The MeSA Assist is decision support software that helps clinicians measure an individual’s Executive Control (EC) by assessing two components of EC: Attention Control (AC) and Cognitive Flexibility (CF). The concept of executive control is defined as the cognitive abilities necessary for the self-regulation of behavior and the achievement of purposeful goals. The MeSA Assist tests are specifically designed to be included in evaluations that include an IVA-2 interpretative report. Examiners can now compare IVA-2 visual attention with the executive control strengths or weaknesses. Since many individuals with ADHD symptoms often also have deficits in executive functioning, the MeSA Assist tests are considered likely to be of significant clinical value in any comprehensive ADHD evaluation that also includes the IVA-2. Using the IVA-2 report writing system, clinicians can complete an evaluation that includes the client’s clinical history, presenting symptoms, other psychological issues, clinical observations, rating scale results, and both the IVA-2 and MeSA test results. All reports can be easily modified using the built-in, MS Word compatible word processor.
There are two versions of the test. The MeSA-AE Assist test is the Advanced Edition for use with individuals ages 15 to 89 and the MeSA-IE Assist is the Intermediate Version that is appropriate for children ages 8 to 14. These two tests are based on versions of the well-known Trail Making test and are interactively administered by an examiner with the assistance of a step-by-step test administration guideline, scoring and timing app using either a Windows PC or an iPad. A MeSA Assist test generally takes less than 10 minutes and is administered under examiners’ supervision using the app to help guide them. Test results are automatically scored using standard scores based on a comprehensive normative database derived from research studies that included over 6,000 non-impaired adults and more than 1,400 “normal” children. Standard, Detailed and Comprehensive MeSA interpretative reports are provided to help guide examiners in their interpretation of the Standard Analysis test results.
The MeSA-AE and IE Assist test forms are exactly the same as the original Trail Making test developed for use by the United States Army years ago. Consequently, the validity of the MeSA Assist tests is based on the numerous research studies using it completed during the past 70 years. For an overview of the relevant validity research for the MeSA-AE Assist click here and for the MeSA-IE Assist click here.
The MeSA-AE and IE Assist tests require that they be administered under the supervision of a licensed healthcare professional with expertise in the use and interpretation of psychological tests. The test is not intended to be used as a stand-alone diagnostic instrument. By itself, it does not identify the presence or absence of any clinical diagnosis. The function of this psychological test is to aid examiners as part of a comprehensive evaluation. For a sample of a clinician generated report that uses both the MeSA-AE with the IVA-2, click here.
You have the freedom to administer the MeSA-AE or IE tests at multiple locations without any additional costs using your own iPad. The MeSA Assist remote testing feature allows examiners to administer and score a test using an iPad. Test data are automatically uploaded back to your PC and are accessible only from your “master” MeSA Assist station license. Data are securely encrypted, and no PHI is stored on your iPad or online.
Here’s how it works: from your PC where the MeSA Assist app is installed, you can select the option to “Assign Remote Testing Code” and generate codes for MeSA Assist test remote administrations. Next, you need to install the MeSA-AE Assist or MeSA-IE Assist app (available on the iTunes store) on your iPad. You can then enter these codes on the IOS app on your iPad to administer those tests in a different location. The iPad functions to help guide you in administering and scoring the test and no external mouse is needed. Once you have administered a test, the data will automatically upload back to your MeSA Assist PC in the office.
assess executive function abilities.
are 10-minute psychological tests for use by qualified healthcare professionals.
provide a report writer that helps clinicians quickly and easily interpret test results.
help to assess possible malingering (MeSA-AE for adults 18+).
can easily be administered by a technician.
provide four unique interpretive reports to help the examiner to better understand their clients’ executive functioning abilities of attention control, cognitive flexibility and overall executive control.
include Standard and Comparative analyses that provide in-depth information in both table and graph format to help aid clinicians in interpreting the test scores and data.
The use of these psychological tests requires that they be administered under the direct supervision of a licensed healthcare professional. They are not intended to be used as standalone diagnostic instruments and by themselves do not identify the presence or absence of any clinical diagnosis. The function of these psychological tests is to aid examiners in making their diagnosis as part of a comprehensive evaluation.
The IVA-2 is a test of attention like all CPTs. The fact that the IVA-2 was found to significantly correlate with both QEEG and fMRI measures of attention provides validation that it truly measures what it was designed to measure (i.e., attentional functioning). Both QEEG and fMRI measures of attention have been found in various research studies to be useful in identifying individuals with ADHD and differentiating them with clinical efficacy.In light of the value of QEEG, the FDA approved a new QEEG based test last year after determining that it had sufficient clinical accuracy to be medically appropriate for use in helping clinicians in their diagnostic process when evaluating ADHD symptoms. This test was based in part of the research completed over 15 years ago by Dr. Joel Lubar and Dr. Vince Monastra, who identified the clinical sensitivity of QEEG analysis in classifying individuals with ADHD.
Thus, the IVA-2 test’s validity as a useful tool in the diagnostic process of clinicians is partly based on the fact that it is an accurate measure of the underlying psychophysiological processes of attention confirmed by independently completed research studies.