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    • CommentAuthorJan K
    • CommentTimeJul 25th 2016
    Sunday I found an article on the internet about how "mild behavior impairment" can be the first sign of dementia. This is something a lot of spousal caregivers--including me--already knew because of personal experience, but I was surprised to see that someone had actually done a study on it. When DH was seeing all the medical professionals prior to diagnosis, they acted like behavior issues didn't have any connection to dementia. I'm glad to see that someone besides a caregiver now sees this connection. I think it would make things a lot easier to know at the very beginning that the problematic behaviors are related to dementia. Quite a few caregivers have said--again, including me--that they were ready to divorce their spouses by the time they were diagnosed. Even when a diagnosis was made, we got no information about how behavior could be a large issue. The only thing mentioned was memory loss.

    Below is a link, and a short quote from the article by Lauran Neergaard, AP Medical Writer.

    "Memory loss may not always be the first warning sign that dementia is brewing — changes in behavior or personality might be an early clue.

    Researchers on Sunday outlined a syndrome called "mild behavioral impairment" that may be a harbinger of Alzheimer's or other dementias, and proposed a checklist of symptoms to alert doctors and families.

    Losing interest in favorite activities? Getting unusually anxious, aggressive or suspicious? Suddenly making crude comments in public?

    "Historically those symptoms have been written off as a psychiatric issue, or as just part of aging," said Dr. Zahinoor Ismail of the University of Calgary, who presented the checklist at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference in Toronto.

    Now, "when it comes to early detection, memory symptoms don't have the corner on the market anymore," he said."
    • CommentAuthorJazzy
    • CommentTimeJul 25th 2016
    It was in 2004 that we noticed some extreme behaviour. Screaming at neighbours, restaurant staff, me. Our son and daughter-in-law came to visit and her and I went on the Internet and checked out Ad but he symptoms didn't match. Over a 6 year period we noticed more and different symptoms. Agressive behaviour and all about me and what I want were very high now. His driving became a concern. We were finally were able to get him checked out and they sent a geriatric nurse who had been doing the testing for years. She spent about two hours with us and them informed me " he has dementia. I don't know which one but he definitely has it" we went to her office the next week and the Dr. said "no dementia depression". I thought the nurse was going to fall off her chair. I then moved him to a different province as we couldn't get a different opinion there and he was diagnosed with" bv fronto and vascular. MRI was done. Also Ad. I had no idea at that time or in 2005 that there was anything but AD. Information on Fronto with bv was scarce.
    I am so happy to hear about this report you have brought to us. You are so right. Caregivers see symptoms other then memory loss way before hand. Maybe they need to listen to us. We really are the experts.

    • CommentAuthorxox
    • CommentTimeJul 25th 2016
    I want to emphasize that the focus on the original article seems to be on Alz. Dr. Goldberg argued this in The New Executive Brain, that other parts of the brain failing will cause the frontolobes. This article, by calling this mild ignores that dementias such as FTD are all about behavior and not memory loss. But hopefully this will lead to behavioral changes not being written off as midlife crisis or marital problems.
    • CommentAuthormyrtle*
    • CommentTimeJul 25th 2016
    I just read that article in the New York Times "Health" section and it had a two-page checklist for doctors to use to detect this condition. I had many of the symptoms listed on page 1 of the checklist so I decided it would be better not to go on to page 2!
    • CommentAuthorLFL
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2016
    As I've said many times on this board, behavior changes were the first signs but I had no clue. My DH has bvFTD as well. One symptom I would never have associated with dementia was that my husband could no longer hold a job for more than 6 months, This after having a 20 year career with a Fortune 100 company. I believe it was paulc who also mentioned this as an early stage warning sign. I thought it was a midlife crisis, but boy was I wrong! Now I wish that's all it was.
    • CommentAuthorJazzy
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2016
    My DH has bv fronto and the first signs were his screaming and yelling and swearing if he didn't get his way. Restaurants, stores, neighbours, priest and me. We finally got a DX eight years after first signs.
    • CommentAuthorJanet
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2016
    My husband has bv FTD also.
    • CommentAuthorAdmin
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2016
    When I was attending conferences and seminars in the beginning of Sid's illness, I used to tell people to make an appointment with a neurologist before a divorce lawyer. So many of the symptoms of early dementia are behavioral. There are discussions on this board about people being close to or divorced before realizing it was dementia, not a mid life crisis.