Critical appraisals

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Multicomponent interventions in preventing incident delirium in elderly inpatients: a critical appraisal of literature

Intervenciones multicomponente en la prevención del delirium entre adultos mayores hospitalizados: un análisis crítico de la literatura


Introduction. Delirium is a common neuropsychiatric syndrome arising among elderly inpatients. It has been associated with increased mortality, cognitive decline and increased healthcare costs. Multicomponent interventions might be useful in preventing incident delirium. Objectives. To assess the available evidence regarding multicomponent interventions in preventing incident delirium among elderly inpatients. Methods. A literature review was conducted in 5 databases in search for systematic reviews evaluating multicomponent interventions in preventing incident delirium. Included reviews were assessed by using the criteria recommended by the Cochrane Collaboration. Results. Three systematic reviews were found. All described adequate searching methods, but two considered non-randomized designs for analyses. Important heterogeneity was seen among studies, precluding meta-analyses. However, beneficial effects were described regarding incident delirium prevention. Discussion. Moderate-quality evidence suggests that multicomponent interventions are useful in preventing delirium. New systematic reviews should restrict their methods to randomized trials in order to allow a definitive conclusion to be made.