Fast Five Quiz: Alzheimer's Disease Differential Diagnosis and Workup

Jasvinder P. Chawla, MD, MBA


February 22, 2022

Per AAN recommendations, in patients with suspected Alzheimer's disease, brain MRI and CT should be performed to detect other causes of dementia (eg, stroke, tumor, small-vessel disease). In clinical research studies, atrophy of the hippocampi (structures important in mediating memory processes) on coronal MRI is considered a valid biomarker of Alzheimer's disease neuropathology. Nonetheless, measurement of hippocampal volume is not used in routine clinical care in the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease.

Neither brain sclerotic lesions nor calcifications are associated with Alzheimer's disease.

Although a 2011 study of asymptomatic patients suggested that brain size (ie, regions of the cortex) may help predict risk for Alzheimer's disease, the AAN guidelines do not mention the necessity of brain size measurements when diagnosing Alzheimer's disease.

Learn more about imaging studies for diagnosing Alzheimer's disease.


Comments on Medscape are moderated and should be professional in tone and on topic. You must declare any conflicts of interest related to your comments and responses. Please see our Commenting Guide for further information. We reserve the right to remove posts at our sole discretion.