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BACKGROUND: Medial temporal lobe atrophy is one of the most accurate markers of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Given the wide availability of the CT in the routine diagnostic assessment of patients with cognitive disturbances, a CT-based marker of AD might be clinically useful. OBJECTIVE: To test the accuracy of a simple CT-based measure, the radial width of the temporal horn (rWTH). METHOD: The rWTH was taken in a group of 20 pathologically confirmed AD patients and 23 non demented persons enrolled in the Oxford Project to Investigate Memory and Aging (OPTIMA project). RESULTS: The rWTH was significantly larger in AD patients than controls. Using a cutoff value between 3.9 at 50 and 8.1 at 90 years, the rWTH was able to correctly classify 16/20 and 19/23 subjects with a sensitivity and a specificity of 80% and 83%. The overall accuracy was 81%. CONCLUSION: The CT measurement of the rWTH is a simple and reasonably sensitive marker of regional brain atrophy in AD.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Geriatr Psychiatry

Publication Date





570 - 574


Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Alzheimer Disease, Atrophy, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Sensitivity and Specificity, Temporal Lobe, Tomography, X-Ray Computed