Caudate, putamen, and globus pallidus volume in schizophrenia: a quantitative MRI study

Hokama H, Shenton ME, Nestor PG, Kikinis R, Levitt JJ, Metcalf D, Wible CG, O’Donnell BF, Jolesz FA, McCarley RW

Psychiatry Res 1995 Nov;61(4):209-29

PMID: 8748466


Basal ganglia structures have been reported to be abnormal in schizophrenia. However, while component structures of the basal ganglia are functionally differentiated, there have been no evaluations of their separate magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) volumes with small voxel (1.5 mm3) spoiled gradient-recalled acquisition in steady state techniques and multi-plane assessments. We examined MRI scans from 15 male, right-handed, neuroleptic-medicated schizophrenic patients and 15 age-, handedness-, and gender-matched normal volunteers. Compared with normal subjects, schizophrenic patients showed enlarged volumes: 14.2% for total basal ganglia, 27.4% for globus pallidus, 15.9% for putamen, and 9.5% for caudate. Increased volumes, especially of the caudate, were associated with poorer neuropsychological test performance on finger tapping and Hebb’s Recurring Digits. These findings indicate abnormalities throughout all basal ganglia structures in at least a subgroup of schizophrenic patients.