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Psychologie & NeuroPsychiatrie du vieillissement

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Assessment of cognitive complaints and depressive symptoms in Health check-up centers Volume 5, issue 2, Juin 2007

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Authors
CETAF, Saint-Étienne, CMRR, CHU de Saint-Etienne, Inserm / Drass LR, Montpellier

Memory clinics, where cognitive impairment is diagnosed, have to deal with an increasing number of requests. In this context, this study was aimed to evaluate the feasibility of cognitive complaint assessment in a health check-up performed in preventive Health check-up centers. Methods: The study population included 60-year and over subjects who were proposed a health check-up in the Health check-up centers of five French cities (Amiens, Nîmes, Longwy, Rennes and Sélestat). Cognitive complaint and anxio-depressive symptoms were collected for all participants. Subjects presenting a cognitive complaint fulfilled a neuropsychological screening including MMSE, 5-word test, Clock Drawing test, verbal fluencies and exploration of 4 Instrumental Activities of Daily Living. Subjects suspected to have cognitive impairment were then referred to a memory clinic. Results: One thousand and twenty participants were included in the study; 31.5% had a cognitive complaint, and 12.3% of these subjects were referred to a memory clinic. A dementia was diagnosed in one third of them, corresponding to 1% of the study participants. However, all the patients with dementia were referred by the same check-up centre, which staff was well experienced in cognitive disorders. Moreover, 29.3% of the participants had a depressive symptomatology. Conclusion: exploration of cognitive functions in a preventive health check-up center for elderly people can be interesting, but requires a staff’s former experience in cognitive disorders, especially for the diagnosis of Mild Cognitive Impairment. Moreover, depressive symptoms, which are frequent and can be cared for, should be explored in a health check-up for senior citizens.