Neurology Central

The impact of β-amyloid positron emission tomography on the diagnostic and treatment decisions of dementia experts

Aim: Amyloid positron emission tomography (aPET) measurement of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology could improve the accurate diagnosis of cognitive disorders. Appropriate use criteria recommend that only dementia experts order aPET. Materials & methods: We surveyed 145 dementia experts about their current approaches to evaluation and treatment and the likely influence of aPET. Results: Experts expected aPET to alter diagnostic procedures and patient management and also increase diagnostic certainty. They anticipated confirming AD or altering pharmacological treatment following positive results more than excluding AD following negative results. Experts familiar with aPET reported changes that were more consistent with appropriate use criteria and published evidence. Conclusions: Knowledge about aPET strongly influenced effects on diagnostic certainty and changed clinical practice. Dementia experts may need additional training to achieve optimal benefit from aPET.
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