Cognitive Functioning in Chiari Malformation Type I Without Posterior Fossa Surgery

Maitane García, Esther Lázaro, Juan Francisco López-Paz, Oscar Martínez, Manuel Pérez, Sarah Berrocoso, Mohammad Al-Rashaida, Imanol Amayra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


Chiari Malformation type I (CM-I) is a neurological disorder characterized by a displacement of the cerebellar tonsils through the foramen magnum into the spinal canal. Most research has focused on physical symptomatology but few studies include neuropsychological examinations. Moreover, although current research highlights the involvement of the cerebellum on higher cognitive functions, little is known about cognitive consequences associated with CM-I. The aim of this study is to analyze cognitive functioning between 39 CM-I patients and 39 healthy controls, matched by gender, age and years of education. Participants have been examined on a large battery of neuropsychological tests, including executive functioning, verbal fluency, spatial cognition, language, verbal memory, processing speed, facial recognition and theory of mind. Results show a poorer performance of the clinical group compared to the control group, even after controlling the effect of physical pain and anxious-depressive symptomatology. The findings suggest the presence of a generalized cognitive deficit associated with CM-I, which makes it necessary to focus attention not only on physical consequences, but also on cognitive ones.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)564-574
Number of pages11
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Cerebellar syndrome
  • Cerebellum
  • Chiari malformation
  • Cognition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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