Ever since the late 1980s our team of top-class clinicians, researchers (and clinical researchers) have organized many major international conferences on autism, ADHD, The Social Brain, and neurodevelopmental disorders more generally. In 2009, I coined the term ESSENCE (Early Symptomatic Syndromes Eliciting Neurodevelopmental Clinical Examinations) in order to draw attention to the very early onset and overlap of neurodevelopmental symptoms that signal the need for early diagnosis and intervention.
ESSENCE encompasses symptoms and disorders that are included under labels such as autism, ADHD, learning disability, speech and language disorder, dyslexia, developmental coordination disorder, tic disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, and reactive attachment disorder and behavioural phenotype syndromes (such as fragile X, 22q11 deletion syndrome, tuberous sclerosis and fetal alcohol spectrum disorder). These conditions all overlap with each other, and if a child (or adult) is diagnosed with one of them, he/she will need to be screened for all the others in the ESSENCE group.
In April 2018, more than 30 international experts from our large network will come together to offer the very latest in the field of ESSENCE. Everyone attending will come away from this big event feeling energised with new knowledge as to how to discover, assess and intervene in neurodevelopmental disorders. If you have attended any of the big Social Brain conferences in Gothenburg or Glasgow (and even if you have not!), ESSENCE 2018 is a must for you (or for anyone working in the field of neurodevelopment, be it child or adult services).