Question: In adults with dementia, how effective are group exercise interventions, compared to any other intervention, in improving patient outcomes?


There is some weak evidence, from one systematic review and one additional randomised controlled trial (RCT), that exercise interventions may have a small beneficial effect on cognition and ability to perform activities of daily living in people with dementia. The results of a second RCT indicated that exercise may significantly slow decline in physical function, but only where an intensive, tailored home-based exercise intervention was used. Studies included in the systematic review, and additional RCTs, were conducted in populations with differing severities of dementia, evaluated
exercise programs with differing content, intensity and duration, and used different measurement scales to assess outcomes. Further research is needed on the effectiveness of exercise programs for patients with dementia; future studies should aim to standardise key intervention characteristics and should investigate possible variation in effectiveness according to severity of disease.

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