Prevalence of Dementia and Neuropsychiatric Symptoms among Elderly Patients Attending Outpatient Departments of Psychiatric Hospitals in Southern Thailand

Siriporn VERAGIAT, Wipawan Chaoum PENSUKSAN, K. Sinsak SUVANCHOT, Chuntagarn YOOYEN, Pranee CHETKHUNTHOD, Parichad SARSANAS


We sought to obtain information about the prevalence of dementia, neuropsychiatric symptoms (NPSs) and the factors associated with dementia among elderly patients attending outpatient departments of psychiatric hospitals in Southern Thailand. A cross-sectional study was conducted among 200 elderly patients in outpatient departments. All participants were assessed with the Thai Mental State Examination and the Neuropsychiatric Inventory Questionnaire Thai version. The data were collected through interview questionnaires conducted from July to September, 2014. Chi-square test, Student’s t test and logistic regression models were used to identify statistically significant associations. The prevalence of dementia was found to be 52 %. The prevalence of NPSs was 52.9 % among individuals with dementia. Common NPSs included nighttime motor behavior (54.8 %), depression (51.9 %), and anxiety (48.1 %). Old age (OR 2.36; 95 % CI 1.18 - 4.71) was statistically significantly associated with dementia. Higher levels of education (OR 0.16; 95 % CI 0.05 - 0.49) and having social activity (OR 0.37; 95 % CI 0.15 - 0.86) also showed statistically significant association with a decreased risk for dementia. Dementia had a moderate prevalence (52 %) while the prevalence of NPSs was 52.9 % among individuals with dementia. The top 5 symptoms were nighttime motor behavior, depression, anxiety, irritability, and delusion. The factors associated with dementia were old age, lower levels of education and lack of social activity. Therefore, assessment and investigation of dementia, NPSs and the factors associated with dementia amongst these people should be recognized and appropriate activities focusing on the individual and their family context should be established.


Dementia, neuropsychiatric symptoms, elderly patients, outpatient departments, psychiatric hospitals

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