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Psychol Rep. 2012 Apr;110(2):477-88.

The Tower of London Test: different scoring criteria for diagnosing Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment.

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Laboratory of Neuropsychological Investigations (LIN), INCT de Medicina Molecular, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil.


The Tower of London (TOL) is used for evaluating planning skills, which is a component of the executive functions. Different versions and scoring criteria were developed for this task, and some of them present with different psychometrical properties. This study aimed to evaluate two specific scoring methods of the TOL in diagnosing Mild Cognitive Impairment and probable Alzheimer's disease. The TOL total scores from 60 patients of each diagnosis were compared with the performance of 60 healthy-aged controls using receiver operating characteristics analysis and multinomial logistic regression. Krikorian method better diagnosed Alzheimer's disease, while Portellas's was better at discriminating healthy controls from Mild Cognitive Impairment, but were not efficient at comparing this last group with Alzheimer's patients. Regression analysis indicates that in addition to screening tests, TOL improves the classification of the three groups. The results suggest the two scoring methods used for this task may be useful for different diagnostic purposes.

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