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Zhonghua Nei Ke Za Zhi. 2001 Jan;40(1):13-5.

[The value of number connection test in the diagnosis of subclinical hepatic encephalopathy].

[Article in Chinese]

Author information

  • 1Department of Gastroenterology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510080, China.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To explore the influencing factors and diagnostic values of number connection test (NCT) in detection of subclinical hepatic encephalopathy (SHE).

METHODS:

NCT was carried out in four hundred and fifty healthy volunteers to explore the influencing factors and to work out a reference value. Then forty patients with liver cirrhosis were studied with NCT, intelligence quotient (IQ) and evoked potentials(EP) to determine the value of NCT in the diagnosis of SHE.

RESULTS:

(1) NCT results were influenced by age and educational background. The older the age and the lower the educational level, the longer the NCT time (P < 0.001); (2) The abnormal rate of NCT was 30% (12/40), being lower than the IQ abnormal rate of 58% (23/40) (P < 0.01). (3) IQ or/and EP were abnormal in 85%. (4) The combination of four tests i.e. block design, picture arrangement, object assembly and NCT were abnormal in 53% of the patients. Comparing with the abnormal rate (58%) of full set of IQ test, the sensitivity and specificity were 87% and 94%, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS:

NCT result was influenced by age and educational background and the sensitivity was low for the scanning of SHE. Combination of four psychometric tests: block design test, picture arrangement, object assembly and NCT was recommended to substitute full set of IQ test in the diagnosis of SHE.

PMID:
11798550
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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