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Two experts on aging speak at international psychiatry convention

Two Forest Grove doctors spoke in Hawaii about treating dementia-related behavior

Two doctors from the Tuality Center for Geriatric Psychiatry in Forest Grove spoke on treating dementia-related behavior disturbances to the 164th annual American Psychiatry Association convention in Honolulu, Hawaii in May. Doctors attended the event from across the United States, Asia and Europe.

Dr. Maureen C. Nash, attending psychiatrist and medical director, and Sarah Foidel, lead occupational therapist, presented the four-hour, in-depth seminar.

'Getting an invited course is quite an honor, especially this year when the number of courses approved had to be limited due to constraints,' Nash said. 'It was well-attended and the audience generated many questions about this challenging topic. Many people stayed for an extra hour to continue to ask questions and discuss the issue.'

The behavior disturbances they discussed included delusions and paranoia, depression, anxiety, apathy and aggression, which are quality of life issues for patients, family members and care givers of people with dementia.

The doctors presented treatment options, including behavioral interventions and effective medications, that can improve quality of life.

Nash says she credits the late Dr. Scott Armstrong, a fellow psychiatrist and the previous co-medical director of the Tuality Center for Geriatric Psychiatry, with the idea to prepare and submit the course. He died three days before the presentation was due at the American Psychiatry Association.

The Tuality Center for Geriatric Psychiatry in Forest Grove is the only acute care geriatric psychiatry hospital unit in Oregon and southwest Washington.