Background Children with multiple impairments have more complex developmental problems than children with a single impairment.
Method We compared children, aged 4 to 11 years, with intellectual disability (ID) and visual impairment to children with single ID, single visual impairment and typical development on ‘Child Behavior Check List/4–18’ (CBCL/4–18), Parent Report.
Results Children with ID and visual impairment had more emotional and behavioural problems than other groups of children: with single impairment and with typical development (F = 23.81; d.f.1/d.f.2 = 3/156; P < 0.001). All children with special needs had more emotional and behavioural problems than children with typical development. The highest difference was found in attention problems syndrome (F = 30.45; d.f.1/d.f.2 = 3/156; P < 0.001) where all groups of children with impairments had more problems. Children with visual impairment, with and without ID, had more somatic complaints than children with normal vision.
Conclusion Intellectual disability had greater influence on prevalence and kind of emotional and behavioural problems in children than visual impairment.