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Diagnostic value of a cognitive battery for assessing cognitive decline

Timely diagnosis of progressive cognitive decline and identification of the specific neurological entity producing the behavioural and psychological symptoms is essential for early the intervention, effective management and implementation of treatment strategies.

The aim of the research, presented at CTAD 2017, was to explore the clinical-diagnostic value of a brief neuropsychological battery for dementia, consisting of fully-automated, computerised tasks and classical neuropsychological measures of memory and language.


In total, 82 memory clinic patients (55 women) aged 42 to 91 years underwent a formal neuropsychological evaluation in five cognitive domains: attention and concentration, memory, language, visuospatial abilities and executive functions.

The measures were CANTAB Insight, the Memory Impairment Screen (MIS), the short forms of the Boston Naming Test (BNT) and the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test – Revised (PPVT-R), both standardised in Greek, the Comprehension of Instructions in Greek (CIG) and a three-category fluency test from the Cambridge Semantic Battery.


The present study proposes a brief model for differentiating between MCI and NC obtaining individual scores for two variables: MIS (verbal episodic memory) and PAL (non-verbal episodic memory). The proposed model has near-perfect diagnostic sensitivity and specificity, while generalisability of findings can be inferred from bootstrap sampling.

In this context, our findings clearly demonstrate that a brief battery of tests can be of great clinical utility with regard to discriminating pathological memory cognitive decline.

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