathering, allow users to get support from us, and provide a link to an online NEMO community for sharing experiences and learning from other NEMO users. NEMO will be finished to look like a piece of furniture so that it blends in with its surroundings when not in use. NEMO will be simple to operate, and safe for use in homes, schools, living accommodations for those with autism, or professional facility settings by parents or caregivers with minimal training.
The misplaced belief in ABA
When a child is first diagnosed, it is not unusual for the parents, probably distressed and understandably desperate for help in navigating the unknown, to be counselled and told they must choose between a variety of “therapies for autism,” with applied behaviour analysis presented as one of them . As noted previously, ABA is the medical professionals “go-to” treatment of choice for autism, it is a psychological intervention based on the principles of behavioural conditioning developed by the Harvard-trained psychologist B.F. Skinner and introduced in his 1938 publication, The Behavior of Organisms: an experimental analysis . In this book, Skinner sets out the parameters for a discipline that has come to be called the experimental analysis of behavior (EAB) and describes behaviors as either respondent or operant, where respondent behavior is elicited by an observable stimulus, and there being no observable stimuli in the case of operant behavior. The basic technique of ABA relies heavily on operant conditioning which is an associative learning process through which the strength of a behavior can be influenced by reinforcing or punishing the action [18-20]. There are similarities with the original work on respondent behaviours conducted in the late 1800’s by Russian physiologist Igor Pavlov who developed his principles of behavioral conditioning while studying the response of dogs to various stimuli such as food . Skinner is credited by many as the father of behaviour analysis but we have found no reference to him treating autism. In the early 1970’s, the principles of Skinner’s work were adopted, adapted, and introduced as applied behaviour analysis, a psychological intervention for use in autism by Ole Ivar Lovaas [22-24]. Based on this work, Dr. Lovaas has been called “The Father of ABA.” (www.thelovasscenter.com).
Despite its omnipresence as the “go-to” treatment, the use of ABA remains controversial. There are those who believe ABA goes against everything B.F. Skinner believed in . There are also those working in autism such as A.H. Sandoval-Norton Ph.D., and colleagues, who believe ABA still lacks the scientific evidence necessary to prove efficacy and consider it to be an unethical, ineffective, inappropriate, and abusive therapy [26,27]. One of the reasons they give for this is that ABA does not address the underlying pathological structures of the autism brain . Sandoval-Norton and colleagues also express the opinion that ABA is a consumer-based rather than neuroscience or client-centered intervention . Reviewing the references used in the two Sandoval-Norton papers will lead the reader to a significant body of supporting literature related to issues surrounding ABA.
While the symptoms of autism manifest in psychological terms with aberrant behaviours, autism is, without doubt, a multi-organ neuropathological disorder that impacts the brain, the immune system, the gastrointestinal tract, and other organ systems [28,29]. The presence of underlying pathology and the many forms it takes in autism has been confirmed in studies published since the late 1960’s such as those referenced here and many others too numerous to mention [30-37].
As with all pathological conditions, the severity of symptoms is a result of the extent to which the tissues and organs involved are impacted; and in the case of autism, which regions of the brain are involved and the degree to which each of those regions are affected . Based on the evidence, there is no doubt autism is, first and foremost, a neuropathological condition. Given that fact, it should be obvious that any response resulting from a psychological intervention will be limited by the degree of pathological derangement. Equally, it is unrealistic to expect the pathological derangement to respond to a psychological therapy (i.e., wounds do not heal because you talk to them, they heal because something is done that positively impacts the wound pathology).
While the internet is replete with claims that ABA makes a difference, just what those claims really mean in terms of quality of life for autistic individuals and their families is often difficult to unravel. Parents living with autism on a day-to-day basis, who believed what they were told initially and started their journey full of expectations, only to see their hopes and aspirations dashed as they come to understand there are, in fact, no interventions available that make a real difference in quality of life for them or their child, are likely to be pleased with any relief they can get, no matter how insignificant it is. Regardless of the claims made for it, while it seems reasonable to imagine that ABA could be effective in children whose brains are only mildly affected, there is little to no evidence showing that it produces clinically meaningful change in those with moderate to severe autism.
