Neurocognition in individuals with incidentally-identified meningioma

Alissa M. Butts, Stephen Weigand, Paul D. Brown, Ronald C. Petersen, Clifford R. Jack, Mary M. Machulda, Jane H. Cerhan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Meningiomas are primary intracranial tumors that are often asymptomatic. To our knowledge, no study has attempted to describe neurocognitive function in patients with incidentally-discovered meningioma. We utilized the Mayo Clinic Study of Aging (MCSA), which is a population-based sample of Olmsted County, Minnesota residents that includes neuropsychological testing and brain MRI approximately every 15 months. Using a text search of radiologists’ notes of 2402 MCSA individuals (mean age 77 years, scanned between 2004 and 2014) we identified 48 eligible subjects (2%) who had at least one meningioma. Most meningiomas were small (90% <3 cm). We matched each of the 48 subjects to 5 non-demented MCSA controls (n = 240) on age, sex, and education. Cognitive domains assessed included memory, attention-executive function, language, and visuospatial. More women (67%) had a meningioma than men (33%). Groups did not differ on prevalence of Mild Cognitive Impairment (Meningioma = 19%, Controls = 13%). Across cognitive domains, we observed similar performance for the two groups (p’s ≥ 0.21). Subtle differences emerged in memory and language domains (p = 0.05 and p = 0.11) when we divided the Meningioma group by tumor location, wherein the small group with an infratentorial tumor performed more poorly than controls globally as well as on select memory and language measures. Our findings suggest that small meningiomas are generally cognitively benign, but that may change as the tumor evolves, and might be impacted by other factors such as meningioma location.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)125-132
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of neuro-oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017


  • Brain tumor
  • Cognition
  • Meningioma
  • Neurocognitive

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research


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