Cerebellar and frontal hypometabolism in alcoholic cerebellar degeneration studied with positron emission tomography

Sid Gilman, Kenneth Adams, Robert A. Koeppe, Stanley Berent, Karen J. Kluin, Jack G. Modell, Phillip Kroll, James A Brunberg

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147 Scopus citations

Abstract

Local cerebral metabolic rate for glucose was studied utilizing 18F-2-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose and positron emission tomography (PET) in 14 chronically alcohol-dependent patients and 8 normal control subjects of similar age and sex. Nine of the 14 patients (Group A) had clinical signs of alcoholic cerebellar degeneration, and the remaining 5 (Group B) did not have signs of alcoholic cerebellar degeneration. PET studies of Group A revealed significantly decreased local cerebral metabolic rates for glucose in the superior cerebellar vermis in comparison with the normal control subjects. Group B did not show decreased rates in the cerebellum. Both Groups A and B showed decreased local cerebral metabolic rates for glucose bilaterally in the medial frontal area of the cerebral cortex in comparison with the normal control subjects. The severity of the clinical neurological impairment was significantly correlated with the degree of hypometabolism in both the superior cerebellar vermis and the medial frontal region of the cerebral cortex. The degree of atrophy detected in computed tomography scans was significantly correlated with local cerebral metabolic rates in the medial frontal area of the cerebral cortex, but not in the cerebellum. The data indicate that hypometabolism in the superior cerebellar vermis closely follows clinical symptomatology in patients with alcoholic cerebellar degeneration, and does not occur in alcohol-dependent patients without clinical evidence of cerebellar dysfunction. Hypometabolism in the medial frontal region of the cerebral cortex is a prominent finding in alcohol-dependent patients with or without alcoholic cerebellar degeneration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)775-785
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Neurology
Volume28
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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    Gilman, S., Adams, K., Koeppe, R. A., Berent, S., Kluin, K. J., Modell, J. G., Kroll, P., & Brunberg, J. A. (1990). Cerebellar and frontal hypometabolism in alcoholic cerebellar degeneration studied with positron emission tomography. Annals of Neurology, 28(6), 775-785.