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J Neurosci Nurs. 2016 Jul-Aug;48(4):229-35. doi: 10.1097/JNN.0000000000000220.

A Preoperative, Nurse-Led Intervention Program Reduces Acute Postoperative Delirium.

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Ying Guo, BS, RN, The Second Affiliated Hospital and College of Nursing, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, China. Questions or comments about this article may be directed to Yuying Fan, PhD, at She is an Associate Professor, The Second Affiliated Hospital and College of Nursing, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, China.


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of a preoperative, multidisciplinary intervention program for the prevention of acute postoperative delirium on the incidence and severity in patients who were treated in the intensive care unit after surgery. We studied 122 patients who had been transferred into intensive care unit after surgery at a teaching general hospital in China. The intervention consisted of standardized protocols for the management of risk factors for delirium: education of nursing staff, systematic cognitive caring, maintaining a safe environment, social support, and improving sleep quality. All patients were monitored for signs of delirium after surgery, as measured by the Delirium Detection Score. The Delirium Detection Scores of patients in the intervention cohort after surgery on different time points were less than the scores of patients in the control group on the same point-in-time (p < .01). The severity degree of delirium for patients was less (p < .01) in the intervention group within 24 hours than that in the usual care cohort. This study showed the beneficial effects of a preoperative intervention program focusing on early prevention of delirium in patients before surgery. Systematic and comprehensive interventions could reduce the incidence and severity of delirium.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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