Introduction: The Behavioral Pathology in Alzheimer's Disease Rating Scale (BEHAVE-AD) is a screening instrument for the evaluation of behavioral disturbances in Alzheimer's patients. Our aim was to validate the BEHAVE-AD test in Spanish, intended for use in routine clinical practice.
Method: We assessed the validity of the BEHAVEAD in 79 nursing-home patients with diagnosis criteria of dementia, scoring 4 or higher on the Global Deterioration Scale (GDS) scale, by developing a crossed validated form between the Neuropsychiatric Inventory-Questionnaire (NPI-Q) and BEHAVE-AD tests. Both instruments were rated by an expert clinician. In order to study the concurrent validity of some of the BEHAVE-AD subscales, we compared the Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (CMAI) and the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS) tests.
Results: The Pearson correlation index between the BEHAVE-AD test and the NPI-Q, was significant but moderate (r=0.694). Pearson's correlation between BEHAVEAD's symptoms scale and NPI-Q's severity scale was r=0.698. When comparing BEHAVE-AD's global evaluation scale (caregiver's disturbance) and NPI-Q's distress scale, the correlation index was 0.535.
Conclusions: The BEHAVE-AD Spanish version offers the possibility to use a screening tool for the detection of neuropsychiatric symptoms in dementia patients, also applicable to nursing home residents, administered by an expert clinician.