BACKGROUND:Subjective memory complaints (SMCs) are incorporated into the diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and neurodegenerative dementias; however, the relative frequency of SMCs in cognitively intact older adults and those with different types of dementia is poorly understood. Similarly, the concordance between self- versus informant-reported SMCs has not been compared across different diagnostic groups. OBJECTIVE:This study aimed to evaluate the frequency of self-reported (Objective 1) and informant-reported (Objective 2) SMCs in cognitively intact adults or those diagnosed with MCI or a neurodegenerative dementia. Agreement between participant and informant complaints was also evaluated (Objective 3). METHODS:Baseline evaluation data were drawn from 488 participants (Mage = 70.49 years; Medu = 15.62 years) diagnosed as cognitively intact, non-amnestic MCI, amnestic single domain MCI, amnestic multi-domain MCI, possible/probable Alzheimer's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, or frontotemporal dementia. Participants and their informants completed the Memory Assessment Clinic Questionnaire. RESULTS:One-way ANCOVAs controlling for age, education, and depression revealed no group differences in severity of self-reported SMCs. In contrast, informant memory ratings followed the expected clinical pattern, with comparable and most impaired ratings given to participants with any dementia diagnosis, followed by those with any MCI diagnosis, followed by cognitively intact participants. There was inconsistent agreement between self- and informant-reported SMC ratings in any of the impaired groups. CONCLUSIONS:Given greater diagnostic specificity and internal consistency of informant report, clinicians should weigh this information more heavily than self-report in the diagnostic process.
J Alzheimers Dis (Journal of Alzheimer's disease : JAD)
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