Cognitive impairment refers to adverse changes in high-level brain functions, such as language, visual perception and construction, calculation ability, attention, memory, and executive functions (eg, planning, problem solving, self-monitoring). This impairment is observed in approximately 45% to 60% of patients with MS. Cognitive dysfunction is related to brain atrophy and total lesion burden on MRI, and demyelination in the frontal lobes and corpus callosum is more often associated with cognitive dysfunction than is demyelination in other parts of the brain. There is little or no correlation with disease severity or duration.6
- Cognitive dysfunction has no association with disruption of daily activities in most patients with MS.
6. Bagert B, Camplair P, Bourdette D. Cognitive dysfunction in multiple sclerosis: natural history, pathophysiology and management. CNS Drugs 2002;16:445-55.
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