Strategies for Memory Improvement in Older Adults

Jane S. Saczynski, PhD; George W. Rebok, PhD

Disclosures

Topics in Advanced Practice Nursing eJournal. 2004;4(1) 

In This Article

Clinical Implications and Role of the Advanced Practice Nurse

Due to the high conversion rate of MCI to dementia, memory problems are a significant public health issue. Despite the impact of memory impairment, little has been done to incorporate diagnostic and treatment options into primary care visits. Behavioral interventions, conducted in small groups, have been very successful at improving the memory performance of adults. Memory skills have not been taught within medical visits, although this context is an appropriate venue. The APN may be essential in the initial diagnosis and assessment of memory impairment, through observations or from memory worry or a complaint issued by the patient. Moreover, the APN is uniquely qualified to disseminate behavioral interventions through primary care visits. The clinician can assess the health concerns of each specific patient and incorporate meaningful interventions into the sessions, achieving maximal results. Although primary prevention for memory impairment is unrealistic, interventions within the context of a medical visit are a more efficient mode of dissemination that can be tailored to each individual.

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