We aimed to evaluate the functional abilities of persons with Rett syndrome (RTT) in stages III and IV. The group consisted of 60 females who had been diagnosed with RTT: 38 in stage III, mean age (years) of 9.14, with a standard deviation of 5.84 (minimum 2.2/maximum 26.4); and 22 in stage IV, mean age of 12.45, with a standard deviation of 6.17 (minimum 5.3/maximum 26.9). The evaluation was made using the Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory, which has 197 items in the areas of self-care, mobility, and social function. The results showed that in the area of self-care, stage III and stage IV RTT persons had a level of 24.12 and 18.36 (P=0.002), respectively. In the area of mobility, stage III had 37.22 and stage IV had 14.64 (P<0.001), while in the area of social function, stage III had 17.72 and stage IV had 12.14 (P=0.016). In conclusion, although persons with stage III RTT have better functional abilities when compared with stage IV, the areas of mobility, self-care, and social function are quite affected, which shows a great functional dependency and need for help in basic activities of daily life.
Keywords: Rett syndrome; disability evaluation; mobility limitation; self-care.