Fortunately, there is a source of comment about ABA that we can look too for a totally unbiased opinion on its effectiveness. These are the reports to Congress published by the DoD that, through its Tricare insurance program, provides treatment for military families living with autism. In a cover letter from the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense introducing the 2019 report to Congress concerning the effectiveness of ABA entitled, “The Department of Defense Comprehensive Autism Care Demonstration, Quarterly Report to Congress, Second Quarter, Fiscal Year 2019” the letter’s author, James N. Stewart, Assistant Secretary of Defense, states “Based on outcome measures data for this reporting quarter, 76 percent of TRICARE beneficiaries in the ACD had little to no change in symptom presentation over the course of 12 months of applied behavior analysis (ABA) services, with an additional 9 percent demonstrating worsening symptoms.” . Similarly, in their 2020 report “The Department of Defense Comprehensive Autism Care Demonstration Annual Report 2020,” the DoD stated that based on a study of 3,794 participants, possibly the largest study ever conducted of ABA effectiveness, “ABA services are not working.” Starting on page 23 of this report, DoD qualify their statement by saying “Overall, the findings from this analysis continue to demonstrate concern with overall outcomes of beneficiaries participating in the ACD. While the change scores in Figure 4 note improvements after 12 and 18 months of rendered ABA services, and that most baseline severity scores and most ages demonstrated some percent change in scores from baseline, the changes are small and may not be clinically significant.” “What can be interpreted with confidence is that the number of hours of ABA services rendered did not have the intended impact of symptom reduction on the PAC scores. This lack of correlation between improvement and hours of direct ABA services strongly suggests that the improvements seen are due to reasons other than ABA services and that ABA services are not significantly impacting outcomes” .
The DoD utilizes third parties in their provision of autism services and in 2020 reported that participation in their autism program had increased by 39 percent from 11,461 beneficiaries in FY 2015 to 15,928 in FY 2019 with program costs increasing by 129 percent from $161.5M in FY 2015 to $370.4M in FY 2019 . Based on the comments made in these DoD reports, and the continued absence of a real solution, the DoD expenditure on ABA could be considered a waste of U.S. taxpayer money that seems set to continue rising.
Additional Results with NEMO therapy
We have already discussed subjects 1 & 2 above; another example is Subject 4 whose starting baseline score was 113 (Figure 4) and his pre-treatment standard deviation was 3.31. He was 12 years old at start of therapy, a severely autistic and disabled child. He could sign about ten requests and had a very small vocabulary of basic words which he used in a slurred, quiet voice. He would shake his head, yes or no, in response to questions. He would ask for something by looking at the thing he wanted, raising his eyebrows to request it, and then at his mother for her response. His mother’s subjective comments were prolific and often very emotional. When Subject 4 exhibited a new or meaningful change in behavior, his mother would refer to them as “firsts.” She reported many firsts following commencement of NEMO Therapy, such as when Subject 4 gave her a spontaneous kiss which he had never done before; that in one week, he had cooperated completely in getting a haircut, a medical examination, and a dental checkup including getting his teeth cleaned. She also noted that regarding the dental appointment, this was the first time he had not needed to be sedated or restrained by several adults for the dentist to complete his work. Subject 4’s response over the course of the 350 days he received NEMO Therapy was remarkable. His ATEC score dropped from 113 to 60 and he began exhibiting an urge to speak. Unfortunately, the program was stopped at 350 days because the family had to move and could not continue with the study. The cessation of therapy is marked “Move” on Figure 4. Subject 4 maintained this final score without regression during the follow-up period even though the family moved several times before settling and he was entering puberty. His lowest total score was 58, an improvement of almost 17 (16.62) standard deviations and was reported about 1½ years into the follow-up period (Figure 4). We eventually lost touch with the family and were unable to maintain follow-up longer than two years. Of her own volition, Subject 4’s mother made a video during the pilot study and sent it to us. It was recorded in their home by her husband using his cell phone. In it she describes her own experience and how the changes she saw affected her son and her family. We made some minor edits for continuity and gave it a title “A Caregivers story.” It is about nine minutes long and available to view on our website https://www.nemoptherapeutic.com.
Figure 4: ATEC results for Subject 4 during baseline, treatment, and follow-up periods. A – Total score. Treatment was terminated at the time of the move at approximately 350 days.
So, where are we today?
