Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 40, Issue 10, pp 1171–1178

Behavior Problems, Psychiatric Symptoms, and Quality of Life for Older Adults With Intellectual Disability With and Without Autism


    • School of PsychologyBangor University
  • David Felce
    • Welsh Centre for Learning Disabilities, School of MedicineCardiff University
  • Michael Kerr
    • Welsh Centre for Learning Disabilities, School of MedicineCardiff University
  • Richard P. Hastings
    • School of PsychologyBangor University
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10803-010-0975-1

Cite this article as:
Totsika, V., Felce, D., Kerr, M. et al. J Autism Dev Disord (2010) 40: 1171. doi:10.1007/s10803-010-0975-1


The evidence base on outcomes associated with autism in older adulthood is limited. The expected increase in the prevalence of older adults with autism highlights the need to describe their profiles and service needs. Adults 50 years or older with an intellectual disability (ID) and the triad of impairments characteristic of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) were compared to peers with ID only, and younger adults with ASD and ID. After accounting for ability differences, older adults with ASD did not differ from those with ID in terms of behavior problems, psychiatric disorder, and quality of life. Any differences in the skills of adults with ASD were associated with decreased adaptive skills, and not the presence of ASD per se.


Older adults Autism spectrum disorders Intellectual disability Ageing

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010