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Is Delirium an Indicator for Patients with COVID-19?

  • Category: Coronavirus
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Baton Rouge General
Is Delirium an Indicator for Patients with COVID-19?

Diagnosing COVID-19 continues to be a daunting task as many are asymptomatic, or symptoms are inconsistent across age groups. While confusion is not a common symptom for younger COVID patients, nearly a third of patients over 65 admitted to hospitals report experiencing confusion or mental impairment.

A recent study shows that a growing number of those 65 and older who test positive for COVID-19 arrive at the ER with a more obscure main symptom, instead of the common signs like shortness of breath and fever. “Delirium,” which can include disorientation, agitation, and impaired consciousness, can often signal a significant health challenge, but unfortunately can go unrecognized in patients with dementia.

Symptoms like delirium and dizziness are not considered part of the standard symptom checklist that most facilities use when determining who gets tested for COVID-19, leading some experts to argue this could be why nursing homes see such large infection spread and COVID-19 deaths.

Consult the latest CDC guidelines for more information on how to protect yourself and your household from COVID-19. For tips to help those suffering with dementia, please visit The Alzheimer’s Association COVID-19 Help-Support page.