Gériatrie et Psychologie Neuropsychiatrie du Vieillissement


Quality of life in dementia: state of the knowledge Volume 10, issue 4, Décembre 2012

Faculté de médecine, Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, EA 3797, Reims, France, Département de gérontologie clinique, Hôpital Maison Blanche, CHU de Reims, France, Unité d’aide méthodologique, Hôpital Maison Blanche, CHU de Reims, France

Background: Dementia is a chronic and evolutive disease, for which no curative treatment exists. Evaluating the quality of life of patients suffering from dementia is therefore an important component of management. Aims: To summarise existing literature regarding quality of life instruments specific to dementia, and to identify factors associated with quality of life. Methods: We analysed studies published between November 1996 and December 2010 and referenced in PubMed, and focusing on the development and/or validation of quality of life instruments specific to dementia, or studies having used any such instrument to evaluate a therapeutic intervention. Results: Nine quality of life instruments were identified. Place of residence and level of education do not appear to play any significant role. Results were conflicting for age and sex. There appears to be a relation, albeit a weak one, with cognitive function. The factors most frequently associated with lower quality of life were behavioural disorders, dependence, and caregiver burden. Quality of life of patients under pharmacological treatment is poorly documented, while occupational therapy and cognitive stimulation appear to have moderate positive effects.