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Sometimes, in the early stages of dementia with Lewy bodies, symptoms can mimic another condition. The progressive decline in mental cognition can first begin to show in physical ways. Resembling the signs of Parkinson’s, Lewy body dementia can lead to a hand tremor – an involuntary quivering movement of the hand. Uncontrollable shaking may also be present with a “shuffling walk”, said the Mayo Clinic.

Understandably, a shuffling walk could lead to more falls, which could be another warning sign.

The abnormal protein in the brain (called alpha-synuclein, i.e. Lewy bodies) are also present when a person is suffering from Parkinson’s disease.

This is why dementia with Lewy body shares similar symptoms to the other type of brain condition.

Other Parkinson-like symptoms of Lewy body dementia include:

  • Slowed movement
  • Rigid muscles

READ MORE: Dementia symptoms: Two issues involving vision indicating you may be in the early stages

“Parkinsonian” symptoms that occur before cognitive changes are a sign of Parkinson’s disease dementia, clarified the charity Dementia UK.

However, estradiol cypionate usan if parkinsonian symptoms occur at the same time as cognitive changes, then it’s classified as dementia with Lewy bodies.

Cognitive changes can include “changes in thinking, visual perception and sleep”.

As the brain condition progresses, the affected person might experience “recurring visual hallucinations”.

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This is when a person begins to see things that aren’t really there – and this can be pleasant or upsetting.

It may also be more common for the person to experience intense dreams and nightmares.

Paying attention to people may also become increasingly difficult, with the dementia sufferer blankly staring into space for stretches of time.

These “sudden” fluctuations in alertness can cause a person to appear drowsy and lethargic, and they may spend a lot of their time sleeping.

“Memory is often less affected than with other types of dementia,” said the experts at Dementia UK.

“But people may be at more risk of mood and behaviour changes such as apathy, anxiety, depression, delusions and paranoia.”

Other bodily symptoms can include changes in blood pressure, body temperature and an impaired sense of smell.

In order to obtain a correct diagnosis, and to receive the right type of support, it’s important to take note of symptoms.

A diary or recording of symptoms, alongside a SPECT (single photon emission computed tomography) scan may help with a diagnosis of dementia with Lewy bodies.

Although the brain condition isn’t reversible, and the progression can’t be stopped completely, medication can help with troubling symptoms.

For example, medication may be able to help reduce distressing hallucinations and help to improve concentration levels.

For more information on dementia with Lewy bodies, or other types of dementia, please visit Dementia UK.

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