Clock Drawing Test Identifies Symptoms of Dementia

Discover how the clock drawing test can help identify a wide range of dementia symptoms. Learn about the different aspects of the test and how it can be used as a baseline for further testing. Don't interpret your own test, find out why professional interpretation is important.

Clock Drawing Test Identifies Symptoms of Dementia

Could it be possible that the clock drawing test is a test for dementia? I mean, really?

Have a person draw a picture of a clock. Just circles with numbers, then add an hour and minute hand and set the clock for a specific time. For someone with memory problems, this is not so simple anymore.

So what are we looking for when this test is given? This is a simple assessment tool. It is used to identify a wide range of dementia diagnosis symptoms. Using a drawing of a clock can help point out underlying cognitive, or thinking problems.

Here are a few things that this simple, yet, complex task addresses:

  • Verbal comprehension/understanding
  • Memory function/ short term memory problems/recall
  • Executive function/planning abilities
  • Assessment of visual spatial and perceptual process

The time setting part of the test is a very important part of this test. It can help identify a specific part of the brain that is affected. In fact, many insurance companies have refused to pay for expensive tests such as MRI’s and CAT’ scans.

The results of the clock-drawing test can be used as a baseline. This can be made part of a patient’s medical record. Used to compare from year to year. This information would be able to warrant further testing.

It is amazing that a test for dementia, as simple as the clock drawing test can be so revealing. Please, do not interpret your own test.

This is a test that reveals detailed information about the deep levels of one’s brain functions. The individuals that interpret these tests require many years of post-graduate education. It’s not as simple as you may think.


Here are more tests to consider:

Animal naming - Dementia Types: Animal Naming Test

St Louis University Mental Status Exam - St Louis University Mental Status Exam SLUMS test

Cognistat Test - Memory Problems Are Probably The First Noticeable Dementia Signs

Mini Mental Status Exam - Memory Problems Are Probably The First Noticeable Dementia Signs

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