Background It is important to have a replicable easy method for monitoring atrophy progression in Alzheimer's disease. Volumetric methods for calculating hippocampal volume are time-consuming and commonly used in research. Visual assessments of medial temporal lobe atrophy (vaMTA) is a rapid method for clinical use. This method has not been tested in a large non-demented population in comparison with volumetry mesurements. Since hippocampal volume decreases with time even in normal aging there is also a need to study the normal age differences of medial temporal lobe atrophy.
Purpose To compare visual assessment of medial temporal lobe atrophy (vaMTA) with hippocampal volume in a healthy, non-demented elderly population. To describe normal ageing using vaMTA.
Material and Methods Non-demented individuals aged 60, 66, 72, 78, 81, 84, and ≥87 years old were recruited from the Swedish National study on Ageing and Care in Kungsholmen (SNAC-K), Sweden. Standard magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, vaMTA, and calculations of hippocampal volumes were performed in 544 subjects.
Results Significant correlation (rs = −0.32, P < 0.001, sin; and rs = −0.26, P < 0.001, dx) was found between hippocampal volume measurements and vaMTA. In normal ageing, almost 95% of ≤66-year-olds had a medial temporal lobe atrophy (MTA) score ≤1, with possible scores ranging from 0 to 4. Subjects aged 72, 78, and 81 years scored ≤2, while the two oldest age groups had scores ≤3.
Conclusion There was a highly significant correlation between volumetric measurements of the hippocampus and MTA scoring. In normal ageing, there is increasing MTA score. For non-demented elderly individuals ≤70 years, an MTA score of 0–1 may be considered normal, compared with MTA ≤2 for 70–80-years and MTA 3 for >80-year-old individuals.
2012. Vol. 53, no 5, 573-579 p.