Delirium other diagnostic studies

Jump to navigation Jump to search

Delirium Microchapters


Patient Information


Historical Perspective




Differentiating Delirium from other Diseases

Epidemiology and Demographics

Risk Factors

Natural History, Complications and Prognosis


Diagnostic Criteria

History and Symptoms

Physical Examination

Laboratory Findings



Other Diagnostic Studies


Medical Therapy

Primary Prevention

Secondary Prevention

Cost-Effectiveness of Therapy

Future or Investigational Therapies

Case #1

Delirium On the Web

Most recent articles

Most cited articles

Review articles

CME Programs

Powerpoint slides


American Roentgen Ray Society Images of Delirium

All Images
CT Images

Ongoing Trials at Clinical

US National Guidelines Clearinghouse

NICE Guidance

FDA on Delirium

CDC on Delirium

Delirium in the news

Blogs on Delirium

Directions to Hospitals Treating Delirium

Risk calculators and risk factors for Delirium

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Sara Zand, M.D.[2] Pratik Bahekar, MBBS [3]; Vishal Khurana, M.B.B.S., M.D. [4]


EEG maybe helpful for the diagnosis of delirium. EEG findings associated with delirium include periodic discharges, triphasic waves ,lateralized rhythmic delta ,low voltage/generalized attenuation, theta or delta generalized slowing.The presence of either theta or delta generalized slowing correlated strongly with delirium severity regardless of arousal state (hyper- or hypoactive) and comorbidities.

Other Diagnostic Studies

  1. EEG
  2. Lumbar Puncture


  • The presence of either theta or delta generalized slowing correlated strongly with delirium severity regardless of arousal state (hyper- or hypoactive) and comorbidities.
  • EEG changes in delirium are most prominent in the posterior regions.
  • Delirium shows slowing of background activity, however, slowing of background activity is also observed in deep sleep and dementia.
  • Typical and atypical antipsychotic may cause EEG abnormality.[3]
  • One study observed an increase in the relative power of the theta and a decline in the relative power of the alpha frequency band, but this phenomenon seen to be absent when Parkinson is a co-morbid condition to delirium.[4]
  • Delirium can also be identified from non delirium states by the following characteristics:
  • Increase in the relative power of the delta frequency band
  • Decrease in the peak frequency and significantly decreased bispectral index (BIS).[5]

  • Delirium has been known to be associated with a generalised slowing of background activity.[6][7]
  • The relative power of the theta frequency and alpha frequencies was consistently different between delirium and non-delirium patients.

Lumbar puncture


  1. 1.0 1.1 Kimchi, Eyal Y.; Neelagiri, Anudeepthi; Whitt, Wade; Sagi, Avinash Rao; Ryan, Sophia L.; Gadbois, Greta; Groothuysen, Daniël; Westover, M. Brandon (2019). "Clinical EEG slowing correlates with delirium severity and predicts poor clinical outcomes". Neurology. 93 (13): e1260–e1271. doi:10.1212/WNL.0000000000008164. ISSN 0028-3878.
  2. Thomas, C; Hestermann, U; Walther, S; Pfueller, U; Hack, M; Oster, P; Mundt, C; Weisbrod, M (2008). "Prolonged activation EEG differentiates dementia with and without delirium in frail elderly patients". Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry. 79 (2): 119–125. doi:10.1136/jnnp.2006.111732. ISSN 0022-3050.
  3. Yılmaz, Mustafa; Erbaş, Oytun (2013). "The effects of typical and atypical antipsychotics on the electrical activity of the brain in a rat model". Journal of Clinical and Experimental Investigations. 4 (3). doi:10.5799/ahinjs.01.2013.03.0284. ISSN 1309-6621.
  4. Cozac, Vitalii V.; Gschwandtner, Ute; Hatz, Florian; Hardmeier, Martin; Rüegg, Stephan; Fuhr, Peter (2016). "Quantitative EEG and Cognitive Decline in Parkinson's Disease". Parkinson's Disease. 2016: 1–14. doi:10.1155/2016/9060649. ISSN 2090-8083.
  5. "What are the opportunities f... [J Neuropsychiatry Clin Neurosci. 2012] - PubMed - NCBI".
  6. Engel, GL (2004 Fall). "Delirium, a syndrome of cerebral insufficiency. 1959". The Journal of neuropsychiatry and clinical neurosciences. 16 (4): 526–38. doi:10.1176/appi.neuropsych.16.4.526. PMID 15616182. Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (help); Check date values in: |date= (help)
  7. van der Kooi, AW (2012 Fall). "What are the opportunities for EEG-based monitoring of delirium in the ICU?". The Journal of neuropsychiatry and clinical neurosciences. 24 (4): 472–7. doi:10.1176/appi.neuropsych.11110347. PMID 23224454. Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (help); Check date values in: |date= (help)
  8. Warshaw, G. (1993). "The effectiveness of lumbar puncture in the evaluation of delirium and fever in the hospitalized elderly". Archives of Family Medicine. 2 (3): 293–297. doi:10.1001/archfami.2.3.293. ISSN 1063-3987.

Template:WH Template:WS