Regional correlation of PET and CT in senile dementia of the Alzheimer type.
Tomography, X-Ray Computed
Alzheimer disease is manifested by both widespread and regionally restricted brain changes, some of which have recently been identified in vivo with computed tomography (CT) and positron emission tomography (PET). This is a report of the regional correlation of CT and PET measurements in 19 carefully diagnosed subjects comprising 11 controls and eight patients with senile dementia of the Alzheimer type. Regional CT attenuation values did not discriminate between the two groups, but PET using 18F-2-deoxy-2-fluoro-D-glucose demonstrated significant regional reductions (range, 21%-28%) in glucose utilization in the Alzheimer group. PET measures were also more consistently related to cognitive decline. The correlation between CT structural measures and PET metabolic measures demonstrated consistent relations between widespread PET regions and CT changes in the thalamus, posterior limb of the internal capsule, and temporal lobes. However, CT changes in the frontal white matter, caudate nucleus, and anterior limb of the internal capsule were not related to any regional PET changes. These data support previous findings of temporal lobe involvement in Alzheimer disease and suggest the involvement of structures in the region of the third ventricle.