The art of sharing the diagnosis and management of Alzheimer's disease with patients and caregivers: Recommendations of an expert consensus panel

George T. Grossberg, Daniel D. Christensen, Patrick A. Griffith, Diana R. Kerwin, Gail Hunt, Eric J. Hall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations


Objective: To develop a set of recommendations for primary care physicians (PCPs) suggesting how best to communicate with patients, caregivers, and other family members regarding the diagnosis and management of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Participants: A national roundtable of 6 leading professionals involved in treating or advocating for patients with AD was convened on March 14, 2008. This roundtable included 4 leading academic physicians with diverse backgrounds (a geriatric psychiatrist, a neuropsychiatrist, a neurologist, and a geriatrician) from geographically diverse regions of the United States, who were invited on the basis of their national reputation in the field and experience working with minority populations with dementia; the executive director of a national AD advocacy organization; the executive director of a national advocacy organization for caregivers; and a medical correspondent with expertise in interviewing and small group leadership. Evidence: Expert opinion supported by academic literature (search limited to PubMed, English language, 1996-2008, search terms: Alzheimer's disease,primary care, diagnosis, management, caregiver, family, patient-physician relationship). Consensus Process: Moderated dialogue aimed at generating consensus opinion; only statements endorsed by all authors were included in the final article. Conclusions: Diagnosis and management of AD by PCPs, utilizing specialist consultation as needed, may contribute to earlier diagnosis and treatment, improved doctor-patient and doctor-caregiver communication, increased attention to caregiver needs, and better clinical and quality-of-life outcomes for patients and caregivers. A set of expert panel recommendations describing practical strategies for achieving these goals was successfully developed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPrimary Care Companion to the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 29 2010


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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