Intellectual Disability in the Elderly

  • Joanna C. Lim
  • Laurel J. Bessey
  • Pallavi Joshi
  • Lisa L. Boyle


Older adults with intellectual disability (ID) represent a heterogeneous population, including individuals with genetic syndromes along with acquired brain injuries that occur during the developmental period, resulting in intellectual cognitive impairments identified in the developmental period that lead to functional impairments. Over the course of several decades, life expectancy of many individuals with ID has increased due to improved medical and social care, leading to increased challenges for providers and society to address the unique needs of this growing older adult population. Older adults with ID are more likely to have comorbid psychiatric disorders, most commonly affective disorders. Psychiatrists will be increasingly called upon to help optimize behavioral and psychiatric health of older adults with ID. Special considerations also include evaluation and management of comorbid neurocognitive disorders in patients with ID.


Intellectual disabilities Mental retardation Fragile X syndrome Down syndrome Rett’s syndrome 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joanna C. Lim
    • 1
  • Laurel J. Bessey
    • 2
  • Pallavi Joshi
    • 3
  • Lisa L. Boyle
    • 4
  1. 1.Veterans Affairs Medical CenterWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public HealthMadisonUSA
  3. 3.Hofstra-Northwell School of Medicine-Staten Island University HospitalStaten IslandUSA
  4. 4.William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans HospitalMadisonUSA

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