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BACKGROUND: There is current interest in exploring the different subtypes of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), in terms of both their epidemiology and their cognitive profile. AIMS: To examine the frequency of MCI subtypes presenting to a memory clinic and to document detailed neuropsychological profiles of patients with the amnestic subtype. METHOD: Consecutive tertiary referrals (n=187) were psychiatrically evaluated; 45 patients met criteria for amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI). A subgroup of 33 patients with aMCI as well as 21 healthy controls took part in a thorough neuropsychological examination. RESULTS: Of the patients who were examined in greater neuropsychological detail, ten had pure aMCI (none with visual memory impairment only). Fifteen met criteria for non-amnestic MCI. Fifteen had normal neuropsychological profiles. Using more than one test increased sensitivity to detect episodic memory impairment. CONCLUSIONS: Amnestic MCI is an important diagnosis in secondary and tertiary memory clinics. There is scope to improve the efficacy and sensitivity of the clinical assessment of this impairment.

More information
Type

Journal article

Journal

Br J Psychiatry

Publication Date

01/2008

Volume

192

Pages

59 - 64

Keywords

Aged, Case-Control Studies, Cognition Disorders, Female, Humans, Longitudinal Studies, Male, Memory Disorders, Neuropsychological Tests, Referral and Consultation, Sensitivity and Specificity