Cognitive Dysfunction in Homeless Adults: A Systematic Review

Homelessness is associated with multiple adversities that might impact upon brain function. We performed a review of published work to assess evidence of cognitive dysfunction among adults who are homeless. Despite liberal inclusion criteria only seventeen publications were identified, these describing eighteen samples mainly from the USA. Although the total number of individuals studied is small (about 3300) and the samples are heterogeneous, most studies indicate a considerable burden of cognitive dysfunction among homeless people. Such dysfunction might be expected to impact upon their ability to reintegrate into society, thereby undermining policies of inclusiveness. In clinical practice, assessment of homeless adults should include their cognitive state.

Publication Date: 
2004
Publisher(s): 
Sage Journals
Pages: 
375-379
Volume: 
97
Journal Name: 
Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine
Location: 
United States