Brief screening tests for the diagnosis of dementia: comparison with the mini-mental state exam.

Journal Article (Journal Article;Multicenter Study)

Dementia is a common and under-diagnosed problem among the elderly. An accurate screening test would greatly aid the ability of physicians to evaluate dementia and memory problems in clinical practice. We sought to determine whether simple and brief psychometric tests perform similarly to the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) in screening for dementia. Using a retrospective analysis, a series of standard, brief, psychometric tests were compared with each other and to the MMSE as screening tests for very mild dementia, using DSM-III-R criterion as the gold standard. Two independent cohorts from the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging and the Washington University Alzheimer's Disease Research Center were evaluated. We found that two brief and simple-to-administer tests appear to offer similar degrees of sensitivity and specificity to the MMSE. These are the recall of a five-item name and address, "John Brown 42 Market Street Chicago" and the one-minute verbal fluency for animals. Combining these two tests further improves sensitivity and specificity, surpassing the MMSE, to detect dementia in individuals with memory complaints.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kilada, S; Gamaldo, A; Grant, EA; Moghekar, A; Morris, JC; O'Brien, RJ

Published Date

  • 2005

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 19 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 8 - 16

PubMed ID

  • 15764865

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0893-0341

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States