Background and purpose: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been explored as a noninvasive tool to assess pathology in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. However, the correlation between classical MRI measures and physical disability is modest in MS. The diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) MRI technique holds particular promise in this regard. The present study shows brain regions where FA and individual diffusivities abnormalities are present and check their correlations with physical disability clinical scores.
Methods: Eight patients and 12 matched healthy controls were recruited. The Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite was administered. For MR-DTI acquisitions, a Genesis Signa 1.5 T MR system, an EP/SE scanning sequence, 25 gradient directions were used.
Results: Tract Based Spatial Statistics (TBSS) group comparisons showed reduced FA and increased individual diffusivities in several brain regions in patients. Significant correlations were found between FA and: EDSS, 9-HPT(NON)DOM and 25 FW score; between λ2 and: P100 (r&l), 9-HPT(NON)DOM and 25 FW; between λ3 and: 9-HPT(NON)DOM and 25 FW score.
Conclusions: Fractional anisotropy and individual radial diffusivities proved to be important markers of motor disabilities in MS patients when the disease duration mean and the disability scores values range are relatively high.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.