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Delirium common amongst patients undergoing stem cell transplant

Researchers have found that many patients undergoing stem cell transplant suffer from delirium. 90 subjects were involved in the study and results showed that half of patients had delirium episodes which included psychotic problems, behavioral problems, cognitive impairment, mood disturbance and consciousness disturbance. Early symptoms such as hypoactive behavior, sleep-wake cycle disturbance and cognitive impairment began four days before the start of the delirium episode and lasted ten days on average. The presence and severity of delirium was also associated with emotional distress, fatigue and pain. These results show that the traditional symptoms (hallucination, delusion, disorientation and agitation) of delirium may lead to misdiagnosis of delirium. Delirium is a short term change in a patient's level of consciousness and cognition or perception caused by a medical condition. Diagnosis and treatment of delirium is important as delirium can increase the risk of falls, wound infections and aspiration pneumonia. It also increases the incidence of death during hospitalization of cancer patients and within five years of a check up.

Source: summary of medical news story as reported by Eurekalert

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About: Delirium common amongst patients undergoing stem cell transplant

Date: 10 January 2005

Source: Eurekalert

URL: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2005-01/jws-upo010505.php

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