Vol. 10 nº 3 - Jul/Aug/Set de 2016
Original Article Páginas: 232 a 237

The influence of age, gender and education on the performance of healthy individuals on a battery for assessing limb apraxia

Authors Joana Mantovani-Nagaoka1; Karin Zazo Ortiz2


keywords: apraxia, ideomotor apraxia, educational status, age.

INTRODUCTION: Apraxia is defined as a disorder of learned skilled movements, in the absence of elementary motor or sensory deficits and general cognitive impairment, such as inattention to commands, object-recognition deficits or poor oral comprehension. Limb apraxia has long been a challenge for clinical assessment and understanding and covers a wide spectrum of disorders, all involving motor cognition and the inability to perform previously learned actions. Demographic variables such as gender, age, and education can influence the performance of individuals on different neuropsychological tests.
OBJECTIVE: The present study aimed to evaluate the performance of healthy subjects on a limb apraxia battery and to determine the influence of gender, age, and education on the praxis skills assessed.
METHODS: Forty-four subjects underwent a limb apraxia battery, which was composed of numerous subtests for assessing both the semantic aspects of gestural production as well as motor performance itself. The tasks encompassed lexical-semantic aspects related to gestural production and motor activity in response to verbal commands and imitation.
RESULTS: We observed no gender effects on any of the subtests. Only the subtest involving visual recognition of transitive gestures showed a correlation between performance and age. However, we observed that education level influenced subject performance for all sub tests involving motor actions, and for most of these, moderate correlations were observed between education level and performance of the praxis tasks.
CONCLUSION: We conclude that the education level of participants can have an important influence on the outcome of limb apraxia tests.


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