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Current Gerontology and Geriatrics Research
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 942640, 11 pages
Research Article

Are Dementia Patient's Engagement Using Tailored Stimuli the Same? The Apathy Dilemma in Nursing Home Residents

1Le Centre Mémoire de Ressources et de Recherche, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Nice 06000 Nice, France
2Laboratoire d’Anthropologie et de Psychologie Cognitives et Sociales, Université Nice Sophia Antipolis 06100 Nice, France
3EA CoBTek, Université Nice Sophia Antipolis 06100 Nice, France
4Plateforme Patients du Centre Hospitalier et Universitaire de Nice, Nice 06100, France
5Department of Psychology, University of Pancasila, Jakarta 123930, Indonesia
6CobTeK/CMRR, Pavillon Mossa, Rez de Jardin Hôpital de Cimiez 06000 Nice, Nice 06000, France

Received 2 February 2012; Revised 30 May 2012; Accepted 12 June 2012

Academic Editor: Iracema Leroi

Copyright © 2012 Elsa Leone et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Apathy is the most frequent behavioural disturbance understanding how apathy drives engagement in resident’s activities of interests is a milestone to better understanding and tailored challenging interventions targeting engagement enhancement. Method. Residents aged 60 and older with dementia according to the ICD 10 from four nursing homes in the south east of France. A set of 25 stimuli were used and categorized by participant into Work, Leisure, Family, or Personal categories, an additional “not interested” category was used for comparison of engagement. The participants stimuli allocation was randomized in guided and unguided situations over a two-week period with 15minute interaction for each stimulus ( 𝑛 = 2 ) of each category (5×(15 min×2)). Clinical trial identifier: NCT01314131. Results. The mean age, 95% confidence interval (CI) of the 40 participants was 85.4 (83.8–87) with a mean MMSE score, CI95% of 17.7 (16.5–19). Analyses revealed a significant superiority effect of guidance over unguided interaction in duration of engagement in all categories of interest except for the stimulus category “family” and all 𝑃 < . 0 5 . Apathetic participants when guided had longer engagement duration in stimulus Leisure and Personal (all 𝑃 < . 0 1 ). Conclusion. Guidance and better activities of interest can lead to enhanced engagement time in participants with dementia.