Amyloid Positron Emission Tomography and Subsequent Health Care Use among Medicare Beneficiaries with Mild Cognitive Impairment or Dementia

Gil D. Rabinovici, Maria C. Carrillo, Charles Apgar, Ilana F. Gareen, Roee Gutman, Lucy Hanna, Bruce E. Hillner, Andrew March, Justin Romanoff, Barry A. Siegel, Karen Smith, Yunjie Song, Christopher Weber, Rachel A. Whitmer, Constantine Gatsonis

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IMPORTANCE Results of amyloid positron emission tomography (PET) have been shown to change the management of patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia who meet Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC). OBJECTIVE To determine if amyloid PET is associated with reduced hospitalizations and emergency department (ED) visits over 12 months in patients with MCI or dementia. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS This nonrandomized controlled trial analyzed participants in the Imaging Dementia-Evidence for Amyloid Scanning (IDEAS) study, an open-label, multisite, longitudinal study that enrolled participants between February 2016 and December 2017 and followed up through December 2018. These participants were recruited at 595 clinical sites that provide specialty memory care across the US. Eligible participants were Medicare beneficiaries 65 years or older with a diagnosis of MCI or dementia within the past 24 months who met published AUC for amyloid PET. Each IDEAS study participant was matched to a control Medicare beneficiary who had not undergone amyloid PET. Data analysis was conducted on December 13, 2022. EXPOSURE Participants underwent amyloid PET at imaging centers. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The primary end pointswere the proportions of patients with 12-month inpatient hospital admissions and ED visits. One of 4 secondary end points was the rate of hospitalizations and rate of ED visits in participants with positive vs negative amyloid PET results. Health care use was ascertained from Medicare claims data. RESULTS The 2 cohorts (IDEAS study participants and controls) each comprised 12 684 adults, including 6467 females (51.0%) with a median (IQR) age of 77 (73-81) years. Over 12 months, 24.0% of the IDEAS study participants were hospitalized, compared with 25.1% of the matched control cohort, for a relative reduction of -4.49% (97.5%CI, -9.09% to 0.34%). The 12-month ED visit rates were nearly identical between the 2 cohorts (44.8%in both IDEAS study and control cohorts) for a relative reduction of -0.12%(97.5%CI, -3.19% to 3.05%). Both outcomes fell short of the prespecified effect size of 10% or greater relative reduction. Overall, 1467 of 6848 participants (21.4%) with positive amyloid PET scans were hospitalized within 12 months compared with 1081 of 4209 participants (25.7%) with negative amyloid PET scans (adjusted odds ratio, 0.83; 95%CI, 0.78-0.89). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE Results of this nonrandomized controlled trial showed that use of amyloid PET was not associated with a significant reduction in 12-month hospitalizations or ED visits. Rates of hospitalization were lower in patients with positive vs negative amyloid PET results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1166-1173
Number of pages8
JournalJAMA Neurology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 13 2023


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