[Normalization of the Brief Repeatable Battery of Neuropsychological tests (BRB-N) for German-speaking regions. Application in relapsing-remitting and secondary progressive multiple sclerosis patients]

Nervenarzt. 2004 Oct;75(10):984-90. doi: 10.1007/s00115-004-1729-0.
[Article in German]


The Brief Repeatable Battery of Neuropsychological Tests (BRB-N) is a neuropsychological screening battery, often applied in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. It is almost exclusively administered in trials and not in the daily practice routine because of the lack of normative values. Using a stepwise linear regression analysis, the dependence of test results on age, gender, and education of 241 healthy control subjects was investigated. Z-values of -1.68 or less were considered pathological. Based on the normative values, the proportions of cognitively impaired patients with relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS, n=43) and secondary progressive MS patients (SPMS, n=60) were calculated. The regression model explained 2.7-25.0% of the variance of test performances. Cognitive impairment occurred in 38% and in 47% of the RRMS and the SPMS groups, respectively. In both groups attention and concentration impairment was prominent, while in the SPMS group memory was also frequently affected. The proportion of cognitively impaired MS patients reflected the figures that could be found in the literature.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cognition Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Cognition Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Germany / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Chronic Progressive / diagnosis*
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Chronic Progressive / epidemiology*
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / diagnosis*
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting / epidemiology*
  • Neuropsychological Tests / standards*
  • Neuropsychological Tests / statistics & numerical data
  • Reference Values
  • Risk Assessment / methods
  • Risk Assessment / standards
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index