Objectives: In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), verbal fluency index (Vfi) is used to investigate fluency accounting for motor impairment. This study has three aims: (1) to provide Vfi reference values from a cohort of Italian healthy subjects; (2) to assess the ability of Vfi reference values (vs standard verbal fluency test [VFT]) in distinguishing ALS patients with and without executive dysfunction; and (3) to investigate the association between Vfi and brain structural features of ALS patients. Methods: We included 180 healthy subjects and 157 ALS patients who underwent neuropsychological assessment, including VFT and Vfi, and brain MRI. Healthy subjects were split into four subgroups according to sex and education. For each subgroup, we defined the 95th percentile of Vfi as the cutoff. In ALS, the distributions of "abnormal" cases based on Vfi and standard VFT cutoffs were compared using Fisher's exact test. Using quantile regressions in patients, we assessed the association between Vfi and VFT scores, separately, with gray matter volumes and white matter (WM) tract integrity. Results: Applying Vfi and VFT cutoffs, 9 and 13% of ALS cases, respectively, had abnormal scores (p < 0.001). In ALS, while higher Vfi scores were associated with WM changes of callosal fibers linking supplementary motor area, lower VFT performances related to corticospinal tract alterations. Discussion: We provided Italian reference values for the spoken Vfi. Compared to VFT, Vfis are critical to disentangle motor and cognitive deficits in ALS. In patients, abnormal Vfis were associated with damage to WM tracts specifically involved in ideational information processing.

Italian reference values and brain correlates of verbal fluency index - vs standard verbal fluency test - to assess executive dysfunction in ALS / E. Canu, V. Castelnovo, P.M. Rancoita, M. Leocadi, A. Lamanuzzi, E.G. Spinelli, S. Basaia, N. Riva, B. Poletti, F. Solca, F. Verde, N. Ticozzi, V. Silani, S. Abrahams, M. Filippi, F. Agosta. - In: AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS AND FRONTOTEMPORAL DEGENERATION. - ISSN 2167-9223. - (2023), pp. 1-9. [Epub ahead of print] [10.1080/21678421.2023.2167606]

Italian reference values and brain correlates of verbal fluency index - vs standard verbal fluency test - to assess executive dysfunction in ALS

B. Poletti;F. Verde;N. Ticozzi;V. Silani;
2023

Abstract

Objectives: In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), verbal fluency index (Vfi) is used to investigate fluency accounting for motor impairment. This study has three aims: (1) to provide Vfi reference values from a cohort of Italian healthy subjects; (2) to assess the ability of Vfi reference values (vs standard verbal fluency test [VFT]) in distinguishing ALS patients with and without executive dysfunction; and (3) to investigate the association between Vfi and brain structural features of ALS patients. Methods: We included 180 healthy subjects and 157 ALS patients who underwent neuropsychological assessment, including VFT and Vfi, and brain MRI. Healthy subjects were split into four subgroups according to sex and education. For each subgroup, we defined the 95th percentile of Vfi as the cutoff. In ALS, the distributions of "abnormal" cases based on Vfi and standard VFT cutoffs were compared using Fisher's exact test. Using quantile regressions in patients, we assessed the association between Vfi and VFT scores, separately, with gray matter volumes and white matter (WM) tract integrity. Results: Applying Vfi and VFT cutoffs, 9 and 13% of ALS cases, respectively, had abnormal scores (p < 0.001). In ALS, while higher Vfi scores were associated with WM changes of callosal fibers linking supplementary motor area, lower VFT performances related to corticospinal tract alterations. Discussion: We provided Italian reference values for the spoken Vfi. Compared to VFT, Vfis are critical to disentangle motor and cognitive deficits in ALS. In patients, abnormal Vfis were associated with damage to WM tracts specifically involved in ideational information processing.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; cognitive classification; motor neuron disease; normative data; verbal fluency index
Settore MED/26 - Neurologia
Settore M-PSI/08 - Psicologia Clinica
2023
18-gen-2023
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/956262
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