Overview of each component of the study

Behavioral Assessments

Testing includes confirmation of your child’s diagnosis and evaluation of your child’s language, handedness, and attention skills. You will be given questionnaires to complete that provide detailed information about your child and family. Because young children differ in how they perform with adults in testing sessions, the length of testing will vary. Usually, testing will last 1.5 – 3 hours during each half-day visit. However, the examiner and team are sensitive to children’s needs, and breaks in testing are provided and planned according to parent’s desires.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

The MRI provides detailed pictures of the structure and connectivity of your child’s brain. MRI is very safe. It is a completely non-invasive procedure. This means that no needles are used and no chemicals or radiation (as is the case with X-rays) are used to create images.

The MRI is scheduled around your child’s bedtime and is performed when they are asleep without the use of sedation or medications. This session will take place at the Imaging Research Center. The MRI scan takes about 35 minutes, but time required to complete this session varies depending on how long it takes for your child to fall asleep.

This is not the kind of MRI scan that you would get for a medical reason, but a radiologist will routinely read these scans. Also, if you so indicate, a copy of the radiologist’s report may be sent to your physician(s). In the rare case that there were unusual or puzzling results with your child's scan, the GAIN Study medical staff will contact you to discuss the findings and make recommendations for follow-up.

Medical Examination

A pediatrician will collect a medical history about your family and conduct a short medical exam on your child. You child’s height, weight, and head circumference will be measured.

Blood Draw

The blood draw allows researchers to study immune functions, genetics, and other possible biomarkers. A total of two to three tablespoons of blood will be collected from the participating child and their biological parents. The blood draw takes less than 30 minutes and is usually conducted at the MIND Institute. In some instances, another lab near the MIND Institute may be used.