Mild Cognitive Impairment Subtypes in a Cohort of Elderly Essential Tremor Cases

Kathleen Collins, Brittany Rohl, Sarah Morgan, Edward D. Huey, Elan D. Louis, Stephanie Cosentino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Objectives Individuals with essential tremor (ET) exhibit a range of cognitive deficits generally conceptualized as dysexecutive or fronto-subcortical, and thought to reflect disrupted cortico-cerebellar networks. In light of emerging evidence that ET increases risk for Alzheimer's disease (AD), it is critical to more closely examine the nature of specific cognitive deficits in ET, with particular attention to amnestic deficits that may signal early AD. Methods We performed a cross-sectional analysis of baseline data from 128 ET cases (age 80.4±9.5 years) enrolled in a longitudinal, clinical-pathological study. Cases underwent a comprehensive battery of motor-free neuropsychological tests and a functional assessment to inform clinical diagnoses of normal cognition (ET-NC), mild cognitive impairment (MCI) (ET-MCI), or dementia (ET-D). ET-MCI was subdivided into subtypes including: Amnestic single-domain (a-MCI), amnestic multi-domain (a-MCI+), non-amnestic single-domain (na-MCI), or non-amnestic multi-domain (na-MCI+). Results Ninety-one (71.1%) cases were ET-NC, 24 (18.8%) were ET-MCI, and 13 (10.2%) were ET-D. Within MCI, the a-MCI+ subtype was the most common (13/24; 54.2%) followed by a-MCI (4/24; 16.7%), na-MCI+ (4/24; 16.7%), and na-MCI (3/24; 12.5%). Cases with amnestic MCI demonstrated lower recognition memory Z-scores (-2.4±1.7) than non-amnestic groups (-0.9±1.2) (p=.042). Conclusions Amnestic MCI, defined by impaired memory recall but associated with lower memory storage scores, was the most frequent MCI subtype in our study. Such impairment has not been explicitly discussed in the context of ET and may be an early hallmark of AD. Results have implications for the prognosis of specific cognitive deficits in ET.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)390-399
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the International Neuropsychological Society
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Cognition
  • Dementia
  • Executive function
  • Longitudinal
  • Memory
  • Movement disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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