Cerebral metabolic dysfunction in patients with dementia with Lewy bodies and visual hallucinations

Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord. 2008;25(6):531-8. doi: 10.1159/000132084. Epub 2008 May 14.


Aims: To identify the pattern of cerebral hypometabolism in patients with dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and visual hallucinations (VH).

Methods: Fourteen patients with DLB and VH, 7 with DLB without VH and 16 healthy controls underwent clinical and (18)F-FDG PET evaluations. The 2 patient groups did not significantly differ in their clinical characteristics, except in the occurrence of VH. A voxel-wise comparison of (18)F-FDG PET scans was conducted between each of the 2 patient groups and the control group, and the patient groups among each other.

Results: Compared with the control group, hypometabolic regions were more extensive and confluent in the patient group with VH than in the group without VH. The direct comparison between the 2 patient groups revealed a significant metabolic deficit in the group with VH at the right occipito-temporal junction and the right middle frontal gyrus.

Conclusions: These results suggest that hypometabolism in visual association areas rather than the primary visual cortex is involved in VH in DLB.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18
  • Frontal Lobe / diagnostic imaging
  • Frontal Lobe / metabolism
  • Hallucinations / diagnostic imaging*
  • Hallucinations / etiology
  • Hallucinations / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Lewy Body Disease / complications
  • Lewy Body Disease / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lewy Body Disease / metabolism*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Positron-Emission Tomography*
  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Temporal Lobe / diagnostic imaging
  • Temporal Lobe / metabolism
  • Visual Cortex / diagnostic imaging
  • Visual Cortex / metabolism


  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Fluorodeoxyglucose F18