Comorbidity patterns in institutionalized older adults affected by dementia

TitleComorbidity patterns in institutionalized older adults affected by dementia
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsZazzara M.B, Vetrano D.L, Carfi A., Liperoti R., Damiano C., Onder G.
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment and Disease Monitoring
Keywords*Comorbidity, *dementia, *nursing home, *personalized medicine, Aged, article, atrial fibrillation, cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive lung disease, cross-sectional study, data analysis software, depression, Female, heart arrhythmia, hospital admission, Human, ICD-9, linear regression analysis, long term care, Male, nasogastric tube, percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube, personality disorder, phenotype, principal component analysis, resident, respiratory tract disease, schizophrenia, sensory dysfunction

Introduction: Dementia is common in nursing homes (NH) residents. Defining dementia comorbidities is instrumental to identify groups of persons with dementia that differ in terms of health trajectories and resources consumption. We performed a cross-sectional study to identify comorbidity patterns and their associated clinical, behavioral, and functional phenotypes in institutionalized older adults with dementia. Method(s): We analyzed data on 2563 Italian NH residents with dementia, collected between January 2014 and December 2018 using the multidimensional assessment instrument interRAI Long-Term Care Facility (LTCF). A standard principal component procedure was used to identify comorbidity patterns. Linear regression analyses were used to ascertain correlates of expression of the different patterns. Result(s): Among NH residents with dementia, we identified three different comorbidity patterns: (1) heart diseases, (2) cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and sensory impairments, and (3) psychiatric diseases. Older age significantly related to increased expression of the first two patterns, while younger patients displayed increased expression of the third one. Recent hospital admissions were associated with increased expression of the heart diseases pattern (beta = 0.028; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.003 to 0.05). Depressive symptoms and delirium episodes increased the expression of the psychiatric diseases pattern (beta = 0.130, 95% CI 0.10 to 0.17, and beta 0.130, CI 0.10 to 0.17, respectively), while showed a lower expression of the heart diseases pattern. Discussion(s): We identified different comorbidity patterns within NH residents with dementia that differ in term of clinical and functional profiles. The prompt recognition of health needs associated to a comorbidity pattern may help improve long-term prognosis and quality of life of these individuals. Highlights: Defining dementia comorbidities patterns in institutionalized older adults is key. Institutionalized older adults with dementia express different care needs. Comorbidity patterns are instrumental to identify different patients' phenotypes. Phenotypes vary in terms of health trajectories and demand different care plans. Prompt recognition of phenotypes in nursing homes can positively impact on outcomes.Copyright © 2022 The Authors. Alzheimer's & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring published by Wiley Periodicals, LLC on behalf of Alzheimer's Association.