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Eur J Neurol. 1999 Nov;6(6):629-37.

Review neuroimaging in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

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Department of Neurophysiopathology, Scientific Institute Ospedale San Raffaele, Via Olgettina 60, 20132, Milan, Italy.


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a chronic degenerative disorder of unknown etiology affecting the motor system. Conventional and non-conventional neuroimaging techniques can provide essential help both to increase the confidence in ALS diagnosis and to assess the disease evolution. Signal abnormalities at the level of the motor cortex and the corticospinal tract on conventional T2-weighted magnetic resonance (MR) images are a potentially useful marker of ALS pathology. However, the prognostic value of these conventional MR abnormalities is still hampered by their low pathological specificity. Non-conventional MR techniques with a higher pathological specificity, such as MR spectroscopy, magnetization transfer imaging and diffusion-weighted imaging, seem to have some potential not only for ALS diagnosis, but also for monitoring disease evolution either naturally or when modified by experimental treatments.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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