Objective: To measure the changes of regional cerebral metabolism rate of glucose (rCMRglc) in patients with Alzheimer disease (AD) and explore their value to diagnose AD.
Methods: 10 patients with AD who met the diagnostic criteria of DSM-IV and 10 normal controls (NC) were assessed with 18F-2-fluoro-deoxy-D-glucose positron emission tomography (PET).
Results: The two groups were matched in age, gender and education. The mean total scores of the mini-mental status examination (MMSE) were: 16.5+/-6.1 for AD and 28.7+/-1.6 for NC. The mean total Memory Quotient of Wechsler Memory Scales (MQ) were: 32.3+/-19.6 for AD and 93.1+/-9.0 for NC. Compared with NC, the AD groups showed statistically significant decline of rCMRglc in frontal lobe, temporal lobe and the hippocampal formation (p<0.05-p<0.01). The hypo-metabolism was more salient in regions of upper and middle fronta gyri, middle temporal gyrus, orbital gyrus and anterior cingulate gyrus in which the metabolism decreased over 20% compared to NC. The hypo-metabolism was correlated with the severity of dementia. Discriminant analysis demonstrated that variables of right inferior temporal gyrus, left upper temporal gyrus, left hippocampus, and right insular lobe were entered into the discriminant functions, and the total discriminant accuracy reached 100%.
Conclusions: 18F-FDG PET is a very sensitive tool in measurement of the changes of rCMRglc in patients with AD. Findings show a frontal-temporal type of metabolism in AD patients and suggest that hypo-metabolism in hippocampal formation and temporal lobe is helpful in early detection of AD.
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