Background: Mental and behavioral disorders among adults with Usher syndrome have been discussed and reported in some case studies but no research has been reported on children with Usher syndrome.
Methods: This article investigates the prevalence and characteristics of mental and behavioral disorders among 26 children, 3-17 years of age, with Usher syndrome.
Results: Six of the 26 children were diagnosed with a mental or behavioral disorder (1 with schizophrenia and mild mental retardation, 1 with atypical autism and severe mental retardation, 1 with atypical autism and mild mental retardation, 1 with mild mental retardation, and 2 with conduct disorder). Another 3 children had had a mental or behavioral disorder previously in their childhood.
Conclusion: Even though vision impairment first manifests in late childhood, some children with Usher syndrome seem to develop mental and behavioral disorders during childhood. The aetiology and treatment of mental and behavioral disorders among children with Usher syndrome are discussed. Children with Usher syndrome and their parents may need clinical support during early childhood to prevent development of mental and behavioral disorders.
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