9 doctors weighed in:
How is delirium diagnosed?
9 doctors weighed in

Dr. Pamela Pappas
Psychiatry
4 doctors agree
In brief: Delirium
Delirium is a clinical diagnosis, usually made in the context of other underlying medical conditions.
Mental status changes within hours to days from normal waking to confusion ; reduced awareness of the environment. Activity level can be agitated to stuporous, even progressing to coma if the cause is not found and addressed. Multiple assessment scales exist also: http://tinyurl.Com/nyh77jo.

In brief: Delirium
Delirium is a clinical diagnosis, usually made in the context of other underlying medical conditions.
Mental status changes within hours to days from normal waking to confusion ; reduced awareness of the environment. Activity level can be agitated to stuporous, even progressing to coma if the cause is not found and addressed. Multiple assessment scales exist also: http://tinyurl.Com/nyh77jo.
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Thank
2 comments
Dr. Eric Weisman
Two things to be mindful of.......with delerium the level of arrousal fluctuates and the condition is most often reversible if the the cause is identified and addressed.
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Thank you, Dr. Weisman.
Dr. Maureen Nash
Psychiatry - Geriatric
4 doctors agree
In brief: History and exam
Delirium is underdiagnosed especially in older adults.
Family and friends can alert medical personell that there has been a drastic change in somone. There are fluctuations in attention as well as changes in sleep wake cycle and often severe confusion.

In brief: History and exam
Delirium is underdiagnosed especially in older adults.
Family and friends can alert medical personell that there has been a drastic change in somone. There are fluctuations in attention as well as changes in sleep wake cycle and often severe confusion.
Dr. Maureen Nash
Dr. Maureen Nash
Thank
Dr. Lawrence Smith
Clinical Psychology
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Thorough evaluation
Delirium is diagnosed by a doctor after careful evaluation of the patient, often with input of involved family members or caregivers.
The doctor will evaluate the symptoms of disturbance of consciousness and cognition and consider the time course and presence of other factors such as substance intoxication, medication use, fever, and other general medical problems.

In brief: Thorough evaluation
Delirium is diagnosed by a doctor after careful evaluation of the patient, often with input of involved family members or caregivers.
The doctor will evaluate the symptoms of disturbance of consciousness and cognition and consider the time course and presence of other factors such as substance intoxication, medication use, fever, and other general medical problems.
Dr. Lawrence Smith
Dr. Lawrence Smith
Thank
Dr. Jeff Seaman
Psychiatry
In brief: Clinically
We really do not need an eeg to diagnose delirium.
In the 10, 000 or so patients i've treated for delirium, i used an eeg no more than 10 times, mostly looking for clues to potential delirium precipitants in atypical cases. We do have some rating scales as well, the cam and the drs-98-r which lead the pack.

In brief: Clinically
We really do not need an eeg to diagnose delirium.
In the 10, 000 or so patients i've treated for delirium, i used an eeg no more than 10 times, mostly looking for clues to potential delirium precipitants in atypical cases. We do have some rating scales as well, the cam and the drs-98-r which lead the pack.
Dr. Jeff Seaman
Dr. Jeff Seaman
Thank
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