Two brief tests help rule out transition to dementia


  • Mary Corcoran
  • Univadis Medical News
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While brief cognitive and odour identification tests are used to predict the risk of dementia, a new research suggests they may also be valuable in ruling out a transition to dementia. 

As part of the study, researchers analysed data from 749 older adults, without dementia, in the community. The participants completed a brief cognitive screening test (Blessed Orientation Memory Concentration [BOMC] test) and the 40-item University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test, which includes the 12-item Brief Smell Identification Test (B-SIT). Participants were followed for around four years. 

A total of 109 of these participants transitioned to dementia, with the majority (n=101) transitioning to Alzheimer’s disease dementia. 

The authors reported that participants who were unimpaired on both B-SIT and BOMC had a low likelihood of being diagnosed with dementia or of cognitive decline during follow-up. Study author, Davangere P Devanand said the findings suggest that for older adults who are unimpaired on both a brief odour identification test and a brief global cognitive test, transition to dementia in the next few years “is very unlikely and further investigative evaluation for dementia typically is not needed."

The research is published in Alzheimer's & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer's Association.