Neurology | Clinical Neurosciences | School of Medicine | University of Utah Health Care

The University of Utah
Center for Alzheimer's Care,
Imaging and Research (CACIR)

Memory Study Line
Tel (801) 587-7888

Cognitive Disorders Clinic
Tel (801) 585-7575
Fax (801) 585-2746

Imaging & Neurosciences Center
729 Arapeen Drive
Salt Lake City, UT 84108
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Examples of Positron Emission Tomography (PET)


PET images can show how different diseases causing memory loss and thinking problems affect the brain. These images show energy use in the brain on a color scale, shown at right.

The ¨hot¨ colors at the top of the scale reflect the highest activity, with green and blue regions showing low activity.

The top figure shows the brain as seen from the right. Even patients with only memory problems can have changes on PET scans. Patients who have both memory and other thinking problems show more changes on PET.

In Alzheimer's disease, these problems are primarily at the back of the brain. In a different type of dementia, called frontotemporal dementia or FTD, changes occur primarily in the front.

Image Credit: Norman Foster, MD

Learn More About Imaging

To learn more about positron emission tomography (PET) and how imaging is used in Alzheimer's, click HERE to view imaging posters that were presented at the Center's open house in November 2006.