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Introduction to Large Language Models (LLMs) for dementia care and research

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Treder, Matthias S 
Lee, Sojin 
Tsvetanov, Kamen A 


jats:secjats:titleIntroduction</jats:title>jats:pDementia is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects cognitive abilities including memory, reasoning, and communication skills, leading to gradual decline in daily activities and social engagement. In light of the recent advent of Large Language Models (LLMs) such as ChatGPT, this paper aims to thoroughly analyse their potential applications and usefulness in dementia care and research.</jats:p></jats:sec>jats:secjats:titleMethod</jats:title>jats:pTo this end, we offer an introduction into LLMs, outlining the key features, capabilities, limitations, potential risks, and practical considerations for deployment as easy-to-use software (e.g., smartphone apps). We then explore various domains related to dementia, identifying opportunities for LLMs to enhance understanding, diagnostics, and treatment, with a broader emphasis on improving patient care. For each domain, the specific contributions of LLMs are examined, such as their ability to engage users in meaningful conversations, deliver personalized support, and offer cognitive enrichment. Potential benefits encompass improved social interaction, enhanced cognitive functioning, increased emotional well-being, and reduced caregiver burden. The deployment of LLMs in caregiving frameworks also raises a number of concerns and considerations. These include privacy and safety concerns, the need for empirical validation, user-centered design, adaptation to the user's unique needs, and the integration of multimodal inputs to create more immersive and personalized experiences. Additionally, ethical guidelines and privacy protocols must be established to ensure responsible and ethical deployment of LLMs.</jats:p></jats:sec>jats:secjats:titleResults</jats:title>jats:pWe report the results on a questionnaire filled in by people with dementia (PwD) and their supporters wherein we surveyed the usefulness of different application scenarios of LLMs as well as the features that LLM-powered apps should have. Both PwD and supporters were largely positive regarding the prospect of LLMs in care, although concerns were raised regarding bias, data privacy and transparency.</jats:p></jats:sec>jats:secjats:titleDiscussion</jats:title>jats:pOverall, this review corroborates the promising utilization of LLMs to positively impact dementia care by boosting cognitive abilities, enriching social interaction, and supporting caregivers. The findings underscore the importance of further research and development in this field to fully harness the benefits of LLMs and maximize their potential for improving the lives of individuals living with dementia.</jats:p></jats:sec>


Peer reviewed: True


4203 Health Services and Systems, 4205 Nursing, 42 Health Sciences, 46 Information and Computing Sciences, 4608 Human-Centred Computing, Neurosciences, Clinical Research, Neurodegenerative, Brain Disorders, Acquired Cognitive Impairment, Alzheimer's Disease including Alzheimer's Disease Related Dementias (AD/ADRD), Caregiving Research, Behavioral and Social Science, Basic Behavioral and Social Science, Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Aging, 7.1 Individual care needs, 7 Management of diseases and conditions, Neurological, 3 Good Health and Well Being

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Frontiers in Dementia

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Frontiers Media SA