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New cognitive impairment test may help diagnose Alzheimer's disease at an earlier stage

Category: General Health

Researchers from the University of Tennessee recently developed a new behavioral test that has been found to be extremely accurate in detecting cognitive abnormalities related to Alzheimer's disease.

The computerized self test, or CST, was designed to help doctors diagnose the condition at the earliest stage possible. A recent study has shown that 60 percent of Alzheimer's cases are not detected by primary care physicians, leading to many missed treatment opportunities.

"Early detection is at the forefront of the clinical effort in Alzheimer's research, and application of instruments like CST in the primary care setting is of extreme importance," said co-author Rex Cannon, an adjunct research assistant professor of psychology at UT Knoxville.

The CST is an interactive online exam that evaluates impairments in functional cognitive domains and identifies whether a patient is capable of processing information correctly.

In the study of the test, researchers found that CST was accurate in detecting the presence of Alzheimer's disease and other forms of cognitive impairment in 96 percent of cases.

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