Background The ability to perform activities of daily living (ADL) as a component of participation is one of the factors that contribute to the quality of life. The ability to perform ADL for persons experiencing severe/profound intellectual disability (ID) may be reduced due to their cognitive and physical capacities. However, until recently, the impact of the significantly prevalent visual impairments on the performance of activities of daily living has not yet been revealed within this group. Aim The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of visual impairment on the performance of Activities of Daily Living for persons with a severe/profound intellectual disability. Method The Barthel Index (BI) and Comfortable Walking Speed (CWS) were employed in order to measure in 240 persons with severe/profound ID and having Gross Motor Functioning Classification System (GMFCS) levels I, II or III the ability of performing activities of daily living (ADL); this included 120 persons with visual impairment. Effects were analysed with linear regression analyses. Results The results of the study demonstrated that visual impairment has a minimal, but significant, effect on the ability of performing Activities of Daily Living (BI) for persons with a severe/profound intellectual disability. Forty four percent of the total BI score can be predicted by the GMFCS level and the level of ID; 45% with the additional presence of visual impairment. GMFCS levels II or III, a profound ID level, and visual impairment yielded lower BI scores compared to GMFCS Level I, severe ID, and no visual impairment. CWS scores did not significantly vary if visual impairment was present. Conclusions Visual impairment does slightly affect the ability to perform ADL in persons experiencing severe/profound ID.
|Pages (from-to)||35 - 42|
|Journal||Research in Developmental Disabilities|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
- intellectual disabilities
- visual impairment
- daily life