Treatment of agitation in elderly persons with Dementia: A summary of the expert consensus guidelines
Agitation frequently accompanies dementia, causing severe stress for caregivers and often leading to institutionalization. There are limited controlled data concerning the best methods of treating this agitation, which led the authors to undertake a survey of experts in the field on unanswered clinical questions. The survey results of which were published in 1998 as the Expert Consensus Guidelines on the Treatment of Agitation in Older Persons with Dementia. In this article, the authors summarize the clinical recommendations given in these guidelines. They discuss the differential diagnosis of agitation in dementia and the variety of problems that can cause agitation in these patients (medical conditions, physical discomfort, environmental stresses, and neuropsychiatric syndromes such as psychosis, anxiety, depression, insomnia, or sundowning). Principles to guide treatment planning and the essential components in a medical evaluation of agitated patients with dementia are then reviewed. The authors then describe the recommendations of the Expert Consensus Guidelines for both environmental interventions and medication treatment. © 1998 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.
Kahn, DA; Alexopoulos, GS; Silver, JM; Carpenter, D; Docherty, JP; Frances, A; Gwyther, LP
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