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The Other Dementia

Monday May 25, 2015

Lewy body dementia is actually the second most common type of dementia, but it's often misdiagnosed.
Jean Enersen

KING5 - For Robert Doheny's mother, Patricia, it started with a little trouble walking, then a little trouble understanding, but it didn't stop there.

"Little things she would always do, she forgot, almost how to cook-- that's not mom," he said.

It took three long years to finally get an answer: Lewy body dementia.

Watch KING5's story on Lewy Body Dementia here.

LBD is not rare. It affects an estimated 1.3 million Americans.

Symptoms can include memory problems, confusion, sleep difficulties, and depression.

Patients may also suffer hallucinations, Parkinson's-like symptoms disease, and falls.

But for Robert, the most heartbreaking symptom was losing his mother while she was still alive.

"The blank face, when you're talking to somebody and there's no one there anymore, but, in the back of your head, that's your parent. That's your mom, your dad, your cousin, your uncle."

Because the same symptoms can be caused by a variety of conditions, Lewy body dementia is initially diagnosed as something else nearly 80 percent of the time.

For more information and to locate a support group, click here.