A new scale for assessing behavioral agitation in dementia

Psychiatry Res. 1992 Jan;41(1):73-88. doi: 10.1016/0165-1781(92)90020-4.


The primary purpose of the present study was to develop a reliable and valid rating instrument for assessing treatment efficacy for behavioral problems in the cognitively impaired elderly. The Behavioral and Emotional Activities Manifested in Dementia (BEAM-D) Scale was developed for the operational assessment of troublesome and disruptive behaviors in dementia. Each behavioral category of the BEAM-D was clinically considered to be a significant deviation from normative behavior for the geriatric dementia patient. The reliability and validity of the BEAM-D was assessed in a group of 45 patients diagnosed with primary degenerative dementia. The mean interrater reliability of BEAM-D items was 0.90. Concurrent validity was established by comparison with currently used rating scales, the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS) and the Sandoz Clinical Assessment-Geriatric (SCAG). Stepwise regression analysis revealed that the items of the BEAM-D had a strong relationship with conceptually similar behavioral dimensions on the BPRS and SCAG.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnosis*
  • Alzheimer Disease / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests / statistics & numerical data*
  • Psychometrics
  • Psychomotor Agitation / diagnosis*
  • Psychomotor Agitation / psychology
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Social Behavior Disorders / diagnosis
  • Social Behavior Disorders / psychology