Author(s): Loewenstein DA, DElia L, Guterman A, Eisdorfer C, Wilkie F
Recent evidence suggests that specific types of intrusive errors may occur more often in the protocols of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients than in those of patients diagnosed with other types of dementia. Using the FULD Object Memory Evaluation, we documented the occurrence of five qualitatively different types of intrusive errors for mildly and moderately impaired patients with AD and multiple cerebral infarctions (MCI). Depressed and normal elderly controls were also studied. Despite an equivalent degree of impairment on a broad array of neuropsychological measures, mildly impaired AD patients evidenced greater deficits on a measure tapping retrieval from semantic memory and demonstrated a higher occurrence of specific types of intrusive errors relative to their mildly impaired MCI counterparts. Further, both of these measures were highly correlated, suggesting that these indices may be particularly sensitive to semantic dysfunction associated with early AD.