The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of one year of systematic clinical supervision, and supervised individually planned care on the mood and general behavior of patients with dementia in relation to their cognitive function and level of confusion. The intervention was carried out in a ward devoted to the care of patients with severe dementia (EW), with a similar ward (CW) where no changes were made serving as a control. Each ward housed 11 patients, of whom 7 patients in each ward survived throughout the study time. Assessment of the patients' mood, general behavior, cognitive functions (MMSE), orientation and confusion (OBS) was made at baseline, and after 6 and 12 months of intervention. Significant deteriorations for the patients in CW were seen during the study period as regards the factor strength, functional performance and orientation in the ward, and speech performance and psychomotor slowing. For the patients in the EW, deterioration was seen only in the factor accessibility, and improvement was seen in the factor sensitivity and euphoria. The differences indicated that the development in the two wards went in opposite directions to the benefit of the patients in the EW. Because of the small sample size, the findings are more the result of a pilot trial, rather than generalizable. The intervention, however, seemed to have a positive effect on the secondary symptoms of the disease. (C) 1999, Editrice Kurtis.
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