The therapeutic approach to autism has basically remained unchanged since Lovaas adapted Skinner’s original work in the 1970’s. Equally, the results achieved also remain largely unchanged. As they have always done, the parents of autistic children know their offspring are special and are not “born” with autism; that one can see at least. There are now many studies showing autism is triggered during pregnancy because of maternal immune system activation [40-50]. Symptoms are not apparent at birth. They gradually appear over the first two to three years of life and are typically brought to the attention of a medical professional by the parents. There is still no available treatment that addresses the underlying pathology in the brain of individuals diagnosed with ASD [7,8,27,51].
In their 2013 paper, Kern and associates suggest that a causal factor in ASD is neurodegeneration, which they describe as the progressive loss of structure or function of neurons, or a type of progressive encephalopathy . Kern and colleagues also state their belief that this loss of neurological function causes children to experience regression and loss of previously acquired skills and abilities. They conclude that research into treatments that address the issue of neurodegeneration in ASD is warranted . Our findings, on the other hand, suggest that rather than neurological degeneration, the problem is due to impaired cellular function involving hypoperfusion (reduced blood flow), neuroinflammation (inflammation of the brain and spinal cord), and deranged capillary development (angiogenesis) in the affected regions of the developing brain commencing with the growth spurt, which means they fail to grow and keep pace with the unaffected regions. At an early age, the circulation may not be too deficient, thus the brain could be working essentially normally. Then, as the brain grows and angiogenesis in the affected regions does not keep up, functional failure begins to occur and aberrant behaviours start to appear. A detailed explanation of what we believe is happening is given in our hypothesis paper . Irrespective of the actual mechanism, without an intervention that addresses the neuropathology of autism, the net result is the same, an unfulfilled life.
The efficacy of therapies based on the principles of applied behavior analysis are increasingly being called into question. The use of psychoactive drugs such as risperidone (Risperdal®) and aripiprazole (Abilify®, Aristada®) to suppress behaviours in autism has been increasing steadily, and they come with a raft of side effects. For example, common side effects of risperidone include aggressive behaviour, agitation, anxiety, and rarely a severe life-threatening allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis . Psychoactive drugs do nothing to address the underlying pathology and only have an effect while the clinical dose is maintained. The grim reality is that, today, despite the billions expended on autism research over the past 60 years, there has been no significant progress made in addressing this condition, a situation that is unlikely to change unless and until NEMO Therapy receives regulatory approval.
The unprecedented results achieved during our pilot studies have shown that regular treatment with NEMO Therapy produces clinically meaningful changes in quality of life in ten out of ten children with moderate to severe autism and their families, which helped them move on to live richer and fuller lives. The absence of regression indicates these changes are permanent.
Based on the number of activities the children in our studies were able to enjoy while receiving treatment it is apparent that NEMO Therapy is highly synergistic and can be conducted while the child is engaged in many other activities including home-schooling, computer games, watching TV, and working with a therapist on interventions such as those based on the principles of ABA . Given the learning capacity and interpersonal skills of children entering a NEMO treatment program will have been diminished by their autism there will certainly be a need to provide a coordinated approach to behavioural training and other knowledge and character-building educational services to aid in the subject’s transition to an improved quality of life as they respond to treatment. We believe the existing interventions, adapted for purpose, including those based on the principles of ABA, will have an important role to play in this.
Finally, put yourself in the position of being the parent of a child with moderate to severe autism and answer the following question:- “If a safe, affordable treatment were available today that can make permanent changes in your loved one’s development such that the overall impact of symptoms is diminished, aberrant behavioral issues are reduced, the barriers to learning are lowered and his/her quality of life is improved with no identifiable side effects, would you want to use it to help them?”
A final point worthy of note
While researching the literature and gathering data to support our hypothesis for the efficacy NEMO Therapy in autism, we have identified a significant body of evidence reporting the benefits of oxygen in other very common chronic neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and stroke which share symptoms including hypoperfusion and neuroinflammation and lack interventions that offer clinically meaningful change. In addition, we have worked with cosmetic surgeons and shown that NEMO Therapy significantly enhances the healing of acute uncompromised wounds resulting from facial, breast, and hair transplant surgery. Thus, we believe there is significant potential to expand the use of NEMO Therapy beyond autism. This potential presents a major investment opportunity and fulfils our mission statement “Dedicated to harnessing the power of oxygen to promote healing and better health.”
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