Vol. 2 nº 1 - Jan/Feb/Mar de 2008
Original Article Páginas: 52 a 56

Assessment of memory complainers in São Paulo, Brazil: three-year results of a memory clinic

Authors Cássio Machado de Campos Bottino1, Pedro Zucollo2, Maria Del Pilar Quintero Moreno2, Gislaine Gil2, Carla Garcia Cid2, Eduardo Vilodres Campanha3, Demétrio Ortega Rumi4, Cândida Helena Pires de Camargo2


keywords: memory clinic, Alzheimer's disease, cognitive disorders, depression.

Memory clinics were established in the USA and European countries as services to attend patients who complain of cognitive deficits, referred by primary care doctors, specialists and other hospitals. Objective: We aimed to describe the clinical and cognitive profile of consecutively evaluated subjects during the initial three years of service of a memory clinic from a university hospital. Methods: Subjects were submitted to a clinical work-up for dementia, which included laboratory exams, cranial computerized tomography, cognitive tests, and a comprehensive neuropsychological battery. Diagnosis was made according to ICD-10 criteria. Results: We evaluated 104 subjects (67.3% females and 32.7% males), with mean age of 59.1 years, 88.8% aged 50 years or above. Mean schooling was 9.9 years. Patients were classified into 10 different primary diagnostic categories, namely Depression (26.9%), Alzheimer's disease (17.3%), Memory complaints without objective impairment (17.3%), Mild Cognitive Disorder - MCD (14.4%), and Anxiety (12.5%) the most frequent diagnosis. Comparing patients with dementia, MCD, Depression or Anxiety and Memory complainers, by age (below and above 60 years), dementia was more commonly diagnosed in older subjects, while a higher frequency of memory complainers was found in the younger group. Conclusions: This preliminary report from an outpatient group of referred patients with cognitive complaints showed a higher frequency of psychiatric disorders in this sample. The memory clinic approach should be considered as a model of service which can evaluate subjects with cognitive complaints effectively and improve the quality of care delivered to this patient group.


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