Faculty Articles

Title

Cognitive Impairment in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Document Type

Poster

Publication Date

9-2021

Publication Title

Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology

ISSN or ISBN

0887-6177

Volume

36

Issue/Number

6

Abstract/Excerpt

Objective

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease caused by degeneration of the upper and lower motor neurons. This literature review examines the recurring etiology of cognitive impairments in ALS through empirical literature. The current study explores ALS across different subtypes and potential cognitive impairments. Two classifications are primarily examined ALS, and ALS with frontotemporal dementia (ALS-FTD). Involving three categories: familial inheritance pattern, genetic mutation, or sporadic. Neuropsychological studies affirm cognitive impairments in individuals diagnosed with ALS and ALS-FTD.

Data Selection

Data was culled from the American Psychological Association (PsycInfo), PubMed, Google Scholar. Terms used in this literature review include cognitive impairment in ALS and ALS-FTD, executive function deficiencies in ALS, neuropsychology in ALS, neuropsychological deficits in ALS, neuropsychological assessments for ALS, cognitive impairments in familial ALS, genetic ALS, and sporadic ALS, familial ALS, sporadic ALS, genetic mutations involved in ALS. Search dates December 20–23 of 2020 and March 3–4 of 2021. A total of 40 studies were examined.

Data Synthesis

ALS-patients demonstrate a significant cognitive impairment. However, influencing comorbidities accompanying the disease may be contributing to these impairments. Researchers employed neuroimaging and neuropsychological batteries to further understand influencing factors involved in ALS and cognition.

Conclusions

Researchers now understand ALS as a multi-symptomatic disorder and acknowledge the presence of cognitive impairments at various encased levels. There are limitations in neuropsychological batteries that accommodate for executive dysfunctions observed in ALS patients. Future studies should explore neuropsychological assessments that accommodate for motor deficits and dysarthria when assessing cognitive impairment in ALS patients.

DOI

10.1093/arclin/acab062.169

Peer Reviewed

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