The Down's Syndrome Medical Interest Group
encouraging best-practice medical care for people with Down's Syndrome
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Site Editor Dr Jennifer Dennis

Design & Development Cayenne Web Development

© DSMIG 2002-6

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Guidelines for Essential Medical Surveillance

Download Guidelines (PDFs)  

Cardiac Disease (2007)

Cervical Spine Disorders:
Craniovertebral Instability

See also: ‘A revision of the guideline on cervical spine disorders’ reproduced by kind permission of the British Association for Community Child Health

Growth (2012)

Hearing Impairment (2007)

Thyroid Disorder (2001)

Vision/Opthalmic (2012)

See also Vision Guideline Background Notes

You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader
in order to view the PDF files.


People with Down's syndrome on the whole do not have medical problems different from those in the general population. However some medical conditions are overrepresented. Most of these are treatable disorders which, if undiagnosed, impose an additional but preventable burden of secondary handicap.

The DSMIG surveillance guidelines have been developed on the basis of available evidence by a group of clinicians with a special interest in Down's syndrome. They are updated as new research and audit evidence becomes available. The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health has been supportive of the venture and we have had guidance from the Centre for Evidence Based Child Health.

The guidelines are not a blueprint for Gold Star services. Their purpose is to set out a minimum safe standard of basic medical surveillance which we consider essential for all those with the syndrome in the UK and Republic of Ireland.

This we consider to be the identification of:

We have also included information which we hope will increase understanding of the complex issues surrounding cervical spine disorders.

We are currently producing clinical awareness notes which cover other conditions. These will be posted on this site as they become available.

Guidelines review schedule

Our guidelines are reviewed as and when time allows. The situation as of March 2012 is as follows:


Full evidence-based revision (2012) available online


Revised version following review by BACDA in Oct 2004 now online


Full evidence-based revision (2007) available online

Cervical spine disorders

Full evidence-based revision (2012) available online.


Informal review in the light of recent published work suggests no change necessary at the moment (2011)


Full evidence based revision (2012) available online.

Other Publications

Keypoint series

At a glance reference sheets covering the guidelines and other areas.

Clinical awareness notes

which cover other conditions