We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Durham University



Publication details for Professor Deborah Riby

Janes, E., Riby, D. M. & Rodgers, J. (2014). Exploring the prevalence and phenomenology of repetitive behaviours and abnormal sensory processing in children with Williams Syndrome. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research 58(8): 746-757.

Author(s) from Durham


A small amount of research with individuals who have Williams Syndrome (WS) suggests that children with the condition may be vulnerable to sensory processing abnormalities and present with repetitive and restricted behaviours.

Parents of 21 children with WS aged 6–15 years completed a semi-structured interview designed to elicit the form, frequency, impact and developmental course of a range of sensory processing abnormalities and repetitive behaviours.

Findings indicate that sensory processing difficulties are predominantly characterised by hypersensitivities, particularly in relation to vestibular, auditory, gustatory and proprioceptive functioning. Parents also reported the presence of a range of restricted and repetitive behaviours, which were often associated with their child's sensory symptoms.

This study makes a significant contribution to our understanding of sensory functioning and repetitive behaviours in WS. It also highlights the need for a multidisciplinary assessment of the difficulties experienced by children with the disorder.

Contact Us

Ask us online