Statewide Information Resource & Referral for Advocacy & Service for People with Developmental Disabilities

Doctors, Pediatricians and Other Medical Subspecialties

Your child’s pediatrician may be the first to suspect a developmental delay. Physicians should refer parents to early intervention services as soon as possible. Remember, as always, if you are not satisfied with your doctor’s diagnosis, seek a second opinion. A referral to a specialist is often needed to identify a medical or developmental disability.

Listed below are some other medical professionals who can diagnose and/or confirm a disability and/or make recommendations for treatment.

  1. Ear, Nose & Throat Doctors – diagnose and treat hearing problems, adenoids, tonsils, ear implants and sinus.
  2. Pediatric Ophthalmologists – diagnose and treat vision problems and specializes in diseases of the eye in children.
  3. Cardiologists – A physician who specializes in diseases of the heart.
  4. Audiologist – A specialist who can diagnose and treat hearing problems such as Central Auditory Processing Disorder. Auditory processing is what a person does when the ear receives an auditory message and the central nervous system extracts the meaning from that message, eventually, putting meaning to the message. It is a multi-level process involving the inner ear, central nervous system and brain.
  5. Gastroenterologist – A physician who specializes in diseases of the stomach and intestinal tract.
  6. Neurologist – A physician who specializes in diseases of the nervous system.
  7. Pediatric Neurologist – A physician who specializes in diseases of the nervous system with special consideration given to children. These physicians could order an electroencephalography (EEG), a recording of the brain waves to detect seizure or brain disease. Many but not all Pediatric Neurologists are also Developmental Pediatricians.
  8. Developmental -Behavioral l Pediatrician – Developmental-behavioral pediatricians possess training and experience to consider, in their assessments and treatments, the medical and psychosocial aspects of children’s and adolescents’ developmental and behavioral problems. (American Academy of Pediatrics)
  9. Behavior Analyst – Individuals can be certified at one of two levels to practice. Those who become certified as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (B.C.B.A.) can operate and function as independent behavior analysts, whereas those certified as a Board Certified Associate Behavior Analyst (B.C.A.B.A.) must provide services under the supervision of B.C.B.A. More information regarding the required qualification may be obtained at www.bacb.com.1

Citations:
1 Autism Spectrum Disorders – Interventions and Treatments for Children and Youth by Richard L. Simpson
2 “The Out of Sync Child” by Carol Stock Kranowitz, M.A.

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