A Nuanced Way to Measure Delirium Severity

While clinicians have several tools at their disposal to determine whether patients are delirious, researchers at the Brigham are going a step further by focusing on the severity of delirium. Geriatrician Tammy T. Hshieh, MD, MPH, discusses a more nuanced delirium rating tool featured in a recently published study.


Lessons Learned From Adapting the CGA for Telehealth

People using tablet at homeThe COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a rapid shift to telemedicine across health care. Among the many challenges this new reality has created for geriatricians is how to adapt the comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) to a virtual delivery format.

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Does Long-Term Regular Aspirin Use Prevent Frailty?

man on virtual visit

It is well-established that chronic inflammation may lead to frailty. Less understood is the potential of anti-inflammatory medications such as aspirin to prevent this state of increased vulnerability.

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Creating a Framework to Triage Geriatric COVID Patients

Provider with geriatric patient

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 8 out of 10 COVID-19-related deaths in the United States have been in adults 65 years and older. As such, the novel coronavirus pandemic has had a dramatic impact on geriatric care.

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Statin Use Tied to Reduced Mortality Rate in Older Adults

Man wearing mask talking to doctor

U.S. veterans aged 75 years or older who were prescribed statins had a 25 percent lower risk of death than their counterparts, according to a retrospective cohort study led by investigators from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the VA Boston Healthcare System. The analysis also found the risk of dying from a cardiovascular event, such as a heart attack or stroke, was lower by 20 percent among veterans treated with statins.

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Higher Mortality and Hospital Use Linked to Dependency in Instrumental Activities of Daily Living Among Cancer Patients

Elderly couple cooking together

A recent study out of Brigham and Women’s Hospital advises that older cancer patients receive routine assessments of their ability to conduct certain daily living activities to identify those who need supportive intervention. The study, led by Clark DuMontier, MD, geriatrician and research fellow in Brigham and Women’s Division of Aging, found a correlation between patients’ ability to live independently and their odds of being hospitalized or dying.

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Tearing Down the Silos: Promoting Collaboration in Geriatrics Care and Education

Birds eye view of providers standing in circle

Caring for a hospitalized older adult requires the coordinated efforts of various specialists and geriatricians throughout the patient’s hospital stay. At Brigham and Women’s Hospital, an attending physician in the Division of Aging is facilitating such collaboration by developing a co-management service that embeds geriatrics within the hospital’s internal medicine floors.

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Inflammation Biomarkers Predict Postsurgical Cognitive Outcomes in Older Adults

brain scan images

As people live longer and lead more active lives in their later years, many opt for elective surgeries to improve their quality of life. With more older people undergoing major surgeries, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of patients developing postoperative delirium and cognitive decline.

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Predicting Health Outcomes in Older Patients with Hematologic Cancers

Gait speed and grip strength are objective measures of physical health that have been shown to predict important health outcomes in older adults such as functional decline, acute care use and death. According to a recent study, these measures are particularly important to assess in older patients with hematologic malignancies including leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma.
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Preventing Delirium During Hospital Stays With Nonpharmacologic Interventions

Delirium, a sudden onset of confusion frequently seen in older patients, was once thought to be a temporary condition that patients “snapped out of” after being discharged from the hospital. However, it is now recognized that delirium may lead to longer-term cognitive impairment and poor health outcomes, including an increased risk of death, nursing home placement and memory problems.
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