An evaluation of patients who received an organic mental disorder diagnosis on a Psychiatric Consultation-Liaison Service

Robert E Hales, Shirley Polly, David Orman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations


The authors conducted comprehensive medical record reviews of 100 medical and surgical patients who received an organic mental disorder diagnosis by the Psychiatry Consultation-Liaison (C/L) Service of a large teaching hospital. The cases were randomly selected from among 182 patients with an organic mental disorder diagnosis, who, in turn, were drawn from 1085 consecutive psychiatric consultations conducted during a 1-year period. Dementia (34%) and delirium (32%) constituted the most common diagnoses. Approximately 78% of the patients were noted to have laboratory abnormalities (2.7 per patient), three quarters of which were routine tests. The mean age of patients without laboratory abnormalities (47.6 years) was 15 years younger than those with abnormal findings (62.6 years). The patients averaged 5.7 medications, with delirious patients averaging 7 medications and those with dementia, 4.5, a statistically significant difference. Patients with no laboratory abnormalities were receiving less medication (2.6) than those with abnormalities (6.5).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)88-94
Number of pages7
JournalGeneral Hospital Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1989
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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