CAM (Confusion Assessment Method)

A method for detecting delerirum in a high risk setting.

Delirium is common among hospitalized elderly patients and is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Delirium commonly goes unrecognized. Existing cognitive tools were inadequate for detecting delirium.

The Method:
The method consists of two phases. The first is an assessment instrument and the second is a diagnostic algorithm.

An example and description is available at:

Several versions of the diagnostic algorithm:

In the orginal validation study CAM had a sensitivity of 94-100% and specificity of 90-95% with a high inter-rater reliability.

Inouye S, van Dyck CH, Alessi CA, Balkin S, Siegal A, Horwitz RI. Clarifying Confusion: The Confusion Assessment Method. Ann Internal Med. 1990;113(12):941-948.

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