Examination of the construct validity of ImPACT computerized test, traditional, and experimental neuropsychological measures

The Clinical neuropsychologist. 2010 Oct;

24(8):1309-1325.

Maerlender, A., L. Flashman, A. Kessler, S. Kumbhani, R. Greenwald, T. Tosteson and T. McAllister.

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Abstract:

Although computerized neuropsychological screening is becoming a standard for sports concussion identification and management, convergent validity studies are limited. Such studies are important for several reasons: reference to established measures is needed to establish validity; examination of the computerized battery relative to a more traditional comprehensive battery will help understand the strengths and limitations of the computer battery; and such an examination will help inform the output of the computerized battery. We compared scores on the ImPACT battery to a comprehensive battery of traditional neuropsychological measures and several experimental measures used in the assessment of sports-related concussion in 54 healthy male athletes. Convergent validity was demonstrated for four of the five ImPACT domain scores. Two cognitive domains often compromised as a result of mild TBI were not directly identified by the ImPACT battery: sustained attention and auditory working memory. Affective symptoms correlated with performance on measures of attention and working memory. In this healthy sample the correlations between the domains covered by ImPACT and the neuropsychological battery supports ImPACT as a useful screening tool for assessing many of the cognitive factors related to mTBI. However, the data suggest other sources of data need to be considered when identifying and managing concussions.

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