Application and validation of the barrow neurological institute screen for higher cerebral functions in a control population and in patient groups commonly seen in neurorehabilitation
Caisa Hofgren, Eva Esbjörnsson, Hans Aniansson and Katharina Stibrant Sunnerhagen
Objective: To determine whether the Barrow Neurological Institute Screen for Higher Cerebral Functions (BNIS) can differentiate brain-dysfunctional patients from controls.
Design: A case-control study.
Subjects: A total of 92 controls and 120 patients from a neuro-rehabilitation clinic with a diagnosis of: right and left hemisphere stroke, traumatic brain injury, Parkinson’s disease or anoxic brain damage.
Methods: The BNIS has a maximum total score of 50 points, < 47 indicates cognitive dysfunction. Group comparisons and exploration of variables influencing the BNIS total score were made.
Results: A significant difference was found between the control group and the total patient group for the BNIS total score and for the subscales (p < 0.0005). Sensitivity was 88% and specificity 78%. Presence of disease and educational level had the greatest influence on the results of the BNIS. Patients with Parkinson’s disease were shown to be the least cognitively affected and those with anoxic brain damage the most affected.
Conclusion: The BNIS has potential value as a screening instrument for cognitive functions and is sufficiently sensitive to differentiate brain-dysfunctional patients from a control population. It appears to be applicable in a neurological rehabilitation setting, and can be used early in the process, giving a baseline cognitive functional level.
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