In this small study of 95 hospitalized elders at the VA, researchers validated a modified RASS screening tool to detect delirium. Patients underwent daily screening with the modified RASS and with a comprehensive assessment for delirium by a geriatric expert. The sensitivity and specificity for delirium as a single assessment was 64% and 93% respectively; but if performed daily, the sensitivity and specificity to detect incident delirium was 85% and 92% respectively. This may be a promising quick tool to screen serially for incident delirium in hospitalized patients, but performs less well as a single assessment (abstract)
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.