What is the prognosis of delirium?

Updated: Apr 25, 2019
  • Author: Kannayiram Alagiakrishnan, MD, MBBS, MPH, MHA; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Answer

Delirium significantly worsens prognosis and is associated with increased mortality at discharge and at 12 months. A significant proportion of patients with delirium during their hospital admission continued to demonstrate symptoms of delirium at discharge, 6-month, and 12-month follow-up. [19]

Resolution of symptoms may take longer in patients with poor premorbid cognitive function, incorrect or incomplete diagnosis of contributing factors, and structural brain diseases treated with large doses of psychoactive medications prior to the onset of acute medical illness.

For some patients, the cognitive effects of delirium may resolve slowly or not at all.


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