A case formulation: Psychological assessment and treatment of a person with a Prader-Willi syndrome and hearing and visual difficulties

Leena Hassinen, Raimo Lappalainen, Tero Timonen


Psychological treatment of a person with multiple difficulties due to syndromes or disabilities and possible additional diseases can be challenging because of the complexity of the problems. This case example presents a behavioural assessment and treatment of a client having Prader-Willi syndrome, hearing and vision difficulties, mild learning disability, diabetes, depression, chronic pain problem, and overweight problem. The case formulation showed that mood problems among multi problem clients are difficult to understand because of the complexity of the history and present problems. Clinical case formulation model such as the Functional Analytic Clinical Case Diagram can be a useful tool when selecting targets for the treatment, and when making other treatment decisions. This paper presents a long-term treatment of a multi-problem client. The treatment incorporated communication skills training, functional analysis, body awareness training and contextual principles and techniques. This case example shows that although there is no "cure" for some chronic and inherited disorders, psychological interventions can significantly increase wellbeing and quality of life of these clients. Thus, cognitive behavioural assessment and intervention procedures should be applied more in order to increase the quality of life of minority groups.

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