Background We discuss the role of the occupational therapist working with individuals and families affected by Huntington’s disease.
Objectives A research by purposes was carried out through the design and implementation of an intervention program aimed at preventing and alleviating the deterioration caused by the disease through training in daily living activities and cognitive stimulation, and coaching the families through monthly monitoring and annual meetings.
Method A literature review using structured databases was conducted to identify studies focusing on Occupational Therapy in Huntington’s disease. An intervention program based on the different types, symptoms and stages of the disease was designed. The program evaluation is done through standard tests, tracking sheets and family group meetings with professionals. The research was conducted with 9 participants at the Castille and Leon Huntington’s Chorea Association (Burgos-based).
Results Articles related to Occupational Therapy and Huntington’s disease are scarce. The implementation of the Barthel Index shows that patients remain independent in daily living activities after participating in the program.
Conclusions Although Huntington’s disease is degenerative, the program has served to maintain the functionality of the affected people as long as possible and to develop their skills into the family. The occupational therapist has an important role in improving the quality of life of people affected by Huntington’s disease and their families as part of a multidisciplinary intervention.
- (According to MeSH): Huntington’s Disease. Occupational Therapy. Cognition Disorders. Movement Disorders. Task Performance and Analysis.