Progressive topographical disorientation: a case of focal Alzheimer's disease
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We describe a follow-up study of a patient with a selective, progressive impairment of topographical orientation. The patient's topographical difficulties were evident only in unfamiliar surroundings at the beginning of the observation period but later on they were observed even at home. Serial neuropsychological tests demonstrated a progressive impairment of visuospatial abilities with sparing of the other cognitive domains; only at the last assessment, about six years after early disturbances and three years after the first evaluation, the patient developed the typical cognitive impairments of Alzheimer's disease (AD). This case represents a focal variant of AD not previously described and suggests that the neuronal pathways underlying spatial orientation may be selectively damaged by the degenerative process.
Key wordsTopographical disorientation Alzheimer's disease Focal variant of Alzheimer's disease
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