eISSN: 2300-6722
ISSN: 1899-1874
Medical Studies/Studia Medyczne
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vol. 29
Original paper

Mental and physical performance of dementia patients in long-term residential care

Zbigniew Śliwiński
Magdalena Matłok
Małgorzata Starczyńska
Marta Makara-Studzińska

Studia Medyczne 2013; 29 (3): 230–233
Online publish date: 2013/10/25
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Introduction: Dementia syndromes are an increasing medical and social problem in today’s world. Preservation of the best possible quality of life in dementia patients relies on prolonging their independence in daily life for as long as possible. Dementia patients require increasing support as the disease progresses and will ultimately become dependent on the help of others.

Aim of the research: To assess the level of mental and physical performance and nutritional status in patients with dementia syndromes in long-term residential care.

Material and methods: The study group comprised 62 patients with dementia syndromes resident in a Medical and Nursing Care Facility in Pustków. Selected aspects of quality of life were investigated with the Barthel scale, GDS scale according to Reissberg, Abbreviated Mental Test Score (AMTS) and Mini-Nutritional Assessment (MNA) scale.

Results: In our study men performed better than women on the Barthel scale, 58% of all patients were rated moderately severe on that scale, 36% were severe and 7% were mild. Assessment of the current severity of dementia on the GDS scale showed that 28% of the patients had very severe dementia, 27% had mild deficits, 27% had moderate deficits, 11% had moderately severe dementia and 6% had borderline dementia. In a mental state assessment according to the AMTS scale, men scored higher than women. This difference indicates less memory deficit and better psychological and physical status among men. With regard to nutritional status, our study revealed a risk of malnutrition in 65% of the patient and actual malnutrition in 7%.

Conclusions: The Barthel scale, rating the performance of dementia patients with regard to activities of daily life, classified more than half of the patients as „moderately severe”. Women had lower mean scores than men in the Barthel scale, AMTS scale and GDS scale, indicating that dementia is more prevalent among women than among men. The findings of the present study document a risk of malnutrition in dementia patients in long-term residential care.

dementia syndromes, mental performance, nutritional status, physical performance

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