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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 53  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 168-173

Cognitive functions in multiple sclerosis patients

1 Department of Neuropsychiatry, Tanta University, Tanta, Egypt
2 Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Tanta University, Tanta, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Wafik S Bahnasy
Department of Neuropsychiatry, Tanta University, Tanta, 11511
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Background Cognitive impairment (CI) is a common manifestation of multiple sclerosis (MS) and can occur early or late in the disease course. Objective The aim of this study was to evaluate the types and severity of CI in different MS subtypes. Patients and methods This study was conducted on 40 MS patients and 20 healthy controls. Physical disability was assessed using the Expanded Disability Status Scale and cognitive functions were assessed using the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised, the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, and the Bender-Gestalt test. Event-related potential p300, MRI, and brain magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) were also performed. Results There was significant CI in MS patients when compared with controls. The most commonly affected cognitive domain was information-processing speed, which led to impairment in memory, attention, and visuospatial and executive functions. MRS showed decreased N-acetyl aspartate (NAA)/creatine (Cr) and NAA/choline (Cho) ratios and increased Cho/Cr ratio in MS patients. Secondary progressive multiple sclerosis patients seemed to have more CI compared with other types. Conclusion CI is a common MS manifestation occurring early in the disease course and in all MS subtypes. The degree of CI is positively correlated with axonal loss in MRS, as evidenced by reduction in NAA/Cr ratio.

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