Abstract

The Mattis Dementia Rating Scale (DRS), a widely used dementia screening instrument, generates five subscale scores in the areas of Attention (ATT), Initiation-Perseveration (IP), Construction (CN), Conceptualization (CON), and Memory (MEM). The present study sought to determine the criterion validity of the DRS subscales in a sample of 50 patients with Alzheimer's disease (25 with mild and 25 with moderate dementia). Subject performance on the five DRS subscales was correlated with performance on five well-validated neuropsychological criterion measures using Pearson r and stepwise regression. On a univariate level, each DRS subscale correlated most strongly with its assigned neuropsychological criterion measure. On a multivariate level, each DRS subscale emerged as the Step 1 predictor of its assigned criterion measure, with the exception of DRS CN, which was the Step 2 predictor. The results suggested that overall the DRS subscales are valid measures of their respective constructs and have value for both clinical and research purposes in mild and moderate dementia.