SPECT, MRI and cognitive functions in multiple sclerosis

C. Pozzilli, D. Passafiume, S. Bernardi, P. Pantano, C. Incoccia, S. Bastianello, L. Bozzao, G. L. Lenzi, C. Fieschi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Seventeen patients with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (MS) and mild physical disability had neuropsychological testing, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) using technetium 99m (99mTc) hexamethyl-propyleneamine oxime (HMPAO). Performance in verbal fluency, naming and memory testing appeared to be impaired in MS patients compared with 17 age- sex- and education-matched normal controls. Weighted periventricular and confluent lesion scores and the width of the third ventricle, proved to be the most sensitive MRI measures in differentiating more cognitively impaired patients from those who were relatively unimpaired. Ratios of regional to whole brain activity, measured by SPECT, showed significant reduction in the frontal lobes and in the left temporal lobe of MS patients. A relationship was found between left temporal abnormality in 99mTc-HMPAO uptake and deficit in verbal fluency and verbal memory. Finally, asymmetrical lobar activity indicated a predominant left rather than right temporo-parietal involvement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-115
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology


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