This site uses cookies to measure how you use the website so it can be updated and improved based on your needs and also uses cookies to help remember the notifications you’ve seen, like this one, so that we don’t show them to you again. If you could also tell us a little bit about yourself, this information will help us understand how we can support you better and make this site even easier for you to use and navigate.

Efficacy of an occupational group therapy in degenerative dementias: a controlled study in the nursing home setting


Pickel, Sabine, Gräßel, Elmar, Luttenberger, Katharina


Psychiatrische Praxis, Volume: 38, No.: 8, Pages.: 389-396

Year of Publication



Objective: We investigated the effectiveness of an occupational group therapy, tailored to dementia patients, performed regularly 6 days a week, on everyday-practical capabilities and dementia-related behavior.; Methods: Fifty-six dementia patients in one nursing home in Northern Bavaria (Germany) were observed for 6 months: 28 patients in a therapy group and 28 patients in a matched controlled group. Performance tests, ADAS-kog and E-ADL-Test, were carried out blinded. Data were analyzed using adjusted mean differences for baseline and 6-months follow-up data and multiple regression analysis.; Results: The therapy leads to stabilization of everyday-practical capabilities (adjusted mean difference 4.0; 95 % CI 1.6-6.3; p = 0.002) and of dementia-related behavior (adjusted mean difference -6.8; 95 % CI -11.8–1.8; p = 0.009) compared to deterioration in the control group who received treatment as usual. The effect power (Cohen d) on everyday-practical capabilities is |0.83|. The therapy had no significant effect on cognitive capacity.; Conclusions: An occupational therapy program directed particularly to everyday-practical activities cannot slow the progression of all dementia-related symptoms, but has a main target effect on everyday-practical capabilities.; © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

Bibtex Citation

@article{Pickel_2011, doi = {10.1055/s-0030-1266137}, url = {}, year = 2011, month = {may}, publisher = {Thieme Publishing Group}, volume = {38}, number = {08}, pages = {389--396}, author = {Sabine Pickel and Elmar Grä{ss}el and Katharina Luttenberger}, title = {Wirksamkeit eines beschäftigungstherapeutischen Gruppenangebots bei degenerativen Demenzen: Eine kontrollierte Verlaufsstudie im Pflegeheim}, journal = {Psychiatrische Praxis} }


activities of daily living, aged, aged, 80 and over, alzheimer disease, comorbidity, diagnosis, disease progression, double-blind method, female, homes for the aged, humans, male, mental status schedule, nursing homes, occupational therapy, psychology, therapy, treatment outcome

Countries of Study


Types of Dementia

Dementia (general / unspecified)

Types of Study

Non randomised controlled trial

Type of Outcomes

ADLs/IADLs, Cognition


Nursing Homes

Type of Interventions

Non-pharmacological Treatment

Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions

Occupational Therapy