OBJECTIVE. Research examining sensory processing patterns in persons with Angelman syndrome is nonexistent despite anecdotal evidence and clinical diagnostic criteria that may reflect these features. The goal of this study was to better characterize sensory processing patterns in persons with Angelman syndrome.
METHOD. Parents of 340 persons with Angelman syndrome between 3 and 22 years of age completed a standardized measure of sensory processing, the Sensory Experiences Questionnaire.
RESULTS. Results confirmed a high degree and variety of sensory processing abnormalities in persons with Angelman syndrome. These problems were most prominent in the areas of hypo-responsiveness to tactile and vestibular input, consistent with reports of sensory seeking behaviors in this population. Sensory processing deficits were not related to gender, seizure disorder, or genetic subtype. However, some behaviors were correlated with age.
CONCLUSION. This study provides the first systematic description of sensory processing abnormalities in a large sample of persons with Angelman syndrome. Considerations for enhancing occupational performance and social participation in this population through occupational therapy interventions are discussed.