Detecting Primary Progressive Aphasia Atrophy Patterns: A Comparison of Visual Assessment and Quantitative Neuroimaging Techniques
Journal of Alzheimer s Disease Reports
There are now clinically available automated MRI analysis software programs that compare brain volumes of patients to a normative sample and provide z-score data for various brain regions. These programs have yet to be validated in primary progressive aphasia (PPA). Objective: To address this gap in the literature, we examined Neuroreader™ z-scores in PPA, relative to visual MRI assessment. We predicted that Neuroreader™ 1) would be more sensitive for detecting left > right atrophy in the
... al lobar regions in logopenic variant PPA clinical phenotype (lvPPA), and 2) would distinguish lvPPA (n = 11) from amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI; n = 12). Methods: lvPPA or aMCI patients who underwent MRI with Neuroreader™ were included in this study. Two neuroradiologists rated 10 regions. Neuroreader™ lobar z-scores for those 10 regions, as well as a hippocampal asymmetry metric, were included in analyses. Results: Cohen's Kappa coefficients were significant in 10 of the 28 computations (k = 0.351 to 0.593, p≤0.029). Neuroradiologists agreed 0% of the time that left asymmetry was present across regions. No significant differences emerged between aMCI and lvPPA in Neuroreader™ z-scores across left or right frontal, temporal, or parietal regions (ps > 0.10). There were significantly lower z-scores in the left compared to right for the hippocampus, as well as parietal, occipital, and temporal cortices in lvPPA. Conclusion: Overall, our results indicated moderate to low interrater reliability, and raters never agreed that left asymmetry was present. While lower z-scores in the left hemisphere regions emerged in lvPPA, Neuroreader™ failed to differentiate lvPPA from aMCI.