ABSTRACT Identifying the presence of cognitive impairment in patients admitted for inpatient rehabilitation is important as it may impact on their ability to participate in a rehabilitation program. The Folstein Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) has been used by clinicians as a cognitive screening tool for its convenience, even though it is not sensitive, and often fails to detect cognitive impairment. Recently, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) has been developed as a brief cognitive screening tool to detect mild-moderate cognitive impairment. We performed a longitudinal study to compare the utility of the MMSE and MoCA in an inpatient rehabilitation setting. A total of 50 consecutive patients were studied with an average age of 71.7 years of age. The mean test score for MMSE was 26.5 and 22.2 for the MoCA. The Pearson’s correlation coefficient between the scores was 0.695 (p < 0.003). The mean performance time for the MMSE was 7.4 minutes and 14.8 minutes for the MoCA. MMSE did not perform well as a screening instrument for mild cognitive impairment as there were 43 patients who scored 24 or more on MMSE, and 25 patients (58%) scored 25 or less on MoCA, indicating the presence of cognitive impairment. Even though the MoCA takes longer to administer, the additional important information provided indicates that the MoCA should be used rather than the MMSE as a cogni-tive screening tool.
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