Subclinical cerebrovascular disease in mild cognitive impairment

J. A. Luchsinger, A. M. Brickman, C. Reitz, S. J. Cho, N. Schupf, J. J. Manly, M. X. Tang, S. A. Small, R. Mayeux, Charles DeCarli, T. R. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Cerebrovascular disease (CVD) may contribute to mild cognitive impairment (MCI). We sought to determine the relation of white matter hyperintensity (WMH) volume and infarcts in brain MRI to MCI in a community-based sample. METHODS: A total of 679 elderly persons without dementia underwent brain MRI. WMH and infarcts were quantified using research methods. WMH was adjusted for total cranial volume. The Petersen criteria were used to define MCI. MCI was further subclassified into amnestic and non-amnestic. We used logistic regression to relate WMH and infarcts to prevalent MCI. RESULTS: WMH were associated with amnestic MCI (odds ratio [OR] = 1.9; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.1, 3.4) but not non-amnestic MCI (OR = 1.2; 95% CI 0.4, 1.6) after adjusting for age, gender, ethnic group, education, and APOE-ϵ4. Infarcts were more strongly associated with non-amnestic MCI (OR = 2.7; 95% CI 1.5, 4.8) than amnestic MCI (OR = 1.4; 95% CI 0.9, 2.3). In secondary analyses using continuous cognitive scores as outcomes, WMH, but not infarcts, were related to memory, while infarcts were more strongly related with non-amnestic domains. CONCLUSION: White matter hyperintensity (WMH) is more strongly related to amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Infarcts are more strongly related to non-amnestic MCI. The nature of WMH in amnestic MCI requires further study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)450-456
Number of pages7
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 11 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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