Autism Specialist

Palm Leaf Pediatrics

Pediatric Infectious Disease Specialists & Pediatricians located in Miami, FL

An estimated 1 in 59 children are affected by the challenges of autism, a disorder that affects your entire family. Maria Roberta Moro, MD, at Palm Leaf Pediatrics in Miami offers compassionate, full-service care for children in South Florida with autism to ensure a high quality of life. Dr. Roberta Moro and her experienced team provide the resources families need to cope and thrive with the challenges of autism. Schedule a consultation by phone or online to learn more about autism diagnosis and treatment.

Autism Q & A

What is autism?

Autism is a developmental and neurologic disorder that causes a variety of personal and social challenges, including repetitive behaviors, nonverbal communication, and difficulties engaging in social situations. Additionally, autism may also involve sensory issues in children, with certain sights, sounds, and touches causing agitation and behavioral issues.

Autism usually begins in early childhood and lasts throughout adult life.

What are the common signs of autism?

Parents may notice certain behaviors in children as young as 6 months old that can indicate autism, such as limited or no eye contact, lack of facial expressions, and a lack of reaching or pointing gestures during interactions.

Other common signs and symptoms of autism include:

  • Delayed speech
  • Limited interests
  • Repetitive behaviors
  • Preference for being alone
  • Lack of understanding the feelings of others


Generally, signs of autism are noticeable in children by age 2 or 3. Children with autism may display developmental delays and experience associated medical issues such as seizures, difficulties with sleep, and gastrointestinal disorders.

How is autism diagnosed?

Because the signs of autism vary, a diagnosis can be difficult. Dr. Roberta Moro evaluates your child’s developmental progress and their behaviors. She may perform blood work and other tests to rule out underlying health conditions that may cause developmental delays before determining an autism diagnosis.

Annual well-child visits give Dr. Roberta Moro the opportunity to evaluate developmental milestones and understand any concerns you have about your child’s social behaviors. She may also speak with teachers and other caregivers to learn more about your child’s activities away from home.

What treatment options are available for autism?

Dr. Roberta Moro works closely with your child and family to determine the best course of treatment to manage behaviors of autism. There isn’t a single medication to address autism. In some cases, medications can be helpful in reducing the severity of autism-related issues like seizures and depression.

Early intervention services may be necessary for improving developmental delays, like walking and talking. Dr. Roberta Moro may also recommend therapeutic treatments to help older children with their behavior and social skills. For children who are aggravated by certain sounds and sights, or for those who don’t like to be touched, Dr. Roberta Moro may recommend additional therapies to address these specific issues.

To learn more about diagnosing and managing autism, schedule a consultation with Dr. Roberta Moro online or by calling the office today.