in Beauty, Make Up

Jordan Retro acharia.org

OBJECTIVE: To present and evaluate an instrument, the Telephone Cognitive Assessment Battery (TCAB), designed to be administered over the telephone to assess the cognitive status of older individuals. The TCAB addresses mental status, reasoning and executive ability, primary and secondary memory, and language. It consists of six neuropsychological tests and takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes to complete.DESIGN: The instrument is evaluated with a comparative cross-sectional design, with data collected both prospectively and retrospectively.SETTING: The University Hospitals of Cleveland/Case Western Reserve University Alzheimer Center Research Registry.PARTICIPANTS: Forty Alzheimer's Disease cases selected from among those most recently recruited into the Registry and 40 cognitively intact Registry controls. Controls were selected randomly so that the two groups had similar distributions of age, sex, and education.MEASUREMENTS: The cognitive status of all participants was assessed utilizing both the TCAB and the usual in-person Registry evaluation, which includes medical history data and in-person assessment of cognitive status. In order to measure the potential learning effect of repeated testing, half of the cases and half of the controls were recruited and assessed over the telephone with the TCAB before their in-person Registry evaluation (with a waiting period of at least 2 weeks between evaluations), whereas the other two halves received the TCAB after they had become part of the Registry. The TCAB was administered to all participants by a single investigator. Two clinical evaluators, blinded to the Registry diagnosis of the subjects, independently classified the subjects as cognitively impaired, normal, or questionable on the basis of the results of the TCAB and a brief listing of medical illness and depressive symptoms. A final classification was achieved through consensus and subsequently compared with the Registry diagnosis, taken here to be the gold standard.RESULTS: Test scores of subjects assessed by TCAB before receiving the in-person assessment were compared with those of subjects receiving the in-person assessment first. There were no significant differences between mean scores of the two groups (those with TCAB first and those with TCAB last) for either cases or normal controls. High values of the kappa statistic were obtained for the two initial evaluators of the TCAB classification, demonstrating excellent interrater reliability. Regarding the reconciled TCAB classification, the ability of the TCAB to correctly classify subjects according to cognitive status, while controlling for potential confounders such as age and educational level, was assessed by means of discriminant analysis techniques. Knowledge of the TCAB classification and age allowed the correct classification of 95% of the participants; this was not significantly improved by knowledge of other potential determinants. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated under two schema for classifying those subjects in the "questionable" category. Positive and negative predictive values of the TCAB were computed assuming a prevalence of cognitive impairment of 10% in the older population. High negative predictive values (over 99%) were obtained under both schema, whereas the positive predictive values were seen to be more dependent on the classification of questionables.CONCLUSION: Research studies involving ascertainment of cognitive status of older people, particularly those that require periodic follow-up, such as those focusing on healthy aging, commonly suffer from lack of representativeness of subjects, often brought about by problems related to mobility of potential participants. It is also crucial that normal individuals who are recruited initially to serve as controls in epidemiologic studies of dementing illnesses be reevaluated periodically, and this may be hindered by the same obstacles. (ABSTRACT TRUNCATED)  

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