Abstract

Objective: Memory loss is a key feature of AD, characterized by rapid forgetting and can include reduced learning. Patients with FTD can have learning deficits, secondary to executive deficits, but not an amnestic profile, per se. Patients with FTD often have verbal deficits which complicates memory assessments when using verbally mediated tests. The current study examines the differences between AD patients and FTD patients in a nonverbal memory test. Method: The Brief Visuospatial Memory Test (BVMT-R) was administered in a clinical setting as part of a standardized neuropsychology battery. There are three learning trials and a recall trial after a 25 minute delay. Nine patients diagnosed with probable FTD were matched with nine patients with suspected AD based on overall MOCA scores. Results: There was not a significant difference in the learning trials of the BVMT. However, there was a statistically significant difference in the delayed recall score of the two groups (p = 0.04). In the delayed recall trial the FTD patients had a mean score of 3.8 whereas the AD patients had a mean score of 1.6. Conclusion(s): The results demonstrate that, on average, patients with AD perform significantly worse on delayed recall trial of the BVMT than patients with FTD. Since memory loss is the defining feature in the clinical presentation of Alzheimer's disease, but is not a predominate deficit in FTD, the results suggest that the BVMT is a good measure of capturing the relatively intact delayed recall in patients with FTD.