The range and clinical impact of cognitive impairment in French patients with ALS: a cross-sectional study of neuropsychological test performance.
ABSTRACT Our objective was to assess the spectrum and clinical associations of cognitive impairment in French patients with ALS, and determine the effect of cognitive impairment on survival in this population. One hundred and thirty-one patients were enrolled in a cross-sectional cohort study of neuropsychological test performance. ANOVA and χ(2) tests assessed differences in clinical characteristics between impaired and unimpaired patients; multiple regression determined which features contributed most strongly to cognitive status, and Cox models compared survival. Fifty-three patients (40%) were categorized as cognitively impaired based on test performance. Thirteen (10%) patients had frontotemporal dementia (FTD) clinically; all scored in the moderate to severely impaired range on testing. Impaired patients had less education (p = 0.001), and severely impaired patients were more likely to have bulbar onset than unimpaired patients (p < 0.001). Severe cognitive impairment predicted shorter survival (p = 0.007), even when controlled for motor severity (p = 0.001). In summary, 10% of a consecutive series of French ALS patients had overt dementia and 40% were cognitively impaired by neuropsychological testing. We conclude that lower education level and possibly bulbar-onset ALS were associated with impairment. As in other causes of dementia, higher education attainment may protect against clinical cognitive deterioration in ALS. French patients with severe cognitive impairment have shorter survival time.
SourceAvailable from: Pierre-François Pradat[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Neuroimaging allows investigating the extent of neurological systems degeneration in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Advanced MRI methods can detect changes related to the degeneration of upper motor neurons but have also demonstrated the participation of other systems such as the sensory system or basal ganglia, demonstrating in vivo that ALS is a multisystem disorder. Structural and functional imaging also allows studying dysfunction of brain areas associated with cognitive signs. From a biomarker perspective, numerous studies using diffusion tensor imaging showed a decrease of fractional anisotropy in the intracranial portion of the corticospinal tract but its diagnostic value at the individual level remains limited. A multiparametric approach will be required to use MRI in the diagnostic workup of ALS. A promising avenue is the new methodological developments of spinal cord imaging that has the advantage to investigate the two motor system components that are involved in ALS, that is, the lower and upper motor neuron. For all neuroimaging modalities, due to the intrinsic heterogeneity of ALS, larger pooled banks of images with standardized image acquisition and analysis procedures are needed. In this paper, we will review the main findings obtained with MRI, PET, SPECT, and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy in ALS.BioMed Research International 04/2014; 2014:467560. DOI:10.1155/2014/467560 · 2.71 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To identify the risk factors being associated with aetiology of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a series of systematic reviews based on existing observational epidemiological studies identified through searching of bibliographic databases were conducted. Associations between ALS and a number of genetic and environmental risk factors were examined using meta-analysis. Specifically we found that previous exposure to lead, pesticides, solvents, experience of trauma and electric shock were associated with relative increased risks of developing ALS of 86% [odds ratio (OR) =1.86, 95% CI: 1.39-2.48], 57% (OR=1.57,95% CI: 1.19-2.08), 47% (OR=1.47, 95%CI: 1.13-1.80), 64% (OR=1.64; 95%CI: 1.36-1.98), and 2.27% (OR=3.27, 95%CI:1.87-5.73) respectively, compared to their corresponding controls. The presence of intermediate CAG repeat expansion in the ATXN2 gene was associated with a 4.4 -fold increase in the risk of ALS (OR=4.44, 95%CI: 2.91-6.76). However, the attributable risk associated with each identified risk factor was estimated to be less than 5% of all ALS cases. These results confirm that ALS is a rare multifactorial degenerative condition of motor-neurons.04/2014, Degree: Master of Science, Supervisor: Drs. Krewski and Gomes
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ABSTRACT: There is less data available regarding the characteristics of cognitive impairment in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in a population-based series. Patients with ALS incident in Piemonte, Italy, between 2009 and 2011 underwent an extensive neuropsychological battery. Cognitive status was classified as follows: normal cognition, frontotemporal dementia (ALS-FTD), executive cognitive impairment (ALS-ECI), non-executive cognitive impairment (ALS-NECI), behavioural impairment (ALS-Bi), non-classifiable cognitive impairment. We also assessed 127 age-matched and gender-matched controls identified through patients' general practitioners. Out of the 281 incident patients, 207 (71.9%) underwent the neuropsychological testing; of these, 19 were excluded from the analysis due previous conditions affecting cognition. Ninety-one (49.7%) patients were cognitively normal, 23 (12.6%) had ALS-FTD, 36 (19.7%) ALS-ECI, 10 (5.5%) ALS-NECI, 11 (6.0%) ALS-Bi and 11 (6.0%) non-classifiable cognitive impairment, 1 had comorbid Alzheimer's disease. Patients with ALS-FTD were older, had a lower education level, and had a shorter survival than any other cognitive group. Of the nine cases with C9ORF72 mutation, six had ALS-FTD, two ALS-ECI and one was cognitively normal; one of the five patients with SOD1 mutations and one of the five patients with TARBDP mutations had ALS-Bi. About 50% of Italian patients with ALS had some degree of cognitive impairment, in keeping with a previous Irish study, despite the largely different genetic background of the two populations. The lower educational attainment in patients with ALS-FTD indicated a possible role of cognitive reserve in ALS-related cognitive impairment. ALS-ECI and ALS-NECI may represent discrete cognitive syndromes in the continuum of ALS and FTD.Journal of neurology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry 04/2014; 86(2). DOI:10.1136/jnnp-2013-307223 · 5.58 Impact Factor