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Minerva Psichiatrica 2001 June;42(2):91-8


language: Italian

Study of temperament in subjects with Down and Fragile X Syndrome and in their relatives

Bargagna S., Canepa G., Juneeschi M., Tinelli F.


Background. The aim of this paper is to describe temperament characteristics in children with Down and Fragile X Syndrome, their parents and brothers in order to investigate if they present some typical similar characteristics.
Methods. The method employed as a measure of temperament was the Buss and Plomin EAS scale based on a three-dimensional typology of temperament, using a sample of 23 children with Down Syndrome (RMD) and 12 children with Fragile X Syndrome (RMX). The scale is a questionnaire in two forms, one for children and adolescents and one for adults, to be completed by parents and consisting of 20 items on emotionality, activity, sociability and, only for children, shyness.
Results. On the basis of the standard deviations and the means obtained for every dimensions of temperament, temperament was variable within both groups of RMD and RMX. Children with RMD presented high levels of sociability while children with RMX presented higher levels of activity, emotionality and shyness. Differences with statistical relevance between the two groups were on the level of activity, emotionality and shyness. The results, obtained using a t-test, highlighted a similarity between the temperament of children with RMD and that of their parents and brothers, while children with RMX differed greatly form their own parents and mothers.
Conclusions. Further transversal and longitudinal studyes carried out on a wider group of subjects would be useful to evaluate same aspects of temperament characteristics in children with Down Syndrome and children with Fragile X Syndrome. They would also be useful to evaluate the children adaption behaviour and to give indications for treatment.

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