Most studies show that picture-naming test is the best task to evaluate the underlined cognitive and language function in the patients with dementia. Naming performance is the most evident linguistic symptom, which starts in the initial phase of the mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and Alzheimer’s disease (AD).
The current study aimed at determining the picture-naming performance level of Persian-speaking patients with MCI and AD compared with normal peers using naming subtests of Barnes language assessment (BLA).
In total, 90 subjects were selected through self-report; some relevant tests including mini-mental status examination (MMSE) and functional assessment staging (FAST) scale, as well as experts comments were employed; subjects were divided into three groups of MCI, AD, and normal control (NC) (30 cases per group). Picture-naming performance of patients in the MCI and AD groups was assessed and compared with that of the NC group using the naming subtest of the BLA.
In the picture-naming test of BLA, the AD group performed worse than the NC and MCI groups (P < 0.001). Moreover, a significant difference was observed between the NC and MCI groups. While the MCI group performed worse than the NC (P < 0.001), it acted better than the AD group (P < 0.001).
According to the results of the current study, picture naming test was a useful cognitive-linguistic task, which can accurately differentiate the three study groups, especially MCI from normal subjects, despite its quick and simple application.