Prevalence of delirium in adult intensive therapy

Ruy de Almeida Barcellos, Andreia Zanon, Taciana de Cavalcanti Castilhos, Angela Enderle Candaten


Objective: Measure the prevalence of delirium in intensive care patients. Method: This is a cross-sectional study with a quantitative approach, carried out in a highly complex hospital in Caxias do Sul. The study population consisted of 1271 patients hospitalised in the intensive care unit in 2017. For the data collection it was used an electronic  spreadsheet made by the researchers. The data was analysed using descriptive statistics. Results: It was evidenced that 8% (101) of the patients were diagnosed with delirium; of those 50% were older than 70 years, 74% used benzodiazepines, 65% were hypertensive, 71% had some comorbidity and 76% survived. Conclusion: The delirium is a sudden onset pathology, but it can be prevented through strategies in the care plan, and it is the nurse who performs the identification of the patients at risk for developing delirium by applying specific scales.


Delirium; Intensive care unit; Nursing.


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