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Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2001 Jul;16(7):690-3.

High prevalence of anxiety symptoms in hospitalized geriatric patients.

Author information

1
University of Oslo, Research Group in Geriatrics of the Norwegian National Health Association, Department of Geriatric Medicine, Ullevaal University Hospital, Oslo, Norway. kari.kvaal@ioks.uio.no

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine the prevalence of anxiety symptoms in hospitalized geriatric patients.

DESIGN:

Controlled cross-sectional study.

SUBJECTS:

Ninety-eight geriatric in-patients and 68 healthy home-dwelling controls of similar age recruited from senior citizen centres.

OUTCOME MEASURE:

Anxiety measured as a current emotional state by Spielberger's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI).

RESULTS:

The geriatric patients scored significantly higher than the controls. Applying Spielberger's recommended cut-off of 39/40 on the STAI sumscore, 41% of the female and 47% of the male geriatric patients might be suspected of suffering from significant anxiety symptoms. Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease tended to score higher; otherwise no relationship was found between the STAI sumscore and type of chronic somatic disease, nor between the STAI sumscore and number of drugs in regular use.

CONCLUSIONS:

STAI proved feasible for use in the elderly. The scoring on the STAI is high in geriatric in-patients. Further studies are needed to clarify to what extent this relates to a high prevalence of anxiety disorders.

PMID:
11466747
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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