Repetitive and ritualistic
behaviour in children with Prader-Willi syndrome and children with autism.
Islington Primary Care NHS Trust, London, UK.
Summary by Jamie H. Bassel, D.C., P.C.
In this month’s Journal of Intellectual Disability Research this study reveals
that people with Prader-Willi Syndrome (PWS) display obsessive repetitive and
ritualistic behavior. This is seen as an extension from known food seeking
behavior. The study compared children with Autism with children with PWS. In
both conditions individuals display increases in recurring, inflexible and
routine behavior. Parents were asked to fill-out the Childhood Routines
Inventory (CRI) questionnaire. The results revealed that both groups had similar
responses. Parents of PWS children indicated that behaviors of “collecting and
storing items” occurred more frequently, whereas, autistic children were more
interested in “lining up” objects, specific foods and details of the home
environment. The study concluded that the typical behavioral pattern in PWS
focuses on items being “just right”, persistence of “sameness”. There is an
overwhelming relationship between children of autism and PWS and therefore
proper psychological/medical management should focus on rigid behavioral
patterns. Furthermore, future studies should examine whether there is a
specific gene location or neurotransmitter that addresses this behavior in both
children with Autism and PWS.
J Intellect Disabil Res. 2006 Feb;50(Pt 2):92-100.