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Neurophysiol Clin. 1997 Jun;27(3):211-9.

The role of the electroencephalogram in the diagnosis of dementia of the Alzheimer type: an attempt at technology assessment.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Neurophysiology, Academic Hospital, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


In a first attempt at technology assessment of the electroencephalogram (EEG) in the diagnosis of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), three conclusions were reached: notwithstanding the well defined clinical criteria, there remains a need for a laboratory technique to confirm the diagnosis since a 100% accuracy cannot be obtained by clinical methods only; although the EEG has a high sensitivity in separating AD patients from normal controls, the sensitivity of the EEG is at present not satisfactory when studying populations with a low prevalence of AD patients; the sensitivity of the EEG is higher or equal to the best other laboratory techniques (magnetic resonance imaging [MRI], computerized tomography [CT], SPECT, PET) available at the moment. Since the EEG and MRI can be helpful in different aspects of the differential diagnosis it is argued that all AD patients should be studied at least once by EEG as well as by MRI.

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