Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

The prevalence of delirium in an older acute surgical population and its effect on outcome

Hewitt, Jonathan ORCID:, Owen, Stephanie, Carter, Ben C., Stechman, Michael J., Tay, Hui Sian, Greig, Matthew, McCormack, Caroline, Pearce, Lynsday, McCarthy, Kathryn, Myint, Phyo K. and Moug, Susan J. 2019. The prevalence of delirium in an older acute surgical population and its effect on outcome. Geriatrics 4 (4) , 57. 10.3390/geriatrics4040057

[thumbnail of geriatrics-04-00057.pdf] PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (290kB)


Background: With an ageing population, an increasing number of older adults are admitted for assessment to acute surgical units. Older adults have specific factors that may influence outcomes, one of which is delirium (acute cognitive impairment). Objectives: To establish the prevalence of delirium on admission in an older acute surgical population and its effect on mortality. Secondary outcomes investigated include hospital readmission and length of hospital stay. Method: This observational multi-centre study investigated consecutive patients, ≥65 years, admitted to the acute surgical units of five UK hospitals during an eight-week period. On admission the Confusion Assessment Method (CAM) score was performed to detect delirium. The effect of delirium on important clinical outcomes was investigated using tests of association and logistic regression models. Results: The cohort consisted of 411 patients with a mean age of 77.3 years (SD 8.1). The prevalence of admission delirium was 8.8% (95% CI 6.2–11.9%) and cognitive impairment was 70.3% (95% CI 65.6–74.7%). The delirious group were not more likely to die at 30 or 90 days (OR 1.1, 95% CI 0.2 to 5.1, p = 0.67; OR 1.4, 95% CI 0.4 to 4.1. p = 0.82) or to be readmitted within 30 days of discharge (OR 0.9, 95% CI 0.4 to 2.2, p = 0.89). Length of hospital stay was significantly longer in the delirious group (median 8 vs. 5 days respectively, p = 0.009). Conclusion: Admission delirium occurs in just under 10% of older people admitted to acute surgical units, resulting in significantly longer hospital stays.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine
Publisher: MDPI AG
ISSN: 2308-3417
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 17 October 2019
Date of Acceptance: 5 October 2019
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 18:19

Citation Data

Cited 3 times in Scopus. View in Scopus. Powered By Scopus® Data

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics