Objective: Although early identification and management services for dementia have become more widespread, their efficacy and the clinical characteristics of service have yet to be fully evaluated. Therefore, the objective of this study is to clarify these issues.Measurements: The subjects were 164 Japanese users of an early identification and management program for dementia, known as the Initial-phase Intensive Support Team (IPIST), between 2013 and 2015. Nonhierarchical cluster analysis was used to derive subgroups based on cognitive status and ability in activities of daily living (ADL) and behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD). One-way analysis of variance was performed to evaluate differences among the groups derived by the cluster analysis. A paired t test was used to assess how the clinical status of the groups changed between baseline and follow-up.Results: Four groups were identified by cluster analysis, i.e. a mild group, a moderate group, a BPSD group with moderate cognitive impairment and severe BPSD, and a severe group with severe cognitive impairment and severe BPSD. Although there were no significant improvements in cognitive impairment or ADL in any group, significant improvements were found in BPSD in the BPSD and severe BPSD groups. Caregiver burden was significantly lessened in all groups. Clinical diagnosis and long-term care insurance service utilization rates were significantly improved overall.Conclusion: The users of IPIST were classified into four subgroups based on their clinical characteristics. The IPIST program could improve the quality of life of people with dementia and their caregivers.
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