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Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord. 2011;32(3):202-8. doi: 10.1159/000333072. Epub 2011 Nov 16.

Early and presenting symptoms of dementia with lewy bodies.

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  • 1Department of Geriatric Psychiatry, Akershus University Hospital, Lorenskog, Norway.



To explore the presenting and early symptoms of dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB).


Patients with mild dementia fulfilling diagnostic criteria for DLB (n = 61) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) (n = 109) were recruited from outpatient dementia clinics in western Norway. At diagnosis, caregivers were asked which symptom had been the presenting symptom of dementia.


Caregivers reported that memory impairment was the most common presenting symptom in DLB (57%), followed by visual hallucinations (44%), depression (34%), problem solving difficulties (33%), gait problems (28%), and tremor/stiffness (25%). In contrast, 99% of AD carers reported impaired memory as a presenting symptom, whereas visual hallucinations were a presenting symptom in 3% of the AD cases.


DLB should be suspected in predementia cases with visual hallucinations.

Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

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