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This decreased availability might result in a decreased serotonin production in the brain, since tryptophan is the precursor of serotonin [6]. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to evaluate the possible association between aspirin use and mean levels of neopterin and tryptophan in patients with and without a delirium and additionally, whether the use of aspirin is associated with a decreased prevalence of delirium.The present study was performed within the Delirium In The Old (DITO) study in which mean plasma/serum levels of several biochemical parameters, including neopterin and tryptophan, were compared between patients with and without a delirium [3,6].Activation of the immune system, oxidative stress, and disturbances in the serotonergic neurotransmission may all contribute to the development of a delirium.

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The Medical Ethics Committee of the Erasmus University Medical Center approved the study protocol.

All participants were observed daily by the nursing and medical staff and by members of the research team until discharge.

The possible influence of aspirin on mean levels of neopterin and tryptophan was investigated with univariate analysis of variance in adjusted models.

Eighty-three patients were included; 22 had a delirium.

In the DITO study, a cross-sectional study, we included patients who were admitted to the wards of Internal Medicine and Geriatrics of the Erasmus University Medical Center and the ward of Geriatrics of the Havenziekenhuis, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.