Childhood disintegrative disorder is also known as Heller's syndrome. It's a very rare condition in which children develop normally until at least two years of age, but then demonstrate a severe loss of social, communication and other skills.
Childhood disintegrative disorder is part of a larger category called autism spectrum disorder. However, unlike autism, someone with childhood disintegrative disorder shows severe regression after several years of normal development and a more dramatic loss of skills than a child with autism does. In addition, childhood disintegrative disorder can develop later than autism does.
Treatment for childhood disintegrative disorder involves a combination of medications, behavior therapy and other approaches.
Mar. 06, 2013
- Childhood disintegrative disorder. In: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TR. 4th ed. Arlington, Va.: American Psychiatric Association; 2000. http://www.psychiatryonline.com. Accessed Jan. 21, 2013.
- Fact sheet: Childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD). Illinois Autism Training & Technical Assistance Project. http://www.illinoisautismproject.org/. Accessed Jan. 21, 2013.
- Sadock BJ, et al. Kaplan & Sadock's Comprehensive Textbook of Psychiatry. 9th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Wolters Kluwer Health Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2009. http://ovidsp.ovid.com/ovidweb.cgi?T=JS&CSC=Y&NEWS=N&PAGE=booktext&D=books2&AN=01412563/9th_Edition/5&XPATH=/OVIDBOOK%5b1%5d/METADATA%5b1%5d/TBY%5b1%5d/EDITORS%5b1%5d. Accessed Jan. 21, 2013.
- Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs): Condition information. Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. http://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/autism/conditioninfo/Pages/default.aspx. Accessed. Jan. 21, 2013.
- Charan SH. Childhood disintegrative disorder. Journal of Pediatric Neurosciences. 2012;7:55.
- Augustyn M. Terminology, epidemiology, and pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorders. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 21, 2013.
- Pervasive developmental disorders information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/pdd/pdd.htm. Accessed Jan 21. 2013.
- A parent's guide to autism spectrum disorder. National Institute of Mental Health. http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/a-parents-guide-to-autism-spectrum-disorder/what-is-autism-spectrum-disorder-asd.shtml. Accessed Jan. 21, 2013.
- Augustyn M. Diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan 21, 2013.
- Huffman LC, et al. Management of symptoms in children with autism spectrum disorders: A comprehensive review of pharmacologic and complementary-alternative medicine treatment. Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics. 2011;32:56.
- Kupfer DJ, et al. DSM-5 — The future arrived. JAMA In press. Accessed Feb. 25, 2013.
- Huxsahl JE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Feb. 5, 2013.
- Swintak CC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Feb. 21, 2013.
- Rosman NO, et al. Childhood disintegrative disorder: Distinction from autistic disorder and predictors of outcome. Journal of Child Neurology. In print. Accessed Feb. 24, 2013.