Objective: To show the feasibility of using different unobtrusive activity-sensing technologies to provide objective behavioral markers of persons with dementia (PwD).
Design: Monitored the behaviors of two PwD living in memory care unit using the Oregon Center for Aging & Technology (ORCATECH) platform, and the behaviors of two PwD living in assisted living facility using the Emerald device.
Setting: A memory care unit in Portland, Oregon and an assisted living facility in Framingham, Massachusetts.
Participants: A 63-year-old male with Alzheimer's disease (AD), and an 80-year-old female with frontotemporal dementia, both lived in a memory care unit in Portland, Oregon. An 89-year-old woman with a diagnosis of AD, and an 85-year-old woman with a diagnosis of major neurocognitive disorder, Alzheimer's type with behavioral symptoms, both resided at an assisted living facility in Framingham, Massachusetts.
Measurements: These include: sleep quality measured by the bed pressure mat; number of transitions between spaces and dwell times in different spaces measured by the motion sensors; activity levels measured by the wearable actigraphy device; and couch usage and limb movements measured by the Emerald device.
Results: Number of transitions between spaces can identify the patient's episodes of agitation; activity levels correlate well with the patient's excessive level of agitation and lack of movement when the patient received potentially inappropriate medication and neared the end of life; couch usage can detect the patient's increased level of apathy; and periodic limb movements can help detect risperidone-induced side effects. This is the first demonstration that the ORCATECH platform and the Emerald device can measure such activities.
Conclusion: The use of technologies for monitoring behaviors of PwD can provide more objective and intensive measurements of PwD behaviors.
Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; Unobtrusive activity-sensing technology; agitation; apathy; behavioral and psychological symptoms; end-of-life; late-stage dementia; potentially inappropriate medication; technology.
Copyright © 2021 American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.