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The Assessment of Neuropsychiatric Symptoms in Mild Alzheimer’s Disease ( )

Author : Şeyda Çankaya



Aim: Neuropsychiatric symptoms (NPS) dramatically impacts the progression, caregiver burden, and healthcare cost of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The assessment of NPS in each patient may help to understand disease progress and clinical condition. This study aimed to assess the frequency and severity of NPS and its possible correlation with cognitive impairment among AD patients. Material and Methods: A retrospective screening of AD patients with applied Neu-ropsychiatric Inventory (NPI), Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), and Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) resulted in 51 AD patients in 2015-2020. Results: The gender of 51 patients was 29 male (%56.9) and 22 female (%43.1) in sample size. MMSE (mean SD: 19.75±4.408) was not correlated with NPI total score (mean SD: 22.06±19.781) (p=0.610, rho:-0.073). The most prevalent NPS were depression (62.7%), irritability (62.7%), anxiety (60.8%), while less reported NPS were delusion (5.9%), hallucination (13.7%), and euphoria (15.7%). The scores of delusions, hallucinations, euphoria, abnormal motor behaviour, night-time behavioural disturbances, and appetite were significantly more increased in CDR 1 (mild dementia) group than CDR 0.5 (very mild dementia) (Mann-Whitney U test, p<0.05). Conclusion: According to our results, NPS was associated with the stage of dementia, not with the mini mental test score. Considering the effect of NPS burden on the disease, these symptoms should be evaluated at each stage, as well as cognitive examination by healthcare professionals.

Keywords: neu¬ropsychiatric symptoms, cognition, MMSE, NPI, CDR