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Special Test

Cognitive Tests & Assessments

Cognitive tests are used to assess cognitive function, which includes memory, problem-solving skills, language abilities, and other mental faculties.

Cognitive Tests & Assessments Indications

Here are some common indications for Cognitive Function Test:

  1. Dementia Screening and Diagnosis: cognitive impairments test may be indicative of dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, or other forms of dementia.
  2. Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI): To evaluate individuals who show signs of cognitive decline that is more significant than normal aging but not severe enough to be classified as dementia.
  3. Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): To assess cognitive functioning following a head injury. Cognitive tests help in determining the extent of impairment and monitoring recovery.
  4. Stroke Recovery: To evaluate cognitive deficits that may occur after a stroke, such as difficulties with language, memory, attention, or problem-solving.
  5. Neurological Disorders: For diagnosing and monitoring cognitive aspects of various neurological disorders like Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and epilepsy.
  6. Psychiatric Disorders: To assess cognitive function in individuals with psychiatric disorders like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or major depression, where cognitive impairments might be present.
  7. Learning Disabilities in Children and Adults: To identify specific learning disabilities like dyslexia, dyscalculia, or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
  8. Developmental Disorders: For evaluating cognitive development in children with suspected developmental disorders, such as autism spectrum disorder or intellectual disability.
  9. Pre-surgical Evaluation: Particularly in neurological surgeries, to establish a baseline of cognitive function that can be compared post-surgery.
  10. Occupational and Environmental Medicine: To assess cognitive function in individuals exposed to neurotoxins, or in occupations where cognitive function is critical for safety.
  11. Research Purposes: In clinical trials or academic research to study cognitive function and its relation to various diseases, treatments, or other factors.
  12. Age-Related Cognitive Decline: For assessing normal age-related changes in cognitive function and distinguishing them from pathological conditions.
See Also: Trail Making Test

Each of these indications might require different types of cognitive tests, tailored to assess specific cognitive domains relevant to the condition being investigated. It’s also important to note that cognitive test should be conducted by qualified professionals and interpreted in the context of the individual’s overall health, history, and circumstances.

See Also: Balance Tests

Cognitive Assessment Test

Here is an example of a cognitive test following a concussion:

Orientation (5 points):

  • 1 point given for each orientation question, including month, date, day, year, and time.
Cognitive Test - Orientation

Immediate Memory (15 points): 5-item recall

  • Recite a list of 5 unrelated items. Ask the patient to repeat as many items back as they can remember, in any order. This should be completed 3 times in succession. One point awarded for each item in each trial.
Cognitive Test - Immediate Memory

Concentration (5 points)

  • Reverse digit recall: Recite a string of digits and ask the patient to repeat the string in reverse order. Start with a string of 3 numbers and increase by 1 digit in each trial. Complete 4 trials (up to a 6-digit sequence). One point is awarded for each correct reverse sequence.
  • Months in reverse: Have the patient start from the current month and recite the names of the months in reverse order until they return to the starting month. One point is awarded for completing this task correctly.
Cognitive Test - Concentration

Delayed recall (5 points)

  • Ask the patient repeat the previous list of 5 unrelated items.
Cognitive Test - Delayed recall

Total score

  • Add total points from each of the sections.

References & More

  1. Orthopedic Physical Assessment by David J. Magee, 7th Edition.
  2. Matuszak JM, McVige J, McPherson J, Willer B, Leddy J. A Practical Concussion Physical Examination Toolbox. Sports Health. 2016 May/Jun;8(3):260-269. doi: 10.1177/1941738116641394. PMID: 27022058; PMCID: PMC4981071. Pubmed
  3. Gonzalez Kelso I, Tadi P. Cognitive Assessment. [Updated 2022 Nov 7]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK556049/
Last Reviewed
January 20, 2024
Contributed by
OrthoFixar

Orthofixar does not endorse any treatments, procedures, products, or physicians referenced herein. This information is provided as an educational service and is not intended to serve as medical advice.

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