Palliative care as a primary therapeutic approach in advanced dementia: A narrative review

Erin K. Zahradnik, Hillel Grossman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Purpose: The goal of this narrative review was to identify and summarize the ways in which palliative care could benefit patients who have advanced dementia. Methods: This case-based discussion article examines current literature on palliative care for dementia. Findings: Dementia is an incurable, progressive disease that affects millions of subjects. The prevalence has grown in the last decade and is projected to continue on this trajectory. In the later stages of dementia, subjects require increasing levels of care due to severe cognitive and functional impairment. Although the field of palliative medicine focuses on improving the quality of life of patients with life-limiting illnesses, many patients with advanced dementia do not receive palliative care services. Implications: Palliative care has been shown to improve patient and caregiver satisfaction, quality of life, and symptom burden at the end of life. Patients with advanced dementia would benefit from increased access to palliative care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1512-1517
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Therapeutics
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2014


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Dementia
  • Geriatric psychiatry
  • Geriatrics
  • Palliative care


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