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Role of the Healthcare Professional
Because dyslexia is a complex neurological disorder, there is a role for the physician in the care of children with dyslexia, even though treatments are primarily educational.
The physician may perform a physical exam and order screening tests, such as vision and hearing testing, to rul out any contributing deficits.
The physician also serves an important function in identifying neurological conditions like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), either by screening or by referral to subspecialists such as psychiatrists, neurologists, or developmental pediatricians. If ADHD is diagnosed, the physician plays a vital role in prescribing medication to help manage the symptoms of ADHD, and thus contributes to the overall on-task behavior of the child at school.
Several pediatricians are involved in the national Reach Out and Read© program, by which literacy-promoting books are available to children attending their well-child visits.
It must be remembered that there is no blood test or brain scan test for dyslexia.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/18/2014
Neelkamal S Soares, MD, MBBS, FAAP
Elizabeth A Finley-Belgrad, MD
Mary L Windle, PharmD
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