Trail Making Test
Neurology. 2012 Jan 24;78 (4):250-5 22238418
R S Marshall, J R Festa, Y K Cheung, R Chen, M A Pavol, C P Derdeyn, W R Clarke, T O Videen, R L Grubb, H P Adams, W J Powers, R M Lazar
Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
OBJECTIVE To determine whether unihemispheral hemodynamic failure is independently associated with cognitive impairment among participants in the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke-sponsored, multicenter, randomized clinical trial, Randomized Evaluation of Carotid Occlusion and Neurocognition (RECON). METHODS Forty-three patients were randomized into RECON after recent symptomatic carotid artery occlusion and asymmetrically increased oxygen extraction fraction (OEF) by PET (OEF ratio >1.13), indicating stage II hemodynamic failure on the side of occlusion. The PET-positive patients were compared with 28 RECON-enrolled patients who met all clinical and radiographic inclusion/exclusion criteria but had no OEF asymmetry. A multivariable regression compared patients with PET OEF >1.13 or ≤1.13, stratifying by TIA vs. stroke as the qualifying event. The dependent variable was a composite neurocognitive score derived from averaging age-normalized z scores on a test battery that included global and internal carotid artery (ICA) side-relevant hemisphere-specific tests. RESULTS There were no differences in demographic, clinical, or radiologic characteristics between the PET-positive and PET-negative patients except for PET OEF asymmetry. The unadjusted average neurocognitive z score was -1.45 for the PET-positive and -1.25 for the PET-negative patients, indicating cognitive impairment in both groups but no difference between them (p = 0.641). After adjustment for age, education, side of occlusion, depression, and previous stroke, there was a significant difference between PET-positive and PET-negative patients among those with TIA as a qualifying event (average z score =-1.41 vs.-0.76, p = 0.040). Older age and right ICA side were also significant in this model. CONCLUSION Hemodynamic failure is independently associated with cognitive impairment in patients with carotid occlusion. This finding establishes the physiologic parameter upon which the extracranial-intracranial bypass will be tested.
Most cited papers:
Comparison of lactulose and neomycin in the treatment of chronic portal-systemic encephalopathy. A double blind controlled trial.
A randomized double blind clinical comparison of neomycin and lactulose was performed in 33 cirrhotic patients with chronic portal-systemic encephalopathy (PSE) at seven cooperating hospitals. In order to maintain double blindness, sorbitol syrup was used as a control solution along with neomycin and was compared with lactulose syrup and placebo tablets in a double drug protocol. Twenty-nine patients were studied in a crossover investigation in which each received both therapeutic regimens preceded and followed by control periods. Four additional patients received one or the other agent, but did not receive both. Serial, semiquantitative assessments were made in all patients of mental status, asterixis, and the trailmaking test (TMT) and electroencephalograms (EEG) and arterial ammonia levels. Both neomycin-sorbitol and lactulose were effective in the majority of patients (83 and 90%, respectively). Each of these parameters (mental state, asterixis, TMT, EEG, and NH3) was improved significantly by neomycin-sorbitol and lactulose. The post-treatment levels for each of these measures were similar in the neomycin and lactulose-treated groups. Mean stool pH was reduced by neomycinsorbitol to 6.1 and by lactulose to 5.5. This difference was highly significant statistically. Bowel activity was similar in the two groups. Both drugs were free of toxicity. These investigations demonstrate that both lactulose and neomycin-sorbitol are effective in the treatment of chronic portal-systemic encephalopathy.
Division of Clinical Neuroscience, St. George's Hospital Medical School, London, United Kingdom. email@example.com
BACKGROUND Normal aging is accompanied by a decline of cognitive abilities, and executive skills may be affected selectively, but the underlying mechanisms remain obscure and preventive strategies are lacking. It has been suggested that cortical "disconnection" due to the loss of white matter fibers may play an important role. But, to date, there has been no direct demonstration of structural disconnection in humans in vivo. METHODS The authors used diffusion tensor MRI to look for evidence of ultrastructural changes in cerebral white matter in a group of 20 elderly volunteers with normal conventional MRI scans, and a group of 10 younger controls. The older group also underwent neuropsychological assessment. RESULTS Diffusional anisotropy, a marker of white matter tract integrity, was reduced in the white matter of older subjects and fell linearly with increasing age in the older group. Mean diffusivity was higher in the older group and increased with age. These changes were maximal in anterior white matter. In the older group, anterior mean diffusivity correlated with executive function assessed by the Trail Making Test. CONCLUSIONS These findings provide direct evidence that white matter tract disruption occurs in normal aging and would be consistent with the cortical disconnection hypothesis of age-related cognitive decline. Maximal changes in anterior white matter provide a plausible structural basis for selective loss of executive functions. In addition to providing new information about the biological basis of cognitive abilities, diffusion tensor MRI may be a sensitive tool for assessing interventions aimed at preventing cognitive decline.
McGill University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
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VA Medications Development Research Unit, Long Beach, Calif., USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
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Defence Institute of Physiology and Allied Sciences, Delhi Cantt, India.
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