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Analysis of affective disorders in patients with vascular dementia

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The outpatient records of 147 patients followed up for diagnosed vascular dementia were analyzed to assess the relationship between affective disorders and severe cognitive impairments. It was found that 7% of the examinees had a history of depressive states. Estimating the development time for vascular dementia could divide the patients into 2 groups: 1) 60% of the patients in whom cognitive impairments began to determine its clinical picture just within the first 2 years after identification of affective disorders and 2) 40%, in whom cognitive impairments occurred 10—20 years later. In both groups, mental disorders occurred at an equal age in the presence of depressive disorders; in Group 1, vascular dementia developed nearly twice as often as that in Group 2. At the same time, the occurrence of cognitive impairments in Group 1 patients just in the early disease stages is indicative of the organic genesis of affective disorders, as confirmed by the moderately rapid progression of psychopathological symptoms, such as sharpening of personality traits, increased rigidity of psychic processes, emotional lability, variations in affective symptomatology, inadequate remissions, and the presence of neurological symptoms. Another type of a ratio of depressive to severe cognitive disorders was found in the elderly persons in Group 2. The long existence of affective disorders without signs of cognitive diminution leads one to say that they have recurrent depressive disorder with further addition of a comorbid vascular process. These patients showed a fairly high severity of affective pathology that was responsible for more frequent admissions, as well as a phase course with relatively pure remissions without any clear intellectual-mnestic reduction and a predominance of hysterical character traits.

About the Authors

D. V. Zakharchenko
V.M. Bekhterev Psychoneurology Research Institute, Saint Petersburg
Russian Federation

N. G. Neznanov
V.M. Bekhterev Psychoneurology Research Institute, Saint Petersburg
Russian Federation

N. M. Zalutskaya
V.M. Bekhterev Psychoneurology Research Institute, Saint Petersburg
Russian Federation


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For citations:

Zakharchenko D.V., Neznanov N.G., Zalutskaya N.M. Analysis of affective disorders in patients with vascular dementia. Neurology, Neuropsychiatry, Psychosomatics. 2012;4(2S):61-64. (In Russ.)

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