Types of Dementia

  • Created by: RhodesN
  • Created on: 06-11-17 10:16


Alzheimer's disease is caused by parts of the brain shrinking (atrophy), which affects the structure and function of particular brain areas.


There are many symptoms, some include: confusion, disorientation and getting lost in familiar places;difficulty planning or making decisions; problems with speech and language;problems moving around without assistance. 


It's not known exactly what causes this process to begin. However, in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease, scientists have found amyloid plaques (abnormal deposits of protein), neurofibrillary tangles (containing tau) and imbalances in a chemical called acetylcholine. Poeple are at more riskl if they are:older, have afamily history of it or have Down's Syndrome.


There's currently no cure for Alzheimer's disease, although medication is available that can temporarily reduce some symptoms or slow down the progression of the condition in some people. People who do have it and their families do get support form healthcare professionals who also help them to come up with a care plan. 

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Vascular dementia is a common type of dementia caused by reduced blood flow to the brain. It's estimated to affect around 150,000 people in the UK.


Some symptoms are: slowness of thought;difficulty with planning and understanding problems with concentration; mood, personality or behavioural changes; feeling disorientated and confused; difficulty walking and keeping balance.


Vascular dementia is caused by reduced blood flow to the brain, which damages and eventually kills the brain cells. This is usually due to: narrowing of the small blood vessels deep inside the brain – known as subcortical vascular dementia or small vessel disease; a stroke (where the blood supply to part of the brain is suddenly cut off, usually as the result of a blood clot) – called post-stroke dementia or single-infarct dementia; lots of "mini strokes" that cause tiny but widespread damage to the brain – known as multi-infarct dementia.


There is no cure for Vascular Dementia but the effects can be slowed down by medication and therapies can be given to help make living wiht it much easier. 

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Dementia with Lewy Bodies

Very common type of dementia that effects almost 100,000 people within the UK. 


Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) causes problems with mental abilities and a number of other difficulties.

Many mental symptoms of this illness are: thinking speed, understanding, judgement, visual perception, language and memory. Other symptoms are: Confusion, tremours, dpression, hallucinations, fainting and falls. 


There is no cure for this type of dementia but can have the pain reduced by medication and therapies. there are people like the NHS nurses that are also there to help provide support to the patient and their families. They can help come up with care plans. 

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Frontotemporal dementia is an uncommon type of dementia that mainly affects the front and sides of the brain (frontal and temporal lobes) and causes problems with behaviour and language.


Personaility and behavioural chnages, language probelms, problems with mental abilities and memory probelmsThere may also be physical problems, such as slow or stiff movements, loss of bladder or bowel control (usually not until later on), muscle weakness or difficulty swallowing


  • medicines – to control some of the behavioural problems
  • therapies – such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech and language therapy for problems with movement, everyday tasks and communication
  • dementia activities– such as memory cafe's, which are drop-in sessions for people with memory problems and their carers to get support and advice
  • support groups – who can offer tips on managing symptoms from dementia experts and people living with frontotemporal dementia, and their families
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Cruetzfeldt- Jakob Disease

Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is a rare and fatal condition that affects the brain. It causes brain damage that worsens rapidly over time.


These are: loss of intellect and memory; change in personality; loss of balance and co-ordination; slurred speech; vision problems and blindness; abnormal jerking movements; progressive loss of brain function and mobility.


Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is caused by an abnormal infectious protein in the brain called a prion.

How do Prions Cause CJD?

Prions are misfolded prion proteins that build up in the brain and cause other prion proteins to misfold as well. This causes the brain cells to die, releasing more prions to infect other brain cells.Eventually, clusters of brain cells are killed and deposits of misfolded prion protein, called plaques, may appear in the brain.Prion infections also cause small holes to develop in the brain, so it becomes sponge-like. The damage to the brain causes the mental and physical impairment associated with CJD and eventually leads to death.Prions can survive in nerve tissue, such as the brain or spinal cord, for a very long time, even after death.

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Cruetzfeldt- Jakob Disease (2)


There's no proven cure for Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), but clinical studies are under way at the National Prion Clinic to investigate possible treatments. 

The NHS provide a speacialist team which will help the patient with physical things on a daily basis so then the patient can still have some quality of life whist suffering with CJD. 

if the patient is suffering with psychological problems, such as Depression, then antidepressants can be provided to help reduce the impact of this on their evryday life. 


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Korsakoff syndrome

Korsakoff syndrome is a chronic memory disorder caused by severe deficiency of thiamine (vitamin B-1). Korsakoff syndrome is most commonly caused by alcohol misuse, but certain other conditions also can cause the syndrome.


Korsakoff syndrome causes: problems learning new information; inability to remember recent events; and long-term memory gaps.Memory problems may be strikingly severe while other thinking and social skills are relatively unaffected. Individuals may seem unable to recall that the conversation took place or to whom they spoke. 


Most cases of Korsakoff syndrome result from alcohol misuse. Scientists don't yet know why heavy drinking causes severe thiamine deficiency in some alcoholics, while others may be affected primarily by alcohol's effects on the liver, stomach, heart, intestines or other body systems. 

Korsakoff syndrome also can be caused by anorexia, overly-stringent dieting, fasting, starvation or weight-loss surgery; uncontrolled vomiting; AIDS; kidney dialysis; chronic infection; or cancer that has spread throughout the body.

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Korsakoff syndrome (2)


Treatment with oral thiamine, vitamins and magnesium may increase chances of symptom improvement. Giving up alcohol is also an effective treatment.

About 25 percent of those who develop Korsakoff syndrome eventually recover, about half improve but don't recover completely, and about 25 percent remain unchanged. 

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