The Specificity of the 21-Item Test in Two Elderly Samples
Turpin, Daniel M.
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The 21-Item Test was administered to 20 healthy elderly individuals dwelling in the community and 53 individuals residing in a nursing home. The 20 healthy elderly individuals had means for age, education, and Short Portable Mental Status Questionnaire (SPMSQ) of 76.25 years (SD = 7.19), 14.30 years (SD = 3.89), and .30 (SD = 4.70), respectively. The second group of 53 nursing home residents had means for age, education, and SPMSQ of 82.79 years (SD = 8.56), 11.14 years (SD = 2.46), and 3.17 (SD = 2.46), respectively. The clinical cut-offs for the forced-choice component of the 21-Item Test proposed by Iverson (1998) may be insensitive to age and cognitive impairment. Not a single individual scored in the range of biased responding. Thus, the 21-Item test is unlikely to produce false positive results in elderly patients with obvious cognitive deficits.