ZonMw grant for delirium research

Boogaart , Mark

The department of Intensive Care Medicine received a ZonMw grant of €319,000. With this grant research is carried out to prevent delirium (acute confusion) in Intensive Care Unit (ICU) patients using the drug haloperidol.

The study entitled "Prevention of ICU delirium and delirium-related outcome with haloperidol; a multicentre randomized controlled trial". Researchers are Dr. Mark van den Boogaard (principal investigator), prof. Dr. Peter Pickkers (project leader) and Dr. Roger. Brüggemann (pharmacist).

Clinical importance of the study
The grant was awarded due to its great clinical importance of this study for the ICU in which many patients develop delirium. This delirium is associated with serious consequences on the short-term as well as on long-term outcome. The prevention of delirium is therefore imperative. Worldwide haloperidol is the drug of choice for the treatment of delirium. There are clear indications that the preventive use of a low-dose haloperidol in ICU patients with a high risk for delirium has beneficial effects.

Effects preventive treatment delirium
The study will be performed in 20 hospitals in the Netherlands. The effects of a low dose of prophylactic haloperidol on short and long term outcome and the effect on survival in patients with a high risk of delirium will be determined. Positive effects of this preventive treatment will result into revisions of (inter) national delirium guidelines.

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