The a-test: a symptom validity indicator embedded within a mental status examination for social security disability.

a Independent Practice , New Orleans , Louisiana.
Applied Neuropsychology (Impact Factor: 1.97). 04/2012; 19(2):121-6. DOI: 10.1080/09084282.2011.643953
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT During the Psychological Consultative Examination (PCE) for Social Security Disability evaluations, there is a need for symptom validity measures to validate the findings for claims of disability (Chafetz, 2010 ). The "A" Random Letter Test of Auditory Vigilance (A-Test) is a simple auditory continuous performance test utilized as part of a comprehensive mental status examination (Strub & Black, 1993 ). The present study validates the use of the A-Test as a symptom validity measure easily administered as part of the PCE for Social Security Disability evaluations. This study shows that the A-Test is well correlated with other symptom validity measures, discriminates multiple symptom validity failure from nonmultiple failure, and has good classification accuracy statistics in two different studies of these claimants. The A-Test can thus easily be used as a symptom validity measure in professional psychological examinations of Social Security claimants without additional cost or much added time to the evaluation.

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