Longitudinal cortical thinning and cognitive decline in patients with early- versus late-stage subcortical vascular mild cognitive impairment
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BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Biomarker changes in cognitively impaired patients with small vessel disease are largely unknown. The rate of amyloid/lacune progression, cortical thinning and cognitive decline were evaluated in subcortical vascular mild cognitive impairment (svMCI) patients. METHODS: Seventy-two svMCI patients were divided into early stage (ES-svMCI, n = 39) and late stage (LS-svMCI, n = 33) according to their Clinical Dementia Rating Sum of Boxes score. Patients were annually followed up with neuropsychological tests and brain magnetic resonance imaging for 3 years, and underwent a second [11 C] Pittsburgh compound B (PiB) positron emission tomography scan within a mean interval of 32.4 months. RESULTS: There was no difference in the rate of increase in PiB uptake or lacune number between the ES-svMCI and LS-svMCI. However, LS-svMCI showed more rapid cortical thinning and cognitive decline than did the ES-svMCI. CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that, whilst the rate of change in pathological burden did not differ between ES-svMCI and LS-svMCI, cortical thinning and cognitive decline progressed more rapidly in the LS-svMCI.
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