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Can J Neurol Sci. 2001 Feb;28 Suppl 1:S42-51.

Screening for cognitive impairment and dementia in the elderly.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, Canada.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To review the evidence available to support or refute the recommendation to screen for cognitive impairment (cognitive deficits which do not affect daily function) and dementia in primary care.

DATA SOURCES:

Medline search using terms listed at the end of this article; consultation with experts in the field; review of other published recommendations.

STUDY SELECTION:

There were no articles which described a randomized controlled trial of screening versus no screening. Studies were therefore chosen which aided in the definition; natural history; interventions and outcomes including possible negative effects.

DATA SYNTHESIS:

No systematic synthesis was performed. Background papers were circulated to a panel of experts prior to the Canadian Consensus Conference on Dementia and conclusions endorsed by consensus.

CONCLUSIONS:

1. There is insufficient evidence to recommend for or against screening for cognitive impairment or dementia. (C); 2. Memory complaints should be evaluated and the individual followed to assess progression. (B); 3. When caregivers or informants describe cognitive decline in an individual, these observations should be taken very seriously; cognitive assessment and careful follow-up are indicated. (A) (See Appendix).

PMID:
11237310
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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