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Dementia screening in primary care: Is it time?
Date:11/27/2007

e benefit outweighs the harm, the commentary maintains. Harms include possible stigma, loss of long term care insurance, emotional dislocation for both the individual and family, and resources shifting from other health problems.

Dr. Boustani is the author of a 2003 report evaluating the wisdom of routine screening for dementia in primary care settings prepared for the U.S Preventative Services Task Force. The report found that while two-thirds of dementia cases are undetected by the patient's primary care physician, insufficient data exists to indicate whether or not it is a good idea to administer dementia screening tests to patients who do not have symptoms of memory loss or confusion.

Pressures to institute screening of unproven benefit could divert much needed resources from the health and social care systems and have an overall negative impact on care for patients with dementia and other illnesses, ultimately delaying the point when dementia screening becomes indicated. The goal should continue to be the best possible care for the most patients, which currently does not include screening for dementia, the commentary concludes.


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Contact: Cindy Fox Aisen
caisen@iupui.edu
317-274-7722
Indiana University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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