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J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 2011 Mar;33(3):300-14. doi: 10.1080/13803395.2010.516743.

Use of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale Digit Span subtest for malingering detection: a meta-analytic review.

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  • 1University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40504, USA.


Twenty-four studies utilizing the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) Digit Span subtest--either the Reliable Digit Span (RDS) or Age-Corrected Scaled Score (DS-ACSS) variant--for malingering detection were meta-analytically reviewed to evaluate their effectiveness in detecting malingered neurocognitive dysfunction. RDS and DS-ACSS effectively discriminated between honest responders and dissimulators, with average weighted effect sizes of 1.34 and 1.08, respectively. No significant differences were found between RDS and DS-ACSS. Similarly, no differences were found between the Digit Span subtest from the WAIS or Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS). Strong specificity and moderate sensitivity were observed, and optimal cutting scores are recommended.

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