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J Gerontol Nurs. 2009 Mar;35(3):50-7; quiz 58-9.

Effectiveness of community-based, nonpharmacological interventions for early-stage dementia: conclusions and recommendations.

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University of Illinois College of Nursing, Department of Medical-Surgical Nursing, Urbana 61801, USA.


In 2007, a comprehensive review of the extant research on nonpharmacological interventions for persons with early-stage dementia was conducted. More than 150 research reports, centered on six major domains, were included: early-stage support groups, cognitive training and enhancement programs, exercise programs, exemplar programs, health promotion programs, and "other" programs not fitting into previous categories. Theories of neural regeneration and plasticity were most often used to support the tested interventions. Recommendations for practice, research, and health policy are outlined, including evidence-based, nonpharmacological treatment protocols for persons with mild cognitive impairment and early-stage dementia. A tested, community-based, multimodal treatment program is also described. Overall, findings identify well-supported nonpharmacological treatments for persons with early-stage dementia and implications for a national health care agenda to optimize outcomes for this growing population of older adults.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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