Neuropathological findings in patients with clinical diagnoses of probable Alzheimer's disease

Am J Psychiatry. 1990 Feb;147(2):168-72. doi: 10.1176/ajp.147.2.168.


To assess prospectively the accuracy of standard antemortem clinical diagnostic criteria for Alzheimer's disease, post-mortem examinations were performed on 25 patients who had met DSM-III criteria for primary degenerative dementia and National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke criteria for probable Alzheimer's disease. Seventeen patients (68%) met neuropathological criteria for Alzheimer's disease. Two presenile-onset patients had diffuse neocortical senile plaques of insufficient number for definite Alzheimer's disease. Six patients had non-Alzheimer's disease diagnoses. Five of these six had presenile-onset dementia. These results suggest caution in the antemortem diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease in presenile-onset dementia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnosis*
  • Alzheimer Disease / pathology
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Dementia / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Hippocampus / pathology
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurofibrils / pathology