Chulalongkorn Medical Journal


Objective : To assess the efficacy of aromatherapy as an intervention for agitatedbehaviors in patients with dementia at the Dementia Clinic, King ChulalongkornMemorial Hospital.Method : This was a randomized controlled trial which recruited 24 patients withdementia at the Dementia Clinic, King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital.The intervention was undertaken at the patient’s home by major caregivers.The sample was randomly divided into two groups: the experimental group,12 patients with a mean age of 80.83 years (SD: 5.31), received aromatherapywith lavender oil for 1 hour every day for 2 weeks: and the control group,12 patients with a mean age of 80.75 years (SD: 6.84), received jojoba oilfor 1 hour every day for 2 weeks. The agitated behaviors were assessed byusing the Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (CMAI), pre and postintervention. Statistic analyses were conducted using Chi-square, Mann-Whitney U-test, the Wilcoxon signed-rank test and ANCOVA to comparethe characteristics and primary outcomes of the study.Result : The baseline CMAI score was significantly lower in the control thanthe experimental group. At the end of the study, 3 subjects from the controlgroup and 1 subject from the experimental group dropped out fromthe study. After adjusting for the baseline CMAI score by ANCOVA,the CMAI scores had significantly decreased in the aromatherapy groupwith lavender oil than the jojoba oil group (p < 0.05) in ITT (LOCF).Conclusion : The home-based aromatherapy with lavender oil was effective in reducingthe agitation in patients with dementia. Nevertheless, this was a pilot studywith a small sample size. Further studies are recommended using moresubjects and longer periods of intervention.


Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University

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