Dementia – 10/31/17

Normal aging = no change in independent functioning

Mild cognitive impairment = stage between normal aging and dementia

  • Subjective reports of cognitive decline
  • Objective findings of impairment of cognitive decline
  • Loss of independence in daily functioning
  • No significant impairment in occupational and social functioning

Dementia = deterioration of cognitive function severe enough to impair occupational and social functioning; biggest risk factor = age

Alzheimer’s disease

  • Most common type of dementia
  • Insidious development of recent memory loss
  • Word finding difficulties early
  • Visuospatial dysfunction (getting lost in familiar places)
  • Problems with executive function (problem solving ability)
  • No role for biomarker testing

Lewy Body dementia

  • Dementia precedes Parkinsonian symptoms
  • Visual hallucinations

Parkinsons dementia

  • Parkinsonian features before onset of dementia
  • Symptoms of Parkinsons include = bradykinesis + rigidity, pill-rolling tremor, postural/gait instability

Frontotemporal dementia

  • Can occur in younger people
  • Change in social behaviors
  • Loss of executive functioning and decision making
  • Has a genetic component 40% of the time so genetic counseling is beneficial


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