The neglected puzzle of dementia in people with severe/profound intellectual disabilities: A systematic literature review of observable symptoms

Maureen B. G. Wissing*, Aurora M. Ulgiati, Johannes S. M. Hobbelen, Peter P. De Deyn, Aly Waninge, Alain D. Dekker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
37 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Background: Dementia is increasingly prevalent in people with severe/profound intellectual disabilities. However, early detection and diagnosis of dementia is complex in this population. This study aimed to identify observable dementia symptoms in adults with severe/profound intellectual disabilities in available literature.

Method: A systematic literature search was conducted in PubMed, PsycINFO and Web of Science with an exhaustive search string using a combination of search terms for severe/profound intellectual disabilities and dementia/ageing.

Results: Eleven studies met inclusion criteria. Cognitive decline, behavioural and psychological alterations, decline in activities of daily living as well as neurological and physical changes were found.

Conclusions: Only a very limited number of studies reported symptoms ascribed to dementia in adults with severe/profound intellectual disabilities. Given the complexity of signalling and diagnosing dementia, dedicated studies are required to unravel the natural history of dementia in this population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-45
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities
Volume35
Issue number1
Early online date4-Jul-2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan-2022

Keywords

  • ageing
  • dementia
  • Down syndrome
  • intellectual disabilities
  • severe or profound intellectual (and multiple) disabilities
  • DOWN-SYNDROME
  • PSYCHOLOGICAL SYMPTOMS
  • OLDER-ADULTS
  • LEARNING-DISABILITY
  • DIAGNOSTIC-CRITERIA
  • ALZHEIMERS-DISEASE
  • PREVALENCE
  • AGE
  • EXPERIENCES
  • POPULATION

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