Item response theory facilitated cocalibrating cognitive tests and reduced bias in estimated rates of decline.

Department of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA.
Journal of clinical epidemiology (Impact Factor: 5.48). 05/2008; 61(10):1018-27.e9. DOI: 10.1016/j.jclinepi.2007.11.011
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To cocalibrate the Mini-Mental State Examination, the Modified Mini-Mental State, the Cognitive Abilities Screening Instrument, and the Community Screening Instrument for Dementia using item response theory (IRT) to compare screening cut points used to identify cases of dementia from different studies, to compare measurement properties of the tests, and to explore the implications of these measurement properties on longitudinal studies of cognitive functioning over time.
We used cross-sectional data from three large (n>1000) community-based studies of cognitive functioning in the elderly. We used IRT to cocalibrate the scales and performed simulations of longitudinal studies.
Screening cut points varied quite widely across studies. The four tests have curvilinear scaling and varied levels of measurement precision, with more measurement error at higher levels of cognitive functioning. In longitudinal simulations, IRT scores always performed better than standard scoring, whereas a strategy to account for varying measurement precision had mixed results.
Cocalibration allows direct comparison of cognitive functioning in studies using any of these four tests. Standard scoring appears to be a poor choice for analysis of longitudinal cognitive testing data. More research is needed into the implications of varying levels of measurement precision.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene polymorphism has been reported to be associated with cognitive dysfunction in healthy individuals, however the results were controversial in the very old elderly. The aim of this study is to assess the possible association of the APOE polymorphism with cognitive dysfunction in people aged 75 years and over. Four hundred and twenty-five aged Chinese veteran men without dementia were enrolled for APOE genotyping and neuropsychological tests including Mini-Mental Status Examination (MMSE), Digit Span Forward and Backward, and Cognitive Ability Screening Instrument Chinese language version (CASI C-2.0) were evaluated in these subjects. Among the elderly veterans, people who carry APOE ɛ4 were found to have worse performance on the total CASI scores, the abstraction/judgment subscores and the list-generating fluency subscores. This study suggests that the APOE ɛ4 alleles contributed detrimental effects on cognitive function in the very old veterans who do not have dementia.
    Neuroscience Letters 05/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.neulet.2014.05.046 · 2.06 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cognition is 1 of 4 domains measured by the NIH Toolbox for the Assessment of Neurological and Behavioral Function (NIH-TB), and complements modules testing motor function, sensation, and emotion. On the basis of expert panels, the cognition subdomains identified as most important for health, success in school and work, and independence in daily functioning were Executive Function, Episodic Memory, Language, Processing Speed, Working Memory, and Attention. Seven measures were designed to tap constructs within these subdomains. The instruments were validated in English, in a sample of 476 participants ranging in age from 3 to 85 years, with representation from both sexes, 3 racial/ethnic categories, and 3 levels of education. This report describes the development of the Cognition Battery and presents results on test-retest reliability, age effects on performance, and convergent and discriminant construct validity. The NIH-TB Cognition Battery is intended to serve as a brief, convenient set of measures to supplement other outcome measures in epidemiologic and longitudinal research and clinical trials. With a computerized format and national standardization, this battery will provide a "common currency" among researchers for comparisons across a wide range of studies and populations. Neurology (R) 2013; 80 (Suppl 3):S54-S64
    Neurology 03/2013; 80(11):S54-64. DOI:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3182872ded · 8.30 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors (AChEIs) are widely used to delay cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease. Observational studies in routine clinical practice have shown cognitive improvement in some groups of patients receiving these agents but longitudinal trajectories before and after AChEI initiation have not previously been considered. To compare trajectories of cognitive function before and after AChEI initiation and investigate predictors of these differences. A retrospective longitudinal study was constructed using data from 2460 patients who received AChEIs and who had routine data on cognitive function (Mini-Mental State Examination; MMSE) before and after AChEI initiation. Longitudinal MMSE change was modelled using three-piece linear mixed models with the following segments: 0-12 months prior to AChEI initiation, 0-6 months and 6-36 months after initiation. MMSE decline was reversed (in that the slope was improved by an average 4.2 units per year, 95% CI 3.5-4.8) during the 6-month period following AChEI initiation compared with the slope in the one year period before AChEI initiation. The slope in the period from 6-36 months following AChEI initiation returned to the pre-initiation downward trajectory. The differences in slopes in the 1 year period prior to AChEI initiation and in the 6 months after initiation were smaller among those with higher MMSE scores at the time of AChEI initiation, among those who received a vascular dementia diagnosis at any point, and among those receiving antipsychotic agents. In this naturalistic observational study, changes in cognitive trajectories around AChEI initiation were similar to those reported in randomised controlled trials. The magnitude of the difference in slopes between the 1 year period prior to AChEI initiation and the 6 month period after AChEI initiation was related to level of cognitive function at treatment initiation, vascular comorbidity and antipsychotic use.
    PLoS ONE 11/2014; 9(11):e109484. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0109484 · 3.53 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
May 22, 2014