Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Aggression Between Nursing-home Residents More Common Than Widely Believed, Studies Find

Date:
June 4, 2008
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
When people hear about elder abuse in nursing homes, they usually think of staff members victimizing residents. However, new research suggests that a more prevalent and serious problem may be aggression and violence that occurs between residents themselves.

When people hear about elder abuse in nursing homes, they usually think of staff members victimizing residents. However, research by Cornell faculty members suggests that a more prevalent and serious problem may be aggression and violence that occurs between residents themselves.

Related Articles


Although such aggression can have serious consequences for both aggressors and victims, the issue has received little attention from researchers, and few proven solutions exist to prevent resident altercations, says Karl Pillemer, director of the Cornell Institute for Translational Research on Aging at the College of Human Ecology. He has co-authored two articles -- in Aggression and Violent Behavior and in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society -- on "resident-to-resident mistreatment" this spring with Weill Cornell Medical College professor of medicine Mark S. Lachs, M.D., and medical student Tony Rosen. Both studies report that verbal and physical aggression between residents is common and problematic, and that more research is necessary to identify risk factors and preventative measures.

"Anyone who spends much time in a nursing home will observe arguments, threats and shouting matches among residents, as well as behaviors like pushing, shoving and hitting," Pillemer said.

"Given that nursing homes are environments where people live close together, and many residents have lowered inhibitions because of dementia, such incidents are not surprising," he said. "Because of the nature of nursing home life, it is impossible to eliminate these abusive behaviors entirely, but we need better scientific evidence about what works to prevent this problem."

The studies found 35 different types of physical and verbal abuse between residents at a large urban nursing home. Screaming was the most common form of aggression, followed by such physical violence as pushing and punching or fighting.

In related work, the authors found that 2.4 percent of residents reported personally experiencing physical aggression from another resident and 7.3 percent reported experiencing verbal aggression over just a two-week period. Most respondents rated the events as moderately or extremely disruptive to daily activities.

In another study, 12 nurse-observers identified 30 episodes of resident-to-resident aggression on just a single eight-hour shift, 17 of which were physical. Research also indicates that victims are more likely to be male, have behavioral problems like wandering and be cognitively impaired.

While such incidents are difficult to prevent, these types of studies will help nursing-home staff manage aggression among patients, Pillemer said.

"At present, staff have few solutions available to them and typical interventions in the nursing home may have negative consequences for aggressive residents, including the use of psychotropic medications or isolation of the resident," said Lachs, co-chief of geriatrics at Weill Cornell. "We hope our work will help inspire a vigorous search for programs that work to prevent aggression and violence among residents in long-term care."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cornell University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "Aggression Between Nursing-home Residents More Common Than Widely Believed, Studies Find." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080602170924.htm>.
Cornell University. (2008, June 4). Aggression Between Nursing-home Residents More Common Than Widely Believed, Studies Find. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080602170924.htm
Cornell University. "Aggression Between Nursing-home Residents More Common Than Widely Believed, Studies Find." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080602170924.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins