ERIC Number: EJ794443
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jun
Reference Count: 17
Characterisation of User-Defined Health Status in Older Adults with Intellectual Disabilities
Starr, J. M.; Marsden, L.
Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, v52 n6 p483-489 Jun 2008
Background: Older adults with Intellectual Disabilities (ID) have an excess disease burden that standard health assessments are designed to detect. Older adults with ID have a broader concept of health with dimensions of well being in addition to absence of disease in line with the World Health Organization's health definition. We sought to characterise user-defined health status in a sample of older adults with ID. Methods: We administered a user-led health assessment to 57 adults with ID aged 40 years and over. Cluster analysis on user-defined health themes of participation, nutrition and hygiene/self-care identified clear separation of participants into a healthier and a less healthy group. Results: Disease burden (P - 0.002) and medication use (P = 0.003) were greater in the less healthy group. The healthier group were taller (P = 0.005), stronger (P = 0.005) and had better vision (P less than 0.001) than the less healthy group. Constipation (P = 0.014), urinary incontinence (P less than 0.001) and faecal incontinence (P less than 0.001) were commoner in the less healthy group. There were few significant differences between health groups on the majority of standard physical-examination items. Conclusions: There is considerable overlap between user-defined health and that assessed by standard instruments. In addition, user-defined health encompasses aspects of physical fitness not captured by traditional disease-based health models.
Descriptors: Older Adults, Mental Retardation, Health, Differences, Self Evaluation (Individuals), Physical Fitness, Disease Incidence, Multivariate Analysis, Nutrition, Hygiene, Participation
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A