Cognitive impairment in pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis is detected by the Brief International Cognitive Assessment for Multiple Sclerosis and computerized cognitive testing

November 2, 2017

Authors: Leigh E Charvet, Michael Shaw, Ariana Frontario, Dawn Langdon, Lauren B Krupp

Journal: Multiple Sclerosis: Clinical and Laboratory Research

DOI: 10.1177/1352458517701588

Year Published: 2017


Cognitive impairment is a common and troubling feature of pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis (POMS). Brief cognitive assessment in the outpatient setting can identify and longitudinally monitor cognitive involvement so that early intervention is possible.


The goal of this study was to measure the sensitivity of two cognitive assessment approaches that are brief, repeatable, and suitable for clinical practice and for multicenter investigation.


Participants with POMS ( n = 69) were consecutively evaluated as part of outpatient neurologic visits and compared to healthy control participants (HC, n = 66) using the Brief International Cognitive Assessment for MS (BICAMS) approach and timed information processing measures from Cogstate, a computer-based assessment.


There was strong agreement in the detection rate of impairment between both assessments, with 26% for the BICAMS and 27% for Cogstate. Two of the Cogstate tasks were the most sensitive individual measures.


Both the BICAMS and Cogstate timed processing measures offer practical, sensitive, and standardized approaches for cognitive screening assessment in POMS.

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