Development in children with achondroplasia: A prospective clinical cohort study

Penelope J. Ireland*, Samantha Donaghey, James Mcgill, Andreas Zankl, Robert S. Ware, Verity Pacey, Jenny Ault, Ravi Savarirayan, David Sillence, Elizabeth Thompson, Sharron Townshend, Leanne M. Johnston

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


Aim Achondroplasia is characterized by delays in the development of communication and motor skills. While previously reported developmental profiles exist across gross motor, fine motor, feeding, and communication skills, there has been no prospective study of development across multiple areas simultaneously. Method This Australasian population-based study utilized a prospective questionnaire to quantify developmental data for skills in children born from 2000 to 2009. Forty-eight families from Australia and New Zealand were asked to report every 3months on their child's attainment of 41 milestones. Results include reference to previously available prospective information. Results Information from questionnaires was used to develop an achondroplasia-specific developmental recording form. The 25th, 50th, 75th, and 90th centiles were plotted to offer clear guidelines for development across gross motor, fine motor, feeding, and communication skills in children with achondroplasia. Interpretations Consistent with results from previous research, children with achondroplasia are delayed in development of gross motor and ambulatory skills. Young children with achondroplasia demonstrate a number of unique movement strategies that appear compensatory for the biomechanical changes. While delays were seen in development of later communication items, there were fewer delays seen across development of early communication, fine motor, and feeding skills.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)532-537
Number of pages6
JournalDevelopmental Medicine and Child Neurology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes


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