Predictive validity of the Identification of Seniors At Risk (ISAR) screening tool in elderly patients presenting to two Italian Emergency Departments

Fabio Salvi, Valeria Morichi, Annalisa Grilli, Liana Spazzafumo, Raffaella Giorgi, Stefano Polonara, Giuseppe de Tommaso, Paolo Dessì-Fulgheri

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Background and aims: Elderly patients presenting to Emergency Departments (ED) have complex health problems and often undergo adverse outcomes after an ED visit. In Canadian ED, the Identification of Seniors At Risk (ISAR) is useful in screening for these aspects. This study evaluated the predictive validity of ISAR for elderly patients presenting to Italian ED. Methods: Prospective observational study of a cohort of 200 elderly patients presenting to two urban ED in Ancona (Italy). Identifiers and triage, clinical and social data were collected, and the ISAR was administered. The following single outcomes were considered: early (30-day) and late (6-month) ED revisit, frequent ED return, hospital admission, and functional decline. Composite outcomes were: [1] death, long-term care (LTC) placement, functional decline; [2] the same as [1] plus any ED revisit or hospitalization. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated. Results: ISAR was positive for 141 (70.5%) subjects, who had high comorbidity, disability and cognitive impairment. ISAR-positive patients had an OR of 4.77 (95% CI, 2.19-10.42) to undergo composite outcome [1] and of 3.46 (95% CI, 1.68-7.15) to experience composite outcome [2]. ISAR also predicted ED revisit and frequent use, hospitalization and functional decline at 6 months. ISAR was also an independent predictor of 6-month mortality (Hazard Ratio 6.9, 95% CI 1.65-29, p=0.008). Conclusions: ISAR can be used as a screening test to identify Italian elderly ED patients who have an increased 6-month risk of death, LTC placement, functional decline, ED revisit, or hospitalization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-75
Number of pages7
JournalAging clinical and experimental research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2009


  • Aged
  • Emergency department
  • Geriatric assessment
  • Outcome
  • Predictive validity
  • Screening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ageing
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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