Despite the wide usage of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and Canadian Stroke Network (NINDS-CSN) neuropsychological battery for the detection of vascular cognitive impairment, its reliability and validity have not been established. Therefore, the present study established the psychometric properties of the battery in cognitively normal older adults in a clinical setting in Singapore.
Setting and Participants
A total of 105 cognitively normal older adults age 50 years and older were assessed in a memory clinic setting.
The 60-minute NINDS-CSN and 5-minute protocol were administered to participants at baseline and 3-month follow-up. Raw scores were transformed into standardized z scores. Test-retest reliability, concurrent validity and construct (convergent and discriminant) validity were reported.
Moderate-to-excellent test-retest reliability (r = 0.36–0.87), concurrent validity, and construct validity (r = 0.41–0.83) were found in both protocols over 3 months (all Ps < 0.01). Although the 5-minute protocol showed moderate validity (r = 0.41), the 60-minute protocol had excellent concurrent validity against a locally validated neuropsychological battery (r = 0.83).
Conclusion and Implications
The NINDS-CSN is reliable and valid in assessing cognitive function. The 60-minute protocol demonstrates great utility beyond its current usage in vascular cognitive impairment populations to the general older adult population. The 5-minute protocol can be used as a brief cognitive screening tool in primary healthcare and the community, due to its brevity and accuracy. Future research should further examine the generalizability of the NINDS-CSN battery in other dementias and cognitive disorders.
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Published online: May 19, 2020
This study was supported by the Singapore National Medical Research Council center grants NMRC/NUHS/2010 (project No. R-184-006-184-511) and NMRC/CG/013/2013.
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
© 2020 AMDA - The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine.