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Developmental-Behavioral Services

Patient Resources

CHARM (Charleston Resiliency Monitoring) Study is a longitudinal study to understand risk and resiliency in children and teens. CHARM is currently recruiting families with 3rd, 6th, and 9th graders.
Learn more about CHARM

SPARK (Simons Foundation Powering Autism Research for Knowledge) SPARK is an online research initiative designed to become the largest autism study ever undertaken in the United States. Sponsored by the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI), SPARK will collect information and DNA for genetic analysis from 50,000 individuals with autism — and their families — to advance our understanding of this condition and speed up the discovery of supports and treatments. Individuals of all ages with Autism Spectrum Disorder, PDD-NOS, Asperger’s Disorder, or Autism are welcome to join.

MUSC is one of a select group of 30 research institutions across the nation chosen by SFARI to assist with recruitment, a testament to MUSC’s strength in autism research. The research is led by Laura Carpenter, PhD, professor of pediatrics and SC Lend training director, and Catherine Bradley, PhD, associate professor of pediatrics.

SPARK's Goals

  • SPARK aims to speed up autism research by inviting participation from this large, diverse autism community, with the goal of including individuals with a professional diagnosis of autism of both sexes and all ages, backgrounds, races, geographic locations and socioeconomic situations.
  • Autism is known to have a strong genetic component. To date, approximately 50 genes have been identified that almost certainly play a role in autism, and scientists estimate that an additional 300 or more are involved. By studying these genes, associated biological mechanisms and how genetics interact with environmental factors, researchers can better understand the condition's causes, and link them to the spectrum of symptoms, skills and challenges of those affected.
  • SPARK will connect participants to researchers, offering them the unique opportunity to impact the future of autism research by joining any of the multiple studies offered through SPARK.
  • The initiative will catalyze research by creating large-scale access to study participants whose DNA may be selectively analyzed for a specific scientific question of interest.
  • SPARK will also elicit feedback from individuals and parents of children with autism to develop a robust research agenda that is meaningful for them. 

Dr. Laura Carpenter talks with Bobbi Connor on South Carolina Public Radio about SPARK. Listen to the podcast.

WBTW News covers a SPARK Enrollment Event in Myrtle Beach. Watch the story.

If you have any questions about SPARK at MUSC, please contact us at sparkautism@musc.edu or at 843-714-1352.
Join SPARK today!

Your child's initial visit typically involves an evaluation by a developmental pediatrician, psychologist, psychiatrist or social worker.

Services We Offer

  • ADHD evaluation
  • Autism spectrum disorder evaluation 
  • Cardiac neurodevelopmental follow-up 
  • Developmental-behavioral evaluation 
  • Down syndrome care
  • High-risk neonatal intensive care (NICU) follow-up 
  • Infant and toddler evaluation 
  • International Adoption Clinic
  • Neurodevelopmental psychiatry 
  • Neuropsychology 
  • Parent-child interaction therapy
  • Preschool clinic
  • School-age clinic
  • Spina bifida care

Our Evaluation Process Includes

  • An extensive review of concerns related to your child’s developmental, medical, social and educational history.
  • Consultation with teachers, therapists and other health care professionals.
  • Physical and neurological examinations.
  • Standardized tests, questionnaires, observations and demonstrations.

After a comprehensive evaluation, the health care provider will discuss results of the evaluation and recommendations with you, which may involve referrals to other pediatric specialists. The goal of the initial visit is to understand your child’s strengths and needs, determine what is typical and what is not, and determine which services your child may need to grow, learn, and develop to the best of his or her ability.

Locations

Children's Hospital

10 McClennan Banks Drive
Charleston, SC 29425
Main: 843-792-2300

Specialty Care Mount Pleasant

2705 Highway 17
Suite 100
Mount Pleasant, SC 29466
Main: 843-876-2222

Specialty Care Summerville

4330 Ladson Road
Summerville, SC 29485
Main: 843-876-2222

West Ashley Medical Pavilion

2060 Sam Rittenberg Boulevard
Charleston, SC 29407

More Care Team Members

Psychology

Catherine Bradley, Ph.D.

Laura Carpenter, Ph.D.

Kasey Hamlin-Smith, Ph.D.

Pam Ingram, EdS

Mary Kral, Ph.D.

Alyssa Schlenz, Ph.D.

Social Work

Karen van Bakergem, LISW-CP

Ashley Early, LISW-CP

Nursing

Virginia Divers, CMA 

Oanh Foust, BSN, RNIII, CPN

Amy Richburg, MSN, RN, CPN

T'keyah Singleton, CMA