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Dementia: When to refer to a specialist
Primary care providers should consider referring the patient when there is:
- uncertainty over diagnosis after initial evaluation and treatment
- an indication for neuropsychological testing to differentiate between normal aging and mild cognitive impairment
- significant depression with poor response to treatment
- difficulties in tolerating medications for dementia
- challenging behaviours or significant stress on the caregiver and social environment
- need for genetic counselling
- patient or family request
- an indication for further evaluation of in-home safety, driving or other areas of potential risk
What referrals can support my patient with dementia?
Recommendations on screening for cognitive impairment in older adults (Canadian Task Force on Preventative Health, 2015)