Managing agitation and difficult behavior in dementia

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

16 Scopus citations


Managing agitation and difficult behavior in dementia can be the most challenging aspect of dementia care, as behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia cause premature institutionalization, increase costs of care, and result in significant loss of quality of life for the patient and the family caregivers. Nonpharmacologic interventions are important first-line steps in dealing with milder symptoms, whereas medication is clearly indicated in conjunction with nonpharmacologic interventions for more severe and problematic behaviors. Various classes of medication, including cholinesterase inhibitors, antidepressants, atypical antipsychotics, anticonvulsants, and anxiolytics represent the reference drugs for treating agitation. Nonetheless, there is no currently available ideal pharmacotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-82
Number of pages14
JournalClinics in Geriatric Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2004


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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