Diagnostic tools for the study of vascular cognitive dysfunction in hypertension and antihypertensive drug research

Andrea Semplicini, Piero Amodio, Gastone Leonetti, Cesare Cuspidi, Carlo Umiltà, Sami Schiff, Philip Scheltens, Frederik Barkhof, Costanza Emanueli, Annachiara Cagnin, Gilberto Pizzolato, Luisa Macchini, Anna Realdi, Vladimir Royter, Natan M. Bornstein, Paolo Madeddu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Arterial hypertension is one of the main risk factors for cerebrovascular diseases, and antihypertensive treatment has significantly reduced their associated mortality. However, morbidity has not been reduced to a similar extent and a still increasing number of patients suffers from recurring strokes and from the disabling consequences of cerebrovascular diseases and develops progressive cognitive impairment. It is still debated to what extent antihypertensive treatment may prevent the development of cognitive dysfunction, due to the lack of a focused approach to vascular cognitive impairment, to the lack of a systematic study of the early phases of dementia, and to the use of diagnostic tests that are not sensitive and specific for a slow onset clinical condition, such as dementia. The aim of the present expert consensus report is to enlist the diagnostic tools that are currently available to assess mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and early dementia and that are sensitive and specific enough to be used in observational, longitudinal, and interventional clinical research studies, aiming to investigate the impact of antihypertensive drugs on vascular dementia (VD).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)274-283
Number of pages10
JournalPharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006


  • Antihypertensive drug therapy
  • Arterial hypertension
  • Clinical trials
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Vascular dementia

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