[Discriminatory validity and association of the mini-mental test (MMSE) and the memory alteration test (M@T) with a neuropsychological battery in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease]

L Rami, B Bosch, C Valls-Pedret, C Caprile, R Sánchez-Valle Díaz, J L Molinuevo
Revista de Neurologia 2009 August 16, 49 (4): 169-74

AIMS: To establish the discriminatory validity of the mini-mental test (MMSE) and the memory alteration test (M@T) for the diagnosis of amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) and probable Alzheimer's disease (AD), and also to study the association between the results obtained in screening tests, a neuropsychological battery and a functional questionnaire in healthy persons and in patients with aMCI and AD.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS: We evaluated 27 normal controls, 27 patients with aMCI and 35 patients with AD using the MMSE and a memory screening test, the M@T, a neuropsychological battery and a questionnaire on functional activities of daily living. Pearson correlation coefficients were used to evaluate the relations between the scores on the M@T and the MMSE and the neuropsychological tests. The area below the curve, the sensitivity and the specificity were calculated for the screening tests.

RESULTS: In patients with aMCI, the scores on the M@T and the MMSE were strongly associated with the performance in the episodic memory tests in frontal tests and with the scores on the functional questionnaire, but not with tests that evaluated praxias and perceptive functions. In patients with AD, the scores on the M@T and the MMSE were associated with results in semantic memory, language, executive functions and praxias, but not with perceptive tests and functional questionnaires.

CONCLUSIONS: In patients with aMCI and AD, the association between MMSE and M@T only correlate with some cognitive functions, without there being any association with other cognitive functions. Therefore, screening tests cannot be used as the only instrument for evaluating the cognitive status in patients with suspected dementia.

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