ICMR releases dementia research and assessment tool in five languages

The tool will be available in Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has released dementia research and assessment tool in five languages. The tool consisting of various tests and questionnaires is available in five Indian languages — Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam — and is freely accessible to professionals and researchers across the country, the ICMR said in a statement.

The Multilingual Dementia Research and Assessment Toolbox, or MUDRA Toolbox, was framed collectively by seven leading centres — NIMHANS (Bengaluru), AIIMS (New Delhi), SCTIMST (Thiruvananthapuram), NIMS (Hyderabad), Apollo Hospital (Kolkata), Manipal Hospital (Bengaluru) and Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College.

Balram Bhargava, Director General, ICMR said, “This was one of the crucial needs for undertaking uniform, standardised dementia research in the country. The toolbox includes various cognitive tests to assess different domains of cognition such as attention and executive function, memory, language, and visuospatial functions.”

The tool includes a five-minute cognitive screening instrument for the busy clinic and a detailed version for more in-depth clinical testing or research. It is a pioneering initiative undertaken by ICMR Neuro Cognitive Tool Box (ICMR-NCTB) consortium to transform India’s dementia and mild cognitive impairment research and clinical practices, according to the statement.

Dr RS Dhaliwal, Head of Non-Communicable Diseases division, said the ICMR commissioned the multidisciplinary project with a team of researchers from various fields, including neurologists, psychologists, and speech-language pathologists, to develop a culturally, educationally and linguistically relevant neurocognitive toolbox.

Dr Meenakshi Sharma, a senior scientist of ICMR, said the toolbox is designed to provide a detailed neuropsychological profile of a patient and is a standardised measure of diagnosis for mild cognitive impairment and dementia.


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