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ORIGINAL RESEARCH PAPERS
Year : 2005  |  Volume : 47  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 99-101

Cognitive decline in elderly medical and surgical inpatients


1 The University of Newcastle, Hunter Area Mental Health, Newcastle, Australia
2 Diplomate in National Board Trainee in Family Health, Dr Rangarajan Memorial Hospital, Sundaram Medical Foundation, Chennai, India

Correspondence Address:
Srinivasan N Tirupati
James Fletcher Hospital PO Box 833, Newcastle, NSW 2300
Australia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0019-5545.55954

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Background: Impairment in cognitive function increases with age. Aim: To study the prevalence of cognitive decline in inpatients ³60 years of age. Methods: One hundred and thirty patients (85 men and 45 women), admitted to a community general hospital for medical or surgical treatment, were selected. The Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) was used to identify subjects with cognitive dysfunction. Patients were categorized as having cognitive decline or normal cognition. The Global Rating of Memory Decline (GRMD) and Global Rating of Intellectual Decline (GRID) scales were used to assess the decline in memory, thinking and reasoning ability. Results: Cognitive decline was diagnosed in 54 subjects (41.5%). Significantly more patients ³70 years of age had cognitive decline compared to patients £70 years of age. On the GRMD, 71 patients had subjective decline in memory, 62 of them reported that the decline interfered with their daily life. On GRID, subjective decline in intellectual function was found in 91 patients, with 55 reporting that the decline interfered with their daily lives. Conclusion: Patients ?70 years of age with an acute medical problem are the most likely to have cognitive problems.



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