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Arq Neuropsiquiatr. 1997 Mar;55(1):56-61.

[Normative data on the verbal fluency test in the animal category in our milieu].

[Article in Portuguese]

Author information

  • 1Disciplina de Neurologia, Escola Paulista de Medicina, UNIFESP, São Paulo, SP, Brasil.



Evaluate the performance on verbal fluency (VF) in our population in a Brazilian sample checking the influence of age and literacy.


336 people without neurological or psychiatric complaints evaluated through Mini-Mental State Examination and VF (animals). For comparison, and to determine cut-off points, 65 people with cognitive loss followed at our clinic were also evaluated.


We found a mean of 13.8 animals in 1 minute, with the following distribution: illiterates, 11.9; up 4 years of education, 12.8; 4 to 7 years, 13.4; 8 years or more, 15.8 (p = 0.0001). In relation to age the means were: up to 64 years, 13.7; 65 years or more, 13.9. There was no difference between the two groups. The cut-off points were 9 for people under 8 years of education with a sensitivity of 75% for illiterates, 100% for low educational level (up 4 years), and 87% for middle level (4 to 7 years). The specificity was respectively 79%, 84%, and 88%. For the high educational level the mean was 13 with a sensitivity of 86% and specificity of 67%.


In the VF (animals) there is a significant influence of schooling and different cut-off points should be used.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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