, Volume 255, Issue 11, pp 1756-1761
Date: 25 Sep 2008

The Frontal Assessment Battery (FAB) in Parkinson’s disease and correlations with formal measures of executive functioning

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Abstract

Background

The Frontal Assessment Battery (FAB) is a short tool for the assessment of executive functions consisting of six subtests that explore different abilities related to the frontal lobes. Several studies have indicated that executive dysfunction is the main neuropsychological feature in Parkinson’s disease (PD).

Goals

To evaluate the clinical usefulness of the FAB in identifying executive dysfunction in PD; to determine if FAB scores in PD are correlated with formal measures of executive functions; and to provide normative data for the Portuguese version of the FAB.

Methods

The study involved 122 healthy participants and 50 idiopathic PD patients. We compared FAB scores in normal controls and in PD patients matched for age, education and Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score. In PD patients, FAB results were compared to the performance on tests of executive functioning.

Results

In the healthy subjects, FAB scores varied as a function of age, education and MMSE. In PD, FAB scores were significantly decreased compared to normal controls, and correlated with measures of executive functions such as phonemic and semantic verbal fluency tests, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test and Trail Making Test Part A and Part B.

Conclusion

The FAB is a useful tool for the screening of executive dysfunction in PD, showing good discriminant and concurrent validities. Normative data provided for the Portuguese version of this test improve the accuracy and confidence in the clinical use of the FAB.