Cortical atrophy seen 10 years before Alzheimer’s onset

SUBTLE atrophic changes can be seen in the brain almost a decade before its cognitive impact will become evident in patients with dementia, US researchers have found.

An MRI can reveal early signs of “cortical thinning” in the same region of the brain affected by the disease, according to two long-term studies conducted at Harvard Medical School, Boston.

In one group of initially cognitively normal subjects, eight developed dementia after an average of 11 years, while in another group, seven developed the condition after an average of seven years.

Their serial MRI scans were compared to those of