What is the most likely DSM 5 diagnosis for Mr. Q?

Neurocognitive Disorder (aka dementia)

Discussion Forum: Neurocognitive Disorder (aka dementia)

Case Study: Mr. Q Mr. Q, a 61-year-old high school science teacher, an experienced camp and hiker, became extremely fearful while on a trek in the mountains. Gradually, over the next few months, he lost interest in his usual hobbies. Formerly a voracious reader, he stopped reading. He couldn’t add or subtract correctly in class and made many errors balancing his checkbook. Several times he got lost while driving home from school. He wrote notes to himself so he would not forget to do errands. He decided abruptly to retire, without discussing it with his wife. Over time he spent hours piling objects in one place and then carrying them to another spot in the house. He became stubborn and querulous. Eventually, he needed help dressing and shaving.

When examined 6 years after the first symptoms had developed, Mr. Q was alert and cooperative. He didn’t know the date or the name of the hospital. He could not recall the names of five objects after a five-minute
interval of distraction. He could not recall the names of his college or graduate school or his major. He could describe his job by title only. In 2010 he though Reagan was president. He did not know who Sarah Palin or Barack Obama was. His speech was fluent and well-articulated, but he had considerable difficulty finding words and used many long, essentially meaningless phrases.
He called a cup a vase and identified the rims of glasses as “the holders.” He did simple calculations poorly. He could not copy a cube or draw a house. His interpretation of proverbs was concrete, and he had no insight into the nature of his problems.

Mrs. Q said, “I am at my wit’s end. He gets up 15-20 times a night and is only calm if I take him for a drive.”


1. What is the most likely DSM 5 diagnosis for Mr. Q? Be specific about matching his symptoms with DSM criteria for your chosen diagnosis.

2. Develop a social work assessment and plan for the couple, based on your diagnosis.


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What is the most likely DSM 5 diagnosis for Mr. Q


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