Epidemiology of self-injurious behaviour in adults with learning disabilities

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Background There have been few epidemiological studies of the disabling and poorly understood disorder self-injurious behaviour among adults with learning disabilities.

Method Interviews were undertaken with the carers of adults known to the Leicestershire Learning Disabilities Register (n=2277).The Disability Assessment Schedule was used and information was also collected on demographic characteristics, developmental and physical status.

Results Self-injurious behaviour was present in 17.4% of the population. In 1.7% self-injurious behaviour occurred frequently and was severe. There was no gender difference between those with and without self-injurious behaviour. Both the chronological age and developmental quotient of individuals with self-injurious behaviour were lower than those of individuals without self-injurious behaviour. Autistic symptoms were more common among those with self-injurious behaviour. The association of self-injurious behaviour with a wide range of other maladaptive behaviour was highly significant. Logistic regression analysis retained age, developmental quotient, hearing status, immobility and number of autistic symptoms as explanatory variables for self-injurious behaviour.

Conclusions Self-injurious behaviour is a prevalent and disabling disorder among adults with learning disabilities.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles