Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Drugs for Alzheimer's Equal Better Outcomes?

Pharmawatch has a very interesting article on the use of the modestly cognitively enhancing cholinesterase inhibitors in dementia care. Memory clinics are increasingly offering these medications but, according to research, may be missing other key aspects of care. Below is an extract from the article in the British Medical Journal to which Pharmawatch is referring:

"Specialist memory clinics do not offer care in the community to their patients as they decline.9 14 This means that the clinics are confining themselves to the easy parts of the management of neurodegenerative disorders. Patients are assessed and then discharged or else reviewed until cognitive deterioration and behavioural disturbances become problematic. They are then referred to ordinary old age psychiatry teams, which have to arrange proper management plans; this sometimes involves undoing what has been done by clinicians who lack experience with long term care of people with dementia. The task is not made easier when potential members of the multidisciplinary team have been recruited to memory clinics."

This should interest anyone interested in the geriatric population.

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