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Use of Serial Mini-Mental State Examinations to Diagnose and Monitor Delirium in Elderly Hospital Patients

Creator:

Blackwell Synergy

Type: Report
Region: Northern Ireland
Description:

Address correspondence: to Dr. S. O'Keeffe, Unit 4, Merlin Park Regional Hospital, Galway, Ireland. E-mail: s.okeeffe@whb.ie Objectives: To determine the responsiveness of serial Mini-Mental State Examinations (MMSEs) for the diagnosis and monitoring of delirium in elderly hospital patients.Design: Prospective study.Setting: University teaching hospital.Participants: One hundred sixty-five people admitted to an acute geriatric service.Measurements: Subjects were assessed using the MMSE and the Confusion Assessment Method on hospital Days 1 and 6. Changes in scores were compared between patients who remained free of delirium (n=124) and those who by Day 6 had developed delirium (n=14) or had resolution of delirium present on admission (n=22).Results: A number of measures of responsiveness confirmed that serial MMSE scores were responsive to resolution and to development of delirium. A fall of 2 or more points on the MMSE was the best determinant for detecting development of delirium (93% sensitivity, 90% specificity, positive likelihood ratio (LR)=8.9 (95% confidence interval (CI)=5.2–15.1) and negative LR=0.08 95% CI=0.01–0.53)). A rise of 3 or more points was the best determinant for detecting resolution of delirium (77% sensitivity, 75% specificity, positive LR=3.1 (95% CI=2.1–4.5) and negative LR=0.30 (95% CI=0.14–0.66)).Conclusion: The MMSE is responsive to short-term changes in cognitive function in elderly patients. Serial MMSE tests should be helpful in monitoring the development and resolution of delirium in this population. 

Date:

22/05/2008

Rights: Public
Suggested citation:

Blackwell Synergy. (2008) Use of Serial Mini-Mental State Examinations to Diagnose and Monitor Delirium in Elderly Hospital Patients [Online]. Available from: http://www.thehealthwell.info/node/6042 [Accessed: 23rd July 2018].

  

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