Objective To determine which test of visuospatial function – copying a wired cube (‘cube’) or interlocking pentagons (‘pentagons’) – is the best screening tool for detecting cognitive impairment in Parkinson's, as defined by abnormal Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) score.
Methods 107 Parkinson's subjects completed the MoCA and copied pentagons from the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). They were classified into two groups based on MoCA score: <26 (cognitive impairment (CI)) or ≥26 (normal cognition (NC)). Cube and pentagons were scored using MoCA and MMSE criteria.
Results The CI group (n=57) was older (p 0.032) but disease duration, stage and medication were not different. 28% of CI and 72% of NC correctly copied cube. 69% of CI and 92% of NC correctly copied pentagons. Inability to correctly copy cube (p<0.001) or pentagons (p 0.003) was associated with CI. Age adjusted odds ratio for predicting cognitive impairment was 6.85 (2.97–16.39, p 0.001) for incorrect cube and 4.61 (1.41 – 14.93, p 0.011) for incorrect pentagons.
Conclusions Incorrect cube was the most predictive visuospatial marker of cognitive impairment in Parkinson's. This is potentially useful when assessing cognitive function in a busy outpatient clinic, for example. Larger numbers are required for validation.
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