Introduction: One of the objectives of the French expert centers for Parkinson's disease (NS-Park) network was to determine a consensus procedure for assessing cognitive function in patients with Parkinson's. This article presents this procedure and briefly describes the selected tests.
Methods: A group of 13 experts used the Delphi method for consensus building to define the overall structure and components of the assessment procedure. For inclusion in the battery, tests had to be validated in the French language, require little motor participation, have normative data and be recognized by the international community. Experimental tasks and tests requiring specific devices were excluded.
Results: Two possibilities were identified, depending on whether an abbreviated or comprehensive assessment of cognitive function was necessary. For an abbreviated assessment, the experts recommended the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) as a screening test for cognitive impairment or dementia. For a comprehensive neuropsychological assessment, the experts recommended assessing global efficiency plus the five main cognitive domains (attention and working memory, executive function, episodic memory, visuospatial function and language) that may be impaired in Parkinson's disease, using two tests for each domain.
Discussion and conclusion: A common procedure for assessing cognitive function is now available across the French network dedicated to Parkinson's disease, and is recommended for both research and clinical practice. It will also help to promote standardization of the neuropsychological assessment of Parkinson's disease.
Keywords: Assessment; Cognition; Dementia; Mild cognitive impairment.
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