Researchers have developed a new model to help predict mortality among older adults with dementia. The prognostic tool can be used to aid clinicians in shared decision-making conversations with patients and their families, researchers say.

To validate the model, investigators looked at data from more than 6,600 community-dwelling seniors with dementia from 1998 to 2016. Data was drawn from the ​​Health and Retirement Study and the National Health and Aging Trends Study.

The model included clinical predictors that are readily available to clinicians, such as demographics, health factors, functional measures (activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living) and chronic conditions.

Using a primary outcome of time to all-cause death, the model was found to predict mortality from one to 10 years “with good discrimination and calibration,” the researchers reported.

“The mortality risk estimates may help guide discussions regarding treatment decisions and advance care planning,” the authors concluded.

The study was published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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