Lewy Body Dementia

What is Lewy Body Dementia?

Lewy Body Dementia which is also called dementia with Lewy bodies, cortical Lewy body disease, diffuse Lewy body disease, and senile dementia of Lewy type is a common form of dementia that shares features with Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s.

Lewy body dementia is a type of progressive neurodegenerative dementia that affects mostly older adults. It can be difficult to diagnose Lewy body dementia correctly since its symptoms resemble those of other diseases. Lewy body dementia accounts for about 20% of dementia cases worldwide and is the second most common kind of progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s. The major cause of the condition is not understood very well and some believe Lewy body dementia may be linked with the PARK11 gene.

What are the Symptoms of Lewy Body Dementia?

Lewy Body Dementia leads to deterioration of motor and intellectual functions, difficulty making decisions, problems with organization, difficulties with visual perception, frequent falls, becoming lost in familiar surroundings, visual hallucinations, great variation in alertness and attention on a daily basis, difficulty judging and navigating distances, problems carrying out day to day activities, difficulty sleeping, and REM behavior disorder which causes the individual to act out their dreams.

How is Lewy Body Dementia Treated?

There is no cure for Lewy Body Dementia.

Cholinesterase inhibitors such as donepezil and rivastigmine may be employed to treat the cognitive symptoms of Lewy body dementia such as hallucinations and other psychiatric symptoms. REM sleep behavior disorder and other problems involving sleep can be treated with melatonin or clonazepam. It’s also important to reduce stress, treat depression, exercise, avoid isolation, and play games and puzzles to exercise the brain.

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Last Reviewed:
October 06, 2016
Last Updated:
September 01, 2017