Title

A Validity Study of the Short Portable Mental Status Questionnaire

Publication Date

1979

Journal

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society

Volume

XXVII

Issue

6

First Page

263

Last Page

269

Abstract

The short, portable mental status questionnaire (SPMSQ) developed by Pfeiffer has several advantages over previous short instruments designed to assess the intellectual functioning of older adults. It is based upon data from both institutionalized and community-dwelling elderly. Although Pfeiffer a four-group classification, he used to groups in his initial validation study: (a) intact/mildly impaired, and (b) moderately/severely impaired. The present study compared clinicians' ratings with those based upon the SPMSQ scores, and examined the validity of the four-group classification. The sample included 181 subjects from seven intermediate care facilities and nine home-care agencies. All were assessed by the OARS questionnaire, which includes the SPMSQ Three discriminant analyses were performed with three different criteria, for two-group, three-group, and four-group models. Results indicated that the two-group model (intact/mildly impaired and moderately/severely impaired) permitted significant discrimination. The four-group model, however, gave less distinct results. In particular, patients who were mildly intellectually impaired could not be clearly distinguished from those who were intact and from those who were moderately impaired. The three-group model (minimally, moderately, severely impaired) seemed to offer the best compromise between the gross dichotomy of the original two-model system and the less accurate four category system.

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