Background and objectives: There has been a recent increase in older patients admitted to general hospitals. A significant percentage of hospitalized older patients are ≥75 years old, which differ from the patients aged 65 to 74 years old in terms of functional status at patient discharge. This study aims to compare sociodemographic, clinical features, and factors associated with length of hospital stay in youngest-old and oldest-old populations of inpatients referred to the consultation liaison psychiatry unit. Material and methods: This is an observational, cross-sectional, retrospective, and comparative study. We obtained data from a sample of 1017 patients (≥65 years) admitted to a general hospital and referred from different services (medicine, surgery, etc.) to the consultation liaison psychiatry unit. The sample was divided into two groups of patients: youngest-old (65–74 years) and oldest-old (≥75 years). Psychiatric evaluations were performed while the patients were on wards at the hospital. Psychopharmacs were started as needed. A comparative analysis was carried out and predictive factors related to length of hospital stay were calculated. Results: The reference rate to consultation liaison psychiatry unit was 1.45% of the total older patients hospitalized. Our study demonstrates differences between the groups of older people: the oldest-old group were mainly female (p < 0.001), had more previous psychiatric diagnoses (p < 0.001), physical disabilities (p = 0.02), and neurocognitive disorders (p < 0.001), they used more antipsychotics (p <0.001), and more frequently had a discharge disposition to a nursing home (p = 0.036). The presence of physical disability (beta = 0.07, p < 0.001) and logtime to referral to consultation liaison psychiatry unit (beta = 0.58, p <0.001) were associated with increased length of hospital stay. Conclusions: Youngest-old and oldest-old people should be considered as two different types of patients when we consider clinical features. The time to referral to consultation liaison psychiatry unit seems to be a relevant factor associated with length of hospital stay.
- Consultation liaison psychiatry
- Length of hospital stay
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