Comparison of Consecutive Periods of 1-, 2-, and 3-Year Mortality of Geriatric Inpatients with Delirium, Dementia, and Depression in a Consultation-Liaison Service

Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
The International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine (Impact Factor: 0.89). 06/2013; 45(1):45-57. DOI: 10.2190/PM.45.1.d
Source: PubMed


Dementia, depression, and delirium are the most prevalent psychiatric disorders in elderly medical inpatients and are all associated with higher mortality. The purpose of this study was to assess and compare consecutive periods of 1-, 2-, and 3-year mortality among elderly patients with dementia, depression, and delirium seen by a psychiatry consultation-liaison service in a general hospital.
We consecutively enrolled inpatients 65 years of age and older that were referred for psychiatric consultation (N = 614) from 2002 to 2006: 172 were diagnosed with delirium, 92 with dementia, and 165 with depression. The 1-, 2-, and 3-year mortality rates for the three groups of patients were compared by log-rank test. The Cox proportional hazard regression model was used to identify any possible factors associated with mortality during the study period.
Only 1-year mortality in the delirium group was significantly higher than that in the depression group (p < 0.05), but there was no significant difference among the three groups in 2- and 3-year mortality. In terms of gender, higher mortality was identified only in depressed male patients. Furthermore, male, older age, and longer length of hospital stay, but not multiple physical comorbidities, were associated with higher mortality.
Clinical physicians should give special attention to delirious patients within the first year after referral. Patients at risk for mortality should be closely followed and early intervention provided in an effort to decrease or delay mortality.

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