The Center for Child Health, Behavior and Development is conducting clinical studies that help researchers understand and explore new treatments for a variety of child health conditions.

Participants in these studies can take advantage of new therapies before they are widely available and help others by contributing to research. To find about more about the clinical studies process, and its potential benefits and risks, read this guide to clinical studies.

To learn about the CHBD’s studies, select a condition below to see a list of studies that are enrolling participants or are underway but not currently enrolling. If you don’t see a study that fits your needs, ask your doctor or nurse for help finding studies that might be right for your child.

Clinical studies by condition:


Improving Asthma Outcomes Through Spirometry Distance Learning (Rita Mangione-Smith, MD, MPH)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Asthma

Status: Active, not recruiting

Contact: Email Linda Shih

Description: Misclassification of asthma severity occurs when assessment is based on symptoms alone. This misclassification can lead to inadequate treatment, increased morbidity, and increased healthcare utilization/cost.

This study’s goal is to test the effectiveness of a distance learning quality improvement program called Spirometry 360, developed by the Interactive Medical Training Resources (iMTR) group at the University of Washington Child Health Institute. Spirometry, a simple breathing test that measures lung function, is a recommended component of asthma diagnosis and treatment in the primary care setting, yet few providers routinely use it for children with asthma. The Spirometry 360 program aims to improve care for children with asthma by enhancing provider knowledge and self-efficacy related to the use and interpretation of office-based spirometry. Learn more.

Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Children’s ADHD Telemental Health Treatment Study (CATTS)

Medical Condition/Therapy: ADHD

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email the CATT study team or call 800-997-4017

Description: Seattle Children’s Hospital is conducting a study to compare two telemental health (TMH) treatment approaches to help children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD/ADD). TMH uses two-way cameras to allow families in underserved areas to meet with a psychiatrist at Seattle Children’s Hospital over the TV. Children 5½ to 12 years old already diagnosed with ADHD/ADD or who might have ADHD/ADD are eligible for the study. Eligible children receive an evaluation at the local TMH clinic (Longview, Olympia, Everett, Wenatchee or Richland). Participating families will be randomly assigned to one of two study groups:

  • Group A: Six sessions of medication and behavioral training
  • Group B: A consultation session with a telepsychiatrist who makes treatment recommendations to the referring doctor

These sessions are free to families. Both groups will complete research questionnaires five times during the study. Learn more.

Sequencing Treatments for Mothers with ADHD and Their At-Risk Children (“Treating Mothers First”)

Medical Condition/Therapy: ADHD

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Libby Bliss or call 206-884-1488

Description: Young children of mothers with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are at heightened risk for ADHD by virtue of genetics and family environment. Maternal ADHD is associated with difficulties parenting effectively and a decreased response to evidence-based behavioral parent training interventions. Many questions remain regarding to how best to treat families in which the mother has ADHD. This study assesses whether mothers with ADHD and their children benefit by treating mothers first using stimulant medication, behavioral parent training or a combination of both. It will also examine whether there is a difference in the order of treatment mothers receive (e.g., medication first or parent training first).


Gender Exploration of Neurogenetics and Development to Advance Autism Research (GENDAAR)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Autism spectrum disorders

Status: Enrolling

Contact: Email Desiree Gulliford or call 206-884-7814

Description: Dr. Sara Webb is looking for girls and boys with ASD between the ages of 8–17 years old to participate in a new study exploring gender differences in autism spectrum disorders. The study involves two to three half-day visits to Seattle Children’s, which will include:

  • Functional magnetic imaging (fMRI) to take pictures of your child’s brain
  • A blood draw for DNA analysis
  • EEG to record the electrical signals of your child’s brain
  • Assessment of your child’s cognitive, language and social skills

We will also ask you to answer questions regarding your child’s behavior and development. You will receive payment for your participation. This study is being conducted by a collaboration of researchers at Seattle Children’s Research Institute, Yale University, UCLA and Harvard University, and is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Social Reward in Autism: Electrophysiological, Clinical and Behavioral Correlates

Medical Condition/Therapy: Autism

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email  Dr. Emily Neuhaus

Description: The goal of this study is to learn how the brain responds to different kinds of rewards and how that relates to social and communication skills for children with or without ASD. We’re looking for 8-to-12-year-old children with or without an autism spectrum disorder. The study includes one lab visit of three to four hours, plus questionnaires and phone calls at the start of the study and at a later time. The lab visit will include using EEG to measure brain activity during a computer game, plus other games and activities.

Studying the Physiology of Attention and Regulation in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (SPARCS)

 Medical Condition/Therapy: Autism spectrum disorders

Status: Active, no longer enrolling for ASD group

Contact: Email SPARCS or call 206-884-1267

Description: Dr. Sara Webb is looking for 1-to-4-year-old children with typical development to participate in a study on attention, regulation, and development. We will monitor your child’s heart rate while they watch movies and play games in two or three 2-hour visits to Seattle Children’s Research Institute in downtown Seattle, and parents will be asked to complete questionnaires and interviews. We will do one follow-up visit plus questionnaires and phone calls 6 months and 1 year later. Free developmental evaluations will be provided, and you will receive $25 and parking compensation for each visit.

