Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Are you malingering?

This is a test I learned for malingering brain injuries in patients that come into your office.

Let's find out if you're malingering. Look at the following picture for 10 seconds:

Stare at this for 10 seconds

Now copy the image you just saw onto the paper. It doesn't have to be in the right order.

Getting less than 9 of the 15 items in the original image strongly suggests that the "brain injured" patient is actually malingering. Yes, there are a lot of people that wouldn't get 9 out of the 15 items. I've had a lot of patients who wouldn't even be able to stare at the drawing. But the key is, if the patient walks into your office, is basically functioning but just complaining of symptoms like decreased memory, attention, etc, they should still be able to copy that picture.

If they can't, they're faking it. (Maybe)


  1. *laughs* Perfect timing! I'm having my husband (2 brain surgeries for GBM 4) take this today before he sees his neurologist- and he did not do that bad this morning! (Got everything but the shapes today)

    Excellent post.

  2. It helps if you're familiar with Jackson 5 songs...