1 What Is Lewy Body Dementia?
Lewy body dementia is a type of dementia in which proteins accumulate in the cells of the brain leading to problems with thinking, memory and movement.
It is the second most common type of progressive dementai after
Symptoms that people with Lewy body dementia experience may include
hallucinations, changes in alertness and attention,
slow movement and tremors.
Signs and symptoms of Lewy body dementia may include the following:
hallucinations Touch, smell and sound hallucinations
Movement disorders such as slowed movements, rigid muscles or tremors Poor regulation of body functions like blood pressure, pulse, sweating and digestive processes which are regulated by the autonomic nervous system
Problems with thinking and memory
Problems with attention
Depression and apathy
Lewy body dementia is caused by accumulation of proteins, known as Lewy bodies, in the brain.
People with this type of dementia may also have plaques and tangles as seen in Alzheimers disease.
4 Making a Diagnosis
Tests that can be used for the diagnosis of Lewy body dementia include:
Neurological and physical exams
Doctors may test:
muscle strength and tone,
ability to walk,
sense of touch.
These exams are also used for checking signs of:
Tests to check the mental abilities are used to assess the memory and thinking ability of the patient.
These tests are helpful as they can help distinguish Lewy body dementia from
Blood tests can be used to check for other problems that can affect the function of the brain, like vitamin B-12 deficiency or hypothyroidism.
Brain imaging scans like MRI, CT or PET scans can be used to make sure the function of the brain is not as a result of
stroke, bleeding or tumor.
There is no cure for Lewy body dementia. Symptomatic treatment includes:
Like rivastigmine (
Exelon), that increase the levels of chemical messengers in the brain that are responsible for memory, thought and judgement can be used.
Other drugs like carbidopa-levodopa (Sinemet) can also be administered to reduce Parkinsonian symptoms like muscle rigidity and slow movement.
Patients taking these medications should be monitored since they can lead to confusion, hallucinations and delusions.
Can also be used. Maing modifications to the environmentand creating daily routines and keeping simple tasks can be very helpful for patients with Lewy body dementia.
6 Alternative and Homeopathic Remedies
Alternative remedies that may help patients with Lewy body dementia to relax include:
7 Risks and Complications
There are several risks and complications associated with Lewy body dementia.
Factors that may increase the risk of developing Lewy body dementia include:
Adults older than 60
Having a family history of Lewy body dementia or
Because Lewy body dementia is a progressive disease, symptoms tend to get worse with time.
As result of this the following complications may arise:
An increased risk of falling and injury
Worsening of symptoms like tremors