Prospective memory function and cue salience in mild cognitive impairment: findings from the Sydney Memory and Ageing Study

Thompson, Claire L., Henry, Julie D., Rendell, Peter G., Withall, Adrienne, Kochan, Nicole A. , Sachdev, Perminder and Brodaty, Henry (2017) Prospective memory function and cue salience in mild cognitive impairment: findings from the Sydney Memory and Ageing Study. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 39 10: 1-13. doi:10.1080/13803395.2017.1281382


Author Thompson, Claire L.
Henry, Julie D.
Rendell, Peter G.
Withall, Adrienne
Kochan, Nicole A.
Sachdev, Perminder
Brodaty, Henry
Title Prospective memory function and cue salience in mild cognitive impairment: findings from the Sydney Memory and Ageing Study
Journal name Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1744-411X
1380-3395
Publication date 2017-02-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/13803395.2017.1281382
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 39
Issue 10
Start page 1
End page 13
Total pages 13
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract Prospective memory (PM) is crucial to the maintenance of functional independence in late adulthood and is consistently impaired in mild cognitive impairment (MCI). There remains a need for brief but valid measures of this construct that can be used as part of a comprehensive clinical assessment of cognition. Since the distinctiveness of PM cues is argued to determine the degree of strategic, controlled demands of PM paradigms, two variants of a brief measure were developed, one of which presented low-salience and the other high-salience PM cues.

A large cohort of older adults with normal cognition or MCI was assessed with one of the two variants of our brief, novel measure of PM. Participants were asked to remember to execute PM tasks where the target cue was either high or low in salience, while concurrently engaged in an ongoing task of olfactory assessment.

The task was able to discriminate between groups of participants with MCI or no cognitive impairment, albeit with a small effect size. The high-salience cue improved performance on the PM task; however, there was no interaction of cue salience with group.

These results suggest that the temporal reliability and construct validity of very brief measures of the type used in this study need further exploration to determine their potential to provide meaningful insights into PM function. This measure may have utility as a brief screening tool, with identified deficits being followed up with a more comprehensive PM assessment.
Formatted abstract
Objective: Prospective memory (PM) is crucial to the maintenance of functional independence in late adulthood and is consistently impaired in mild cognitive impairment (MCI). There remains a need for brief but valid measures of this construct that can be used as part of a comprehensive clinical assessment of cognition. Since the distinctiveness of PM cues is argued to determine the degree of strategic, controlled demands of PM paradigms, two variants of a brief measure were developed, one of which presented low-salience and the other high-salience PM cues.

Method: A large cohort of older adults with normal cognition or MCI was assessed with one of the two variants of our brief, novel measure of PM. Participants were asked to remember to execute PM tasks where the target cue was either high or low in salience, while concurrently engaged in an ongoing task of olfactory assessment.

Results: The task was able to discriminate between groups of participants with MCI or no cognitive impairment, albeit with a small effect size. The high-salience cue improved performance on the PM task; however, there was no interaction of cue salience with group.

Conclusions: These results suggest that the temporal reliability and construct validity of very brief measures of the type used in this study need further exploration to determine their potential to provide meaningful insights into PM function. This measure may have utility as a brief screening tool, with identified deficits being followed up with a more comprehensive PM assessment.
Keyword Brief smell identification test
Cue salience
Mild cognitive impairment
Prospective memory
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Psychology Publications
 
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