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Some older people become confused or more confused than usual when they are admitted to hospital. This confusion may be very obvious and is called “delirium”. We want to find out why some older people in hospital become confused, and why some people recover well from their illness but others go on to develop thinking and memory problems.

Doctor talking through some information displayed on a tablet with a patient in a hospital bed

If you are 70 years or older and are admitted to the John Radcliffe hospital you may be asked to take part in our study (ORCHARD-PS).

If you decide to take part, you will be asked to sign a consent form. This lets us know you would like to take part.

Next, a researcher will ask some questions about your health including questions to test your thinking and memory and about your mobility and function. This should take less than an hour altogether. With your permission, we will ask someone who knows you well, some brief questions.

We will collect some blood samples but we will try and do this when you are having blood taken anyway as part of your hospital care.

We will do a brain scan using the CT-scanner if you have not already had one as part of your care since admission to hospital. Once in the CT scanner this will take less than 10 minutes.

Before you leave the hospital, we will make arrangements to follow you up after 3 months. This could be at the hospital, or at home or by telephone or virtually. At the 3-month follow-up we will repeat the research questions and the thinking and memory test and do one more blood test. These tests will take about an hour. This follow-up will be arranged and repeated in the same way at 1 year and 3 years.