This October is the 8th annual Lewy Body Dementia (LBD) Awareness Month. This year's theme is "I.AM.LEWY."
LBD is a progressive brain disorder that impacts behaviour, cognition, and movement. Lewy bodies are abnormal deposits of a protein called alpha-synuclein that build up in areas of the brain. They are named after the scientist who first described them in the early 1900s. LBD can occur by itself, or together with Alzheimer's or Parkinson's.
LBD accounts for 5 to 15% of all dementias. However, because LBD symptoms can closely resemble other more commonly known diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, it is often underdiagnosed.
While every person with LBD is different, some signs and symptoms include:
According to the Lewy Body Dementia Association, a person with LBD may also experience other psychiatric disturbances, such as "systematized delusions, aggression and depression. The onset of aggression in LBD may have a variety of causes, including infections (e.g., UTI), medications, misinterpretation of the environment or personal interactions, and the natural progression of the disease."
To learn more about LBD, please visit the Lewy Body Dementia Association and Alzheimer Society of Canada websites.
About Dementia Justice
Dementia Justice is a federally incorporated non-profit society dedicated to advancing the rights, needs and dignity of people with dementia who are, or are at risk of becoming, involved with the criminal justice system. We aim to achieve our objectives through public advocacy, awareness-raising, education, and interdisciplinary legal and policy research.