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Neuropsychological asymmetry in Alzheimer's disease: Verbal versus visuoconstructional deficits across stages of dementia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 September 1997

DANIEL STRITE
Affiliation:
Department of Psychology, University of Houston, Houston, Texas
PAUL J. MASSMAN
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, and Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine, Department of Psychology, University of Houston, Houston, Texas
NORMA COOKE
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, and Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas
RACHELLE S. DOODY
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, and Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas

Abstract

The incidence of clinically apparent asymmetric profiles of neuropsychological deficits in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients similar to those reported in the PET literature is currently unclear. This study investigated lateral neuropsychological asymmetry using principal component factor analysis in a sample of 153 patients diagnosed with probable AD. Using factor scores, patients were classified into groups exhibiting asymmetric or symmetric profiles of neuropsychological deficits. In the analysis of lateral asymmetry, 27.5% of patients were classified as asymmetric (10% verbally and 17% visuospatially). Consistent with reports of continued asymmetry beyond the mild dementia stage, asymmetry was exhibited in the mild, moderate, and severely demented groups. These findings of neuropsychological asymmetry across stages of dementia are consistent with the picture of significant neuropsychological heterogeneity in AD that has been emerging in the decade. (JINS, 1997, 3, 420–427.)

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© 1997 The International Neuropsychological Society

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