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Oslo Delirium Research Group

The group focuses upon different aspects of delirium in the elderly: Occurrence, risk factors, prognosis, prevention, treatment and pathophysiological mechanisms.

About us

Our main research focus on different aspects of delirium, or acute confusional state, in elderly people.

The group has studied delirium epidemiology and prognosis, carried out pharmacological and non-pharmacological intervention studies, and carried out studies in delirium pathophysiology.

The group members have comprehensive experience in sampling CSF and clinical data from patient cohorts.

We have established logistics for:

  • identifying hip fracture patients in the Emergency Department
  • providing consent from either the patient or a close relative
  • gathering proxy information on pre-fracture cognitive status by validated instruments
  • obtaining CSF and blood at the onset of spinal anaesthesia
  • monitoring the patients with validated tests during the perioperative phase regarding delirious symptoms, and
  • testing the patients cognitively at follow-up

Long-term goals

Through innovative research design, good utilization of the department's own patient materials, national and international networks and so on, we aim to develop into a leading European center for research on delirium.

In the years ahead, we will especially prioritize treatment research, epidemiology and research on pathophysiological mechanisms.

Our biobank spinal fluid samples from hip fracture patients who are well clinically mapped with respect to delirium represents a unique collection of biological materials, and we will therefore prioritize research on this to elucidate pathophysiological hypotheses in collaboration with basic scientists.

We have an ongoing recruitment of patients at several sites in Norway, and are continuously expanding our biobank.

Our group hosted the 12th annual meeting in the European Delirium Association at Hotel Bristol, Oslo November 16th – 17th 2017.

On-going projects

  • Alpha 2 adrenergic receptor agonists for the prevention of delirium and cognitive decline after open heart surgery (ALPHA2PREVENT): randomised controlled trial
  • Cooperation for improved pharmacotherapy in frail elderly people – The COOP study. A randomized controlled trial
  • Adverse outcomes after delirium. A longitudinal study of patients with hip fracture with and without delirium
  • Home-based patients with delirium
  • Haemodynamic regulation in elderly persons
  • Pathophysiology of delirium
  • Spinal fluid findings from healthy elderly
  • Acute sick elderlies in medical departments
  • Delirium in care transitions


International Collaboration

  • Edinburgh Delirium Research Group, Department of Geriatric Medicine University of Edinburgh, UK. CSF biomarkers in delirium (inflammation, neurotransmitters, cortisol), delirium severity (survey), CSF biomarker review.
  • Colm Cunningham: CSF biomarkers in delirium (inflammation). Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland.
  • Durk Fekkes: CSF biomarkers in delirium (inflammation, neurotransmitters). Department of Clinical Chemistry, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  • Henrik Zetterberg, Kaj Blennow: CSF biomarkers (inflammation, neuropathology). Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry, Clinical Neurochemistry Lab, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, The Sahlgrenska Academy at University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
  • John Hirdes: Delirium epidemiology (Canadian nursing home patients). School of Public Health and Health Systems, University of Waterloo, Canada
  • Chris Fox: CSF biomarkers in delirium and dementia (ongoing recruitment at several sites in the UK). Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia, UK.

National collaboration

  • Centre for Dementia and Delirium Research. Cooperation between our group, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences (UiO) and Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI). 
  • Frede Frihagen, Johan Ræder: Collection of CSF from hip fracture patients. Dep of Orthopedic surgery/Dep of Anesthesiology at Oslo University Hospital, Norway
  • Wender Figved, Marius Myrstad, Ullrich Sprang: Collection of CSF from hip fracture patients. Dep of Orthopedic surgery/Dep of Anesthesiolgy at Vestre Viken, Bærum, Norway.
  • Einar Sivertsen, Ole Christian Roald, Aasmund Godø: Collection of CSF from hip fracture patients. Dep of Surgery/Dep of Anesthesiology, Diakonhjemmet Hospital, Oslo, Norway
  • Asbjørn Årøen, Adam Essack: Collection of CSF from hip fracture patients. Dep of Orthopedic surgery/Dep of Anesthesiology, (Adam Essack) at AHUS.
  • Anders Fjell, Kristine Walhovd: CSF and imaging (MR/fMR) changes in normal aging. Research Group for Lifespan Changes in Brain and Cognition, Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
Published Apr. 14, 2015 11:02 AM - Last modified Nov. 14, 2022 9:13 AM


Group leader


Detailed list of participants

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