Visual determinants of reduced performance on the Stroop color-word test in normal aging individuals.

M. Van Boxtel, Marcel Ten Tusscher, J. Metsemakers, B. Willems, J. Jolles

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43 Citations (Scopus)


It is unknown to what extent the performance on the Stroop color-word test is affected by reduced visual function in older individuals. We tested the impact of common deficiencies in visual function (reduced distant and close acuity, reduced contrast sensitivity, and color weakness) on Stroop performance among 821 normal individuals aged 53 and older. After adjustment for age, sex, and educational level, low contrast sensitivity was associated with more time needed on card 1 (word naming), red/green color weakness with slower card 2 performance (color naming), and reduced distant acuity with slower performance on card 3 (interference). Half of the age-related variance in speed performance was shared with visual function. The actual impact of reduced visual function may be underestimated in this study when some of this age-related variance in Stroop performance is mediated by visual function decrements. It is suggested that reduced visual function has differential effects on Stroop performance which need to be accounted for when the Stroop test is used both in research and in clinical settings. Stroop performance measured from older individuals with unknown visual status should be interpreted with caution.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)620-627
Number of pages8
JournalJ Clin Exp Neuropsychol
Issue numberOctober
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Interference
  • Age
  • Visual determinants
  • stroop color-word test


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