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      Cognitive Performance after Lacunar Stroke Correlates with Leukoaraiosis Severity

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          Background: This study investigates the effect of leukoaraiosis on patients presenting with cognitive impairment after lacunar stroke. Methods: Fourty-six patients with cognitive impairment and newly discovered lacunar stroke detected by brain magnetic resonance imaging underwent neuropsychological testing. Results: Patients with both lacunar infarct and leukoaraiosis performed less well on cognitive measures, compared to those with lacunar infarcts alone. Additionally, leukoaraiosis severity inversely correlated with cognitive performance. Conclusions: In patients with lacunar stroke, presence of leukoaraiosis is associated with worse performance in multiple cognitive domains. These findings suggest lacunar infarcts plus leukoaraiosis is a common etiology for vascular dementia.

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          Most cited references 9

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          Prevalence of cerebral white matter lesions in elderly people: a population based magnetic resonance imaging study. The Rotterdam Scan Study

           F-E. de Leeuw (2001)
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            Lacunar infarcts defined by magnetic resonance imaging of 3660 elderly people: the Cardiovascular Health Study.

            To identify risk factors for and functional consequences of lacunar infarct in elderly people. The Cardiovascular Health Study (CHS) is a longitudinal study of people 65 years or older, in which 3660 participants underwent cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Neuroradiologists read scans in a standard fashion without any clinical information. Lacunes were defined as subcortical areas consistent with infarcts measuring 3 to 20 mm. In cross-sectional analyses, clinical correlates were contrasted among groups defined by MRI findings. Of the 3660 subjects who underwent MRI, 2529 (69%) were free of infarcts of any kind and 841 (23%) had 1 or more lacunes without other types present, totaling 1270 lacunes. For most of these 841 subjects, their lacunes were single (66%) and silent (89%), namely without a history of transient ischemic attack or stroke. In multivariate analyses, factors independently associated with lacunes were increased age, diastolic blood pressure, creatinine, and pack-years of smoking (listed in descending order of strength of association; for all, P < .005), as well as maximum internal carotid artery stenosis of more than 50% (odds ratio [OR], 1.81; P < .005), male sex (OR, 0.74; P < .005), and history of diabetes at entrance into the study (OR, 1.33; P < .05). Models for subgroups of single, multiple, silent, and symptomatic lacunes differed only minimally. Those with silent lacunes had more cognitive, upper extremity, and lower extremity dysfunction not recognized as stroke than those whose MRIs were free of infarcts. In this group of older adults, lacunes defined by MRI are common and associated with factors that likely promote or reflect small-vessel disease. Silent lacunes are also associated with neurologic dysfunction.
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              Incidence and risk factors of silent brain infarcts in the population-based Rotterdam Scan Study.

              The prevalence of silent brain infarcts in healthy elderly people is high, and these lesions are associated with an increased risk of stroke. The incidence of silent brain infarcts is unknown. We investigated the incidence and cardiovascular risk factors for silent brain infarcts. The Rotterdam Scan Study is a prospective, population-based cohort study of 1077 participants 60 to 90 years of age. All participants underwent cranial MRI in 1995 to 1996, and 668 participants had a second MRI in 1999 to 2000 (response rate, 70%) with a mean interval of 3.4 years. We assessed cardiovascular risk factors by interview and physical examination at baseline. Associations between risk factors and incident silent infarcts were analyzed by multiple logistic regression. Ninety-three participants (14%) had > or =1 new infarcts on the second MRI; of these, 81 had only silent and 12 had symptomatic infarcts. The incidence of silent brain infarcts strongly increased with age and was 5 times higher than that of symptomatic stroke. A prevalent silent brain infarct strongly predicted a new silent infarct on the second MRI (age- and sex-adjusted odds ratio, 2.9; 95% confidence interval, 1.7 to 5.0). Age, blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, cholesterol and homocysteine levels, intima-media thickness, carotid plaques, and smoking were associated with new silent brain infarcts in participants without prevalent infarcts. The incidence of silent brain infarcts on MRI in the general elderly population strongly increases with age. The cardiovascular risk factors for silent brain infarcts are similar to those for stroke.

                Author and article information

                Cerebrovasc Dis
                Cerebrovascular Diseases
                S. Karger AG
                August 2007
                17 July 2007
                : 24
                : 2-3
                : 271-276
                aDepartments of Neurology and Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California at Los Angeles, and bV.A. Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System, Los Angeles, Calif., USA
                105679 Cerebrovasc Dis 2007;24:271–276
                © 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 2, Tables: 2, References: 27, Pages: 6
                Original Paper


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