SCREEN legend Mickey Rooney is deteriorating rapidly, and his confused behavior at a recent event has sparked fears that the aging star may be suffering from dementia.

The 92-year-old actor was booked for “An Evening With Mickey Rooney” at Lyons Eng­lish Grille in Palm Springs, Calif., on Nov. 12 – a dinner event during which he was supposed to mingle with fans and speak about his storied Hollywood career.

But instead of the meet-and-greet they’d paid for, fans instead saw a disoriented and frail shell of a man who didn’t even remember why he was at the event!

“Mickey was in no condition to be out greet­ing fans,” a source at the restaurant told The ENQUIRER. “He didn’t have a clue where he was. He was confused, and sadly, he couldn’t even speak coherently. There was no way he could tell stories about his extraordinary life in Hollywood.

“Every seat was filled, and everyone was shocked by Mickey’s condition. Word spread that he either had dementia or Alzheimer’s.”

Fans who paid nearly $65 a plate to hear the Oscar-, Golden Globe- and Emmy-winning actor speak choked up with tears as Mickey began “rambling on and on about nothing,” added the source.

“Everyone was looking forward to meeting Mickey, but he should not have been there. He should’ve been at home in bed with loved ones around him, not propped up on a stool expected to perform.

“It was pathetic, and his family members who arranged the event should be ashamed of themselves.”