Background & Objectives It is well known that cognitive impairment in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) is characterized by executive dysfunction, rather than memory dysfunction, although the precise mechanism of this remains to be elucidated. The purpose of the present study is to examine the correlation between gray matter volume (GMV) and executive function in CKD patients. Design, Setting, Participants, Measurements This cross-sectional study recruited 95 patients with non-dialysis-dependent CKD (NDDCKD) with no history of cerebrovascular disease, who underwent brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and Trail Making Test (TMT) in the VCOHP Study. The subjects underwent brain MRI and TMT part A (TMT-A) and part B (TMT-B). The segmentation algorithm from Statistical Parametric Mapping 8 software was applied to every T1-weighted MRI scan to extract tissue maps corresponding to gray matter, white matter, and cerebrospinal fluid. GMV was normalized by dividing by the total intracranial volume, calculated by adding GMV, white matter volume, and cerebrospinal fluid space volume. Then, normalized wholebrain GMV was divided into four categories of brain lobes; frontal, parietal, temporal, and occipital. We assessed the correlation between normalized GMV and TMT using multivariable regression analysis. Results Normalized whole-brain GMV was significantly inversely correlated to the scores of TMT-A, TMT-B, and ΔTMT (TMT-B minus TMT-A). These correlations remained significant even after adjusting for relevant confounding factors. Normalized frontal and temporal GMV, but not parietal and occipital GMV, were significantly inversely correlated with TMT-A, TMT-B, and ΔTMT using multivariable regression analysis. Conclusions The present study demonstrates the correlation between normalized GMV, especially in the frontal and temporal lobes, and executive function, suggesting that fronto-temporal gray matter atrophy might contribute to executive dysfunction in NDD-CKD.
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