Study of Oxytocin in Autism to Improve Reciprocal Social Behaviors (SOARS-B)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Autism

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Christine Rubery

Description: The purpose of this research study is to learn about the effects of intranasal oxytocin as a supplemental treatment for improving social difficulties in children and adolescents, ages 3 to 17, with autism. This study will also provide additional information about the safety and tolerability of intranasal oxytocin. During the first six months of the study, participants will be randomly assigned to take either placebo or active oxytocin. During the second six months, all participants will take active oxytocin. Study participants will come to Seattle Children’s for visits once a month for 12 months with one follow-up visit at 18 months. Learn more

Targeting GABA-A for the Treatment of Social Disability in Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders (FAST-AS Study)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Autism

Status: Recruiting/Enrolling

Contact: Email Denise Ward

Description: We are doing a research study to learn more about an investigational drug called AZD7325. We want to know if this investigational drug is safe, tolerable and effective on social communication in adults with autism. Eligible participants are adults ages 18 to 35 years who have been diagnosed with high-functioning autism. Study participants will come to Seattle Children’s up to nine times over the course of 12 weeks for study visits. They will be given either the investigational drug or a placebo. Study visits involve EEGs, questionnaires, interviews and blood draws.

Vasopressin Antagonist to Improve Social Communication in Autism (Vanilla Study)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Autism

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Denise Ward

Description: The Vanilla study will measure the effects of an investigational drug called BP28420 on social behavior, communication and safety in adult males with autism. Eligible participants are adult males ages 18 to 35 who have been diagnosed with autism. Eligible participants will come to Seattle Children’s once a week over the course of about 12 weeks for study visits, with one follow-up visit at week 18. Participants will be given either the investigational drug or a placebo during study participation. Participants will need a caregiver to come with them to each study visit. Learn more.

Cerebral Palsy

Relationship of Orthotics to Activity and Participation in Children with Cerebral Palsy

Medical Condition/Therapy: Ambulatory cerebral palsy

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Ana Kobayashi (206-884-2756) or Kristie Bjornson (206-884-2066)

Description: This study will quantify daily walking and physical activity levels for children with cerebral palsy (CP) with and without use of a solid ankle foot orthotic (SAFO). The purpose of this study is to determine the effect of wearing or not wearing a previously prescribed SAFO on a child's walking ability, participation in common life activities, and gait. Children ages 2–10 years who have bilateral cerebral palsy and dynamic equinus gait deformity, and wear bilateral SAFOs fabricated by Cascade DAFO (Ferndale, Wash.), may be eligible for participation.

Enrolled children are randomly assigned to either wear or not wear their SAFOs for a 14-day intervention period. After this period is over, children will then do the opposite for a second 14-day intervention period. Children attend three study visits. The first research visit occurs at enrollment at Seattle Children’s. The next two research visits occur in the children’s homes after each of the intervention periods. Learn more.

Children from Families with Language Barriers

Impact of Remote Interpreter Modality on Comprehension, Communication Quality and Length of Stay in the Pediatric ED

Medical Condition/Therapy: Children from families with language barriers

Status: Active, not recruiting

Contact: Email Casey Lion or call 206-884-1049

Description: This study will measure the impact of using telephone vs. video interpretation to improve communication with families that require interpretation in the emergency department (ED). Improving communication is central to improving the safety and effectiveness of care provided to these children. Enrolled families will receive either telephone or video interpretation during their ED visit, then complete a telephone survey the following day. Families who agree will also have their ED visit video recorded. Doctors and nurse practitioners in the ED will fill out an online survey.

Chronic Pain

CHAMP (Changing How We Approach Mechanisms of Pain)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Youth at risk for developing chronic pain

Status: Active, not recruiting

Contact: Email Dr. Tonya Palermo

Description: The focus of the CHAMP study (Changing How We Approach Mechanisms of Pain) is to identify factors that place youth at risk for developing chronic pain. This research project will gather information on the mechanisms of chronic pain, particularly the role of the brain in modulating pain signals. We are studying a combination of factors including results from:

  • A lab-based thermal task that looks at how the brain blocks unpleasant sensations
  • Psychological measures
  • Parental reports of responses to their child’s pain behaviors

Learn more.

Parental Problem Solving and Child Chronic Pain

Medical Condition/Therapy: Parent caregivers of children and adolescents with chronic pain

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Tricia Jessen-Fiddick

Description: The aim of this project is to evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of problem-solving skills training (PSST) as an intervention in parent caregivers of youth with chronic pain, and to conduct a preliminary efficacy trial of PSST in parents of youth with chronic pain. Learn more.

