Vol 49, No 4 (2015)

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Is descriptive writing useful in the differential diagnosis of logopenic variant of primary progressive aphasia, Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment?

Emilia J. Sitek12, Anna Barczak3, Klaudia Kluj-Kozłowska14, Marcin Kozłowski45, Maria Barcikowska6, Jarosław Sławek12
DOI: 10.1016/j.pjnns.2015.06.001
Neurol Neurochir Pol 2015;49(4):239-244.


Current classification of primary progressive aphasia (PPA) encompasses three variants: non-fluent (nfvPPA), semantic (svPPA) and logopenic (lvPPA). Previously lvPPA was regarded as aphasic form of Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, not all patients with lvPPA phenotype present with AD pathology. Despite abundant literature on differentiation of lvPPA from svPPA and nfvPPA, studies comparing lvPPA with AD and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) are scarce. This study aimed at analyzing written descriptive output in lvPPA, AD and MCI. Thirty-five patients participated in the study: 9 with lvPPA, 13 with AD and 13 with MCI. Most aspects of writing performance were comparable in three groups. However, letter insertion errors appeared in 44% patients with lvPPA, while they were absent in AD and MCI. Patients with lvPPA used more verbs than patients with AD. Writing profile may complement other neuropsychological assessment results in the differential diagnosis of lvPPA. Letter insertion errors and frequent verb use may raise a query of lvPPA.

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Neurologia i Neurochirurgia Polska