Delirium Instruments

Dr. Sharon Inouye and colleagues have developed several instruments for the recognition and diagnosis of delirium. These instruments and their training manuals have recently been moved to a new site: They are still FREE and easy to access, requiring registration of less than 2 minutes and available for immediate download.

Confusion Assessment Method (Short CAM): The Short CAM contains the 4 items of the CAM diagnostic algorithm. These are the first 4 items of the full 10-item CAM.

  • Recommended use: most widely used method for detection of delirium for both clinical and research applications. Should be scored on the basis of cognitive screening tests (e.g. SPMSQ or Mini-Cog).
  • Translations available in Arabic, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Thai, and Turkish.

Confusion Assessment Method (Long CAM): This 10-item tool is the gold standard for delirium identification in research situations.

  • Recommended use: broad research and clinical applications. Considered the gold standard for rating delirium-- including diagnosis, severity, and behavioral subtype.

CAM-S: The CAM-S measures delirium severity based on the Short or Long CAM assessments.

  • Recommended use: assessment of delirium severity in research or clinical situations

FAM-CAM (family assessment of delirium): The FAM-CAM is designed to be used with family caregivers to enhance the recognition of delirium.

  • Recommended use: family assessment in research or clinical situations

3D-CAM (brief cognitive screen with CAM): The 3D-CAM is a 3-minute diagnostic assessment of delirium.

  • Recommended use: quick assessment of delirium in research or clinical situations

CHART-DEL: Chart-based Delirium Identification Instrument.

  • The CHART-DEL is a validated method that can be used to review charts (medical records) to detect the presence of delirium.