Diagnostic accuracy statistics for seven Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (NAB) test variables in the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease.

Gavett BE, Lou KR, Daneshvar DH, Green RC, Jefferson AL, Stern RA
Appl Neuropsychol Adult. 2012 19 (2): 108-15

PMID: 23373577 · PMCID: PMC3857936 · DOI:10.1080/09084282.2011.643947

Neuropsychological tests are useful for diagnosing Alzheimer's disease (AD), yet for many tests, diagnostic accuracy statistics are unavailable. We present diagnostic accuracy statistics for seven variables from the Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (NAB) that were administered to a large sample of elderly adults (n = 276) participating in a longitudinal research study at a national AD Center. Tests included Driving Scenes, Bill Payment, Daily Living Memory, Screening Visual Discrimination, Screening Design Construction, and Judgment. Clinical diagnosis was made independent of these tests, and for the current study, participants were categorized as AD (n = 65) or non-AD (n = 211). Receiver operating characteristics curve analysis was used to determine each test's sensitivity and specificity at multiple cut points, which were subsequently used to calculate positive and negative predictive values at a variety of base rates. Of the tests analyzed, the Daily Living Memory test provided the greatest accuracy in the identification of AD and the two Screening measures required a significant tradeoff between sensitivity and specificity. Overall, the seven NAB subtests included in the current study are capable of excellent diagnostic accuracy, but appropriate understanding of the context in which the tests are used is crucial for minimizing errors.

MeSH Terms (16)

Activities of Daily Living Aged Aged, 80 and over Alzheimer Disease Cognition Disorders Discrimination (Psychology) Female Humans Judgment Male Middle Aged Neuropsychological Tests Predictive Value of Tests ROC Curve Sensitivity and Specificity Visual Perception

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