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Testing Visual Perception in Dementia with Lewy Bodies and Alzheimer Disease

Lookup NU author(s): Josh Wood, Dr Michael FirbankORCiD, Dr Urs Mosimann, Dr Rosemary Watson, Dr Robert Barber, Professor Andrew BlamireORCiD, Professor John O'Brien


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Objective: Visuoperceptual deficits are common in dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Alzheimer disease (AD). Testing visuoperception in dementia is complicated by decline in other cognitive domains and extrapyramidal features. To overcome these issues, we developed a computerized test, the Newcastle visuoperception battery (NEVIP), which is independent of motor function and has minimal cognitive load. We aimed to test its utility to identify visuoperceptual deficits in people with dementia. Participants and Measurements: We recruited 28 AD and 26 DLB participants with 35 comparison participants of similar age and education. The NEVIP was used to test angle, color, and form discrimination along with motion perception to obtain a composite visuoperception score. Results: Those with DLB performed significantly worse than AD participants on the composite visuoperception score (Mann-Whitney U = 142, p = 0.01). Visuoperceptual deficits (defined as 2 SD below the performance of comparisons) were present in 71% of the DLB group and 40% of the AD group. Performance was not significantly correlated with motor impairment, but was significantly related to global cognitive impairment in DLB (r(s) = 0.689, p < 0.001), but not in AD. Conclusion: Visuoperceptual deficits can be detected in both DLB and AD participants using the NEVIP, with the DLB group performing significantly worse than AD. Visuoperception scores obtained by the NEVIP are independent of participant motor deficits and participants are able to comprehend and perform the tasks.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Wood JS, Firbank MJ, Mosimann UP, Watson R, Barber R, Blamire AM, O'Brien JT

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry

Year: 2013

Volume: 21

Issue: 6

Pages: 501-508

Print publication date: 01/06/2013

Online publication date: 24/01/2013

ISSN (print): 1064-7481

ISSN (electronic): 1545-7214

Publisher: Elsevier Inc.


DOI: 10.1016/j.jagp.2012.11.015


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Funder referenceFunder name
UK NIHR Biomedical Research Centre for Ageing and Ageerelated disease
05/JTASir Jules Thorn Charitable Trust
Newcastle BRCUK NIHR Biomedical Research Centre for Ageing and Ageerelated disease