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Arch Neurol. 1996 Oct;53(10):1033-9.

Do long tests yield a more accurate diagnosis of dementia than short tests? A comparison of 5 neuropsychological tests.

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1
Rotman Research Institute of Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care, Ontario.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To provide comparative evidence for a valid and practical measure of mental-status functioning that could be used in dementia clinics.

DESIGN:

Five mental-status neuropsychological tools for dementia screening were administered to patients in a memory disorder clinic. These included the Mini-Mental State Examination, the Dementia Rating Scale, the 6-item derivative of the Orientation-Memory-Concentration Test, a short Mental Status Questionnaire, and a composite tool we labeled the Ottawa Mental Status Examination, which assessed orientation, memory, attention, language, and visual-constructive functioning. The tools were compared using various criteria, including the statistical factors of sensitivity and reliability; effects of gender, native language, and language of testing; the utility of these tests for the differential diagnosis of Alzheimer-type and vascular dementia; and sensitivity to cognitive decline in the entire sample and among patients with severe dementia.

RESULTS:

All of the tests were highly intercorrelated, suggesting that they are interchangeable.

CONCLUSION:

The comparisons along the various criteria indicate that if the objective is to have a general index of dementia of the Alzheimer type, short tests are at least as good and sometimes better than the longer tests.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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