Neurodevelopmental and Behavioral Pediatrics


Studies to Understand Medical Issues Associated with Autism

Iron and Sleep

Insomnia and other sleep problems occur in approximately 50-80% of children with ASD. Insomnia may lead to behavior problems during the day for the child and create stress for  families. One factor that may contribute to insomnia in children with ASD is a low iron store, as manifest by low serum ferritin levels.

This two-part study starts with  a personalized sleep education for the family. In the second portion of the study, children will be randomized to receive oral iron supplementation or placebo for a period of 12 weeks. The study is supported by funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to the Autism Treatment Network.

Study Eligibility

Children between 2-10.11 years with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and where there exists a concern about their sleep habits. Other criteria may apply.

Study Overview

  • Involves 7-8 sessions at URMC, which include up to 2 blood draws
  • 1:1 parent education sessions with sleep educator
  • Participants will be required to wear a wrist watch to bed
  • Eligible participants are randomized (like flipping a coin) to either the iron supplement or placebo group. 

Project Collaborators


Jennifer Foley

Phone: (585) 273-2763

Currently closed to enrollment

Connect with Golisano Children's Hospital

Golisano Children's Hospital Development

Contact Us

NDBP Research
Golisano Children’s Hospital
Box 671
601 Elmwood Avenue
Rochester, NY 14642

Phone: (585) 275-0220