The chronicity of self-injurious behaviour: a long-term follow up of a total population study

Taylor, Lorne and Oliver, Chris and Murphy, Glynis H. (2011) The chronicity of self-injurious behaviour: a long-term follow up of a total population study. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 24 (2). pp. 105-117. ISSN 1360-2322. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not available from this repository. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL


Background Self-injurious behaviour (SIB) is a relatively common problem for people with intellectual disabilities and it is known to be associated with various risk markers, such as degree of disability, sensory impairments, and autism (<link rid="b25">McClintock et al. 2003). Less is known about its long-term course however. Method The present study was conducted to examine the quality of life and changes in behaviour for a cohort of 49 people with intellectual disabilities and SIB who were all part of a previous total population study conducted in the south of England by <link rid="b36">Oliver, Murphy and Corbett (1987). Assessment tools used in the original study, and an additional quality of life measure, the Life Experience Checklist (<link rid="b1">Ager, 1990), were carried out with informants in the participant's homes or places of day activity. Results The results show that 84% of the sample continued to self-injure nearly 20 years on, with no significant mean changes in number of topographies or severity of SIB across the group. No one was living in hospital in this study (cf. many individuals in the first survey) but for those who had moved out of hospital, their SIB had not reduced. More people were receiving psychological treatment; more were also receiving anti-convulsant and anti-psychotic medications, though polypharmacy had reduced somewhat. The number of people accessing full-time day activities had decreased substantially, with 44% of people only accessing structured daily activities for 21/2 days per week or less. Conclusions The results of the study add to the growing evidence of extreme chronicity for SIB and the relative lack of impact of treatment for people in whom self-injury has become well-established. They imply that early intervention is essential if such behaviour is to be eliminated long term.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: challenging behaviour; chronicity; self-injury
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare > HV1568 Disability studies
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research > Tizard
Depositing User: Jo Ruffels
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2012 12:31
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2014 09:34
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
  • Depositors only (login required):