II. Diagnostics: Patient Alert

  1. Quick Screening (Move to standardized screening below if positive)
    1. Mental Status Consolidated Screening
  2. Standardized Screening
    1. Saint Louis University Mental Status (SLUMS)
      1. http://medschool.slu.edu/agingsuccessfully/pdfsurveys/slumsexam_05.pdf
      2. Excellent, free alternative to the MMSE
    2. Six Item Cognitive Impairment Test (6CIT)
      1. Designed as a Dementia screening tool for primary care
      2. Formulated from a regression analysis of the Blessed Information Memory Concentration (BIMC)
      3. Medical providers are allowed free usage (although copyrighted)
    3. Copland's Short-Test of Mental Status
      1. Free scale with similar accuracy to MMSE
    4. Confusion Assessment Method (CAM)
      1. Assesses for Delirium
    5. Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination (ACE)
      1. Differentiates Alzheimer's from other Dementias
      2. Detect early Dementia
    6. Blessed Information Memory Concentration (BIMC)
      1. Tests orientation, memory, concentration, naming
      2. Positive if >10 mistakes (out of 28 possible)
    7. Blessed Orientation Memory Concentration (BOMC)
      1. Shortened version of BIMC (6 questions)
      2. Positive if >10 mistakes
    8. Short Test of Mental Status (STMS)
      1. Tests orientation, attention, recall, and copying
      2. Also tests calculation, abstraction, clock drawing
      3. Positive if score <30 (out of 38 possible points)
    9. Mini-Mental Status Exam (MMSE)
      1. Requires payment for clinical use

III. Diagnostics: Patient not alert

V. Exam: General appearance, behavior and attitude

  1. See Appearance, Behavior and Attitude Exam
  2. Appearance
    1. Posture
    2. Clothing and grooming
    3. Old or young appearing
    4. Healthy or sickly appearing
    5. Angry, puzzled, frightened, anxious, contemptuous, apathetic
    6. Effeminate or masculine
  3. Behavior
    1. Mannerisms, gestures, twitches, picking, hand wringing
    2. Combative
    3. Psychomotor retardation
    4. Clumsy
  4. Attitude toward examiner
    1. Coperative or hostile
    2. Defensive, seductive, evasive, ingratiating
  5. Interpretation
    1. Psychotic: Disheveled, odd, grimacing
    2. Schizophrenic: Stare or blank look
    3. Paranoid: Agitated or hostile
    4. Depressed: Psychomotor retardation or mute
    5. Histrionic: Seductive manner
    6. Restlessness is seen in anxiety, mania, drug or Alcohol Withdrawal

VI. Exam: Alertness and orientation

  1. Alertness Level
    1. See Level of Consciousness
    2. Hyperalert
    3. Alert
    4. Lethargy
  2. Orientation
    1. See Orientation Exam
    2. Person (name, age, year of birth)
    3. Place (current location, home address)
    4. Time (date, day of week, time of day, season, month)
      1. Time is the first orientation factor to be lost
    5. Situation (reason for encounter)
  3. Interpretation
    1. Minor Disorientation may be induced by stressors
    2. Major Disorientation or decreased alertness suggests organic cause (see Delirium)

VII. Exam: Attention and Concentration

  1. See Attention and Concentration
  2. Definitions
    1. Attends for short periods of time despite minor stimuli
    2. Attends for longer periods of time (concentrates)
  3. Tests
    1. Random Letter Test
      1. Examiner says each letter (one at a time): "S-A-V-E-A-H-A-A-R-T"
      2. Patient raises finger for each of the 4 A's
    2. Digit Span Test
      1. Patient repeats a series of numbers (start with 3 numbers, then 4 numbers, then 5 numbers and then 6 numbers)
  4. Interpretation
    1. Significant deficits in attention are typically of organic cause
    2. Anxiety or Psychosis-related interrupted thoughts may also affect attention

VIII. Exam: Speech and Language

  1. See Speech Exam
  2. See Aphasia
  3. Characteristics
    1. Speech loud, soft, fast, slow or pressured
    2. Spontaneous speech or mute
    3. Good vocabulary?
    4. Articulates words with difficulty (Dysarthria)
    5. Language deficiency (Aphasia)
      1. Wrong words or poor grammar used
  4. Interpretation
    1. Psychotic: Rambling, bizarre speech (distinguish from Aphasia)
    2. Manic: Loud and rapid speech
    3. Depressed: Slow and soft speech

IX. Exam: Mood and Affect

  1. Mood
    1. Constant emotional state (depression, euphoria, anxiousness, anger, irritability) the patient can describe
  2. Affect
    1. Observable, current emotional state (flat, blunted, inappropriate)
  3. Interpretation
    1. Is Observed Affect consistent with Stated Mood?
    2. Is Stated Mood consistent with Thought Content?

