Tags: drawing | test | stroke | predictor

Drawing Test Predicts Stroke Death

Friday, 11 May 2012 11:25 PM

A simple drawing test can predict the odds an older man will die after suffering a stroke better than a standard dementia test, new research shows.

The study, published in the online British Medical Journal Open, tied low scores in the drawing test to a threefold risk of death.
To reach its conclusions, the research team compared the ability of the so-called Trail Making Test -- TMT for short – with the “mini mental state exam” (MMSE), used to test for dementia, to predict a stroke patient’s likelihood of dying.
Both tests assess mental skills, which are often compromised in stroke patients and can predict mortality risk. The TMT involves drawing lines between numbers and/or letters in ascending order, as quickly as possible, while the MMSE assesses how well people perform on orientation, memory, and number tests.
Researchers analyzed health records from about 1,000 men who participating in the Uppsala Longitudinal Study of Adult Men, a long-running project designed to assess risk factors for heart disease and stroke.
They found the men who had performed badly on the TMT were more likely to have died. Those with scores were in the bottom 30 percent were around three times as likely to have died after their stroke as those who were in the highest 30 percent. No such association was seen among those with poor MMSE scores.
Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability, with older age and impaired mental function associated with higher risks of death and disability.

© HealthDay

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A simple pen-and-paper test can predict the odds a stroke patient will die better than a standard screening.
Friday, 11 May 2012 11:25 PM
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