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Increased Reporting Accuracy of Alzheimer Disease Symptoms in Caribbean Hispanic Informants

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Introduction:

Informant report of symptoms is essential for diagnosing and characterizing Alzheimer disease (AD). Differences in the perception and experience of dementia across ethnicities may influence informant report. Understanding such differences is critical given that among those with AD, Hispanics are disproportionately affected.

Methods:

Cross-sectional analyses examined informant report of cognitive and functional symptoms in mild AD across white (n=107) and Caribbean Hispanic (n=71) informants. To explore its accuracy, informant report of symptoms was compared against objective measures of patient performance.

Results:

Adjusted analyses revealed Hispanics reported more symptoms than white informants. Informant report of symptoms was inversely correlated with patients’ global cognition in both ethnic groups. Only Hispanic report of symptoms was significantly associated with memory and language performance.

Discussion:

Informant report of symptoms was associated with patients’ global cognition, reflecting relatively accurate informant reports in both ethnic groups, and was stronger in Hispanics when examining memory and language. Such differences may reflect cultural caregiving practices and perceptions of dementia, having implications for diagnosis and treatment.
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Keywords: accuracy; cognition; dementia; ethnicity; informant report

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Neurology, Cognitive Neuroscience Division, G.H. Sergievsky Center, and Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and The Aging Brain, Columbia University Medical Center 2: Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY

Publication date: October 1, 2017

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