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Swank Center for Memory Care
and Geriatric Consultation


Can memory impairments be prevented?

It depends on the root cause of the memory problem. However, by adopting healthy habits, there is a chance you may enhance your memory or delay memory problems. Regular exercise, a healthy diet, adequate sleep, social engagement, and stress reduction will improve your health overall and may benefit your cognitive functioning too. In addition, some research suggests that keeping your mind active by learning new skills or “exercising” the brain with challenging activities such as puzzles can help keep the mind and memory sharp.

Is memory loss purely genetic?

While there is evidence that some memory disorders can be passed down through family members, there are a number of lifestyle factors that affect the memory. Some factors that may affect the memory include:

  • Medications.
  • Alcohol, tobacco and drug use.
  • Head injury.
  • Sleep deprivation.
  • Nutritional deficiencies.
  • Endocrine disorders including diabetes mellitus.
  • Vascular disease including stroke.
  • Depression and stress.

My loved one is exhibiting signs of a memory disorder. How can the Swank Center for Memory Care and Geriatric Consultation help us?

The Swank Center for Memory Care and Geriatric Consultation can help in many ways. Our multidisciplinary team allows input from geriatricians (doctors focused on elder care), as well as from our geriatric psychiatrist, nurse practitioner, medical assistant, social worker, community educator and administrative staff. This team works together to conduct a comprehensive memory assessment, collaborate with primary care clinicians, refer to appropriate specialists, schedule appointments, coordinate care, discuss treatment, caregiving options, and provide vital follow-up care. We are here for you and your significant other with the support you need every step of the way. For consultations, please call us at 302-320-2620.

What kinds of tests do doctors use to determine if I have a memory problem?

Following a comprehensive medical history and physical examination, clinicians at the Swank Center for Memory Care and Geriatric Consultation will employ a series of assessments that test for neurological, psychological and cognitive function. Additional evaluation by neurologists, geriatric psychiatrists or other behavioral health specialists may be necessary, as well as testing of blood and urine, and imaging tests such as a CAT scan or MRI. Our staff can provide referrals and help you make appointments with these specialists, as necessary.

What is the difference between a Geriatric Assessment and a Memory Assessment?

A geriatric assessment is a 1.5 hour assessment of medical history and physical examination with a comprehensive healthcare focus.

A memory assessment is an hour-long assessment that focuses primarily on memory impairment. This consultation will also address medication management, evaluation and treatment of dementia, patient and caregiver education, and psychosocial needs.

How long will my appointment take?

A memory assessment will take approximately 1.25 hours to complete, while a geriatric assessment will take approximately 1.5 hours.

Who should come to my appointment?

Patients are encouraged to bring at least one family member and/or caregiver to appointments.

What information should I bring with me?

You should bring current insurance card(s) and an up-to-date medication list. A list of past medical illnesses and medication trials (including doses and effects) will make your visit more efficient. Please, also bring your glasses and hearing aid with you, if appropriate.

Do I need to complete any forms prior to my appointment?

Yes, please call 302-320-2620 for more information.

Do I need a referral?

No, you do not need a referral to make an appointment at the Swank Center for Memory Care and Geriatric Consultation. Please call 302-320-2620 to schedule an appointment.

Is this visit covered by my insurance?

Most primary insurances cover 80 percent of the cost for the visit and secondary insurances cover the remaining 20 percent.

Where should I park?

Visitors at Wilmington Hospital may use the high-rise parking garage, 24 hours per day. The first two hours are free. The parking garage is regularly patrolled by ChristianaCare constables. Valet parking is available. Follow the traffic signs to the valet-parking area.

Is handicapped parking available?

Yes, handicap parking is available on the Wilmington Hospital campus.

Swank Center for Memory Care and Geriatric Consultation
Wilmington Hospital
501 W. 14th Street
Gateway Building, 5th Floor
Wilmington, DE 19801 directions