Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Cross-sectional study
Delirium superimposed on dementia is pervasive and associated with restraint use among older adults residing in long-term care
  1. Donna Marie Fick
  1. School of Nursing, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Donna Marie Fick
    School of Nursing, The Pennsylvania State University, 201 HHDE, University Park, PA 16802, USA; dmf21{at}

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.

Commentary on: OpenUrlCrossRefPubMed

Implications for practice and research

  • Delirium is common in long-term care and was associated with physical restraint use in this study, which may worsen mental status and increase falls.

  • Nurses should carefully consider the trigger for behaviours that lead to the use of restraints (untreated delirium, pain or misinterpretation of stimuli) and attempt to manage these behaviours without chemical or physical restraints.

  • More research is needed to better measure environmental factors associated with delirium superimposed on dementia (DSD).


Delirium occurs frequently in older adults and leads to poor outcomes including increased death, higher costs and increased nursing care.1 ,2 Delirium is reversible, preventable and treatable when recognised early. Risk factors identified previously for delirium in …

View Full Text


  • Competing interests None.