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October 16, 1967

Delirium in the Coronary Care Unit

JAMA. 1967;202(3):246-247. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130160120042

To the Editor:—  Parker and Hodge described "Delirium [in 11 patients] in a Coronary Care Unit" (201:702, 1967). This unit "... consisted of a 12-bed open ward with sliding curtains around each bed," and visitors were restricted to five minutes in each hour. Many... pulled at their oxygen tents, or tried to climb over the side rails of their beds."The rarity with which this situation has been encountered in our coronary care unit ( CCU) over a two-year period, and the inference from Parker and Hodge that it represents a significant complication of a CCU, prompted this letter.An air-conditioned, noise-free, tranquil environment with a private room for each patient and constant cardiac monitorization have been basic criteria for a coronary care unit.1-3 Most clinicians have recommended oxygen administered nasally rather than routine use of an