Here are the top 10 dementia research priorities announced on 27th June 2013 after a consultation exercise coordinated by The James Lind Alliance.
1. What are the most effective components of care that keep a person with dementia as independent as they can be at all stages of the disease in all care settings?
2. How can the best ways to care for people with dementia, including results from research findings, be effectively disseminated and implemented into care practice?
3. What is the impact of an early diagnosis of dementia and how can primary care support a more effective route to diagnosis?
4. What non-pharmacological and/or pharmacological (drug) interventions are most effective for managing challenging behaviour in people with dementia?
5. What is the best way to care for people with dementia in a hospital setting when they have acute health care needs?
6. What are the most effective ways to encourage people with dementia to eat, drink and maintain nutritional intake?
7. What are the most effective ways of supporting carers of people with dementia living at home?
8. What is the best way to care for people with advanced dementia (with or without other illnesses) at the end of life?
9. When is the optimal time to move a person with dementia into a care home setting and how can the standard of care be improved?
10. What are the most effective design features for producing dementia-friendly environments at both the housing and neighbourhood levels?
Here are the research questions that SIGN 86 set out in February 2006.
Can matching of clinical and radiological appearances improve the identification of subgroups of people with Alzheimer’s disease and those with mixed Alzheimer vascular dementia?
Does the availability of patient/carer information lead to earlier access to services?
Does contact with psychiatric services when a patient has early dementia lead to improved
access to services as the patient deteriorates?
What is the benefit from non-complex psychosocial intervention?
What are the alternatives to drug treatment?
What is the most effective method for treating pain in patients with dementia?
What is the most effective way to prevent falls in patients with dementia?
What is the most effective way to treat delirium in dementia, where patients are at greater risk of morbidity and mortality?
What is the effectiveness of using antidepressants to treat depression in people with dementia?
What are effective interventions for the treatment of repetitive vocalisation?
The development of a set of brief tests which can enhance the diagnostic utility of tests such as the MMSE or clock drawing
what is the effectiveness of caregiver interventions on the carer?
What is the impact of the social context of living with dementia?
Are statins and antihypertensives effective treatments for people with vascular dementia with no history of stroke or myocardial infarction?
What physical exercise programmes help ADL and maintain well-being?