Monday, October 27, 2008
3:00PM EST
Location: Online


Although individuals with Down Syndrome are often considered social and friendly; families and professionals have long recognized that some people with Down Syndrome have diminished social reciprocity, atypical communication development and unusual routines and habits. In other words, some individuals with Down Syndrome also have Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).

In this webinar, investigators from University of Colorado Denver and University of Rochester present findings from their studies of the prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders in children with Down Syndrome. While methods differed somewhat between the two projects both projects did the following: 1) used the state birth defect registry to recruit participants; 2) looked at performance of Autism screening tools with children with Down Syndrome; 3) used ADOS and ADI-R among other factors in the case definitions in an effort to estimate a prevalence rate; and 4) examined child characteristics on a number of assessments in efforts to refine their assessments for Autism Spectrum Disorders in children with Down Syndrome.

Both sites had similar response rates of participation and similar observations with respect to diagnostic assessment with the ADOS. Both groups found accurate diagnosis difficult in situations where children showed significant levels of intellectual disability. Recommendations will be offered in regards to appropriate screening, refinement of diagnostic procedures and the importance of intervention for children with Down Syndrome who are not demonstrating communication and social skill development.


RTOI 2005-1/2-07: Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder in Children with Down Syndrome

Corry Robinson
Cordelia Robinson-Rosenberg, PhD, RN
Cordelia Robinson-Rosenberg, PhD, RN, BS Nursing, D'Youville College, Buffalo, NY, M.A. Special Education; PhD Psychology, George Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. Dr. Robinson, Professor of Pediatrics, Psychiatry, Preventive Medicine and Biometrics, University of Colorado School of Medicine.

Since 1993 Dr. Robinson-Rosenberg has been director of JFK Partners, an interdepartmental program of Pediatrics and Psychiatry at the CU School of Medicine In this role she is responsible for providing leadership, direction and in some cases direct supervision to a professional staff of over 40 faculty members, a portfolio of 20-25 projects and a total annual budget in excess of 7 million dollars.

Dr. Robinson has professional preparation in Nursing (BS) Special Education (MA) and Developmental Psychology with a research specialty in Mental Retardation (Ph.D.) from Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. She has worked in the field of early intervention for children at risk for and with developmental disabilities as a clinician, researcher and educator of personnel from multiple disciplines since 1973. She has been the PI on over 25 federally funded demonstration, training or research projects with particular focus on early intervention, care coordination, work with children reported as abused and neglected and research on autism.



Susan Hepburn
Susan Hepburn, PhD

Susan Hepburn, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, University of Colorado Denver is Director of Research at JFK Partners. She oversees a human subject core of over 750 families interested in research participation. Dr. Hepburn is PI or Co-PI on 18 current research protocols and has authored 38 peer-reviewed publications. Her research interests include: autism development, outcome, and comorbidity with other conditions, and interventions to promote adaptive coping skills. Dr. Hepburn teaches Child Development to psychiatrists and Early Intervention to interns and fellows, facilitates a medical students' ethics discussion group, and as a certified ADOS and ADI-R trainer, oversees training and reliability procedures for clinicians and trainees on autism diagnostic evaluation tools. As a member of the Colorado Autism Task Force, she trains school-based teams in best practices for screening and educational identification, and is developing content on toilet-training and on screening for autism for videos for families, educators and service providers.


Susan Hyman
Susan Hyman, MD


RTOI 2005-1/2-08 : Behavioral and Medical Disorders in Children with Down Syndrome in New York

Susan L. Hyman, M.D. is the Chief of the Division of Neurodevelopmental and Behavioral Pediatrics and an associate professor of Pediatrics at the Golisano Childrens' Hospital at Strong and the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. In addition to the academic practice of Neurodevelopmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Dr. Hyman has research interests which include evaluation of treatments for symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorders, Diet and Nutrition in children with Autism, and the comorbidity of other disorders, such as Down syndrome, with Autism.



Edwin Van Wijngarden
Edwin van Wijngaarden, PhD

Edwin van Wijngaarden, PhD is Assistant Professor in the Departments of Community and Preventive Medicine and Environmental Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center. Dr. van Wijngaarden earned his doctoral degree in Epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2002, and a M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences from Wageningen University in The Netherlands in 1998. He has many research interests but has focused on the potential health effects of occupational and environmental exposures, in particular as they relate to the risk of developing cancer and neurologic conditions in both children and adults. Dr. van Wijngaarden is a member of the American College of Epidemiology, the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology, and the American Medical Writers Association. He has served as an ad hoc reviewer for sixteen professional journals and has published approximately 30 peer-reviewed scientific papers and book chapters. He has advised more than 20 graduate students in public health on their Master's theses and dissertation research, and has collaborated on a wide variety of clinical and epidemiological research projects.


Diana Schendel, PhD

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