Revue de neuropsychologie


Trail Making Test: normative data in a French elderly population from the three Cities Study Volume 1, issue 3, septembre 2009

Centre de recherche Inserm U897, Université Victor-Segalen, Bordeaux-II, Unité mixte de recherche épidémiologique et de surveillance Transport-Travail-Environnement, Institut national de recherche sur les transports et leur sécurité, Bron, Inserm, U888, Hôpital La Colombière, Montpellier, Inserm, U708, Université Paris-VI, Paris, UMR CNRS 5231, Université Victor-Segalen Bordeaux-II

The Trail Making Test has proven to be a useful neuropsychological tool in the assessment of elderly people consulting Memory Clinics. Its popularity may be partly attributable to the fact that it is easy and rapid to administer, and that its use does not require any copyright. Even though several norms have been previously published, some studies have clearly shown that normative data from different countries and cultures are not equivalent even after adjusting for potential confounding factors, which might lead to possible diagnostic errors. The aim of this study was therefore to produce age, sex and educational level-adjusted normative data for this test in a French elderly population. The data was collected as part of the Three-City (3C) Study, a French population-based study on ageing. The sample of subjects analysed for this study included 8 995 non-institutionalised and non-demented elderly adults aged 65 and over. Norms were calculated according to age (65-69, 70-74, 75-78, 80 and over), sex and educational level. The principal aim of this study is to provide to clinicians normative scores on the Trail Making Test assessed in a large population-based sample of elderly persons which may be used by clinicians as an aid in the interpretation of a patient’s score on a test widely used to assess executive deficits in ageing.