Online Program

Health and Health-related Quality of Life in Adults with Intellectual Disabilities: Baseline Results from the Longitudinal Health and Intellectual Disability Study (LHIDS)

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Sumithra Murthy, MBBS, MPH, Department of Disability and Human Development, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Kelly Hsieh, PhD, Department of Disability and Human Development, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
James Rimmer, PhD, School of Health Professions, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
Background: Adults with intellectual disabilities (ID) are often at a higher risk of developing chronic health conditions which result in poorer health, due to their preexisting biological factors, health behaviors, or access to health care and screening. The purpose of this study is to examine health and health related quality of life (HRQOL) in adults with ID living in community settings.

Methods: We analyzed baseline data (N=1,619) from the Longitudinal Health and Intellectual Disability Study (LHIDS). Measures included demographics and characteristics, informant-rated health, weight status, HRQOL (i.e., physically unhealthy days, mentally unhealthy days, and number of activity limitation days), number of chronic health conditions, and number of medications.

Results: Participants were primarily White (88.0%) and the average age was 37.57 years (range 18 – 86 years). Men with ID were more likely to be rated very good or excellent, and increased physically unhealthy days as they aged. Women with ID were more likely to be obese, had more chronic health conditions, and took more medications. Physically unhealthy days significantly increased as age increased. Chronic health conditions that increased with age included number of health conditions, thyroid disorder, constipation, hip/knee pain, urinary incontinence, headache, sleep disorder, osteoporosis, and depression. Health status and number of medications taken also significantly differed among residential settings.

Conclusions: The findings suggest that health disparities exist among women and men, residential settings, and age groups. Development of health promotion guidelines targeted to specific subgroups (while taking age into account) for adults with ID are needed.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Compare health and HRQOL of adults with ID by sex, age group, and residential type. Discuss the trends in chronic health conditions as adults with ID age. Discuss implications of the findings and the need for development of health promotion guidelines to reduce health disparities.

Keyword(s): Disabilities, Health Disparities/Inequities

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I hold an MBBS degree from the University of Mumbai, India and an MPH degree from Northwestern University, Chicago. I am the Project Coordinator for the Longitudinal Health & Intellectual Disability Study and Falls Prevention Study among adults with ID at UIC. I have had extensive clinical experience and a rich background of work on public health programs in primary health centers in India.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.