There are over 400 different types of dementia. Following Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia is Lewy body dementia. Experts believe that this form of the disease accounts for 10 to 15 percent of all dementia cases. Similar to other forms of dementia, LBD is a developing brain disorder.
Lewy body dementia is a form of dementia that occurs when an abnormal amount of protein is built up in specific areas of the brain. This can have a major effect on your behaviour, thinking, alertness and visual perception. The abnormal deposits of protein that build up are called alpha-synuclein, these deposits are known as Lewy bodies.
Diagnosing Lewy Body Dementia can be extremely difficult as its symptoms are very similar to other brain diseases. Within a year of being diagnosed with LBD, patients may start to have memory and thinking problems, changes in behaviour and hallucinations, symptoms similar to those with Alzheimer’s disease.
Research is ongoing to find a drug that may stop or reverse Lewy body dementia as there is currently no cure. Patients are given medication to relieve symptoms, the most common drugs prescribed are Exelon, Aricept and Reminyl. There are some benefits to these such as decreased hallucinations and confusion. Common side effects include being sick, tiredness and diarrhea.
Other forms are prescribed such as Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors. The function of this particular drug is to increase the levels of acetylcholine, a chemical in the brain, improving the ability of brain cells to signal each other. Antidepressants are usually prescribed also to control and manage mood fluctuations.
There are many forms of therapy patients are recommended. Speech therapy, occupational therapy, physiotherapy and some others all contribute to the management of LBD to make your life much easier whilst living with this disease.
Lewy body dementia for most people is usually a progressive fatal disease. LBD develops and gets worse over time and it can shorten lifespans. Following diagnosis patient’s lifespan can be from 8 to 12 years, however, this can vary and some people exceed expectations and live a much longer life with proper care and treatment.
At Cavendish Homecare we have a team of Homecare Managers, Registered Nurses, and carers with a wealth of experience and experts that can provide practical and emotional support and care. We understand that this is such a sensitive time, having trustworthy support can make a huge difference with learning to live with dementia.
If you would like to enquire about our Dementia Care, contact us on, 02030085210 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org