The prevalence of patients surviving with significant developmental delay has steadily increased as improved medical care has led to greater life expectancy, and the care of these children and adolescents and their attendant medical and behavior problems has led to increased stress for their caregivers in the hospital setting. Increased polypharmacy and progressively more restrictive measures have not been effective. Nurses feel threatened when the patients are violent, pediatricians are unfamiliar with management of their uncontrolled behavior, and both look to the consultation-liaison psychiatrist for guidance (1-3).
This presentation will provide an overview of the various more common etiologies of developmental delay, their possible medical and psychiatric comorbidities, and the therapeutic behavioral and pharmacologic interventions for potentially risky behavioral outbursts in this patient population.
Attendees will gain a better understanding of how to approach and intervene with pediatric patients with developmental delay when they exhibit disruptive behavioral outbursts with the goal of limiting risk to the patient, family, and staff.
At the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the outpatient clinic, The USC Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, care is provided for children, adolescents, and young adults with developmental disabilities on a daily basis. Effective and innovative behavioral, psychosocial, and pharmacologic interventions which are implemented on the inpatient setting will be presented.
Intervention strategies have become increasingly important as the number of hospitalized patients with developmental disabilities increase and the need grows to provide the most effective interventions when disruptive or aggressive behavior occurs.