Imaging markers of cerebrovascular pathologies: Pathophysiology, clinical presentation, and risk factors

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Cerebrovascular pathologies (CVPs) are common pathologies associated with age-related cognitive decline along with Alzheimer disease pathologies. The impact of CVP on the prevalence of dementia is increasingly being recognized. The goal of this review is to improve our understanding of the pathophysiological underpinnings and the multimodal magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography imaging changes that are associated with the hallmarks of CVP. This knowledge will facilitate the development of early detection, intervention, and prevention strategies that may contribute to lowering the risk of dementia. In this review, we will first discuss currently known risk factors of CVPs including cardiovascular, lifestyle, genetic, sex differences, and head injury. Next, we will focus on the pathophysiology of CVPs and their impact on neurodegeneration and downstream cognitive impairment. Specifically, we will discuss three of the most common cerebrovascular lesions seen on MRI: white-matter hyperintensity, microbleeds, and infarcts. Finally, we will discuss the unanswered open questions in this field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-14
Number of pages10
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment and Disease Monitoring
StatePublished - 2016


  • Aging
  • Cerebrovascular
  • Imaging
  • Pathophysiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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