In subjects asymptomatic for cognitive impairment, even in familial recurrence, or in patients with memory complaints without any neuropsychological evidence, don’t ask for brain PET (positron emission tomography) with amyloid markers.

Type of practice


Topic Area


The fear of onset of dementia induces healthy people to ask for inappropriate consultations and diagnostics. Brain amyloid PET identifies cerebral amyloidosis that is not diagnostic of Alzheimer disease but common to other dementia subtypes and reported in healthy subjects. Furthermore, increased patient age reduces method accuracy; cognitive impairment can’t be identified nor monitored with this exam, standardized neuropsychological evaluation carries out a fundamental role. In family recurrence, brain amyloid PET can’t be used in place of genetics.


1. Zhang S, Smailagic N, Hyde C, Noel-Storr AH, Takwoingi Y, McShane R, Feng J. 11C-PIB-PET for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease dementia and other dementias in people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2014 Issue 7 DOI 101002/14651858.CD010386.pub2
2. Guerra UP, Nobili FM, Padovani A, Perani D, Pupi A, Sorbi S, Trabucchi M. Recommendations from the Italian Interdisciplinar Working Group (AIMN, AIP, SINDEM) for the utilization of amyloid imaging in clinical practice. Neurol Sci 10.1007/s10072-015-2079-3 (Published 24 January 2015).
3. Le Couteur DJ, Doust J, Creasey H, Brayne C. Political drive to screen for pre-dementia: not evidence based and ignores the harms of diagnosis BMJ 2013;347:f5125 doi: 10.1136/bmj.f5125 (Published 9 September 2013).

Attention. Please note that these items are provided only for information and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a clinician. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their clinician.