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Association between leptin and delirium in elderly inpatients

Authors Sánchez JC, Ospina JP, González MI

Received 28 February 2013

Accepted for publication 2 April 2013

Published 13 May 2013 Volume 2013:9 Pages 659—666


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Julio C Sánchez, Jenny P Ospina, Martha I González

Cell and Applied Physiology Group, Department of Basic Sciences, Faculty of Health, Universidad Tecnológica de Pereira, Pereira, Colombia

Abstract: Leptin is a hormone with significant effects on the brain, both at the cellular level and cognitive level. This study aimed to establish the association between leptin levels and delirium in a Colombian elderly population. 115 patients older than 60 years were included. Leptin was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay after overnight fasting and Mini-Mental State Examination and Confusion Assessment Method (CAM) tests were employed. Delirium was diagnosed using CAM in 23.48% of patients, being most frequent in men. There were no significant differences in hematology and renal test values between patients with delirium and those without delirium, but cerebrovascular diagnoses were more frequent in patients with delirium. No correlation with any specific medication was found, but patients with delirium had a higher number of comorbidities and medications. Leptin levels were significantly lower in patients with delirium and correlated negatively with the number of diagnoses and medications, but not with age, gender, body mass index, or hematology and renal test results. Leptin levels may have a role in the pathophysiological process of delirium and low leptin could be a useful clinical biomarker to establish risk in elderly patients given the association with delirium.

Keywords: delirium, elderly, hospitalization, leptin

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