Cut-off scores of a brief neuropsychological battery (NBACE) for Spanish individual adults older than 44 years old

PLoS One. 2013 Oct 16;8(10):e76436. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0076436. eCollection 2013.

Abstract

The neuropsychological battery used in Fundació ACE (NBACE) is a relatively brief, and easy to administer, test battery that was designed to detect cognitive impairment in the adulthood. The NBACE includes measures of cognitive information processing speed, orientation, attention, verbal learning and memory, language, visuoperception, praxis and executive functions. The aim of the present study was to establish the cut-off scores for impairment for different levels of age and education that could be useful in the cognitive assessment of Spanish subjects who are at risk for cognitive impairment, especially dementia. Data from 1018 patients with a mild dementia syndrome, and 512 cognitively healthy subjects, older than 44 years, from the Memory Clinic of Fundació ACE (Barcelona, Spain) were analyzed. In the whole sample, cut-off scores and sensitivity/specificity values were calculated for six conditions after combining 3 age ranges (44 to 64; 65 to 74; and older than 74 years old) by 2 educational levels (until Elementary school; and more than Elementary school). Moreover, general cut-offs are reported for Catalan and Spanish speakers. The results showed that most of NBACE tests reached good sensitivity and specificity values, except for Ideomotor praxis, Repetition and Verbal Comprehension tests, which had a ceiling effect. Word List Learning from the Wechsler Memory Scale-III and Semantic Verbal Fluency were the most useful tests to discriminate between cognitively healthy and demented subjects. The NBACE has been shown to be a useful tool able to detect cognitive impairment, especially dementia, in older than 44 years Spanish persons.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Area Under Curve
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Language
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests*
  • Sample Size
  • Spain

Grant support

This work was supported by the Spanish Ministry of Health from Instituto de Salud Carlos III (Madrid) (FISS PI10/00945) and by the Agència d’Avaluació de Tecnologia i Recerca Mèdiques. Departament de Salut de la Generalitat de Catalunya (Health Department of the Catalan Government) (390). Fundació ACE is grateful to Mrs. Trinitat Port for her legacy to support their research. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.