Friday, November 17, 2006

We Should TALK to People With Dementia?

A recent review (Ayalon et al., in Archives of Internal Medicine) indicated that neuropsychiatric symptoms of dementia can be treated effectively with psychological interventions. A couple caveats are in order: a) the review was based on a very small number of trials b) we are probably not generally talking about large symptom reductions for most people. Let's keep in mind that the use of either typical or atypical antipsychotics in dementia are linked to untimely side effects, like death to name one. That, and antipsychotic medications are not particularly effective in treating symptoms. So, I'm all in favor of behavior therapy -- relieves symptoms to an extent and doesn't cause death -- how can you top that?

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