Navigation Links
Elderly long-term care residents suffer cognitively during disasters
Date:10/21/2011

In a summer with unprecedented weather events, from tornados, floods, fires and hurricanes, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing found that physiological changes associated with aging and the presence of chronic illness make older adults more susceptible to illness or injury, even death, during a disaster.

Investigators followed 17 long-term care residents, with a mean age of 86, who were evacuated for five days due to a severe summer storm and were relocated to different facilities with different care providers and physical surroundings. The displaced participants experienced delirium, cognitive changes, hospitalizations, and death, according to research published in the Journal of Gerontological Nursing.

"Older adults often have visual and hearing deficits, making it more difficult to interpret their environments and precipitating increased stress," said lead author Pamela Cacchione, PhD, APRN, GNP, BC. "This stress can also exacerbate chronic illnesses, further precipitating delirium."

The 17 participants were part of a broader intervention study testing the effectiveness of a nursing intervention to improve vision and hearing impairment and decrease incident delirium and other outcomes.

As part of the parent study residents were measured with four different tests. The MMSE is a 30-item mental status test that includes questions on orientation, language, attention and recall. The GDS is a 30-item interview based depression rating scale requiring yes or no responses, the NEECHAM is a 9-item nurse rated scale that includes the participant's vital signs and pulse, which is designed to assess for acute confusion/delirium and the mCAM, another delirium assessment tool which includes tasks to assess attention.

The participants were all screened with the NEECHAM and the mCAM on the day of the severe storm and three times a week for two weeks upon their return to their home facility. The scores were compared with their Week 1 scores.

"This study provided documentation of what clinicians have known for some time, but such anecdotal accounts are seldom described with the clinical instrumentation described here," said Dr. Cacchione. "Unexpected relocation often leads to poor outcomes for nursing home residents."

The study, published in September 2011 issue, found that more than half the residents were negatively affected by evacuation and showed signs of delirium within the two weeks immediately following two participants were hospitalized and one died.

"Nurses in all care settings, not just LTC sites, should be aware of the potential difficulties older adults may experience as a result of a natural disaster, especially when evacuations and relocations occur," said Dr. Cacchione. "Basic physical care, ongoing assessment of chronic conditions, medication management, the return to familiar surroundings, and the return of valued objects should be facilitated as soon as possible."


'/>"/>

Contact: Joy McIntyre
joymc@nursing.upenn.edu
215-898-5074
University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Lasers Safe for Removal of Pacemaker Wires in Elderly: Study
2. Elderly patients may be undertreated for prostate cancer
3. Elderly breast cancer patients risk treatment discrimination
4. Some memory complaints in the elderly may be warning signs of cognitive problems
5. Institute for Aging Research study finds Bostons elderly homeless sicker than others
6. Blood Protein Might Signal Death Risk in Elderly
7. Researchers building new sensor that could stop falls by elderly, before they happen
8. Contrary to earlier findings, excess body fat in elderly decreases life expectancy
9. Trastuzumab raises risk of heart problems in the elderly with history of heart disease or diabetes
10. Small amount of exercise could protect against memory loss in elderly, CU study suggests
11. Sleep Apnea Could Up Risk of Dementia In Elderly Women
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... "FCPX editors can now reveal their media with ... X," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Color ... users can now reveal the media of their split screens with growing colorful ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded their ... Eyeglasses . , Millions of individuals in the United States and Canada wear eyeglasses. ... way to both correct vision and make a fashion statement. Even celebrities use glasses ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... , ... PawPaws brand pet supplements owned by Whole Health Supply ... health of felines. The formula is all-natural and is made from Chinese herbs that ... Cat Kidney Support Supplement Soft Chews are Astragalus Root Extract and Rehmannia Root ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can ... Surgery and to Dr. Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey ... cancer. The selective fellowship in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar ... M.D from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal ... complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- MedSource announced today that it has selected Datatrial,s ... choice.  This latest decision demonstrates MedSource,s commitment to ... by offering a state-of-the-art electronic data capture (EDC) ... the EDC platform of choice in exchange for ... long been a preferred EDC platform by our ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  In a startling report released ... failing their residents by lacking a comprehensive, proven plan to eliminate ... a definitive ranking of how states are tackling the worst drug ... only four states – Kentucky , ... Vermont . Of the 28 failing states, three – ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has announced ... report to their offering. ... a favourable commercial environment for MedImmune to enter. The US ... will serve to drive considerable growth for effective anti-influenza medications. ... cap sales considerably, but development is still in its infancy. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: