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Community Health Care for Adults and Elders with Developmental Disabilities Research and Training

A Project of the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD)
funded by the Washington State Developmental Disabilities Council (DDC)

AEDD Home > Curricula for Family and Residential Providers >
Primary Care for the Adult With Developmental Disability

Primary Care for the Adult With Developmental Disability

Karen Anderson, M.D., M.P.H.
Medical Director,
Community Services Network


Adults with DD in your practice

Demographics: Community Population

Demographics: Dependent Care Population

Demographics: special considerations

Communication issues: getting a history

Communication issues: getting an exam

Preventive Care

Communication issues: input from specialist

Healthcare issues

  • Central Nervous System:
    • Mental Retardation
    • Seizures
    • Behavioral/psychiatric issues
    • Motor Disorders and Musculoskeletal Abnormalities
  • GI tract:
    • Dysphagia
    • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
    • Other dysmotility issues
  • Medications
    • side effects
    • interactions
    • drug levels
  • Functional issues
    • communication
    • secondary and tertiary disabilities
  • Behavioral issues
    • SIB, pica, aggression


Dual Diagnosis

GI issues

Musculoskeletal issues

Sensory issues

Ethics and Policy

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Updated 02/7/05


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