What is the course of behavioural symptoms and functional conditions in hospitalised older people with dementia? A multicentre cohort study in Italy

J. Dagani, L. Iozzino, C. Ferrari, M. E. Boero, C. Geroldi, G. M. Giobbio, P. Maggi, A. L. Melegari, G. Sattin, M. Signorini, O. Zanetti, G. de Girolamo

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Introduction: Dementia is one of the major causes of disability and dependency among older people worldwide, and hospitalization occurs frequently in demented patients. The present study examined the course of behavioural symptoms and functional conditions in hospitalised older people with dementia. Materials and methods: Prospective cohort study of 179demented patients (age>64years) admitted to four geriatric units, evaluated at admission, discharge and at 6months after discharge. An analysis of predictors of functioning improvement was performed. Results: Patients with no symptoms at NeuroPsychiatric Inventory baseline assessment did not show any changes at both discharge and follow-up, while patients with symptoms at baseline showed an improvement in every subscale from admission to discharge. Using Barthel Index as a measure of functioning, we found a significant improvement in both "admission-discharge" and "discharge-follow-up" timeframe for the most impaired patients. However, for the less impaired patients, no significant changes emerged from admission to discharge, while a significant worsening occurred from discharge to follow-up. The significant associated variables with improvement in Barthel Index from discharge to follow-up were age and Blaylock Risk Assessment Screening Score at admission. Conclusion: Interesting trends in the course of hospitalized older patients with dementia have been found, and they were associated to different levels of functional impairment at admission. Further research is still needed to understand the predictors of improvement and worsening in such hospitalized patients.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Geriatric Medicine
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jan 27 2015



  • Dementia
  • Epidemiology
  • Hospitalization
  • Outcome assessment
  • Patient discharge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Gerontology

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