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Journal: International journal of geriatric psychiatry


The identification of modifiable lifestyle factors to preserve cognitive function in older individuals becomes increasingly of importance. This study examines whether word puzzle use is related to cognitive function in older adults.


National and global dementia plans have focused on the research ambition to develop a cure or disease-modifying therapy by 2025, with the initial focus on investment in drug discovery approaches. We set out to develop complementary research ambitions in the areas of prevention, diagnosis, intervention, and care and strategies for achieving them.

Concepts: Plan


OBJECTIVE: The objective of this pilot study was to gather preliminary evidence on suicidal ideation in family carers of people with dementia. METHODS: An online, cross-sectional survey was conducted with 120 family carers, the majority of whom were located in Australia and USA. The survey included measures of suicidality, self-efficacy, physical health, depression, hopelessness, anxiety, optimism, caregiver burden, coping strategies and social support. RESULTS: Twenty-six percent of carers had contemplated suicide more than once in the previous year. Only half of these had ever told someone they might commit suicide and almost 30% said they were likely to attempt suicide in the future. Carers who had contemplated suicide had poorer mental health, lower self-efficacy for community support service use and greater use of dysfunctional coping strategies than those who had not. In a logistic regression, only depression predicted the presence of suicidal thoughts. CONCLUSIONS: A significant number of people might contemplate suicide while caring for a family member with dementia. Although more research is required to confirm this finding, there are clear implications for policy and clinical practice in terms of identifying and supporting carers who are already contemplating suicide. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Concepts: Mental disorder, Schizophrenia, Bipolar disorder, Major depressive disorder, Psychiatry, Suicide, Parasuicide, Suicide methods


Language impairment in Alzheimer’s disease occurs early, and language function deteriorates with progression of the illness to cause significant disability. This review focuses on language dysfunction in Alzheimer’s disease and the contribution of semantic memory impairment.

Concepts: Alzheimer's disease, Memory, Semantics, Semantic memory, Mild cognitive impairment, Memory loss


The aim of this study was to prospectively examine the influence of cognitive, medical, behavioral, and social risk factors on medication nonadherence in community-dwelling older adults with cognitive impairment.

Concepts: Psychology, Medicine


OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to compare the effects of music therapy with general recreational day activities in reducing agitation in people with dementia, residing in nursing home facilities. METHODS: In a randomised controlled design, residents with dementia (n = 94) were allocated to either music therapy or recreational activities. Both music therapy and general activities were offered twice weekly for 4 months. Changes in agitation were measured with a modified Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (CMAI) at four intervals on each intervention day. A mixed model analysis was used to evaluate the effectiveness of music therapy, compared with general activities, on CMAI scores at 4 h after the intervention, controlled for CMAI scores at 1 h before the session and session number. RESULTS: Data were analysed for 77 residents (43 randomised to music therapy and 34 to general activities). In both groups, the intervention resulted in a decrease in agitated behaviours from 1 h before to 4 h after each session. This decrease was somewhat greater in the music therapy group than in the general activities group, but this difference was statistically not significant (F = 2.885, p = 0.090) and disappeared completely after adjustment for Global Deterioration Scale stage (F = 1.500; p = 0.222). CONCLUSIONS: Both music therapy and recreational activities lead to a short-term decrease in agitation, but there was no additional beneficial effect of music therapy over general activities. More research is required to provide insight in the effects of music therapy in reducing agitation in demented older people. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Concepts: Alzheimer's disease, Effect, Randomized controlled trial, Effectiveness, Dementia, Efficacy, Entertainment, Music therapy


Evidence in younger populations suggests quantitative but not categorical differences in cognitive impairments between schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. It is uncertain whether a similar distinction applies to patients in later life.

Concepts: Schizophrenia, Bipolar disorder, Bipolar I disorder, Quetiapine, Bipolar spectrum


In view of the mild effects of pharmacological treatment for dementia due to Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the search for modifiable risk factors is an important challenge. Although risk factors for AD are widely recognized, elements that influence the time of onset of the dementia syndrome have not been comprehensively reported. We aimed to investigate which risk factors might be associated with the age at onset of AD in a sample of patients with low mean schooling from São Paulo, Brazil.

Concepts: Alzheimer's disease, The Canon of Medicine, Neurology, Dementia, Caregiving and dementia, Wandering, Sundowning, Aging-associated diseases


To develop and examine the validity of a new brief cognitive test with less educational bias for screening cognitive impairment.

Concepts: Psychology, Type I and type II errors, Educational psychology, Hong Kong


The Lewy body dementias (LBD, dementia with Lewy bodies and Parkinson’s disease dementia) are the second most common cause of neurodegenerative dementia but remain under-recognised, with long delays from initial assessment to diagnosis. Whilst validated instruments have been developed for key symptoms, there is no brief instrument for overall diagnostic assessment suitable for routine practice. We here report the development of such assessment toolkits.

Concepts: Alzheimer's disease, Neurology, Parkinson's disease, Dementia, Progressive supranuclear palsy, Alpha-synuclein, Lewy body, Dementia with Lewy bodies