Dr Sarah Richardson
DECIDE: DElirium and Cognitive Impact in DEmentia
Alzheimer's disease & other dementias
Background: Delirium is common, affecting at least 20% of hospital inpatients. It is widely accepted that delirium is associated with dementia but the degree of causation within this relationship remains unclear as prospective studies have not been designed to show this type of association. There is an urgent need for an improved understanding of this relationship given that delirium prevention may plausibly impact upon dementia prevention.
Aims: To identify the likelihood of a contributory relationship between an episode of delirium and the development of dementia.
In a population-based cohort:
To determine the effect on cognition of an episode of delirium
To ascertain the incidence of delirium
To assess the predictive value of clinical parameters upon cognitive decline
Methods: Over a 12 month period, participants from the Cognitive Function and Ageing Study II-Newcastle (a population-based cohort) will be screened for delirium on admission to hospital. At the point of presentation, baseline characteristics along with a number of disease relevant clinical parameters will be recorded. The progression/resolution of delirium will be monitored.
In those with and without delirium, cognitive decline and dementia will be assessed at one year in comparison to pre-delirium cognitive function (measured as part of CFAS-II). This will evaluate the effect of delirium on cognition and the predictive value of relevant clinical parameters.
Expected outcomes: This study will be the first to prospectively elucidate the size of the effect of delirium upon cognitive decline/dementia and may inform future dementia prevention trials that focus on delirium intervention.