Cerebral atrophy is the morphological presentation of brain parenchymal volume loss that is frequently seen on cross sectional imaging. Rather than being a primary diagnosis, it is the common endpoint for range disease processes that affect the central nervous system. Though often no identifiable cause is found, certain patterns of atrophy can be helpful in certain clinical scenarios, most notably in neurodegenerative diseases. It is a common finding in the elderly population, and so there is some controversy as to when imaging changes are labeled as cerebral atrophy, rather than simply "involutional" or "age related" when the patient has normal cognition.
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The more people know about Alzheimer's, the more action we inspire. Posterior cortical atrophy PCA refers to gradual and progressive degeneration of the outer layer of the brain the cortex in the part of the brain located in the back of the head posterior. There is no standard definition of posterior cortical atrophy and no established diagnostic criteria, and so it is not possible to know how many people have the condition.
However, because posterior cortical atrophy often goes unrecognized, the true percentage may be as high as 15 percent. Researchers and physicians are working to establish a standard definition and diagnostic criteria for posterior cortical atrophy PDF.
The symptoms of posterior cortical atrophy can vary from one person to the next and can change as the condition progresses. The most common symptoms are consistent with damage to the posterior cortex of the brain, an area responsible for processing visual information.
Consistent with this neurological damage are slowly developing difficulties with visual tasks such as reading a line of text, judging distances, distinguishing between moving objects and stationary objects, inability to perceive more than one object at a time, disorientation, and difficulty maneuvering, identifying, and using tools or common objects.
Some patients experience hallucinations. Other symptoms can include difficulty performing mathematical calculations or spelling, and many people with posterior cortical atrophy experience anxiety, possibly because they know something is wrong. In the early stages of posterior cortical atrophy, most people do not have markedly reduced memory, but memory can be affected in later stages. Misdiagnosis of posterior cortical atrophy is common, owing to its relative rarity and unusual and variable presentation.
Additionally, people with posterior cortical atrophy frequently first seek the opinion of an ophthalmologist who may indicate a normal eye examination by their usual tests. Because the first problems are perceived as eye problems, cortical brain dysfunction initially may not be considered as a cause.
There are no standard diagnostic criteria for posterior cortical atrophy, although diagnostic criteria are being developed PDF. Physicians rely on a combination of neuropsychological tests, blood tests, brain scans and a neurological examination to diagnose the condition and rule out other potential explanations for symptoms.
Characteristic features that are sometimes used for diagnosis include gradual onset of visual symptoms described above with preservation of normal eye function and preservation of memory. Age of onset between 50 and 65 years is another clue suggesting PCA. The diagnosis should rule out the possibility that the symptoms were caused by a stroke, tumor or other identifiable condition. Brain imaging has shown that the posterior cortex is thinner in people with posterior cortical atrophy than healthy people of the same age.
This indicates that the individual has experienced a decrease in brain volume. There are no treatments for posterior cortical atrophy known to slow or halt its progression. Some people with posterior cortical atrophy may benefit from treatment to alleviate symptoms such as depression or anxiety, but the overall benefits and risks of such treatments are not established.
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A patient with posterior cortical atrophy due to Alzheimer’s disease
Subcortical atrophy in frontotemporal dementia and Alzheimer's disease: Significance for differential diagnosis and correlation with clinical manifestations. D, Ph. Cerebral subcortical atrophy occurs in both Alzheimer's disease AD and frontotemporal dementia FTD but its significance for clinical manifestations and differential diagnosis between these common types of dementia has not been extensively investigated. Objectives: To compare the severity of cerebral subcortical atrophy in FTD and AD and to analyze the correlations between cerebral subcortical atrophy and demographics and clinical characteristics.
Posterior Cortical Atrophy
Language: English Portuguese. D, Ph. To compare the severity of cerebral subcortical atrophy in FTD and AD and to analyze the correlations between cerebral subcortical atrophy and demographics and clinical characteristics. The degree of cerebral subcortical atrophy was measured indirectly with a linear measurement of subcortical atrophy, the Bifrontal Index BFI , using magnetic resonance imaging. We evaluated cognition, activities of daily living and dementia severity with the Mini-Mental State Examination, Functional Activities Questionnaire and the Clinical Dementia Rating, respectively.