Correlations between neuropsychological and brain MRI (T2-weighted, unenhanced Tl-weighted and MTI) abnormalities secondary to frontal lobe damage in multiple sclerosis

M. Rovaris, M. Falautano, M. A. Rocca, V. Martinelli, G. Mastronardo, G. Comi, M. Filippi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In 30 MS patients, we correlated the extent of abnormalities detected by conventional and new magnetic resonance (MR) techniques which provide putative measure of demyelination and/or axonal loss (Tlweighted and magnetization transfer imaging - MTI) with the results of an extensive battery of neuropsychological tests exploring the frontal lobe functions. A conventional spin echo (CSE) dual echo sequence and the neuropsychological (Raven's progressive matrices test, Hanoi Towers test, Wisconsin Card Sorting test, Stroop test, Verbal fluency test) were obtained in all the patients. In 22 patients, a CSE Tl-weighted and an MTI were also obtained. Patients were considered cognitively impaired when they obtained abnormal results in at least 2 tests. Frontal lobe impairment was present in 15 patients (50%). The mean total (TLL) and frontal lesion loads (FLL) were 22079 and 6J39 mm-5 on PD, 6403 and 1765 mm3 on Tl and 8817 and 2148 mm3 on MTcalculated scans. Patients with frontal lobe cognitive impairment had a higher TLL both on PD (p=0.037) and on MT-calculated (p=0.033) scans. FLL on PD scans was significantly higher for impaired patients (p=0.014), whilst the numbers of abnormal neuropsychological tests per patient were significantly correlated only with Tl TLL (r=0.44, p=0.04). Our study confirms that the cognitive decline is a function of the extent of brain MRI abnormalities in MS patients. The poor correlations we found between neuropsychological patterns of cognitive decline and corresponding regional MRI LLs might be explained by the larger extent of the cerebral networks involved in cognitive functioning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)136
Number of pages1
JournalItalian Journal of Neurological Sciences
Volume18
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)

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