Purpose: To describe how a nurse and a physical therapist in an interprofessional (IP) school-based clinic collaborated to meet the needs of a child with pervasive developmental disorder—not otherwise specified, with atypical classroom behaviors and declining student performance.
Summary: The IP team sought answers for atypical classroom behaviors with declining student performance. Student sensory perceptions masked and delayed the ability to recognize infection.
Observations: Cumulative observations by the team generated serial referrals until a diagnosis of dental abscess was identified.
Conclusions: An IP team in this school setting generated a positive outcome for a student demonstrating absence of clear indicators of pain or infection, with additional positive outcomes for the clinic.
Recommendations for clinical practice: Further studies are needed to recognize illness earlier in the absence of pain or pain perception in children with a form of autism spectrum disorder and to develop reliable and valid metrics for pain identification.