Prevalence of impaired memory in hospitalized adults and associations with in-hospital sleep loss.

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Prevalence of impaired memory in hospitalized adults and associations with in-hospital sleep loss.

J Hosp Med. 2015 Apr 15;

Authors: Calev H, Spampinato LM, Press VG, Meltzer DO, Arora VM

BACKGROUND: Effective inpatient teaching requires intact patient memory, but studies suggest hospitalized adults may have memory deficits. Sleep loss among inpatients could contribute to memory impairment.
OBJECTIVE: To assess memory in older hospitalized adults, and to test the association between sleep quantity, sleep quality, and memory, in order to identify a possible contributor to memory deficits in these patients.
DESIGN: Prospective cohort study.
SETTING: General medicine and hematology/oncology inpatient wards.
PATIENTS: Fifty-nine hospitalized adults at least 50 years of age with no diagnosed sleep disorder.
MEASUREMENTS: Immediate memory and memory after a 24-hour delay were assessed using a word recall and word recognition task from the University of Southern California Repeatable Episodic Memory Test. A vignette-based memory task was piloted as an alternative test more closely resembling discharge instructions. Sleep duration and efficiency overnight in the hospital were measured using actigraphy.
RESULTS: Mean immediate recall was 3.8 words out of 15 (standard deviation = 2.1). Forty-nine percent of subjects had poor memory, defined as immediate recall score of 3 or lower. Median immediate recognition was 11 words out of 15 (interquartile range [IQR] = 9-13). Median delayed recall score was 1 word, and median delayed recognition was 10 words (IQR = 8-12). In-hospital sleep duration and efficiency were not significantly associated with memory. The medical vignette score was correlated with immediate recall (r = 0.49, P < 0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: About half of the inpatients studied had poor memory while in the hospital, signaling that hospitalization might not be an ideal teachable moment. In-hospital sleep was not associated with memory scores. Journal of Hospital Medicine 2015. © 2015 Society of Hospital Medicine.

PMID: 25872763 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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