November 1979

Developmental-Behavioral Dysfunction in Preschool ChildrenDescriptive Analysis of a Pediatric Consultative Model

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, Children's Hospital Medical Center, Boston.

Am J Dis Child. 1979;133(11):1126-1131. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1979.02130110034003

• A study of 79 preschool children referred to an interdisciplinary clinic because of behavioral problems and developmental concerns was done. Historical data and information regarding present functioning were collected using standard questionnaires. In addition to medical, neurological, and psychiatric examinations, every child received a neurodevelopmental assessment. When compared with a matched cohort of children from the community, the clinic population had a higher incidence of developmental concerns. Of 37 children referred because of "hyperactivity" or other behavioral concerns, 13 had previously undetected developmental concerns requiring specific interventions. Dysfunction in preschool children may be the result of an ongoing reciprocal interaction between constitutional predispositions and social and environmental factors. A comprehensive, developmentally oriented approach seems to be indicated in the assessment of these children. This may have implications for pediatric practice.

(Am J Dis Child 133:1126-1131, 1979)