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J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 2018 Mar;40(2):161-172. doi: 10.1080/13803395.2017.1324562. Epub 2017 May 14.

Dynamic assessment of visual neglect: The Mobility Assessment Course as a diagnostic tool.

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a Center of Excellence for Rehabilitation Medicine, Brain Center Rudolf Magnus , University Medical Center Utrecht and De Hoogstraat Rehabilitation , Utrecht , The Netherlands.
b Department of Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy Science & Sports, Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, University Medical Center Utrecht , Utrecht , The Netherlands.
c Department of Experimental Psychology , Helmholtz Institute, Utrecht University , Utrecht , The Netherlands.



Visual neglect is a frequent disorder following stroke and is often diagnosed by neuropsychological assessment. However, paper-and-pencil tasks have low predictive value as they lack sensitivity to capture neglect in complex, dynamic situations, such as activities of daily living. Aims of the current study were to assess the feasibility of the Mobility Assessment Course (MAC), a visual search multitask, to assess neglect, and its relation with existing neglect tasks.


Stroke patients admitted for inpatient rehabilitation and healthy controls were tested with the MAC in different corridors. Participants had to move through a corridor, finding and reporting 24 targets attached to the walls. In addition, the shape cancellation, line bisection, and Catherine Bergego Scale (CBS) were used in order to compare the MAC with existing diagnostic tools for neglect.


Administering the MAC was feasible, as 112 of 113 patients completed the MAC with a median duration of 4.09 min. Depending on the corridor where the assessment took place, in 88.5-93.3% of assessments all targets were visible. The number of omissions (total and contralesional) and the asymmetry score (contralesional-ipsilesional omissions) on the MAC as well as collisions and corrections, were higher for patients with neglect than for those without neglect. Depending on the neglect task used, 4.0-18.6% of patients without neglect on neuropsychological tasks or the CBS showed neglect on the MAC. Vice versa, 17.2-29.3% of patients who showed neglect at neuropsychological assessment or the CBS did not do so on the MAC. Finally, a moderate to strong positive relation was seen between neglect at neuropsychological assessment, the CBS, and the MAC.


The MAC is an ecological task in which both quantitative and qualitative data on neglect can be collected. In order to assess the presence of neglect and neglect severity in a dynamic way, the MAC could be administered in conjunction with neuropsychological assessment.


Ecological valid task; multitask; stroke; visual search; visuospatial neglect

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