Abstract / Description of output
Background/Aims: Patients with early-onset dementia (EOD) often present atypically, making an accurate diagnosis difficult. Single-photon emission-computed tomography (SPECT) provides an indirect measure of cerebral metabolic activity and can help to differentiate between dementia subtypes. This study aims to investigate the clinical utility of SPECT imaging in the diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer's disease. Methods: All patients attending a tertiary referral clinic specialising in EOD between April 2012 and October 2013 were included in the study. Statistical analysis of SPECT patterns with clinical diagnoses, Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination version 3 scores, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) atrophy was undertaken. Results: The results demonstrated a highly significant association between SPECT hypoperfusion patterns and clinical diagnoses. SPECT changes were demonstrated more frequently than MRI atrophy. Conclusions: The results suggest that SPECT imaging may be a useful adjunct to clinical evaluation and a more sensitive biomarker than standard structural imaging. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.