Delirium in seniors linked to higher risk of dementia, study finds

Share this article:

Seniors who have experienced episodes of delirium have a significant risk of developing dementia, new research suggests.           

Delirium, a mental state with acute bouts of confusion and disorientation, affects about 15% of hospitalized seniors. It has long been characterized as a temporary side effect of infection, medications or inpatient procedures. Delirium also is associated with an increased risk for nursing home admission.

Investigators from University of Cambridge and the University of Eastern Finland followed a group of 553 people aged 85 and over for 10 years. In the people without pre-existing dementia, bouts of delirium resulted in an eight-fold increase in the risk for dementia. Moreover, in participants with existing dementia, delirium worsened the severity of their symptoms and increased their risk of mortality.

The study was published Aug. 9 in the journal Brain.

Share this article:

More in News

Also in the news for Sept. 22, 2014

ER support program can reduce hospital admissions among seniors, study says ... Researchers find defect that may lead to Alzheimer's ... Technical glitch may cause milions in payment delays for physicians who adopted EHRs

Enterovirus hits KY nursing home

Nine residents at the Heritage Hall nursing home are confirmed to have a strain of enterovirus, according to local reports.

AHCA applauds Senate passage of IMPACT Act

The Senate approved the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation Act, drawing praise from the American Health Care Association and the National Association for the Support of Long Term Care.