[Considerable diagnostic variation among memory clinics - is it an issue?]
SourceNederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde, 163, (2019), article D4515
Article / Letter to editor
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Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde
SubjectRadboudumc 3: Disorders of movement DCMN: Donders Center for Medical Neuroscience
A recent survey shows a steady growth in the number of memory clinics in the Netherlands over the last two decades. It appears there is considerable variation in both the organization of care and the type of diagnostic work-up that is provided. Over time, the memory clinic population has also changed; 22% of patients present with subjective memory complaints, a three-fold increase. Although the current dementia guidelines leave much room for individualized diagnostic trajectories, the results suggest a lack of consensus on the indication for the different diagnostic tests. More insight is needed in the causes of variation, before discussing to what extent this variation is acceptable or perhaps even desirable considering the widely differing patient populations. In the meantime, patients and carers deserve a more prominent role in the diagnostic process, to ensure that the quest for a timely diagnosis will go hand in hand with appropriate use of memory clinics.
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