Referral guideline – Developmental regression


Developmental regression is when a child loses an acquired function or fails to progress after a period of normal development.

GP management

Clinical history and examination looking for:

  • loss of acquired skills
  • abnormal movements
  • changes in reflexes
  • seizures
  • loss of vision
  • loss of hearing
  • deterioration in behaviour
  • arrest of head growth.

When to refer

  • Refer urgently to the nearest general paediatric service.

Essential referral info

  • History of the function(s) which has been lost or isn’t progressing
  • Birth and developmental history
  • Patient details
  • Medicare number
  • Parent/carer name and contact details
  • Referring clinician details (name, contact details, provider number, date and length of referral)

Helpful referral info

  • Examination findings
  • Height/weight/head circumference/percentile charts
  • Significant psychosocial risk factors

Parent service


Contact details

Hospital Switchboard
(Ask for the General Paediatric Registrar)
t: 07 3068 1111


An approach to developmental regression (log in required)