Self- and informant reports of executive function on the BRIEF-A in MCI and older adults with cognitive complaints

Laura A. Rabin, Robert M. Roth, Peter K. Isquith, Heather A. Wishart, Katherine E. Nutter-Upham, Nadia Pare, Laura A. Flashman, Andrew J. Saykin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

128 Scopus citations


Amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is characterized by impaired episodic memory, although subtle executive problems have been noted on neuropsychological tests. Recent research also has described a group of healthy, non-depressed older adults with significant cognitive complaints (CC) but normal performance on neuropsychological testing. These individuals show structural and functional brain changes intermediate between those seen in MCI and healthy older adults without such complaints (HC). We evaluated executive functions in MCI and CC using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Adult version (BRIEF-A), a newly developed self- and informant report questionnaire in 29 patients with amnestic MCI, 28 CCs, and 30 demographically matched HCs. MCI and CC participants reported significant difficulties with selective aspects of executive functioning relative to HCs despite clinically normal performance on neuropsychological tests of this cognitive domain. Scores were generally in the pattern of MCI > CC > HC, and findings were most pronounced for working memory. Additionally, MCI and CC participants were more likely than their informants to report clinically meaningful executive problems, though informants identified a similar pattern of difficulty overall. Results failed to reveal strong relations between the BRIEF-A and standardized neuropsychological tests of executive function. Overall findings indicate that the BRIEF-A is sensitive to subtle executive changes in MCI and CC and suggest the need for research to determine if executive complaints are predictive of clinical course.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)721-732
Number of pages12
JournalArchives of Clinical Neuropsychology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Executive functions
  • Metacognition
  • Mild cognitive impairment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Self- and informant reports of executive function on the BRIEF-A in MCI and older adults with cognitive complaints'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this