Neurological Sciences

, Volume 30, Issue 2, pp 123–131 | Cite as

The neuropsychological and neuroradiological correlates of slowly progressive visual agnosia

  • Anna Rita GiovagnoliEmail author
  • Anna Aresi
  • Fabiola Reati
  • Alice Riva
  • Clara Gobbo
  • Alberto Bizzi
Case Report


The case of a 64-year-old woman affected by slowly progressive visual agnosia is reported aiming to describe specific cognitive-brain relationships. Longitudinal clinical and neuropsychological assessment, combined with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), spectroscopy, and positron emission tomography (PET) were used. Sequential neuropsychological evaluations performed during a period of 9 years since disease onset showed the appearance of apperceptive and associative visual agnosia, alexia without agraphia, agraphia, finger agnosia, and prosopoagnosia, but excluded dementia. MRI showed moderate diffuse cortical atrophy, with predominant atrophy in the left posterior cortical areas (temporal, parietal, and lateral occipital cortical gyri). 18FDG-PET showed marked bilateral posterior cortical hypometabolism; proton magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging disclosed severe focal N-acetyl-aspartate depletion in the left temporoparietal and lateral occipital cortical areas. In conclusion, selective metabolic alterations and neuronal loss in the left temporoparietooccipital cortex may determine progressive visual agnosia in the absence of dementia.


Slowly progressive visual agnosia Dementia Cognitive impairment Neuroimaging 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anna Rita Giovagnoli
    • 1
    Email author
  • Anna Aresi
    • 1
  • Fabiola Reati
    • 1
  • Alice Riva
    • 1
  • Clara Gobbo
    • 2
  • Alberto Bizzi
    • 3
  1. 1.Neuropsychology Laboratory, Department of Clinical Neurosciences“C. Besta” National Neurological InstituteMilanItaly
  2. 2.Division of Nuclear MedicineS. Antonio HospitalGallarateItaly
  3. 3.Division of Neuroradiology, Department of Experimental and Diagnostic Research“C. Besta” National Neurological InstituteMilanItaly

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