Lexical access changes in patients with multiple sclerosis: A two-year follow-up study

Jorge Sepulcre, Herminia Peraita, Joaquin Goni, Gonzalo Arrondo, Inigo Martincorena, Beatriz Duque, Nieves Velez De Mendizabal, Joseph C. Masdeu, Pablo Villoslada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The aim of the study was to analyze lexical access strategies in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and their changes over time. We studied lexical access strategies during semantic and phonemic verbal fluency tests and also confrontation naming in a 2-year prospective cohort of 45 MS patients and 20 healthy controls. At baseline, switching lexical access strategy (both in semantic and in phonemic verbal fluency tests) and confrontation naming were significantly impaired in MS patients compared with controls. After 2 years follow-up, switching score decreased, and cluster size increased over time in semantic verbal fluency tasks, suggesting a failure in the retrieval of lexical information rather than an impairment of the lexical pool. In conclusion, these findings underline the significant presence of lexical access problems in patients with MS and could point out their key role in the alterations of high-level communications abilities in MS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-175
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2011


  • Clustering
  • Language
  • Lexical access
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Switching

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Psychology


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