PET scans can supply physicians with important diagnostic information and help confirm an Alzheimer's diagnosis (previously done postmortem). When comparing suspected Alzheimer's disease affected brains on a PET scan with normal brain scans, a distinctive pattern emerges. This pattern is detectable much earlier in the disease process than conventional testing. Because of this, patients can start therapies sooner, which are more effective earlier in the disease.
PET can also differentiate Alzheimer's disease from other dementia disorders, such as vascular dementia, Parkinson's disease and Huntington's disease.