Intellectual, Behavioral, and Emotional Functioning in Children With Syndromic Craniosynostosis

Marianne Maliepaard, Irene Mathijssen, J Oosterlaan, J.M.E. Okkerse

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OBJECTIVES: To examine intellectual, behavioral, and emotional functioning of children who have syndromic craniosynostosis and to explore differences between diagnostic subgroups. METHODS: A national sample of children who have syndromic craniosynostosis participated in this study. Intellectual, behavioral, and emotional outcomes were assessed by using standardized measures: Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children, Third Edition, Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL)/6-18, Disruptive Behavior Disorder rating scale (DBD), and the National Institute of Mental Health Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children. RESULTS: We included 82 children (39 boys) aged 6 to 13 years who have syndromic craniosynostosis. Mean Full-Scale IQ (FSIQ) was in the normal range (M = 96.6; SD = 21.6). However, children who have syndromic craniosynostosis had a 1.9 times higher risk for developing intellectual disability (FSIQ < 85) compared with the normative population (P <.001) and had more behavioral and emotional problems compared with the normative population, including higher scores on the CBCL/6-18, DBD Total Problems (P < .001), Internalizing (P < .01), social problems (P < .001), attention problems (P < .001), and the DBD Inattention (P < .001). Children who have Apert syndrome had lower FSIQs (M = 76.7; SD = 13.3) and children who have Muenke syndrome had more social problems (P < .01), attention problems (P < .05), and inattention problems (P < .01) than normative population and with other diagnostic subgroups. CONCLUSIONS: Although children who have syndromic craniosynostosis have FSIQs similar to the normative population, they are at increased risk for developing intellectual disability, internalizing, social, and attention problems. Higher levels of behavioral and emotional problems were related to lower levels of intellectual functioning.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)E1608-E1615
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Research programs

  • EMC NIHES-01-50-01-A
  • EMC NIHES-04-55-01

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