Cognitive Deficits and Behavioral Disorders in Children: A Comprehensive Multidisciplinary Approach to Management

Preservation of human cognition is an important objective of the health policies of both developed and developing countries in this era of rapid demographic transition. Threat to human cognition can occur at any age in either sex due to diverse causes. Cognitive impairments pose a major obstacle to the social and economic development of any nation. Therefore, it is essential to implement a policy of “Cognitive Watch” to prevent cognitive deficits and decline in children. Management of cognitive deficits in children is quite challenging since the plasticity of a growing brain is different from that of an adult brain in several aspects. The conditions leading to cognitive deficits in children are heterogeneous with respect to etiology, pathology and pathogenesis. This review addresses some of the important conditions leading to cognitive deficits in children and their optimal management. It focuses on diverse theories of cognitive development, diverse conditions leading to cognitive decline, the biological, genetic, metabolic and endocrine mechanisms leading to pathogenesis, and suitable intervention strategies, so that it is possible to approach cognitive deficits from their developmental perspective, leading to a comprehensive multidisciplinary management. There are several classifications for cognitive deficits and intellectual disability in children but most of them are distributed and fragmented, since there is no uniform pattern of classification. Etiology- and pathology-based classification is essential to promote disorder-specific treatment. We have made a proposal for such a classification incorporating the cognitive domains.


Suresh P1,2*, Ayyappan A1, Nandini J2, Ismail T1

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