Compressive garments in individuals with autism and severe proprioceptive dysfunction: A retrospective exploratory case series

Vincent Guinchat, Elodie Vlamynck, Lautaro Diaz, Coralie Chambon, Justine Pouzenc, Cora Cravero, Carolina Baeza-Velasco, Claude Hamonet, Jean Xavier, David Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


(1) Background: Compression garments (CGs) are an adjuvant treatment for generalized joint hypermobility (GJH), including the Ehlers–Danlos syndrome/hypermobility types. The effects of CGs are likely to be related to better proprioceptive control. We aimed to explore the use of CGs in individuals with autism and severe proprioceptive dysfunction (SPD), including individuals with GJH, to control posture and challenging behaviors. (2) Methods: We retrospectively described 14 patients with autism and SPD, including seven with comorbid GJH, who were hospitalized for major challenging behaviors with remaining behavioral symptomatology after the implementation of multidisciplinary approaches, including medication, treatment of organic comorbidities, and behavioral restructuring. Each patient received a CG to wear for at least 1 h (but most often longer) per day for six weeks. We assessed challenging behaviors in these participants with the Aberrant Behavior Checklist (ABC), sensory integration with the Dunn questionnaire, and postural sway and motor performance using a self-designed motricity path at baseline, two weeks, and six weeks. (3) Results: We observed a significant effect on most ABC rating scores at two weeks, which persisted at six weeks (total score, p = 0.004; irritability, p = 0.007; hyperactivity, p = 0.001; lethargy, p = 0.001). Postural control in dorsal and profile positions was significantly improved between before and after wearing the CGs (p = 0.006 and 0.007, respectively). Motor performance was also significantly improved. However, we did not observe a significant change in Dunn sensory scores. During the six-week duration, the treatment was generally well-tolerated. A comorbid GJH diagnosis was not associated with a better outcome. (4) Conclusions: CGs appear to be a promising adjuvant treatment for both behavioral and postural impairments in individuals with autism and SPD.

Original languageEnglish
Article number77
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Autism
  • Challenging behaviors
  • Compression garment
  • Ehlers–Danlos syndrome
  • Intellectual disability
  • Joint hypermobility
  • Pressure therapy
  • Proprioceptive dysfunction


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