[A version of this item appears in: Dementia: the Latest Evidence Newsletter (RWHT), Volume 2 Issue 9, April 2012].
This systematic review examines Functional Analysis (FA) for the management of challenging behaviour in persons displaying behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD). FA involves a range of behavioural interventions which involve attempting to explore the meaning or purpose of challenging behaviour. FA offers alternatives to traditional pharmacological management of agitation and aggression using antipsychotics.
The authors of this review evaluated the effectiveness of functional analysis-based interventions for people with dementia (and their carers) by examining eighteen randomised controlled trials (RCTs) which reported behavioural outcomes associated with functional analyses. FA has been incorporated in various multi-component programmes, and study designs have tended to vary according to setting (whether family care, care homes or hospitals).
The authors acknowledge the potential beneficial effects of multi-component interventions incorporating FA, but conclude that it is too early to draw firm conclusions about FA’s efficacy.
Moniz Cook, ED. Swift, K. James, I. [et al]. Functional analysis-based interventions for challenging behaviour in dementia. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (Online). February 15th 2012; Issue 2: No.CD006929. (Click here to view the PubMed abstract).