Treatment and Control of Behavioral and Psycholological Symptoms
Pp. 144-162 (19)
Juan Carlos Duran Alonso
The behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia are very frequent,
appearing during the evolution of the different types of dementia, generating stress for
both the patient and their caregivers. They include a wide group of symptoms:
agitation, irritability, aggression, hallucinations, delusions, depression, anxiety or
insomnia, and need to make an individual assessment of each patient. The management
of these situations requires non-pharmacological measures such as education of
caregivers, physical and sensory stimulation or music therapy.
When these measures are not effective and the situation is stressful we must resort to
pharmacological treatment. Different medications may be useful, but the most
frequently used are antipsychotics. Having to start with low doses and evaluate efficacy
and safety, and maintaining the necessary time to control the symptoms, and then
schedule their progressive withdrawal.
BPSD, Behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia,
Geriatric Medicine Department, “San Juan Grande” Hospital, Jerez de la Frontera, Cadiz, Spain.