As ocular motor abnormalities (OMAs) may be a marker of neurodegeneration in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), bedside assessment of OMAs can be used as a quick and highly specific tool to detect cognitive impairment in these patients.
Why this matters
ALS is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder associated not only with upper (UMN) and lower motor neurons (LMN), but also with cognitive-behavioral changes and OMAs.
The OMAs seen in people with ALS are usually associated with changes in the frontal and prefrontal cortex and may, in addition to the UMN and LMN, be a potential marker of neurodegeneration.
The findings of this large cohort study add to the body of evidence for correlation between the OMAs and motor and cognitive-behavioral features of ALS.