Diagnosis of dementia
Malarvizhi Babu Sandilyan Consultant in old age psychiatry, Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Reading, England
Tom Dening Professor of dementia research, Institute of Mental Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, England
There are two stages to making a diagnosis of dementia: establishing the presence of a dementia syndrome and determining the likely cause. Dementia should be distinguished from mild cognitive impairment, in which any cognitive and functional changes are less marked. Diagnosis of dementia is essentially clinical but investigations are helpful in excluding other disorders and in determining the underlying cause of the condition. International diagnostic criteria exist for the most common causes of dementia and these are useful for clinical and research purposes. At and following diagnosis, patients and their families require information, support and guidance about the future.
Nursing Standard. 29, 43,36-41. doi: 10.7748/ns.29.43.36.e9441Correspondence
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Received: 04 August 2014
Accepted: 20 November 2014