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Adult nursing
Family presence during critical illness may protect against delirium
  1. Joanna L Hart
  1. Palliative and Advanced Illness Research Center, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Joanna L Hart, Palliative and Advanced Illness Research Center, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; joanna.hart{at}pennmedicine.upenn.edu

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Commentary on: Mohsen S, Moss SJ, Lucini F, et al. Impact of Family Presence on Delirium in Critically Ill Patients: A Retrospective Cohort Study. Crit Care Med. 2022 Nov 1;50(11):1628–1637. doi: 10.1097/CCM.0000000000005657. Epub 2022 Aug 26.

Implications for practice and research

  • Critical care units should prioritise family presence, particularly for awake patients or those who develop delirium.

  • Further research should elucidate the mechanisms through which family presence is protective to brain health in critical illness.

Context

The implications of family presence during critical illness on clinical and psychosocial outcomes remain of great social, scientific and operational interest. Existing experimental and observational evidence demonstrates that policies supporting family presence decrease the prevalence and duration of delirium among patients with critical illness.1 Delirium is a fluctuating change in consciousness that occurs frequently among critically ill patients and is associated with poor outcomes. This study by Mohsen et al2 expands on this …

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Footnotes

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.