Social Mechanisms of Chronic Pain

Medical Condition/Therapy: Adolescents with chronic pain

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Dr. Jessica Fales

Description: The purpose of this study is to identify peer-based risk and protective factors that influence daily pain and functioning in teens with chronic pain.

Web-MAP 2 (Web-Based Management of Adolescent Pain 2)

Medical Condition/Therapy: Children and adolescents with chronic pain

Status: Recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Tricia Jessen-Fiddick

Description: The aim of this project is to evaluate the efficacy of an Internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy intervention in a large multicenter sample of children and adolescents, ages 11 to 16 years, with chronic pain, and their parents, recruited from pain centers across the U.S. and Canada. Learn more.


Long-Term Outcome of Drowning

Medical Condition/Therapy: Drowning

Status: Active, not recruiting

Contact: Email Linda Quan

Description: This study includes several evaluations of a cohort of people of all ages who had a drowning event in King, Pierce or Snohomish Counties between 1975 and 1996 and were either hospitalized or died due to the drowning. We will evaluate the long-term outcome of survivors of drowning and their survival curves, neurologic status and medical issues in the years after the drowning event. In addition, we will study the subgroup of drowning victims who had a cardiac arrest and were treated by emergency medical services. We will evaluate the survivors to identify what percent eventually were diagnosed with underlying cardiac causes or had subsequent events that might identify the size of this problem among drowning victims.

Pediatric Cardiac Arrest

Long-Term Outcome of Pediatric Cardiac Arrest Survivors

Medical Condition/Therapy: Pediatric cardiac arrest

Status: Active, not recruiting

Contact: Email Linda Quan

Description: This study consists of several evaluations of children less than 18 years of age who had a cardiac arrest outside of the hospital in Seattle and King County and were treated by emergency medical services, hospitalized and discharged alive. This study evaluates the long-term outcomes of these children in order to identify needs for improved outcomes and to better counsel families as to expectations and needs of this group of survivors. Long-term survival was determined by linking survivors to the state death certificate registry and the National Death Index. Long-term neurologic condition was determined by calculating patients’ cerebral performance scores from chart reviews of the initial and each subsequent hospital discharge. Long-term resource utilization was determined by identifying subsequent hospitalizations, diagnoses, hospital procedures and charges from reviewing hospital records and linkage to the Washington State Comprehensive Hospital Abstract Reporting System.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Family Communication and Support in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

Medical Condition/Therapy: Reducing post-traumatic stress disorder

Status: Currently recruiting/enrolling

Contact: Email Dr. Ross Hays, principal investigator, or Erica Bourget, project manager

Description: This project is evaluating the effect of a standardized communication intervention in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) on long-term distress of family members of children in the PICU for 5 days or longer. The study hypothesis is that intervention families will have lower (better) acute stress disorder scores when their child is discharged from the PICU and lower (better) post-traumatic stress disorder scores at 3-month follow-up, as compared to the control group families.

Weight Management

BASIC fMRI: Brain Activation and Satiety in Children Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Medical Condition/Therapy: Weight management

Status: Currently enrolling

Contact: Email Maya Rowland, or call at 206-884-8267

Description: The Brain Activation and Satiety in Children Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (BASIC fMRI) study is funded by the National Institutes of Health. The goal of this study is to look at brain responses to food and family-based behavioral treatment in order to find better ways to help families maintain a healthy weight. Participating families will enroll in a free family-based behavioral weight management treatment sessions for six months. Enrolled children will also have study visits for assessments which will include fMRI scans, blood draws, surveys, and body measurements. Learn more.

EPICH: Engaging Parents in Child Health

Medical Condition/Therapy: Weight management

Status: No longer enrolling

Contact: Email Albert Hsu, or call at 206-884-7563

Description: Health researchers at Seattle Children’s Research Institute want to find healthy ways to help kids and their parents lose weight.

You may be able to take part in this research study if:

  • Your child is 7 to 11 years old and is heavy for his or her age and gender.
  • At least one of your child’s parents is overweight.
  • You and your child speak English.
  • Both you and your child are not currently in any treatment that affects weight or growth.

If you and your child decide to take part in the study, both you and your child would:

  • Participate in family-based behavioral weight control treatment sessions every week for five months. The sessions are free and run in the evening for just over an hour at our offices in downtown Seattle.
  • Get measurements of your body composition (such as weight and height), diet and activity before receiving any treatment.
  • Get measurements taken throughout and after treatment (like the ones done before treatment).

Many children and parents have better weight control after getting behavioral treatment. This study does not use medicines or medical procedures.

Families who participate will get $40 at the end of treatment (in 5 months).

The principal investigator for this study is Dr. Brian Saelens at the University of Washington Department of Pediatrics and Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

Past Studies and Descriptions

Learn more about past studies conducted at the Center for Child Health, Behavior and Development.