X. Exam: Thought Process

  1. Thought Form
    1. See Disorganized Speech
    2. Logical flow of ideas or circumstantial with lengthy story of loosely related or unrelated details?
    3. Flight of ideas (rapidly moving from one idea to another related idea)?
    4. Evasive?
    5. Tangential (Loose Associations between unrelated thoughts, although connected in the patient's view)?
    6. Perseveration (frequently repeated thought or phrase)?
    7. Blocking (interrupted speech or train of thought, only to be resumed minutes later)?
  2. Thought Content
    1. Preoccupation or Obsession
      1. Do you think about some things often?
      2. Do you think about Suicide or homicide often?
    2. Excessively suspicious, phobic, ritualistic?
    3. Hypochondriacal symptoms?
    4. Deja Vu sensations?
    5. Depersonalization?
    6. Delusions (fixed false beliefs, such as persecutory, grandiose, influential)?
      1. Do you have strong ideas that other people rarely see the same way?
    7. Lack of Insight (unaware that thoughts are abnormal)?
    8. Concreteness (loss of abstract thinking)?
      1. Ask about relatedness between objects (what is similar?)
        1. Baseball and orange
        2. Car and train
        3. Desk and bookcase
        4. Happy and sad
      2. Test proverbs (what do these mean?)
        1. When the cats away, the mice will play
        2. You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink
        3. Haste makes waste
        4. Ignorance is bliss
  3. Interpretation
    1. Abnormal Thought Process suggests Psychosis (especially Schizophrenia)
    2. Obsessions are seen in Psychosis and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
    3. Concreteness with normal intelligence suggests Psychosis (especially with bizarre or personalized answers)

XI. Exam: Insight and Judgement

  1. See Insight and Judgement
  2. Judgement
    1. Judgment is an assessment of real life problem-solving skills
    2. Testing
      1. What should you do if you find a stamped (not canceled) and addressed envelope?
  3. Insight
    1. Insight is an understanding of their condition (including abnormal thoughts)
    2. Testing
      1. Tell me about your illness and if it is worse now?
      2. What medications are you taking?

XII. Exam: Perceptions

  1. Characteristics
    1. Misperceptions (wrong conclusions from straight-forward information)?
    2. Illusions (misinterpreted sensations such as a shadow seen as a person)?
    3. Hallucinations (auditory, visual, tactile, olfactory)?
      1. Are Auditory Hallucinations accusatory, threatening or commanding?
  2. Interpretations
    1. Illusions occur in Delirium and Psychosis
    2. Hallucinations are most common in Psychosis
      1. Auditory Hallucinations are most often seen in Schizophrenia
      2. Visual Hallucinations occur most often in organic conditions
      3. Tactile Hallucinations are most common with Alcohol Withdrawal or Benzodiazepine Withdrawal

XIII. Exam: Memory

  1. See Memory Evaluation
  2. Immediate Memory
    1. See Digit Span Test (digit repetition)
    2. Three word recall at 5 minutes
    3. Interrupted counting
      1. Patient counts from 1 to 100
      2. Examiner interrupts at 27 and asks patient to wait 1 minute and then restart counting (at 27)
      3. Examiner interrupts at 42 and asks patient to wait 3 minutes and then restart counting (at 42)
  3. Recent memory
    1. How did you come to the hospital (e.g. car, ambulance)?
  4. Remote memory
    1. Name four presidents in the last 100 years?
  5. Constructional ability
    1. Copy 2 shapes (e.g. a diamond and a 3 dimensional cube)
    2. Clock Drawing Test
  6. Interpretation
    1. Memory loss or impaired construction ability suggests organic cause

XIV. Exam: Intellectual Functioning

  1. See Cognitive Function Testing
  2. Fund of knowledge
    1. Number of weeks in a year?
    2. How many nickels in $1.15?
    3. Name the last 6 presidents?
  3. Calculations
    1. Serial 7s
      1. Subtract 7 from 100, then from 93, 86, 79, 72, 65, 58, 51, 44, 37, 30...
    2. Seraial 3s
      1. Subtract 3 from 20, then from 17, 14, 11, 8, 5
    3. Simple calculations
      1. Multiply 2x3, 5x3, 4x7

XV. Resources

XVI. References

  1. Zum, Swaminathan and Egan in Herbert (2014) EM:Rap 14(7): 11-13
  2. Tomb (1992) Psychiatry, 4th Ed, Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, p. 6-11

Images: Related links to external sites (from Google)

Ontology: Mini-mental state examination (C0451306)

Concepts Diagnostic Procedure (T060) , Intellectual Product(T170)
SnomedCT 273617000
English MMSE - Mini-mental state exam, Mini mental state examination, mini-mental state examination, mini mental state examination, MMSE - Mini-mental state examination, Mini-mental state examination, Mini-mental state examination (assessment scale), Mini Mental State Examination
Dutch minionderzoek van psychische toestand
French Mini examen de l'état mental
German Mini-Mental-Status-Test
Italian Esame Mini Mental State
Portuguese Mini exame de estado mental
Spanish Miniexamen del estado mental, examen mental abreviado (escala de evaluación), examen mental abreviado
Japanese ミニメンタルステート検査, ミニメンタルステートケンサ
Czech Minivyšetření duševního stavu
Hungarian Mini mentális állapot vizsgálat (MMSE)