Facts About Other Dementias
Not everyone who shows signs of dementia has Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia is an umbrella term that covers many separate diseases. It is a general term for loss of memory and other mental abilities severe enough to interfere with daily life. Therefore, dementia is not a disease; it is a syndrome, or group of symptoms, associated with many separate underlying diseases. There are over 20 different types of dementing diseases but the most common is Alzheimer’s, accounting for 60-80 percent of the cases. Individuals may have more than one type of dementia.
Eponym for progressive supranuclear palsy, a neurologic disorder of unknown origin that gradually destroys cells in many areas of the brain, leading to serious and permanent problems with the control of gait and balance. The most obvious sign of the disease is an inability to aim the eyes properly, which occurs because of damage in the area of the brain that coordinates eye movements. Some patients describe this effect as a blurring. Another common visual problem is an inability to maintain eye contact during a conversation.